It's nearly impossible to exist in our world today and not be effected by the Disney corporation in some way, shape, or form. Their movies have warmed our hearts, their products fly off of shelves daily, and their parks are filled with millions of visitors who can't wait to experience the magic that is "The Happiest Place on Earth."
Generations have grown up watching and experiencing that same Disney magic in theaters and at home through their animated films and touching family stories. As beloved as they are, that hasn't kept Disney from the whispers and allegations that there have been a few jokes and naughty allusions that have been placed in their movies. Some people think that we live in a conspiracy-minded culture that is looking for the slightest bit of corruption or improper behaviors at every turn, others think that Disney has placed these mistakes in their films on purpose to add a bit of spice to their virtuous image. We may never know the reason behind these blunders, but it's difficult to convince someone that they were all done by coincidence.
15 Naughty Mickey And Minnie
How can anyone deny the naughtiness in this photo? "Mickey Mouse: Bladid" is one of the more popular images circulating on the internet of Disney allegedly trying to slip male genitalia into their advertising. While the cover art is real, it's a challenge to find out exactly what the ad was for other than it was some sort of product from Euro-Disney. There is no denying that the innocent embrace between Mickey and his girlfriend Minnie, one of the most famous couples in animated history, has an uncanny resemblance to the famous mouse gripping a penis. There has been speculation that similar images with these kinds of subtle suggestions are created by disgruntled employees on their way out of the Disney door or illustrators looking for private infamy, going down in history as the man or woman who was able to throw a little perversion into one of the world's most wholesome companies.
14 Tangled: The Word In The Hair
Disney's sexual innuendos in their films is something that has been talked about for decades, so much so that now people can't wait to find hidden treasures in their animated movies. Tangled is one of the company's most celebrated films in modern history based on the popular German fairy tale of Rapunzel by the Brothers Grimm. The wholesome love story starring Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi made $592 million and became a favorite of Disney fans of all ages, but conspiracy theorists were quick to point out something that they saw on a Tangled poster.
In a promo photo for the film, Rapunzel's hair is wrapped multiple times around Flynn Rider. Some people claim that if you look closely, illustrators secretly spelled out the word "sex" in Rapunzel's hair, a sexual subliminal suggestion that Disney has repeatedly been accused of. While fans are amused with the find, many believe that these people are reaching a bit to find something that just really isn't there.
13 The Lion King: Naked Woman
Cat lovers everywhere like to give kisses to the cute little noses of their feline friends, but there was a poster for The Lion King that changed that for some Disney fans. The advertisement showed a large lion's face coming out of the sunrise and at first glance, there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with the picture. However, some people claimed that there is a naked woman's body carefully drawn out on the front of the face. If you look hard enough, the shapely female figure is a woman pictured from behind with hair to her shoulders her arms wide open. She's not wearing any clothing except for a pair of thong underwear which is the lion's nose. Again, there were fans who were vocal about people trying to look for something that wasn't there, but others believed it was yet another way Disney illustrators were trying to pull the wool over fans' eyes.
This wasn't the only controversy that circled The Lion King. A scene happens about three-fourths of the way into the movie when Simba is at the edge of a cliff and in the sky the letters S-E-X form. Disney animator Tom Sito refuted the sex conspiracy and said that the letters spell out S-F-X for "special effects."
12 Jock's Double Duty
Disney is well-known for cross referencing characters from one film to another. If you search deeply enough, you can find these hidden treasures, or Disney Easter Eggs, throughout the company's dozens of films. Sleeping Beauty's spinning wheel is seen in Rapunzel's tower in Tangled; Jack Skellington's shadow appears for just a slight moment in The Princess of the Frog; there's a restaurant in Lilo & Stitch called "Mulan Wok"; and there's a Mickey Mouse doll in the background of a scene in Frozen. Treasure hunters have found plenty of these in modern Disney movies, but the company has been doing this in their animations for decades. Take for instance the lovable Scottish Terrier Jock from Lady and the Tramp. Disney would later sneak him into 101 Dalmatians as one of the many dogs in the "Twilight Bark" scene of the film where they spread the news about the missing puppies.
11 Toy Story: Legs
Toy Story creators were downright hilarious for sneaking this purposeful mistake into their films. Sid's mutant toys are the result of Sid taking both his and Hannah's toys and putting them together to make strange creations. There is a spider legged creature with a baby doll head named Baby Face, Muscle Ducky who has a Pez dispenser face and a doll's body, a walking vintage car, and the frog which which was probably the fastest toy in the bunch. There was one of Sid's toys that people noticed that the animators were sure to have had a little fun making. There were a pair of Barbie's sexy legs attached to a toy fishing rod and the joke is that rods are sometimes called "hookers."
The joke may have went over the heads of children across the globe, but grown-ups were well aware of adult wit in action. They chuckled together undercover until the secret was exposed and everyone was able to get in on the laugh.
10 The Little Mermaid: VHS Cover Art
Is that...is that a penis?! On the original VHS cover art for The Little Mermaid, fans got more than they bargained for when one of the towers on the golden castle in the background — the one right there in the center — was said to be male genitalia. Rumors began circulating that an angry Disney illustrator drew the phallic symbol into the photo because they were going to be laid off after The Little Mermaid project had completed, thus another Disney urban legend was born.
In fact, the artist responsible later claimed that it was all a coincidence. He said he didn't intentionally draw a penis into the photo and didn't even notice that it looked inappropriate until someone from the youth program at his church pointed it out to him. Also, the artist in question wasn't even a Disney employee, therefore he couldn't have been upset about being fired. He drew the art for the film's advertising, greeting cards, and CDs, but the VHS cover art was done just months before the video was to hit shelves so the artist was rushed to complete his job. He says that he quickly finished the background so he could focus on other things and that the penis-looking tower was purely accidental. That's his story and he's sticking to it.
9 Hercules: Haunted Mansion Muses
Disney just loves to give nods to themselves in their movies, so Disneyland Park fans were tickled pink when they watched Hercules and saw something familiar with the Muses. The five goddesses were narrators in the movie and Hercules biggest fans, but and animators used their presence to ignite Disneyland memories for viewers of all ages. During Meg's number when she's singing about her adoration for the Greek God Hercules, her background singers, the Muses, take various formations and one of them paid homage to Disneyland's Haunted Mansion ride. For anyone lucky enough to have experienced Mickey's favorite haunted house, you might remember the singing concrete heads toward the end of the ride as you make your way through the lively, ghost-filled party going on in the cemetery. Illustrators recreated the harmonizing head scene for Meg's Muses and although the moment was brief, fans caught the reference and thoroughly enjoyed it.
8 Aladdin: "Take Of Your Clothes"
One of the most debated subliminal message scenes in a Disney animated film is that of Aladdin where people claim that they hear Jasmine's voice telling children to get naked. In the scene where our principal character makes his way to his lady love's balcony dressed as the newly crowned Prince Ali, Jasmine's protective pet tiger Raja greets Aladdin with a menacing growl.
Aladdin, according to Disney, responds to the growl by saying, "Good tiger, just take off and go." When the video was released, however, things sounded different for home viewers who claimed that they heard, "Good teenagers, take off your clothes." The clip was circulated online and argued on social media with fans analyzing the dialogue fervently. By the time the DVD was released, Disney cut the line from the film hoping to lay the controversy to rest but it still remains a topic of conversation for those who say Disney is secretly corrupting our youth.
7 Hercules: Going Commando
We'd like to think that Disney characters are always wearing underwear, but fans got an eye full during a particular scene in Hercules. Another heated discussion was sparked about Disney's 1997 film after viewers were up in arms when they claimed that one of the Muses wasn't wearing anything under her side slit dress. During the musical number "Zero to Hero," one of the Muses sings the lyric "Is he bold?" as the scene flashes to her taking a large step and flexing her bicep. Her dress flies up and shows nothing underneath and conservative parents weren't happy with the flash. The scene doesn't necessarily show anything inappropriate and any woman who wear undergarments knows that at that angle, it's possible to wear a dress or robe and not see a woman's underwear, but even with that logical argument the scene has still gone down in history as another one of Disney's risque mistake moves that they planted on purpose.
6 The Rescuers Down Under: Topless Woman
Disney's famous 1977 film The Rescuers Down Under faced a recall by the company in 1999 after it was confirmed that a pornographic image was featured in a scene of the movie. About 38 minutes into the animated tale as Bianca and Bernard fly through the city, they pass a building with windows that represent apartments. Some lights are off, others are on, but one in particular showed a racy image of a topless woman in the background.
The naked lady was placed in two frames of the film, one in the bottom left corner and the other in the center of the scene. The woman's image was kept in future copies of the film except for a 1992 version, and Disney claimed that the topless lady was inserted into the animation during their post-production process 20 years prior. To be safe, they recalled 3.4 million copies of the movie, a move that many claimed was a sure fire way for the company to boost sales of the poorly selling animated classic while also doing damage control.
5 Kronk Pitches A Tent
If you're going camping, there's a good chance that you're going to need to pitch a tent. While that's a normal, common term for those who enjoy sleeping outside, it's also a slang phrase for an erection. Disney purposefully-on-accident included this innuendo in their movie The Emperor's New Groove and fans picked up on it quickly.
In a scene where Kronk and Yzma are making their way through the jungle searching for the emperor who has turned into a llama, the two stop in the night to get some shut eye. Kronk's boss set up his sleeping quarters in true glamping style while Kronk opted to catch some Zs in more modest arrangements. Kronk slept on the ground and pitched a tiny tent of his own — literally — right over his crotch area. This was an obvious play on a joke that brought about a few snickers from fans with dirty minds.
4 Aladdin's Brothel Scene
The Harem girls in Disney's Aladdin make only a few appearances in the film , the first of which is during Aladdin's "One Jump Ahead" song. As he's making his way through the village, he lands inside their room, but the three ladies seemed annoyed and dismiss the "street rat," not caring about him or his monkey at all.
A theory about why the ladies are irritated with Aladdin in this scene is that they're prostitutes and don't appreciate a homeless, hungry, dirty man with no money interrupting their days work. Also, having him around wouldn't be good for their business, seeing as how they live in a brothel. This is just a fan philosophy, but it's also quite reasonable. Disney didn't confirm that they placed these women in the movie as pay-for-play characters, but their addition was certainly no mistake.
The Harem girls appear again in the film when Aladdin returns to the town as Prince Ali and they fawn over him, one more time during Genie's song "There's a Party Here in Agrabah," and their final look was during Aladdin and Jasmine's wedding.
3 The Little Mermaid: Excited Minister
The human version of The Little Mermaid's sea witch Ursula gave Ariel a run for her money, but who knew that she was hot enough to arouse a minister in the middle of a ceremony! According to legend, and scenes from the movie, when a dazed Prince Eric is about to marry Vanessa, the officiating minister seems to get an erection when the shot cuts to a side profile.
It was the conservative Christian organization American Life League that first commented on the minister's excitement back in 1995, asking parents and concerned citizens to boycott Disney. It's argued that Disney did not mean for it to look as if the minister was sporting an erection, rather that it was supposed to be his legs drawn together. At another angle, the minister is shown to have knobby knees and what people mistook for his growing nature was none other than his skinny legs. We could write this off as being accidental, but with a company as large as Disney combing over ever nook and cranny of their films, one could say this may have slipped through the cracks on purpose.
2 Fantasia: The Case Of Sunflower
It's safe to say that every company has something that they'd wish they could bury deep underground and never have anyone ever see again. Disney has many, and one of which comes in the form of a centaur, or "centaurette" according to Disney. Her name is Sunflower and she appeared in a scene in their 1940 film Fantasia.
In the "Pastoral Symphony" segment of the animated classic, Sunflower appears as a young, brown centaur who tends to the needs of the tall and more elegant white centaurs. Sunflower shines their hooves and places flowers on their blonde tails while her appearance is a sign of the times, personifying the stereotypical black characters that were prevalent in the 1930s and '40s.
Audiences back then may not have seen a problem with a black character being presented as a less than attractive black servant, but as times changed so did opinions about Sunflower. It became a poor reflection on Disney to more modern audiences so she was cut from the 1969 release of the movie. Sunflower was once again reintroduced back into Fantasia in 1990, but she was cropped in her scene so that she couldn't be viewed and she's a character Disney rarely talks about.
1 Alice In Wonderland: Down The Rabbit Hole
In Alice in Wonderland, we watched as the delightful Alice chased a rabbit down that peculiar hole and get introduced to a number of adventures that helped shape some of pop cultures most famous taglines. The film has been recreated numerous times, including the most recent hit starring Johnny Depp, and tea parties have been held in every language decorated to match that of the Mad Hatter.
With all the sweet memories that Alice in Wonderland has given us for generations, it has been at the center of plenty of controversies. The greatest accusation that the 1951 animated film promoted drug use (Alice's sugar mustache looking like cocaine, the caterpillar smoking, and eating and drinking things that could change one's physical makeup), but conspiracy theorists also couldn't help but over-analyze the entrance of the rabbit hole itself. Many believed that Disney deliberately designed the opening to look like female genitalia which lead to more theories about the meaning of the hole. Everyone was rushing to get inside and once they did, the fell into a psychedelic dream. Coincidence? It's easy to speculate when Disney isn't telling any of their secrets.