Jafar is portrayed as an amoral psychopath who'll not hesitate to destroy anyone he perceives as a threat to his own sinister designs. Like numerous clinically-diagnosed psychopaths, Jafar wears a metaphorical mask of normalcy throughout the film, establishing himself as a cool-headed schemer and gaining the trust of those around him, despite his rather untrustworthy physical appearance. Even with this mask, Jafar's psychopathic tendencies tend to seep through and become apparent to the viewer, particularly in the opening sequence, where Jafar, outside of immediate initial anger over Gazeem not being the one who is the Diamond in the Rough and thus being killed, displays no remorse in sending Gazeem the thief to his death in the Cave of Wonders, simply proclaiming that "Gazeem was obviously less than worthy" in a rather dry tone of voice. The deleted song "Humiliate the Boy" also establishes Jafar as an emotional sadist, getting a laugh out of seeing "another fellow's dreams turn into nightmares one by one" and treating the Genie in an especially harsh manner. Jafar also displays narcissistic tendencies, his most obvious ones being his obsessive desire for power and sense of entitlement, as well as manipulating the Sultan to achieve his goals. It is not until Jafar gains control of the Genie's lamp that he fully shows his true colors, becoming arrogant and short-tempered with his subjects after usurping power from the Sultan. It is this impulsive behavior that leads to his downfall, as he uses his third wish to become an omnipotent genie, unaware of the life inside the lamp that he now has to endure. At the start Jafar is a somewhat shadowy character as his face is seen in the shadows during the beginning with Gazeem.
Jafar can have a somewhat comical edge that helps to add some humanity to his character, for example proclaiming "Ewww..." when contemplating decapitation, a trait unusual in a Disney villain. Furthermore Jafar has a sense of humor himself, spurting several puns in a row while keeping Aladdin and his friends from getting the lamp during the film's climax ("Your time is up!", "Don't toy with me!", "Things are unraveling fast now, boy!", "Get the point?", "I'm just getting warmed up!"), as pointed out by Hades in Hercules and the Arabian Nights. This sense of humor does not carry over in the film's direct-to-video sequel, which aimed to make Jafar more sinister and ruthless.
He also was somewhat abusive towards his minions, as evidenced by his interactions with Iago and, later, Abis Mal. Ultimately, this proves to be his final downfall, as Iago ends up turning against him twice in large part because of his abuse and not giving them credit when it is due, and Abis Mal (albeit unintentionally) ended up buying enough time for Aladdin and his allies to try to steal Jafar's lamp when he stopped mid-wish for Jafar to be freed the lamp to ask Jafar whether he was going to actually allow him to keep the treasure, after he endured some abuse regarding his wishes, and thus result in Jafar's lamp being destroyed, and thus Jafar's death.
Like some villain characters from other franchises, Jafar is attracted to a beautiful girl or woman that is a protagonist. Here, he's attracted to Princess Jasmine, but primarily for her good looking body, and not for Jasmine herself as a person. His final wish was initially for Jasmine to fall desperately in love with him so he could make her his queen (he and Iago originally planned on killing her as soon as he became Sultan, but at some time later he refused to kill her, instead sparing her life); he first creates a golden crown for her from her shackles to do so with a wave of his hand, saying that a girl as beautiful as her "should be on the arm of the most powerful man in the world". Genie couldn't grant this wish, but after she's spotted Aladdin and Abu above Jafar and the Genie in a balcony, Jasmine then got the idea to pretend to do so, and she and Jafar have shared both their first kiss together on the lips, in the order for Jasmine to distract Jafar's attention from Aladdin as he tried to get the lamp back. (Much earlier, though, he says in what we would consider to be) a sexist manner that Jasmine's speechlessness is "a fine quality in a wife").
Deleted scenes for the original film implied that most of his negative traits and motives stemmed from having to grow up impoverished and bullied on by the populace of Agrabah, making him almost similar to Aladdin, although their similarities differed in how they handled their suffering.
Appearance and OutfitsEdit
Unlike most villains such as Hades and Bill Sykes who are slender and muscular Jafar is a tall, bony man dressed in extravagant clothing, always seen carrying gold, ruby-eyed, cobra headed staff to supplement his magical powers. Jafar has a twisted, black goatee and a faint mustache, as well as grey eyeliner. He was supposed to be designed as ugly, and Genie makes this obvious when he refers to him as "a tall, dark, sinister, ugly man." He also carries a cobra-head staff, which he uses for his sorcery. Jafar was animated by Andreas Deja, who used the character Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty and voice actor Jonathan Freeman, as basis for Jafar's design. Most of the time Jafar is much like Ming the Merciless both dressing in dark clothing and experts at magic. He also has this similarity to Lord Voldemort but has a more human appearance.
As Royal Vizier, Jafar wears black robes that reach the ground overtop a red garment with bell sleeves. Underneath this second garment, Jafar wears yet another shirt, this one black with very close-fitting sleeves that reach his wrists. The shoulders of his outer robe are pointed and connect to a long, billowing black cape with a blood red interior. His shoes are brown and the tips curl inward. A red-violet sash is tied around his waist. He also wears an odd, light-colored garment that covers his neck, the back of his head, and his chest. He sports a distinctive black headdress, seemingly a type of mitre, with a thin, yellow pattern wrapping around the middle, what seems to be a ruby set in the front, and a bright red feather placed just above it. More red-violet cloth hangs from the miter, draping over Jafar's shoulders. As Sultan, Jafar wears a white version of this outfit.
When he's turned into a sorcerer, Jafar's wardrobe goes to a more exaggerated form of his normal attire, with a head-dress sporting horn-like protrusions. It doesn't have a red feather on it as it is used to, only conserves the ruby on the front. The shoulders of his outer robe are even pointer and maintain a higher position than before. His red-violet sash on his waist is slightly different. Here he regains his iconic snake staff, but notably with an open fanged-mouth that fires beams magic on command.
Once Jafar makes his third lamp wish, he takes on a form resembling Genie himself, with some differences. Jafar's skin becomes blood red, his ears become pointed, his right ear gains a gold piercing, his hair becomes tied in a topknot, and his eyes become completely yellow (although there are instances where Jafar gains pupils, such as in You Are Only Second Rate), and when he uses legs instead of a tail, the legs look muscular and somewhat demonic, with claws. He retains his red-violet sash and five-fingered hands (albeit with claws, compared to Genie, who has four-fingers). When he's in his normal human form, Jafar wears a slight recolor of his sorcerer outfit, with red more prominent than before. Interestingly, his sash on his waist is seen black instead of being red. He retains his snake staff. when he guest appeared in an episode of Hercules, he regains his sorcerer outfit back.
Powers and abilitiesEdit
At the start of Aladdin, despite having an extensive knowledge of arcane lore, Jafar did not seem to possess any genuine magical powers and thus could have been no more than an alchemist. The closest he has ever come to using actual magic prior to becoming a sorcerer was with his Snake staff's hypnotic properties. He was also surprisingly effective at disguising himself when he was a regular human, as evidenced by his posing as an old prisoner to recruit Aladdin into retrieving the Magic Lamp from the Cave of Wonders after arranging for his arrest, and later to trick Hercules into fighting Aladdin. However, after wishing to become the most powerful sorcerer in the world, he could levitate objects, breath fire, summon objects, and transform himself and others. In addition, he also was immune to the effects of fire, as evidenced by his passing through the flames generated by him unharmed immediately before transforming himself into a giant Cobra. Jafar's next wish - to become a Genie - made him arguably one of the most powerful entites in the Disney universe. However, after he was killed and later revived by Hades as a spirit in an episode of the Hercules animated series, Jafar no longer has his genie powers, but remains as a sorcerer.
As far as Jafar's family goes, he has a twin sister named Nasira, who tried bringing her brother back to life in the game, Nasira's Revenge. Jafar's sister is very similar both in appearance and actions as Maleficent. She respects Jafar and the sibling bond between them is quite strong.
In Aladdin, Jafar is introduced as the sinister Royal Vizier to Agrabah's Sultan who desires power over Agrabah. He is the second most powerful authority in Agrabah, answering only to the Sultan. He is always accompanied by his sarcastic, devious pet parrot, Iago.
Whilst presenting a charming and respectable exterior to the Sultan and the people of Agrabah, he secretly holds everyone around him in contempt and manipulates the Sultan by means of hypnotizing him with a magical snake-headed staff, which he always carries on his person. Even regarding his desiring marriage for Jasmine afterwards, it was solely so he could gain control of the throne and intended to kill her soon thereafter—though he later reneges on this in an attempt to make her his queen consort. He's traveled widely and amassed a wide knowledge of magical artifacts and legends. Until he uses Genie's powers to become a sorcerer, however, his magical abilities are limited to the use of such artifacts as he's collected, and his prowess as an accomplished alchemist.
He also had some contacts within the Agrabah underworld, including the thief Gazeem, whom he hired to find the Scarab half. He eventually managed gain it after some delays, although he was unable to retrieve the lamp after further delays that resulted in Gazeem's death, relating to a Diamond in the Rough. Undeterred, he returns to Agrabah, and upon learning from the Sultan that Jasmine doesn't wish to marry a prince, offered to help in exchange for the Sultan's familial sapphire ring, with hypnosis being involved. After departing, however, he makes it clear to Iago that he intends to usurp the Sultan's authority. He eventually used the Sultan's ring as the diamond in the rough at his laboratory, Jafar then identified the individual necessary to access the Cave of Wonders, Aladdin. He then had the royal guards arrest Aladdin as a subtle means of recruiting him, although he did not expect Jasmine to have accompanied him (she had escaped from the palace earlier to avoid having to find another Prince at her doorstep).
Nonetheless, after being confronted by Jasmine, he lied about having executed Aladdin (or rather, covered a half-truth, as he was already intending to execute Aladdin after retrieving the lamp anyway). With Jasmine out of the way of his plans, he then made his way to the dungeons and disguised himself as an old prisoner, offering to help Aladdin escape from the dungeons in exchange for aiding him in retrieving the Lamp from the Cave of Wonders. After accepting the deal, they then made their way to the Cave of Wonders, and after Aladdin was accepted in to retrieve the Lamp, Jafar then promised his reward after Aladdin retrieved the lamp. Some time later, Jafar then demanded the lamp from Aladdin before saving him. Afterwards, he then attempted to give Aladdin his reward (stabbing him while he was hanging on for dear life in the collapsing cave), but Abu bit him in the wrist. Unbeknownst to him until after the cave collapsed, Abu also stole the lamp from him when he bit him. Afterwards, Jafar ended up reprimanded by the Sultan for executing a prisoner without his consultation (Jasmine had earlier informed him earlier of Jafar's supposed execution of Aladdin), with Jafar swearing that it won't happen again. Although Sultan forgave Jafar instantly, Jasmine still distrusted him.
Secretly, however, Jafar was still fuming at the loss of his lamp, and was forced to find another means of taking control of Agrabah. He eventually deduced a means regarding tricking the Sultan into using a fake provision in the law that would allow a royal vizier to marry a princess to have him marry Jasmine. He then attempted to hypnotize the Sultan to ensure the plan worked, although Ali's arrival interrupted the process. Jafar, sensing a potential rival with Ali (who unbeknownst to him was actually the alias of Aladdin due to his possession of the Lamp), then attempted to arrange for Ali's death after his attempt at suggesting the Sultan to drive him away failed. However, he also exposed himself to Ali when Jafar decided to attend to watching the guards ambush of Ali personally, which ultimately proved to be a big mistake. Jafar then hypnotized the Sultan successfully and had him visit Jasmine (who at that time had just returned from night-long tour with Ali across the globe) to inform her of her marriage to Jafar. Jafar then covered up his attempted murder of Ali by claiming that he had "gone away." However, Ali then confronted Jafar and attempted to inform the Sultan that Jafar attempted to murder him. Jafar then tried to convince the Sultan that he was lying, but Ali had managed to deduce how Jafar managed to persuade the Sultan and proceeded to smash the source of the hypnosis: Jafar's staff.
The Sultan, upon being informed of Jafar's treachery, then tried to have the guards arrest Jafar. Jafar, however, escaped with a smoke bomb, although not before glancing the lamp inside Ali's turban, having him deduce Ali's true identity of Aladdin. He then revealed this to Iago, and ordered him to steal the lamp from Aladdin, which he succeeded in the task by tricking Aladdin into thinking that Jasmine was calling him. Jafar, observing the marriage announcment from his lab, then unleashed the Genie, and made himself his new master, declaring his wish to become the sultan of Agrabah. He then revealed himself as the new sultan, and revealed to Aladdin that he's the new master when Aladdin attempted to stop him via the Genie. Afterwards, after Aladdin managed to mention that he will still be stopped even if he was Sultan, Jafar then proceeded to wish to become the most powerful sorcerer in the world, and then banish Aladdin, Abu, and the carpet to the arctic, although not before exposing Aladdin as being the true identity of Prince Ali to Jasmine. Jafar then attempted to wish for Jasmine to become his queen, after a first attempt to have her betroth to him willingly had failed (creating a crown for her from her chains). Although Genie claimed that Genies can't make people fall in love, Jasmine seeming made the wish come true, although he later discovered that Jasmine actually faked it to ensure Aladdin retrieved the lamp when seeing Aladdin reflected on her crown. He then fought against Aladdin with all of his powers.
Jafar transformed himself into a giant cobra to kill Aladdin, but just as he was about to squeeze him to death, Aladdin's tricks Jafar into using his third and final wish to become an all-powerful genie himself. However, he is unaware that Genies are prisoners within their lamps and is therefore trapped by his own selfish wish for power. Screaming in rage he was sucked into a black oil lamp, dragging the protesting Iago with him. Genie then flung the lamp into the Cave of Wonders for 10,000 years.
The Return of JafarEdit
After spending some time in the sunken Cave of Wonders, Jafar's Lamp was freed by Iago (who managed to somehow get himself partially out of the lamp), although Iago ended up dropping the lamp in a well instead of freeing Jafar himself due to a falling out. Jafar is later truly freed from his lamp by one of Aladdin's enemies, a bandit named Abis Mal. Because his genie form can't directly kill Aladdin due to its inherent limitations, and since he can't actually travel outside of close proximity of the lamp, he attempts to arrange for Abis Mal to do it for him. He initially used his genie form to persuade Abis Mal into helping him, but then transforms into his human form after it became apparent that Abis Mal could not even respond coherently, much less agree to help him, out of intimidation at his terrifying genie form. Jafar forcibly recruited Abis Mal as his partner by forcing him to waste his first two wishes so that Abis Mal will assist him in his plot for revenge against Aladdin in order to get his third wish or he will wish he had "never been born" and says that if he co-operates he will see that he is amply rewarded (although Abis Mal, having earlier encountered Aladdin, tells him he would've assisted him anyway after learning this due to sharing a mutual desire for revenge against him as well).
Jafar reunites with Iago and demands him to lure Aladdin and the Sultan into a trap. Iago successfully gets Aladdin and Sultan to go for a flight on Carpet and while they're gone, Jafar invades the palace and begins to torment Genie and Abu. After the torture, he captures the two and begins the next part of his plan.
Aladdin, Sultan, Carpet and Iago reach the destination and what seems to be a peaceful and relaxing area, turns out to be a death trap as Sultan is kidnapped by hooded men on magic flying horses. Aladdin threatens Iago saying he'll deal with him later and rushes off on Carpet to save the Sultan. Aladdin fails and is thrown down a waterfall by Abis Mal but rescued by Jafar. Abis Mal's in shock but Jafar explains their act of revenge's not completed just yet. Jafar frames Aladdin for the murder of the Sultan who's really being held in captivity by Jafar. Jafar disguises himself as Jasmine and right before Aladdin's executed via decapitation, Jafar reveals himself to torture Aladdin even more. However unknown to him, Iago, consumed with guilt for helping Jafar set up his new friends, frees Genie who saves Aladdin in the nick of time.
At the palace, Jafar rewards Abis Mal with all of the treasure his heart desired, with the only thing he requests in return is for Abis Mal to grant his freedom. Before he can, however, Abis Mal ends up interrupting his own wish to wonder whether Jafar was sincere, thus resorting in Jafar issuing a threat to Abis Mal to torture him if he doesn't. Shortly afterward, the lamp is taken by Aladdin who knows that the only way to destroy him is to destroy his lamp. Jafar transforms into a genie and battles the heroes, confident that they'll never destroy him because of his great power. He creates a wasteland in the palace's garden creating pits of lava as a trap for Aladdin and knocks out Genie. When it seems like he is succeeding, Iago unexpectedly comes to the rescue. Jafar is furious at this betrayal and tries to attack him as well. He badly weakens his former ally, but with his last ounce of strength, Iago kicks the lamp into the lava which results in Jafar violently imploding into a cloud of dust, destroying him. Peace is restored and Iago is welcomed into Aladdin's home.
Aladdin (TV series)Edit
Because of his ultimate demise, Jafar made no physical appearances in the television series. However, he was often mentioned by the cast, mostly Iago. His secret hideout in the palace remained intact even after his death, and the heroes occasionally explored it to find new, magical ways to defeat a powerful enemy. An antagonist in the series named Mozenrath, is a powerful sorcerer who Iago often called "Jafar, Jr." because of the similarities.
Hercules: The Animated SeriesEdit
In the episode Hercules and the Arabian Night of Disney's Hercules TV-show spin-off, Jafar was temporarily revived by Hercules' arch-enemy, Hades. Due to his demise, he no longer had his genie powers and was an ordinary sorcerer again. The two villains teamed up to eliminate their enemies. Jafar visited the island of Hercules' hero trainer Philoctetes, where he summoned several giant beasts to battle Hercules. However, Hercules was able to defeat the creatures, sending Jafar back to the Underworld. Meanwhile, Hades sent his lackeys, Pain and Panic, to do away with Aladdin and friends, but Aladdin proves too clever for Hades' imps, so Jafar and Hades concur yet another plot. By kidnapping Abu, and Hercules' friend Icarus, Aladdin and Hercules were told that each other was the kidnapper, and battled. Jafar himself was responsible for getting Hercules involved, using his old prisoner's disguise to trick Hercules into thinking that Icarus was kidnapped by Aladdin, although Hades inadvertently nearly ruined the disguise shortly afterwards by removing the cloak. Eventually, the heroes caught on to the plot after Hercules informed Aladdin of Jafar's revival. In the Underworld, Jafar battled both Aladdin and Hercules, but the heroes defeated him once more, and Jafar was trapped in the River Styx forever.
House of MouseEdit
Despite his death, Jafar has also had a recurring role on House of Mouse. He was even the central villain of the direct-to-video film Mickey's House of Villains, in which he relieved the villains of the Halloween boredom at the House of Mouse by taking it over and transforming it into the House of Villains. However, Jafar is later sealed into his magic lamp and the other villains flee with their most powerful member defeated. Jafar even went on a date with Maleficent in one episode and ended up getting burned by her literally. Many fans noted that the two characters possessed many similarities. The two are often compared as both have regal bearing, bird side-kicks, are exceeding tall and dress in long, dark robes and peculiar head-wear.
Two other of Jafar's most notable appearances on the show are on 'Donald's Lamp Trade" where he tricks Donald into thinking Mickey's not his friend so he can obtain a lamp. Donald steals Genie's lamp when in reality Jafar wanted Micke's lamp. And in "House of Magic", in which he and Iago use the famous magic spell Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo to return the House of Mouse after Daisy Duck magically causes it to vanish.
In "Kingdom Hearts"Edit
Kingdom Hearts seriesEdit
Jafar is a recurring villain in the Kingdom Hearts games. He is a member of Maleficent's group, and appears to be her second-in-command. His eventual genie form returns in this game series, but for some reason the snake form he obtains before even becoming a genie does not.
During Maleficent's conquest of the worlds, Jafar was recruited to help out with their ultimate goal of ruling the universe with the power of Kingdom Hearts. Jafar, along with his parrot Iago, planned to use the Heartless to take over Agrabah, succeeding in placing the citizens under arrest to keep the Heartless from being side-tracted and overthrowing the sutan. He visited Hollow Bastion twice, once commenting on Sora's defeat of Guard Armor and second, commenting on Sora's progress in Deep Jungle along with Clayton's foolishness.
When Maleficent came to check on his progress, Jafar had yet to find the Keyhole to his world, something he tasked the Heartless with doing; (a big mistake). However, he had also yet to capture Jasmine, the sixth Princess of Heart. Upon ordering the Heartless to find Jasmine, Jafar was warned not to steep himself in darkness for too long as "the Heartless consume the careless." When Sora, Donald, and Goofy arrive, Jafar was trying to capture the princess, failing as they diverted his attention.
While Sora, Donald and Goofy went to the Desert and rescued Aladdin from the Heartless, Jafar had managed to locate Jasmine back at the palace. When Aladdin arrived with the others and wished for Genie to save her, Jafar toke the lamp, nullifying the second wish. With his capture of Jasmine complete, Jafar left for the Cave of Wonders with Genie to find the Keyhole while keeping the heroes busy with a Heartless boss.
Upon entering the Lamp Chamber, Jafar wished for the Keyhole to be revealed. At the same time, he had the Heartless possess the Guardian of the Cave to buy himself time. Once again, Maleficent arrived to check on his progress and Jafar informed her of Sora's interfearance with their plan. Thinking it may be best to tell Riku about Sora's resistance to further their goal, Jafar was interrupted by the arrival of the heroes. With Maleficent fleeing back to Hollow Bastion, Jafar used his second wish for Genie to crush Sora and friends. A slave to the lamp, Genie reluctantly fought alongside Jafar against Sora and friends.
Losing, Jafar saw his powers were nothing compared to Genie's. Out of desperation, especially as he was going to be consumed by the darkness within himself otherwise, Jafar ultimately used his last wish to become a genie himself. He then fought the heroes in a lava chamber, but was defeated, getting sucked into his lamp with Iago. After the battle, Hades, Captain Hook, and Riku conversed about his chances against Sora; Hades comments saying that Jafar may have won if Riku had supported him.
Kingdom Hearts: Chain of MemoriesEdit
In Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, Jafar appeared in the Agrabah made of Sora's memories with the Heartless to take over Agrabah. In order to get the lamp, he tricked Aladdin to get the lamp in an attempt to make Jasmine marry him. When Jafar stole the lamp from Aladdin, his first wish was to have Jasmine in his clutches, his second being for Genie to protect him from a sneak attack led by Sora and Aladdin, and his third wish was to become an all-powerful Genie. He teleported Sora and his friends to the center of the earth and attacked them. His attacks were similar to that seen in the first game, except ice could not damage him. Instead of attacking Jafar directly, Sora attacked Iago, grabbed the lamp, and trapped Jafar inside like the previous encounter.He also appeared in Riku's story representing Riku's dark memories.
Kingdom Hearts IIEdit
One year later, Jafar's lamp is found by the Peddler. Maleficent sent Pete to get the lamp and release Jafar from his prison and turn him into a Heartless. Unfortunately for Pete, Sora and friends had already arrived. Sora and gang head to the Cave of Wonders to give the Peddler treasures for the Lamp. Sora returned to find Pete chasing the Peddler for the lamp. Pete chased the Peddler all the way to the Palace, but Iago, who had previously escaped from the lamp, snatched it in the nick of time. Angered, Pete summoned two powerful Heartless but Sora defeated them and sealed Jafar's lamp away.
However, the "defeat" was bittersweet. Due to the manipulations of Organization XIII, the Peddler found Jafar's lamp again and released him. Jafar forced Iago to keep Sora occupied by telling him that he would be in the Desert Ruins. Sora and the gang arrived at the tower in the ruins, with the help of Genie and Carpet, while Jafar kidnapped Princess Jasmine. Once Sora and Aladdin discovered the ruse, Iago informed them that Jafar would be attacking the Palace at that point. They arrived at the Palace to find Jafar taunting Jasmine, who was chained to the gate. Jafar fired a beam of dark lightning at Aladdin, but Iago intercepted it and fell unconscious. Jafar turned into his Genie form and rose into the sky, with Sora in pursuit, riding on the magic carpet. Sora and Jafar battled one-on-one in a battle that destroyed half of Agrabah. Sora came out the victor, with Jafar exploding, his lamp dissolving into the darkness.