Villain songs. I have very little to say about this that isn’t immensely obvious, but come on now, there is no more of a guilty (if it even is guilty) pleasure than that special time in every musical when the baddie du jour sings about why they’re so very evil or what they’ll do to their enemies or tries to convince the vulnerable hero to come over to the dark side.
We like watching characters do bad things, we like watching people sing, so we like characters who do bad things to sing. It’s obvious.
Disney has a long and proud tradition memorable evil doers, and in fact they deserve a hell of a lot of analysis beyond just what they sing about. (I’m reminded of the time I heard that someone did their thesis on the subject and wanted to read their paper immediately. I love Walt’s rogues, is what I’m saying) But boy do they sing, frequently stealing the show with the best number of the picture by far. “Be Prepared” comes immediately to mind for most (and be sure to see it in German if you really want the Third Reich imagery to pop). “Poor Unfortunate Souls” is far too easily forgotten amidst the rest of the tunes from The Little Mermaid. And I auditioned for a play with “Friends on the Other Side” and got cast as Satan.
But the best, bar none, is The Hunchback of Notre Dame’s “Hellfire,” the darkest and most mature bit of lyrical deviance the Mouse has ever produced: