Hello & welcome back to A Look at Disney and after a long hiatus, Power of The Princesses is back. Now alas, I had to go solo because of scheduling conflicts with my partner for Mulan. Anyways, just as a reminder, here is what, we will be looking at. Original Voice Actress, First Appearance, Personality, Favorite Moment, Later Appearances and again, both Kingdom Hearts and Once Upon A Time will get their own section, and finally , Is Mulan A Good Character? We’ve got a lot of ground to cover, so let’s get down to business.
Original Voice Actress
Ming-Na does a great ob of portraying Mulan, especially during her transition from a young girl that is unsure of herself to a brave and noble warrior bound to protect China and honor her father. When you think about, Ming-Na actually had two different characters to play as she had to change her a voice a little for Ping. Not too much but just enough Now, Ming-Na still has a working relationship with Disney as not only has she voiced Mulan in all of her appearances after the movie but she also has a role on Marvel’s Agents of Shield and also on Phineas and Ferb.
I don’t know much about her character on Shield as I couldn’t get into that show but I thought it was worth bringing up. Now like Jasmine and Pocahontas before her, Mulan also had a different singing voice actress, who just happened to be Lea Salonga, the singing voice of Jasmine and quite honestly, while you can hear some similarities between how Salonga sings for both Mulan and Jasmine, it’s never distracting. The singing for Mulan is distinct enough to make her singing voice, unique and her own, when compared to Jasmine.
We first see Mulan as she is getting ready for the matchmaker. Which includes a funny bit, where we see she had written notes on her arm for this event.
And this is also ,where we get our first song of the film, Honor To Us All,
which isn’t a bad song and gives the audience the first inkling that Mulan is not like the other girls in her village.
Also I just realized the irony of the song title, Mulan is told that she’ll never bring honor to her family, yet she does just that by posing as Ping in the Chinese Army and helping to protect China from The Huns.
Mulan unlike the other girls is a bit out of place in her village. The Disney Wiki describes her as being clumsy but also self-reliant, brave, courageous and outgoing. She is also a very kind and warm-hearted young lady and you can kinda see her personality clash with the army and get her in trouble before she ultimately learns how to be a brave and noble warrior and this is perhaps best depicted in I’ll Make A Man Out of You.
It’s almost impossible to talk about this movie without talking about this song.
Man, that is such an awesome song.
I’ve decided to go ahead and talk about two of my favorite moments from the film. For my first Favorite Moment, this was quite easy to choose, I decided to go with Reflection.
Sure, Mulan has a lot of great moments later on in the film but this number is one that I think can resonate with a lot of people because Mulan here feels lost and who we are and don’t where we belong in life and that everywhere, we turn, we will dishonor our family. Interesting side note: this song was cut down to fit the movie but you can find the extended version on YouTube. Here’s a link
to it. And personally, I think that I like the full version better as those missing verses give you more insight into who Mulan, really is. Okay, there is one other scene that is really good for Mulan and also a great contender for Favorite Moment. That being Mulan cutting her hair.
Just how intense this scene is enough to warrant a mention as you see Mulan make the decision to protect her father and put her life on the line and the way, the film plays, just WOW. This is something that you guys need to witness for yourselves. Here ya go. This scene right here shows what lengths, Mulan is willing to go to honor her family and protect her father from going into battle. That is pretty dang awesome, if you ask me.
Now per usual, we have a lot of later appearances and per usual, Mulan’s appearances on Kingdom Hearts and Once Upon A Time will be broken down into their own categories. With that out of the way, let’s begin. Now like most of the other ladies , we’ve talked about throughout this retrospective, Mulan did make a few appearances on House of Mouse and she also fell victim to the cheapquels.
Now, I’ve never seen Mulan II all the way through but from what I’ve seen of it, it’s your typical Disney cheapquel, just without Eddie Murphy as Mushu. Mulan will also be appearing on Sofia The First, in the season 2 special, Princesses To The Rescue.
You can also find Mulan at most of the parks. I mostly remember her at Reflections of China in EPCOT.
Now let’s move onto Mulan on Once Upon A Time.
Mulan On Once Upon A Time
Mulan debuted on the second season premiere of Once, traveling with Prince Phillip to rescue Aurora and he sacrifices himself to save the ladies and throughout the first half of the season, we saw Mulan and Aurora travel with Emma and Mary Margaret throughout The Enchanted Forest and I gotta be honest and say I hated Once’s Mulan at first as they made her so much of a warrior that nothing else came from her. Thankfully, in the third season, they lightened her up and there is one particular scene that we need to talk about regarding Mulan. You see in one particular episode, Mulan reveals for love… Aurora. Well, at least tries to but Aurora is in love with Phillip and with child. She is convinced to do this tanks in part to Robin Hood but seeing as it doesn’t work, she joins Robin’s Merry Men.
Now here is DisneyOtoko Mulan’s Kingdom Hearts Appearances.
Mulan In Kingdom Hearts
DO: Unlike the other princesses that have appeared in multiple games in the series Mulan has only appeared in one Kingdom Hearts game and that was Kingdom Hearts 2 released for the Playstation 2 in 2006 and will soon be re released this Christmas as part of the second HD Collection for the entire series!
Mulan is a resident of the the world the Land of Dragons that was destroyed by the Heartless before the events of Kingdom Hearts 1. The only “survivor” was Mushu who’s body died inb the chaos, but his heart was strong enough to become a summon gem and was freed by Sora and the Fairy Godmother and he assisted the group in the first game. In Kingdom Hearts 2 the worlds have been restored and the first Disney world the group visits (according to canon and battle level) is the Land of Dragons where they come across Mushu using his fire and shadow effects to make himself bigger than he is to give Mulan a confidence boost beofre she goes to join the Imperial Army under the alias of Ping. Donald and Sora think Mushu is a Heartless and they try to attack, but Goofy in his genuine wisdom says that’s not a good idea and actually recognizes Mushu and we get a reunion between Mushu and the trio and introductions are made with Mushu explaining he’s a guardian and that his charge is named Ping.
DO: Goofy then figures out that Ping is a woman which stuns Sora and Donald. The group agrees to keep
Mulan’s secret and they head for the camp. Mushui tricks the party into following by saying that Sora and company owe Ping for his services in the first game. After getting off on the wrong foot with Captain Shang and the troops Heartless show up and Ping gets her first real battle. After seeing Sora, Donald and Goofy’s combat skills he lets them join the army while telling Ping “he” should return home. Sora convinces Shang to give Ping another chance and that “he” be assigned missions with Sora and company as support (gameplay it’s you doing all the work of course). This is a good time to talk about Ping’s combat skills.
For clarification the game pretty much counts Mulan and Ping as two different characters. Ping’s combat SUCKS!!!!!!!! Ping has no special hard hitting abilities and basic abilities that don’t effect his performance. Also his standard attacks will miss most of the time and he’ll fall flat on his face!
DO: After a story event Ping sheds her disguise and Mulan joins the party officially and man do things improve! Mulan is much more skilled with her sword even having her attack stance be the refreshing and badass backhand a style shared with another character in the series. Her attacks are fast and agile and always connect. Also with Mushu tagging along Mushu is even more deadly with her being able to cast fire and have fire based rush attacks. The ultimate prize though is Mulan’s Limit Break! Mulan’s Limit Break Dragon Blaze where Mulan’s combat abilities and Mushu’s fire culminates where Mulan and Sora fly around the battlefield and wrap themselves in Mushu’s fire and after even more acrobatic maneuvers Mushu unleashes a volley of fireballs that rain down on the opponent/s. This technique is powerful and very useful against Shan Yu.
DO: The Land of Dragons unfortunately isn’t a very thematically relevant world like most of the others are, but it is still wonderful to see Mulan’s journey in a new way and to fight alongside China’s bravest woman with fun combat abilities.
Second Visit to the Land of Dragons
DO: Sora and company return to the Land of Dragons around the halfway point of the game. Mulan has stuck around the imperial city and heard rumors of a mysterious and possibly threatening man in black and she tails him up to the mountain. Sora and company join Mulan in her search thinking it’s an Organization member. After a brief skirmish at the summit the man in black flees. On the way down a dragon awakens and heads for the Imperial City. On the way to checking in with the emperor the group encounters a different man in black and he is revealed to be Xigbar Organization XIII’s number 2 and his work is done and he sicks his Nobodies on you as he escapes. After seeing that the Emperor is okay the group heads outside to confront the Stormrider dragon and after the battle the emperor is greatful and is willing to answer the group’s questions. The first man in black is revealed to have been Riku who was investigating Xigbar’s activity in the mountains and went to the imperial city to warn the emperor of the danger and to prepare the city and that Sora and company would handle things. It is also revealed that Xigbar turned the once peaceful dragon into a Heartless. The emperor being grateful to Mulan for saving China again asks if she has a request for him and she humbly asks that Shang has a day off from guarding the emperor and the emperor laughs and with a heavy heart refuses her request, but he asks her if she would like to stay and protect the emperor by Shang’s side. So basically Mulan takes Chi Fu’s job as well as a combat position!
DO: In the credits we see Mulan and Shang having a private moment only to be ruined by Yao, Ling and Chien Po spying on them and their cover being blown. Mulan was well handled in the game with a really good performance by her original actress Ming Na.
Now, it’s time to answer the question…
Is Mulan A Good Character?
Yes, she is. Mulan continues the tradition set forth by Ariel and Belle of being a strong well rounded female character that can fight for herself and goes through one of the best character growths throughout any of the characters, we have touched upon during this event. Mulan is a strong character that seems to be thrown by the wayside because people don’t seem to talk about her anymore. Which is a shame because she is a really good character.