A No Celebrities Were Harmed
version of Walt Disney
; expect him to be the animator of a world-famous cartoon character and/or the founder of Souvenir Land
. Also expect an exaggerated interest in planned communities and/or creating a utopia, possibly with sinister undertones. Oh, and Human Popsicle
or Brain in a Jar
jokes, many of them. Many of these characters go beyond parodying just
Disney and fuse him with Howard Hughes, another mustachio'd early/Golden Age of Hollywood impresario and futurist. Hughes gradually became debilitated by severe mental illness (OCD and agoraphobia) and eventually was reduced to living in seclusion, obsessively carrying out odd habits such as urinating in jars, wearing tissue boxes on his feet, and refusing to cut his nails. While Disney endured a fairly normal, if still ultimately fatal, bout with cancer, Hughes' eccentricities dovetail well enough with the prevailing Urban Legend
about Disney going into hiding in order to cheat death that perhaps it's not surprising that many writers can't resist the conflation when writing this type of character.
See also: Fountain of Expies
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Anime & Manga
- An episode of Kirby: Right Back at Ya! has King Dedede start his own animation company, hiring a famous animator named "Owalt Desney" (or "Dis Walney" in the dub) who turns out to be a monster in disguise to help him.
- Mi-chan and Fancy Yankeeland in the Papuwa anime. The author skates a lot closer visually in the manga but censors any actual names in dialog bubbles.
- A truly heartbreaking version of this appears in Ergo Proxy. He just wants to be left alone, and not killed like all the other Proxies.
- The fake Chuck Culkin in Billy Bat, who took over the titular comic and gave him some major Bad Ass Decay after original author/artist Kevin Yamagata disappears. He rapidly built such a large empire around the character that he easily gets away with pretending he started it.
- William Borise in the second volume of Genkaku Picasso.
- Wade Dazzle, a billionaire cartoon and amusement park mogul who sought the secret of Amazon immortality in the Wonder Woman comics.
- Mitch Wacky in The DCU.
- Yet another DCU version; Winston Keever Sr., creator of Winky Blink And Friends and founder of the Winkyworld theme park chain in Chuck Dixon's Batman and Green Arrow comics. He briefly appears in Green Arrow as a dying old man, horrified by how ruthlessly his son runs the company.
- And one more; the Elseworld Batman: Dark Allegiances reinvents the Dark Knight's villains as parodies of real people from the 1930s suspected of Nazi sympathies. So Oswald Cobblepot becomes Milt Biggsley, the creator of Peter Penguin, and founder of the Biggstown amusement park (allowing a Mythology Gag with a giant prop typewriter).
- Elias McFadden in the middle story of the comic anthology The Eternal Smile.
- One story in the Fantastic Four had a crazy Disney-alike try to use the Human Torch's powers to 'reignite the Earth's core'. The reason his employees went along with such a blatantly insane plan (Lampshaded as such, even by comic-book science standards,) was that they were all Ridiculously Human Robots he'd built.
- Fission Chicken once had to beat the cryogenically-preserved brain of "Walt Ditsey".
- In the black-and-white Howard the Duck magazine, Wally Sidney was a failed animator turned wealthy haberdasher. He imposed a new code of decency on the title character, forcing him to wear pants. Hilariously, this story saw print decades before the real Disney Corp took over Marvel Comics.
- The Doctor Who Magazine comic strip "Welcome To Tickle Town" featured eccentric animator Tobias Tickle, who artificially prolonged his life into the 24th century and then built Tickle Town theme park, and trapped its visitors to protect them from the horrors of the After the End world outside which existed entirely in his head.
- An unpublished Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi story had the girls trying to take a vacation at Dizzyland ("the sickest place on earth") but are chased persistently by their fans.
- The Golden Age MAD parody "Mickey Rodent!" had Walt Dizzy, an Unknown Character whose rules everyone had to live by, including wearing White Gloves at all times. His Disney-like signature appeared on every page until a conspicuous Art Shift (all of this being pointed out by the characters). His name was always printed like his signature when it appeared in dialogue bubbles.
- Raymond Dieterling, founder of Dream-a-Dream Land, in the James Ellroy novel L.A. Confidential. (This character doesn't appear in the film version).
- Ralph Mimsey in several novels by Dave Stone, including the Judge Dredd tie-in novel Wetworks and the Doctor Who Missing Adventures novel Burning Heart; the latter has Mimsey's cryogenically-preserved head as a minor character.
- Uncle Sam Beasley from a few of the Destroyer books tried to conquer Cuba and turn it into an amusement park. His first book features the song, "It's a Short Life After All."
- The unnamed creator of the Happy Mouse Kingdom theme park in Orlando, Florida, as featured in The True Meaning of Smekday.
Live Action TV
- The Big Finish Doctor Who audio drama Zagreus, featuring the Eighth Doctor, has several characters played by the actors who play earlier incarnations of the Doctor. Sylvester McCoy's character is a futuristic Walt Disney analogue named Uncle Winky.
- Walter Rand in the Halt Evil Doer setting for Mutants & Masterminds. His "Rand Utopias" are parodies of Disney's "planned community" Celebration combined with the comicbook concept of the Mad Scientist having a hidden community as his own sociology experiment. (The real Disney also existed in the HED! setting, and got irritated at Rand constantly stealing his ideas. The last straw was when he started "poaching" Mouseketeers to join Sneckles the Snake's Young Pioneers.)
- Cave Johnson from Portal 2 seems to have a lot of this to his character; especially with regards to his plans to cheat death.
- Mr. House in Fallout: New Vegas is this mixed with a Howard Hughes-type paranoiac. His goal is to run New Vegas as The Theme Park Version: safe, clean, secure, and under his totalitarian control, aided by an army of robots. His portrait bears more than a little resemblance to Disney, and his actual body is effectively somewhere between Human Popsicle and Brain in a Jar.
- Andrew Ryan from BioShock 1 is basically a Libertarian Walt Disney bent on building a utopia. He also has a mustache that is similar to Disney's. Like House he is also based on Howard Hughes.
- An early Schlock Mercenary arc featured Newt Sidney, owner of Sidneyland. Very obvious - they even mentioned that he started his career with a talking mouse. Interestingly enough, he's the villain of the piece, enforcing "a near-monopoly" through underhanded dealings, threats, criminal connections, and similar - all of it impossible to trace back to him, meaning that he winds up as a Karma Houdini. The arc is started when one of his competitors hires the titular mercenaries to safeguard the opening of his new 'Magic Dream-Land' (next door to Sidneyland), after Sidney threatened to prevent the opening even if he had to commandeer a Kill Sat and nuke them from orbit.
- Waldo Frizzy from Seventy Seas, creator of Toby Terrier and Toby Town.
- Dr Collodi in Skin Horse, the founder of WhimsyCorp and the Little House of Wonders theme park.