John Darling is the 8 year old brother of Wendy and Michael Darling, the son and middle child of George and Mary, the brother-in-law of Edward, the uncle of Jane and Danny and one of the main characters of Peter Pan. He was voiced by Paul Collins, who also performed the live-action reference sequences of the character and even appeared, dressed as him, for the 1951 Christmas special The Walt Disney Christmas Show to promote the film. He does not appear in the Peter Pan sequel Return to Neverland, possibly judging by the setting of the film, John (and possibly Michael) was away taking part in World War II.
Appearances[edit | edit source]
Peter Pan[edit | edit source]
John loves hearing Wendy's stories of Peter Pan and plays the character of Captain Hook while his younger brother Michael plays Peter Pan during their nursery games. He is very brave and very smart.
One night, while their parents go away to a party, Peter visits the Darling kids and teaches them how to fly and takes them to Neverland with them. When they arrive in Neverland, Captain Hook and his pirates shoot at them with their cannon, but Peter orders Tinker Bell to take the children to the island while he takes on Hook. Tinker Bell jealously tries to make Peter's friends, the Lost Boys, take out Wendy, but after Peter tells the Lost Boys that Wendy will be their new mother, they feel bad.
John is ordered by Peter to take the Lost Boys and Michael on a hunt for Indians, but the boys are captured by the Indians themselves and are mistaken for the kidnapping of The Indian Chief's daughter Tiger Lily, and the Chief orders the boys to be burnt at stake if Tiger Lily doesn't return by sunset. Luckily, Peter saves Tiger Lily from Captain Hook who is the real kidnapper and returns her to the Indian camp, and John and the boys are set free while Peter is made a Flying Eagle by the Chief. During the song, John tries the Chief's pipe, which sickens him and makes his face turn dark green. Also during the song, John dances along with the tribes, wanting to live like savages.
After the party, Wendy tells her brothers that they're going home tomorrow, but John and Michael refuse until Wendy reminds them about their mother, and the boys wish to return home, along with the Lost Boys who wish for a mother, too. John leads the boys out, but they (along with Wendy) are captured by Captain Hook and his pirates who are waiting outside having revealed their hideout by Tinker Bell who was banished earlier for nearly killing Wendy and been captured by Mr. Smee. On the ship, the boys are offered to become pirates to which the boys agree, but Wendy stops them, saying that Peter Pan will save them. However, Captain Hook admits to leaving a present for Peter from Wendy that had a bomb in it that will blow shortly and take Peter with it. But unknown to Wendy, the boys, and Captain Hook, Tinker Bell manages to escape from her prison and warns Peter of the bomb, and Wendy and the boys being captured. Thinking the bomb has killed Peter Pan, Hook has made Wendy walk the plank to drown in the sea, but luckily Peter arrives and saves her from her watery grave and frees the boys, and they fight off Hook and his pirates and the pirates go off their rowboat chasing the crocodile who chases Captain Hook.
In the end, Peter takes Wendy, John, and Michael home to London. After that, John is seen sleeping in his bed and tucked away by Nana the nursemaid dog and John's mother Mary - the whole experience is speculated by some viewers to be a dream, validated by the fact that the word Neverland today appears in English vernacular as "an ideal or imaginary place; a dream world".
Return to Never Land[edit | edit source]
John didn't appear in the sequel Return to Never Land and wasn't mentioned by any of the characters, including Wendy. However, he made a couple of shadowy cameos on some starry night clouds that light up by Tinker Bell, to begin with (flying with Wendy and Michael and leading the Lost Boys to the Indian campus).
Jake and the Never Land Pirates[edit | edit source]
John appears in the Jake and the Neverland Pirates special, Battle for the Book. In it, Captain Hook has stolen the book containing Peter Pan's adventures, which could lead to the destruction of Never Land. To save it, John and his siblings team up with Jake and his crew to race though London—and eventually, Never Land itself—to stop Hook. During the adventure, John becomes particularly close to Izzy.
John appears once again in the series finale "Captain Hook's Last Stand", where he and his siblings visit Never Land to take part in Peter Pan's homecoming celebration. When Peter is finally defeated by a magically-equipped Captain Hook, John and the other young heroes work together to save him.
Other appearances[edit | edit source]
John makes a cameo appearance at the end of "This is Your Life, Donald Duck".
In Who Framed Roger Rabbit, John Darling, in a black trenchcoat, can be briefly spotted during the final scene of the film with the other Toons, while the song is finishing, right next to Tweedle Dum.
John made frequent cameos on House of Mouse alongside his siblings and Peter Pan. In "Ask Von Drake" John makes a cameo during the Ludwig Von Drake Song. In Mickey's Magical Christmas, John takes part in the musical performance at the end of the film.
Trivia [edit | edit source]
- In the original book by J.M. Barrie, John's full name is John Napoleon Darling.