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Kick The Dog / Animated Films

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  • Pixar films often feature these kinds of moments with their villains and often in ways that hurt characters other than the protagonists beforehand, to give the audience an idea who the protagonists are dealing with. Even for the more despicable of villains, a Kick the Dog moment is often involved long before the villain crosses the Moral Event Horizon.
    • In the Toy Story series...
      • Toy Story has Sid steal a doll from his little sister, just to remove the head and replace it with a toy pteranodon head before giving it back to her, because he finds her frightened scream funny. This makes clear that he is not just sadistic towards the toys he thought were insentient, but that he has a very mean-spirited nature.
      • Toy Story 2 has the Prospector closing and locking the air vent after Woody says he wants to leave. Earlier on, the "how long will it last" speech seems reasonable enough, but resorting to locking someone in for not being convinced is clearly unjustified, and in turn makes much clearer whose perspective we're encouraged to listen to.
      • Toy Story 3 has SEVERAL on Lotso's part, from reprogramming Buzz for expressing solidarity with his friends, to having said reprogrammed Buzz throw his former friends in their cells, to throwing Woody's hat onto the prison floor to make it seem like Woody was tortured or killed, (or both) to the flashback in which it is revealed that Lotso told Big Baby they were all replaced by their owner when only Lotso was replaced, and then there is Lotso hitting Big Baby (who apart from being a baby was his most loyal minion), and last but not least, him leaving the main toys to burn in the incinerator, including Buzz and Woody who had both just risked their lives to save him.
      • It really shows just how low he's fallen when, as the other toys are wanting to find him and beat the stuffing out of him, Woody says that he's not worth it with complete sincerity.
    • Syndrome in The Incredibles. First, he mocks Mr. Incredible for the apparent death of his family. Then, he encourages Mr. Incredible to kill his henchwoman, Mirage. Mirage survives, but her respect for her boss doesn't.
      • Mr. Huph, Bob's boss at the insurance company, sees a man being beaten and mugged and thinks nothing of it besides "Let's hope we don't cover him!".
      • The moment where Syndrome happily and unrepentantly shoots Mr. Incredible's children out of the sky, or so he thinks. To put it on perspective: up until then the aforementioned Mirage had been completely loyal to him, but when Syndrome does this she's clearly horrified.
      • Before that, when it's revealed that he's been spending years murdering other supers just to perfect the Omnidroid for his Monster Protection Racket. The movie leaves you in no doubt that Syndrome is eeeeeevil.
      • When he decides to kidnap Jack-Jack not only so he'll have a hostage but so he can one day turn him against his own family.
    • The Screenslaver from Incredibles 2 did this when he's first seen hacking the mind off of the Train Driver, What the Hell, Villain!
      • Evelyn Deavor kicked 3 Dogs, first, she framed the Pizza Boy. Second, she broke both Elastigirl's and Mr. incredible's bonds. Third and final, she lied to her brother, Winston Deavor about Supers wearing Night Vision, but they are Screenslaver specs.
  • Despicable Me has a character-establishing moment at the beginning where the protagonist comforts a child who has dropped an ice-cream cone by... giving him a balloon, after twisting it into some kind of four-legged animal. Protagonist then produces a pin and pops said balloon, and walks off contentedly. Cut to a shocked child with bits of balloon stuck to his face. Yes, he's despicable. His jerkness is further established in the car he drives, an ugly polluting rocket shaped monstrosity; in the fact that he bumps other cars out of the way to park, and when he goes in to the cafe to get a coffee he freezes all the other customers with his freeze ray and goes to the front of the line to get his coffee (which probably was meant for someone else). At least he tips well.
  • In Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, when the Queen is on her way out to poison Snow White, she passes a skeleton reaching for a jug of water just outside his dungeon cell. "Thirsty?" she mocks; "then have a drink!" and throws the jug at the skull, destroying it. Yep, no respect for the dead.
  • In A Goofy Movie, Pete decides that what he really wants to do after forcing his son PJ to knock down the last pin for him in his bowling game (which is one of the many things he does to PJ for a selfish reason of needing something done but being too lazy to do it himself) is to offer to give him a high-five, take it back, and then laugh in his face after he falls for it, visibly upsetting him. There was no reason at all for him to do that, not even a selfish one. And funny, he does it just after attempting to give Goofy some parenting advice.
  • When Eric marries Vanessa in The Little Mermaid, she lays a classic one into Eric's Evil-Detecting Dog.
    • Not to mention when we're first introduced to Ursula, where she's munching on adorable, terrified little shrimp that squeal in her grasp.
  • Beauty and the Beast: "I use antlers in all of my DECORATING!" A man who hunts animals for sport would do something that evil!
  • In Disney's version of Peter Pan, Captain Hook, in a rather Bad Boss fashion, shoots one of his own men for singing off key. Later, when another mentions that Wendy made no splash after walking the plank (she got rescued by Peter), Hook tosses him overboard just to hear a splash.
  • The Sheriff of Nottingham in the Disney version of Robin Hood (who, ironically enough for a Dog Kicker, is a wolf...) goes as far as to steal money from a disabled beggar (who is hiding the money in his cast and he beats his leg to get to it), children, and even from Friar Tuck's church. He does all this with an almost jovial countenance, as if he was just playing an innocent joke... and to top it off, he calls it "his job"!
  • In The Rescuers, Madame Medusa asks Penny, the adorable orphan she's kidnapped, "What makes you think anyone would want a homely little girl like you?" In a sickeningly sweet voice. After trying to get Penny to like her. The cruel manipulation in this scene is arguably more memorably evil than kidnapping Penny in the first place.
  • Cruella de Vil, villain of Disney's 101 Dalmatians, has three in one scene. First, she crushes Nanny behind the door as she enters the house. A moment later, she stubs out her cigarette in Anita's cupcake, and follows by flicking ash into her cup of tea.
  • Professor Ratigan of The Great Mouse Detective casually kicks, knocks over and generally abuses his mice minions while they're singing about how great he is. Mid-song, he executes one for calling him a rat, then frightens the rest into finishing the song.
  • In Mulan, Shan-Yu captures a pair of Chinese scouts (and mockingly congratulates them on finding his army), then lets them go to tell their Emperor he is coming. As they flee, he turns to one of his henchmen, an archer:
    "How many men does it take to deliver a message?"
    [nocks arrow] "One."
    • Later, after having his pet falcon steal a small item from a nearby village to confirm the presence of the Chinese army there, he orders the attack:
      "Besides, the little girl will be missing her doll. We should return it to her."
  • Instead of listing the occasions when Judge Claude Frollo from The Hunchback of Notre Dame kicks the dog, try listing the scenes he doesn't do this even once... we'll wait.
  • Cinderella's stepsisters do this when they tore Cinderella's dress to prevent her from going to the ball, even after she kept her end of the bargain of doing all the house chores. What made this moment even worse was that all the materials used on Cinderella's dress were things that they considered "trash" and they still made a big fuss over it, just so Cinderella wouldn't be able to go to the ball.
    • They learned well from their mother Lady Tremaine. She locked Cinderella up when she realized she was the one the Prince was looking for. And when Cinderella was able to escape with the help of her animal friends, she purposely tripped the footman carrying the glass slipper, causing him to trip and the slipper to break.
      • Bonus points for flashing an evil grin right after the duke implies that the king will have his head for this. Because, you know, she wasn't enough of a monster already apparently.
    • In the sequels, Tremaine keeps up with the puppy kicking. In A Twist in Time she manipulates her soon-to-pull-a-Heel–Face Turn daughter Anastasia into being her henchwoman because she knows how emotionally needy she is (and the other things she does go straight up into Moral Event Horizon), and in Dreams Come True she pulls a rather cruel Parental Marriage Veto on Anastasia.
  • In Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, Kadaj kicked the dog when he convinced Rufus he needed to tell the truth by tossing Tseng and Elena's bloodstained ID cards at his feet. It would have been a much more gruesome moment if... well...
    • In Advent Children Complete, we get to see a glimpse of how Tseng and Elena got their asses handed to them.
  • In Penguins of Madagascar, Skipper slaps around a baby squid at one point. He quickly realizes his mistake, though.
    Skipper: Sorry, laddie.
  • In The Book of Life, after Manolo apparently loses Maria to Joaquin, Carlos tells Manolo that "the whole Sanchez family would be so disappointed", clearly referring to Manolo's mother, long since dead. Manolo is understandably hurt and miserable because of the statement.
  • Storks: Tulip doesn't appreciate being called "Orphan Tulip," which Junior is quick to do once he deserts her in the middle of the tundra after their fight.
  • The LEGO Batman Movie: It takes Batman being shown a montage of his own moments doing this to Alfred and Robin, among other characters that leads to him having his Jerkass Realization.
  • Even after becoming a "zillionaire" through his company that sells fresh air to people, Mr. O'Hare from The Lorax is willing to do anything to prevent the trees that used to be abundant in Thneedville from coming back. Including painting over Audrey's mural of trees.
  • Tangled has Mother Gothel kicking Pascal the chameleon away.