National Unicorn Day: The Best Pop Culture Unicorns
Unicorns — they’re simply the best, aren’t they? These majestic magical creatures resemble normal horses. However, they possess a single horn in the center of their forehead. In many fairytales, the horns as well as the creatures themselves have mystical properties and abilities. Unicorns additionally represent innocence, good fortune, and moral purity. Also, unicorns are downright beautiful.
No wonder, then, that pop culture at large is kind of obsessed with these creatures. We see them everywhere from old fantasy and folklore to ’80s flicks and even super hero movies. Need examples? Join us below as we break down the best unicorns in pop culture, all in celebration of National Unicorn Day 2022!
My Little Pony
Princess Celestia from My Little Pony looks a little different than most unicorns. Her fanciful design, fitting for her royal status, adds wings. This mixes traditional imagery of unicorns with the winged horse called Pegasus. Still, we are granting Celestia unicorn status simply because of the horn. Plus, according to canon, she uses her “unicorn powers” to raise the sun at dawn.
In the My Little Pony series, Celestia is described as regal and harmonious. She rules fairly over a peaceful kingdom. She has a sunny disposition and teaches younger ponies that live in Equestria. Her kindness, generosity, and popularity in the fandom therefore earns her a special shout out on this Unicorn Day list.
While not technically a unicorn, because those don’t exist in Pokémon, Rapidash is an honorary unicorn in our hearts. The Fire Type Pokémon is a cream-colored equine with a fiery mane. There is a single horn protruding between its ears. There is also the Galarian Rapidash. This Psychic and Fairy Type even further resembles classic depictions of unicorns with its pastel colored mane and stark white coat. Regardless of region, Rapidash is an agile and brave Pokémon.
It’s no secret that Deadpool adores unicorns. The Merc with a Mouth can’t get enough of these creatures, especially in plushie form. And it’s rather ironic, and therefore pretty funny, that the most dirty minded Marvel character loves unicorns, which are the epitome of innocence. As a result, unicorns have appeared in many Deadpool comics as well as the live-action films. Deadpool has even passed down the obsession to his daughter. There’s no official Marvel Comics canon reason why he’s so obsessed. He just is. Everybody has their thing, right?
Legend (1985) is a dark fantasy film with a plot centered around unicorns. Jack, the protagonist, must defend these pure creatures from the Lord of Darkness. The Lord of Darkness plans to eradicate all the unicorns from the land. He almost accomplishes this, killing all but one surviving mare. In the end, Jack and his love Lili save the mare as well as restore a unicorn stallion to life, preventing the world’s destruction and saving the unicorns.
This story is particularly important because it shows how light triumphs over darkness. People can change, wrongs can be righted, and goodness can prevail. Legend explores these themes behind the lush backdrop of a fantastical world and even more fantastical creatures.
In Harry Potter, unicorns are extremely important to the Wizarding World. Unicorn tail hairs are used for wand cores — notably, Draco Malfoy’s wand utilizes unicorn hair. Considered beings of utmost purity, unicorns are sacred. Harming one is ruinous. However, the act is tempting to those on the brink of death because drinking a unicorn’s blood will keep you alive, no matter how terrible your wounds.
The moment someone drinks a unicorn’s blood, of course, they are cursed. To have selfishly slain such an innocent, defenseless creature is considered a crime of immeasurable cruelty. Thus in The Sorcerer’s Stone when Voldemort attempts this solution to bring himself back to power, his physical form is monstrous, and he is literally living as a parasite upon half of Professor Quirrell’s body.
The Last Unicorn
Based on a novel of the same name, The Last Unicorn (1982) is an animated film that portrays the last Unicorn’s quest to discover what happened to her species. Learning that they have been herded to the ends of the Earth, she sets out on a lonely and poignant journey to find them. Eventually she rescues the unicorns from confinement.
In the film, her companions apologize for the hardships they have put the Unicorn through, lamenting that they have ruined her purity by having her face trials and feel strong emotions. The Unicorn tells them not to worry, as these experiences of both love and regret are incredibly important. She is still able to live with her kind in their forest home. Such lessons are exceedingly beautiful, as they show us all emotions, positive and negative, make us better and cannot change our innate goodness.
Which of these is your favorite pop culture unicorn? Or did we miss your fave? Let us know in the comments, and don’t forget to Let Your Geek Sideshow!