Return of Jafar – Disneycember

Disneycember looks at the ‘Direct to DVD Sequels.’ It’ll be rough, but it’s time to get through them. Let’s start with the very first.

About Doug Walker

Creator of 5 Second Movies, Nostalgia Critic, Bum Reviews and more.


  1. MidnightScreeningsman2014

    Rip Robin Williams and it’s also no coincidence at all that the top 2 videos have to do with someone replacing him and his best roles

  2. Wow. So harsh on this movie. I actually found it quite enjoyable.
    I think it was the first time I ever saw a redemption arc for a minor villain. I don’t know if I have ever seen one that was older, but I have seen it done several times since.

    • While I don’t find the movie particularly enjoyable or think that Doug’s opinions are too harsh, I do like Iago’s redemption arc. While he may have been dismissed as just a goofy villain sidekick in the original film, he really was the one who allowed Jafar to succeed as much as he did, but received no appreciation for it. His anger at and ultimate betrayal of Jafar was realistic because he wasn’t just a blindly devoted lackey. He’s a much more interesting character than people give him credit for.

  3. This is my favourite advent calendar.

    I think that the one good sequel you are hoping to find could be Pooh’s Grand Adventure: The Search of Christopher Robin. I’m really looking forward to that.

    • GreenGoblinsOckVenom86

      False Tortuga I loved The Search for Christopher Robin. It was cool. Also I love Return of Jafar. Sure it’s not as good as the first but it still was good imo. I also didn’t mind Iago singing.

  4. This actually was originally just going to be a pilot for the show but for some reason they decided to make it a movie. I don’t think it’s bad like a lot of people do. It’s not fantastic but I do think it’s good and just needed another rewrite or two. I honestly think the Disney sequels being called some of the “worst” products Disney has ever produced is really exaggerated. I can think of plenty of Disney products that are FAR worse than any of them and the sequels are really just harmless, even that awful ones. There are plenty of good ones like Scamp’s Adventure, Simba’s Pride, The Search for Christopher Robin, A Twist In Time, just to name a few. Even when I take my nostalgic glasses off, there are still Disney sequels I consider to be genuinely good. Don’t get me wrong, there are ones from my childhood I admit are either bad, awful, or mediocre, but the sequels get WAY TOO MUCH of a bad reputation. I’m hoping this month won’t be mostly negative and that there will be some surprises like the ones Doug Walker reviewed last year where he thought Return To Neverland was a good movie and that Beauty and The Beast: The Enchanted Christmas was okay (I thought he’d rip it to shreds). I’ll likely disagree with his opinions on plenty of these movies but that won’t affect how I feel about them at all.

  5. You echoed my thoughts pretty well. Aladdin was one of my favorite animated movies and Jafar was one of my favorite villains, so I was excited to hear that a sequel was coming out with him featured prominently in it.

    Then I saw it.

    I liked Iago in the first movie, but man … a little of him goes a LOOONG way, and that sequel just had too much Iago in it.

  6. Neo-stalgia Fan 1

    Sigh, and so it begins. I wasn’t really looking forward to this Disneycember. I grew up with a lot of these movies, so to see that he’s going to be going into this with a mostly negative mentality is going to feel like he’s mocking my childhood. I get that these movies weren’t that great, some of them probably terrible, but this one shows more than anything that they are at least serviceable and some people really like them. I guess it’s just going to be a very mixed feeling this time around, since Doug is essentially going to bash nearly every movie I ever saw and liked as a kid.

    • The Real Silverstar

      Eh, it’s just one person voicing their opinions on something, like most internet reviews are.

      If someone told me that one person critiquing a few movies was bashing their childhood, I’d probably have to stop myself from telling them that if that’s all it takes to bash their childhood, then it probably wasn’t that great a childhood to begin with.

      • I’d say any childhood where Disney sequels played a significant role wasn’t that great of a childhood to begin with. If this crap was a high point for you, there must be a lot of great stuff you missed out on.

    • I’m actually looking forward to seeing Doug/NC be pleasantly surprised by a few of the movies this month. Return of Jafar was a decent start to this trend of direct-to-video sequels, but many others were handled far better (and occasionally much, much worse), such as Lion King 2 and the further sequel to Aladdin in The King of Thieves.

  7. Interestingly enough, Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel liked both Aladdin sequels. Honestly, like you, I found this one underwhelming, but I do at least consider King of Thieves good. Not great, but good. It and the Lion King sequels are among the only Disney sequels I can honestly call better than just okay/bad. (That and Pooh’s Grand Adventure, if that counts. That’s one of my all-time favorite Pooh films. I’m hoping you decide to include all of the Pooh films you haven’t covered yet on this list, even if most of them were released to theaters)

    • Did Siskel and Ebert ever have anything bad to say about any Disney product, though? Based on their track record I’d say they were fanboys at best and shills at worst, and yes I say that knowing that their legacy is held in really high regard on this site.

      • Well, Siskel didn’t particularly care for Oliver and Company, Hercules or Mulan, so that’s three. Ebert, on the other hand, liked everything from Disney until Treasure Planet.

  8. Aladdin is my favorite classic Disney movie, and I even liked the sequels… And a good portion of the TV series. Return of Jafar kinda strikes me like Ghostbusters 2, a lot of hate but the movie itself seems… fine. Not spectacular but… fine. In truth I’d love to see something like a trilogy of movies dealing with the expanded Aladdin world they set up in the series, especially the relationship between Mirage and Fashir.
    Honestly it feels like if the series writers, or just competent fans, could go back and touch up everything they could make a really good revamped series. Get a full story arc with Mozenrath, see Aladdin rise up to Sultan, so on. Like, a lot of potential that will likely never be fulfilled… Just like the future of Gargoyles.

  9. Yeah, I do recall being rather underwhelmed by Return of Jafar. I was however an avid fan of the Aladdin cartoon as a kid. Some really creative villains and stories. I loved the ancient Greek inventor who made giant mechanical insects.

  10. This one was okay. I remember Aladdin and the King of Thieves more than I do this one, so I hope you get to that one, too.

  11. Oh God. We’re about to go into a lot of my childhood this Disneycember. O.O Thankfully, I skipped this one. However, I did watch reruns of the Aladdin show. Also, I see Jasmine got a tan. LOL

  12. I remember really liking this movie as a kid, but then again that could Beverly largely because I just loved anything and everything Aladdin related at the time. It started with the first film and culminated in my fondness for the tv show that I almost never got to watch more than a few minutes of at a time since it aired around the time to head to school.

    I remember a particularly unpleasant time when my dad tried to record both the Aladdin show for me and Barney for my younger sister on the same VHS tape only for it to end up recording the first two thirds of an Aladdin episode and instead of finding out the conclusion I got the end of a Barney episode instead. Ugh…

  13. if this is anything to go buy, Doug’s not gonna call a lot of the sequels outright terrible but I do hope he has a bit warmer of an opinion on at least The Lion King II. maybe Lady and the Tramp II as well since I also like that one.

  14. I have to be honest; I liked Aladdin the movie, but Iv’e always been just “eh” about the TV show. It made no sense for post movie Aladdin to still dress like a peasant and live in a hovel. If I was engaged to a princess and was buddies with a magic genie, I sure wouldn’t be living in a hole in the wall. Just ask the Genie to conjure up a house for you. You gave him his freedom. What’s he going to say, “No”?

    Quite frankly, this was just Disney trying to milk as much money from it’s franchises as possible. There was no other reason for this DTV sequel (or any of the others) to exist otherwise.

  15. Great review! BTW I noticed something kind of sad that I’m surprised has’t been reviewed on Disneycember. So consider it for the “Popular Demand”? The movie is called “Teacher’s Pet”. It’s a really funny and wacky road trip comedy with Nathan Lane as the lead and it was a Saturday morning Disney cartoon that got a big screen release and I saw it as a kid and loved it. It was so cartoon as a cartoon is and I found the movie to be very funny and very enjoyable. But this is me remebering from 2004 so it’s been awhile. It’s often over looked so I wouldn’t be surprised if you didn’t know it exsisted.

  16. Creamcheesealchemist

    I’m reminded of Alex Hirsch’s comments about tieins at NYCC. He gushed over an Iago hand puppet and was less enthusiastic about this movie. i do think there were some interesting concepts in some of the sequels- the use of Mushu as the antagonist in Mulan 2 springs to mind- but having seen most of them because of my little sister, a lot of them had the same plot too

  17. Why “Direct to DVD” when “direct to video” would be more accurate, working both before and after DVDs were mainstream?

  18. ThePuzzlerOfRiddles

    Well, a lot of them are bad, but Cinderella 3 was decent.

  19. … I ASSUME we’re not including Rescuers Down Under in the list of ‘sequels’, despite it being… well… a sequel.
    Mostly because you’ve already talked about it.

  20. Thanks for doing this. Look, you’ve reviewed dozens of awful films as the Nostalgia Critic. This is at least better than those. I think it’s at least better than the other sequels. Granted, that’s mostly because there was nothing to compare it to. It has at least some purpose as the start of a show.

  21. I found this movie just OK, but I loved the tv series. Great fantasy adventure show.

  22. thatchickwithlonghair

    Lmao even as a kid, I KNEW THIS SUCKED. I was like “…..WHAT IS THIS?”

    Doug, you poor brave soul, you. Enjoy your Disney Hell this month. XD

  23. Cinnamon Scudworth

    Is this footage from the Blu-Ray? It looks like it. Grr, it’s hard-matted! They pulled that crap with King of Thieves on DVD and it looked awful! Return of Jafar was still 4×3. Now they’re both zoomed-in and ruined. Give me the original aspect ratio or nothing!

  24. “Recent years”? what? were these reviews filmed a decade ago?

  25. Just a note of correction: None of these movies were made by some “hand drawn animation department” that “didn’t have that much to do”. Disney didn’t get into CG until the mid-2000s, when they immediately (and I do mean immediately) stopped production on hand-drawn films. There was no transitional period at all like there was for DreamWorks. The sequels — which coincidentally stopped being produced around the same time — were produced by their TV division in Australia and either animated there or farmed out to Japan or Korea.

  26. Best Disney D-T-V sequel? There’s really NOT many that are even REMOTELY just…well, *good*….but I think the CLOSEST one to being almost as good as the original, was “Lilo and Stitch 2: Stitch Has A Glitch”. The animation was very, VERY close to the original, and it had some very genuinely heartwarming moments in it.

  27. Oh, please tell me he is going to review Inspector Gadget 2 this month.

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