Descendants is a media franchise created by Disney that focuses on the sons and daughters of classic Disney heroes and villains. The series first focuses on four villain kids--Mal, Jay, Carlos, and Evie--but later expands to include other characters as well. This series has a long-lasting legacy for Disney fans everywhere. This article will discuss the first three films in the series.
The first movie in the Descendants series centers around Mal, Jay, Carlos, and Evie. These children go to Auradon Preparatory School, located in the city of Auradon, where they meet the children of numerous Disney heroes. As they attempt to fit in with the other students, they start to wonder whether to follow their parents' orders and stay evil or follow their hearts and become good. Mal and Ben fall in love with each other; Ben's encouragement on following one's desires convinces Mal to change for the better.
The sequel to the first movie introduces new children to the Descendants series. Mal struggles with her new celebrity lifestyle, as she longs for the freedom she previously had on the Isle of the Lost. When Mal returns to the Isle of the Lost, she encounters Uma, the daughter of Ursula, the antagonist who took over Mal's spot as a self-proclaimed queen.
Mal is the main protagonist of this sequel, just like in the first movie. Her relationship with Ben is tested when she battles with her newfound insecurities and relies too much on her magic. There are many references to the first movie in the Descendants series, such as the spellbook Mal received from her mother and the Fairy Godmother's wand. The only difference is that Cruella de Vil, Jafar, Maleficent, and the Evil Queen do not appear in this sequel.
China Anne McClain, the actress who plays Uma, is an African American woman. Her major role brings a strong representation of African American women in this sequel. The actors who play Jay, Carlos, and Evie reprise their roles from the first movie, which brings multiracial representation. New children make their first appearances such as Harry Hook (Thomas Doherty), son of Captain Hook, and Gil (Dylan Playfair), son of Gaston.
Uma hints to the viewers in the ending that the story isn't over yet.
The third movie in the Descendants series focuses on a new group of villain kids who make their way to Auradon Prep. Where we last left off from the first sequel, Dizzy accepts the offer to attend Auradon Prep. She, along with Celia (Jadah Marie), daughter of Dr. Facilier, and Squeaky and Squirmy, the twin sons of Mr. Smee, are chosen to go to Auradon Prep. The actors who play the four original chosen villain kids reprise their roles.
Note: There is a pre and post-credit scene in this movie that is dedicated to Carlos's actor, Cameron Boyce.
Viewers will be fascinated to see how the story about four original villain kids who attend Auradon Prep later expands into an adventure featuring more children of Disney villains and heroes. There are more magical elements in the third movie, with a surprising plot twist: Hades is Mal's father.
The main theme of Descendants 3 is bringing people from Auradon and the Isle of the Lost together in this newly merged society, regardless of their heritage as either good or evil. This is a reference to the first movie in the series, as the barrier symbolizes the separation of the villain kids and the heroes kids. The barrier is replaced by a bridge, symbolizing the importance of bringing people together. The children are completely independent of their parents and are free to make their own choices.
This franchise became successful from looking at the first three movies. There are discussions about adding more sequels to the franchise, with new characters joining the cast. As the movies are centrally focused on children, viewers see the ongoing legacy of magic.
Overall, this franchise has themes, topics, and motifs associated with magic. Disney fans hope that, with more sequels, this franchise will continue to grow and develop into an iconic series.