My Disney Top FiveSarah Heyward

Before we had Edward vs. Jacob, or Bieber Fever, or the abdominal spectacle that is Ryan Gosling, figuring out which guy to worship was a very simple affair. Every year of childhood, a new Disney movie was presented to us. And every year, a new crush on a new cartoon prince was born. Some of the hottest guys I can think of to this day were created by middle aged men in dark, smelly animation chambers. Some of these hot guys aren’t even human. And, sure, Disney continues to pump out movies year after year, but now that I’m (technically, reluctantly) an adult, it’s much more socially acceptable to ooh and ahh over actual, living, breathing, male specimens. But where’s the fun in that? For your lusty, nostalgic enjoyment, here’s my vote for the Top Five Hottest Disney Cartoon Heroes of all time.

5. Peter Pan

Peter Pan does not get enough credit for being the original, hard-to-get, elusive, Mr.-Big-stole-his-moves bad boy. I mean, let’s face it, this guy invented the Peter Pan Complex. Sure, he thinks Wendy’s a babe, but that’s not going to stop him from stringing Tinkerbell along because he likes the attention, laughing at Wendy when the even-hotter mermaids are teasing her, and risking everything to save yet another sexy mama named Tiger Lily. Wendy foolishly thinks she can tame him, pressuring him to let her parents adopt him back in London, but this Lost Boy will never be domesticated. He ranks #5 on my list because he’ll only break your heart, but who can resist that impish, adventurous spirit and the thrill of the chase?

4. Adult Simba

Adult Simba has that sexy I’ve-Got-a-Complicated-Past vibe, and don’t think Nala didn’t notice. Half of her crooning in “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” is related to wondering why he’s being secretive and what exactly he’s been doing all these missing years. And she’s totally into him regardless. There’s also, of course, a sadness to Adult Simba, which makes him more sensitive than the average cartoon prince. When he discovers the truth about his father’s death, that sadness transforms into red-hot passionate anger: also quite attractive, in the right context. The reason Adult Simba is only #4 is that he really could have returned home a lot earlier. He let his pity party go on a wee bit too long. Side note: the moment in the Broadway musical version when Young Simba swings off stage and swings back in as Adult Simba is, to date, the hottest moment in musical theater history.

3. Prince Eric

Oh, Eric. Dangerously human-like in appearance and as a result, necessarily setting up hundreds of thousands of elementary school girls for years of disappointment in the I-want-a-perfect-boyfriend department. Prince Eric is a bonafide hottie, arguably the most traditionally handsome Disney prince of all time. He’s also pretty cool, as far as stuck-up princes go. He doesn’t want to be told by his handlers who to marry. He’s certain that the perfect girl is out there; it’s just a matter of finding her (insert swoon emoticon here). He’s also incredibly sweet to the strange, mute, homeless girl he finds on the beach. Granted, she’s drop-dead gorgeous and can’t talk back, but still. My only complaint about Eric is that he doesn’t make a move on Ariel sooner. Sure, Flotsam and Jetsom cause some trouble when they’re out on the boat, but does that really mean he couldn’t have snagged a kiss on the walk home? Man up, Eric!

2. Young Simba

Young Simba is pretty much the whole package. He’s adorable, scrappy, fun-loving, and brave. But, more important, he actually likes and respects girls. His best friend is Nala, a female lion cub. He skipped right past the whole female-lion-cubs-have-cooties stage of life. Talk about mature! He also experiences great tragedy, perfect if you’re the type who wants a man you can really take care of. And let us not forget that Jonathan Taylor Thomas, pre-pubescent heartthrob of our universal preteen dreams, was the voice behind this cute little guy. Adorably enough, Young Simba even looks like JTT (possibly the source of my confusing yet unrelenting fascination with Furries). But seriously, guys, check out a side-by-side comparison:

My eight year old self is blushing majorly right now.

1. Aladdin

While it was a fairly close contest with Young Simba, Aladdin takes the (stolen) cake as #1 on my list. Charmingly voiced by DJ Tanner’s hot boyfriend Steve, this wannabe-prince is unbelievably attractive. He has more than a drop of the bad boy – he is a street urchin after all – but he’s kind and generous too. Remember when he gives his last piece of stolen bread to a hungry street child? And how he keeps his promise to the genie by granting him freedom with his third and final wish? I don’t even care that he lies to Jasmine about his identity throughout the movie. The boy has game, and that game is called a freaking MAGIC CARPET! Until someone takes me on a flying carpet ride over a starlit Arabian city, I won’t be able to say that I’ve experienced true romance.

Sure, there are other Disney studs I could have included. If you’re into self-aggrandizing Fabio types, you probably favor John Smith from Pocahontas. Musclebound meatheads who could use a haircut? Check out Beast, post-transformation. Every Disney hero is sexy in his own special, somewhat lifeless kind of way. Only you can know which Disney cartoon prince is right for you. So, spill: who would make your top five?


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  • Heather Hoopes

    I’m totally a Genie kind of girl… I guess he’s not a prince but he’s hilarious and BUFF. As far as evil villains go Jafar, though he’s frightenly thin is funny and quick with puns and banter. So… almost all of the male characters from Aladdin do it for me. Going to watch that movie now.

    Before I go know that I also like the Tramp for the same reasons you’ve got for Peter Pan.

  • Jenn Kristine Dixon

    This topic of Disney cartoon hotties is pretty constant in my circle of friends, so i have my top 3 down:
    1. Prince Eric
    2. Captain Li Shang (what is NOT to love about him?!)
    3. Prince Phillip
    and I also really love Frozone from the Incredibles, but maybe it’s just because I want to be as sassy as his wife is when he’s looking for that Supersuit.

  • Natalie M. Hughes

    “He’s also incredibly sweet to the strange, mute, homeless girl he finds on the beach.” Oh my gosh. I DIE. :)

  • Britt Michelle Cherry

    robin hood ftw. flynn is pretty amazing too…but i just think it’s because he reminds me so much of aladdin? and we refer to the beast as “steve” in our house…beauty and steve.

  • Nichole Ovington

    So he isn’t Disney but my favorite is and will always be Dimitri from Anastasia.

  • Kate Hastings

    Oh and totally agree with Sarai. Flynn/Eugene and Shang, too.

  • Kate Hastings

    Eric and Aladdin. Agreed. And the Beast after being changed…

    Totally unrelated.. but.. what the heck is the Beast’s name?! Belle calls him Beast up to 20 seconds before the curse is lifted. Then what?!

  • Sarai Garnett

    In no particular order other than ‘Yes Please': Prince Naveen, Prince Eric, Captain Li Shang, Aladdin, anddd Flynn you’re way hot, but I’m throwing Tarzan in the mix!

  • Audrey Leihser

    Riff Raff, street rat, I don’t buy that! Yes, I agree Aladdin is a hottie, but I have to put Prince Eric at the top of my list. He just is so perfect in every way.

  • Jenny Lynn

    I have to agree with the Prince Philip and Robin Hood comments above. But also Prince Naveen! He’s pretty cute and he plays a ukulele…even if he is a frog for most of the movie.

  • Sílvia Juncà

    Gosh that was “scary”! THIS is my exact list!! I could never ever dismiss Aladin of course, and we’ve always wondered with my girlfriends what would Simba look like if he was actualy human… HOT to say the least! I enjoyed so much your post Sarah! :)

  • Katie Fritcher

    Excellent post! I absolutely agree that Robin Hood, Captain Sang, and Prince Phillip need to be up here, but I have to say THE BEAST would be my choice! Maybe I identify with Belle the most out of all the Disney Princesses, but you can’t deny that a guy with such pretty blue eyes, gravelly voice, a bit of a bad boy/reformed kind soul is pretty irresistible, plus he is willing TO FIGHT WOLVES and has a sweet castle he climbs all over, all to fight for belle’s love! Plus, he is so ripped when he turns into a human! I must say, this topic is one I have had long debates about with my friends and I was ecstatic to see it up here!

  • Medali Castro

    as princes… stupid brain finishing sentences before my hands do

  • Medali Castro

    No Prince Phillip? He fought a dragon! He is cute, witty and charming! And let’s not forget the only *prince* that actually fought and rescued his girl!
    ****Aladdin wasn’t actually a prince until he married Jazmin and grew up without pampering and had to fight against life everyday, and Beast had a slight strength advantage so I can’t count them****

  • Jessica Hollis

    Oh my it is all about Shang! He is clever, overcome his sexism and is just plain damn fine :’) Perhaps my childhood infatuation is why I only date Asians now….

  • Shannon Patrick

    Aladdin has always been my favorite! Flynn Rider from “Tangled” is newly second place. And coming in 3rd (though technically a Fox animated movie, not Disney) would be Dimitri from “Anastasia”.

  • Bryanna Shaw

    Jon smith is my #1 Disney lover boy

  • Kelly Crafton

    Two reasons why Flynn Rider should have been on this list: He’s hot(not to mention funny) and Zachary Levi is the voice behind him (and he is also hot). He’s definitely my favorite Disney guy now! Who can resist that smolder?! Sigh.

  • Brittany Anne

    Aladdin IS a gorgeous disney god. ;)

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