The King of Hearts is the meek and tiny husband of the temperamental Queen of Hearts from Disney's 1951 feature film Alice in Wonderland. It is, in fact, he who accidentally hits the Queen of Hearts on the head with a mallet. He is voiced by Dink Trout in the film.
The King of Hearts is the consort of the Queen of Hearts, and, unlike most instances, is generally the lesser of the two monarchs. He is much smaller than his wife, as well as meeker. While he tries to please his wife, at the same time, he is one of the few people who is able to change her mind about anything, such as altering Alice's beheading to a trial instead. He seems to act more like a son to his wife than a husband, as he asks her to put Alice on trial in a childlike manner, and she pats him on the head like he were a child after taking his suggestion for the trial, as well as using him as a shield against an oversized Alice. Unfortunately, he is only created in Alice's dreams, and vanishes from her mind once she awakens.
The King of Hearts appears in the later portions of the film, alongside his wife; he notably receives much less of a welcome from his subjects (particularly the White Rabbit) than the Queen. He initially assumes that Alice is a card, but is quickly right. When Alice later angers the Queen, he surprisingly convinces the Queen to give Alice a trial rather than an immediate beheading. He functions as the head of the court, later citing regulation when Alice grows to extreme heights after eating mushroom pieces. The King is later seen in the big chase scene near the end of the film.
The King of Hearts has appeared several times alongside the Queen and other Wonderland characters in the auidence of the House of Mouse.
The Valet, also known as Henry, is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time and the King of Hearts'incarnation. He is portrayed by guest stars Tony Perez and Zak Santiago, and does not have a Storybrooke counterpart.
In one kingdom in the Enchanted Forest, Prince Henry is the son of King Xavier, and is fifth in line to the throne. One day in the castle, he and his father are entertaining a northern princess, Princess Eva, who has come for a visit. He encounters Cora, a lowly daughter of a miller delivering flour. Cora is chastised for spilling the flour all over the floor and ruining Eva's slippers, yet he is the only one to stand up for Cora; saying he does not believe the girl meant any harm. However, he walks away with the rest of the royals when they exit the courtyard after King Xavier forces Cora to kneel and apologize to Eva. Later, he encounters Cora at the masquerade ball being held in Eva's honor, and the two dance until King Xavier cuts in. His hand in marriage is promised to Cora if she can spin straw into gold as she claims she can. Cora proves it by spinning gold in front of the whole court, and a humbled Henry offers his hand to Cora in marriage, and she accepts. Henry and Cora eventually have a daughter, Regina, whom Cora declares in front of the king's court that one day her daughter shall be queen.
Many years later, he serves as his daughter's valet. He is extremely proud of his daughter's skills in horseback riding—a hobby his wife, and Regina's mother, Cora, finds to be too unlady-like and childish. Father and daughter get along well growing up, but he is helpless to stop Cora whenever it came to her using magic on Regina to make her comply with what she wishes. He is also unable to protect Regina when Cora purposefully set up a situation in which Regina rescues King Leopold's daughter, Snow White, from danger. This makes the king notice Regina, and he asks for her hand in marriage, which Cora accepts for her.
Regina consults with her father, Henry, about how unhappy she is about her future. She is adamant in not wanting to become just like her mother. Regina asks about how her mother turned out this way, and Henry vaguely recalls there was a man that taught Cora magic through a book of spells.
While she is married, King Leopold brings home the Genie he has freed with one of his three wishes. The Genie falls in love with her at first sight, and Regina uses his infatuation to her advantage to escape her loveless marriage. She writes of her "love" for him in a diary. King Leopold reads the entry but is unaware the man she is pining after is the Genie. Angry, he locks her up in the castle. Fearing for his daughter's life, Henry delivers a box with a poisonous snake inside it to the Genie in the hopes that he will take it to Regina's chambers, saying that this is the only way Regina can be free.
At some point after this, he is captured by his wife the Queen of Hearts in Wonderland; he is shrunken and kept in a box. He is subsequently rescued by his daughter, at the sacrifice of the Mad Hatter as the hat can only take in and out the same number of people. She gives her father a piece of a magical mushroom, which returns him to his normal size. Because only two people—Regina and the Hatter— have entered Wonderland, only two can leave. Thus, Regina returns to the Enchanted Forest with her father, leaving the Hatter trapped and at the mercy of the Queen of Hearts.
When his daughter is imprisoned by Snow White, he visits her there where she tells him that he is the one she loves most. He is also a witness to her near execution that was stopped at the last minute by Snow White. After she is banished from the kingdom and retreats to her palace, he announces the arrival of Rumplestiltskin who reminds her of the Dark Curse, and then Henry summons a carriage to take Regina to Snow White and Prince Charming's wedding ceremony.
Later, after King Leopold's death and the Genie's entrapment in becoming a magic mirror, Henry is Regina's constant companion. When she vows vengeance on Snow White and Prince Charming, he advises her on how to make the Dark Curse work.
However, the curse fails to work when Regina used the heart of her favorite horse, and thus he tells her to go to the person who gave her the curse in the first place. Regina goes to the dark wizard Rumplestiltskin, who is imprisoned in the mines. Rumplestiltskin, in turn, tells her that she needs the heart of the thing she loves most.
Thus, she goes back and tells Henry the news. He catches on quickly, and tries to convince her that she doesn't need to live with hatred all the time, and that the two can start a new life over again. Regina nods and hugs him, but as he wraps his arms around her, she pulls his heart from his chest, and whispers, "I'm sorry."
After the curse is unleashed, Regina lays a black rose on a grave marked, Henry, Beloved Father.
His tomb is moved to the Storybrooke cemetery via the Dark Curse.
He is also featured in Alice's Curious Labyrinth.
The King of Hearts also made appearances as a walk-around character in the early days of the theme park, but was eventually retired for decades until returning in the Tokyo Disneyland parade Happiness is Here.