The Mermaids are one of the many mystical groups of beings that inhabit the magic island of Neverland. They first appeared in Disney's classic 1953 animated film Peter Pan, which is based upon J.M Barrie's 1911 novel of the same name. They also reappear in its 2002 sequel. They are voiced by June Foray, Connie Hilton, Margaret Kerry, and Karen Kester. Disney's portrayal of them are not as dark nor as sinister as they are in Barrie's book, but are much more communicative and civilized.
The mermaids appear to be lazy, vain, shallow and undeniably mischievous in nature. They also are rather amoral, having no sense between right and wrong and are somewhat disrespectful to outsiders. The mermaids seem to not have any real cares or troubles besides having a great fear of Captain Hook. Overall, they tend to come off as very indifferent to anyone else in Neverland and don't like mortals near their lagoon. They are all romantically infatuated with Peter Pan, who apparently visits the lagoon often to flirt and entertain them with his adventure stories. And similar to Tinker Bell, the mermaids are jealous when any other female catches Peter's attention.
The mermaids first appear in the 1953 animated movie when Peter takes Wendy to their turf to meet them. Wendy is ecstatic and enchanted by their beauty, for she has always dreamed of seeing and meeting real life mermaids. Wendy watches (or rather spies on) them from a safe distance as the mermaids lounge around on rocks to bask, bathe in waterfalls and brush their long hair and admire their own reflections in the shallow waters. They also seem to enjoy decorating their hair with random ornaments and adorning themselves with items from Neverland's surrounding ocean which leads into their lagoon. At first glance, the mermaids are all excited to see that Peter has come back to Neverland after his flight to London and is gracing them with his presence. After Peter says hello to them the mermaids ask him to tell them a story.
As they all gather around him to listen, he begins to tell them about the time he cut off Captain Hook's hand and threw it to the crocodile, but then they notice that he has brought a human girl along. They ask him why she is there, clearly envious and suspicious. In an act of jealousy, the mermaids quickly gang up on Wendy to taunt and mock her and tease her for being in her nightgown. They try to drag her into the lagoon with them and mercilessly pull on her dress and hair, even ignoring Wendy when she tries to inform them she can't swim nor is properly dressed to join in.
The mermaids continue to deliberately splash her out of spite with their tails causing her to become soaking wet and upset to the point that she loses her temper and pickes up a large sea shell nearby to throw at them in defense. Seeing that Wendy is seriously very angry by the mermaid's rude actions, Peter stops her in time, telling her that they were only having fun, to which one mermaid casually replies that they were "only trying to drown her." Suddenly, the entire lagoon's atmosphere becomes dark and gloomy, indicating an evil presence is close by. Sensing danger in the air and close at hand, Peter looks around and spots Captain Hook and Smee rowing by in a rowboat with the captured Indian princess Tiger Lily. Peter warns Wendy that Hook is coming. Upon overhearing his name, the mermaids scream and become frightened, prompting them to dive back into the water and deep under the lagoon to hide and disappear. The mermaids do not make another appearance in the rest of the film.
The mermaids make a cameo in the sequel but don't have a speaking role unlike the previous film. When Peter and Jane are flying in Neverland, they grab her from him and begin dressing her in mermaid clothes. Just as one of them is about to pour water on her head, he scoops her back up and causes the mermaid to pour it on two others. They don't appear throughout the rest of the film after this.
The mermaids first appeared witnessing Marina giving Izzy surfing lessons in the episode "Surfin' Turf". They do not accompany her and Jake and his crew to save the surfboard from Captain Hook. They make a cameo with her in "Jake's Jungle Groove", where they move along to the Skullenbones Stomp as a monkey plays the beat on a pair of bongos.
The mermaids play a larger role in the episode "Undersea Bucky!" When the light of Neptune City vanishes, Marina was called forth to find a solution to the problem. Jake and his crew assist her in the search for it with the aid of Bucky transforming into a submarine to explore the deep of the Never Sea. Captain Hook has other uses for it.
The mermaids make a brief cameo in the episode the The Mermaid's Song but play a larger role in the episode Treasure of the Tides. They witness the swimming race with Izzy and Lucille the Seal in Mermaid Lagoon. They joined Izzy, Marina, and Stormy set off to find the "Treasure of the Tides". Captain Hook orders Sharky and Bones to block the lagoon using the Jolly Roger but they were no match for Lucille who was able slip pass them and recruit the help of two blue whales to force the Jolly Roger out the way so Izzy and the mermaids could catch up to Hook and Smee.
While Captain Hook and Smee tried to keep the lead to the Treasure of the Tides, a large school of seahorses block their path. Smee gave Hook the idea to keep Izzy and the mermaids at bay by spooking the sea creatures toward them so Hook could beat them to the treasure. But he didn't count on Izzy's quick wit like in the episode "The Seahorse Roundup". He, Marina and Stormy began to sing a lullaby to calm the seahorses down so they could safely pass. When Hook and Smee reached Hidden Cove to find the Treasure of the Tides, Izzy and the mermaids tried to stop them but they were powerless to do so until Jake, Cubby, and Skully got there with Izzy's Pixie Dust to turn the tide on Hook and Smee. The mermaids decide to make Izzy an honorary mermaid. Later that night, they took part in the celebration and crowned her "Mermaid of the Year". In the episode "Bones' Lucky Doubloon!" Bones tries to prove to Captain Hook that his grandfather's doubloon is lucky when he flips it he receives a kiss from a mermaid.
The mermaids appeared in the premiere of Season 3, "Heart of the Truest Believer". They were depicted as dangerous in Neverland, though affiliated with Peter, like in the original novel. Like the mermaids of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, these tend to take an alien, predacious, and perhaps even villainous role, though their individual personalities and moralities may differ. Like Aquarianne from Disney's Adventures of the Gummi Bears, some carry a conch shell which can be used as a magic flute. They are perhaps the most powerful ones ever produced by Disney; gifted with magic so great it can control the very weather itself.
While Snow White and her companions are sailing the seas of Neverland in Hook's boat, their ship is attacked by mermaids (who strike with such zeal that they are first mistaken for sharks, sea monsters, and even a Kraken). Once they have clouted the ship's hull with their tails, Regina prepares a fireball spell while the rest of the crew tries to drive them away with artillery or capture them with a fishing net. All of these tactics succeed; they are driven away from the ship, save for those who might have been slain by the fire and the one who is captured in the net.
This mermaid prisoner is fiercely defiant of her captors, asking/demanding that they let her go and stating that it is not she who dooms them, but they themselves. While the major characters argue over what is to be done with her, she proves her point by summoning a tempest. As their ship is tossed about upon mighty roiling waves, her crew becomes rain-soaked and desperate. Regina then casts a spell which turns her to wood yet fails to stop the storm, leaving her and her companions to brave the wind, lightning, and driving rain summoned by the malevolent mermaid.
Peter Pan: Adventures in Neverland
In the video game the mermaids assists Peter briefly in his quest to find treasure. One of Hook's crew members attack them but they are quickly saved by Peter.
- This is the first time mermaids were shown in a Disney film.
- The episode "Bones' Lucky Doubloon!" is the first time any of the adult mermaids have any dialog in the Jake and the Never Land Pirates series.
- In the original film, the red headed mermaid was voiced by Tinker Bell's live action reference model, Margaret Kerry.