The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea

The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea is a 2000 American animated direct-to-video musical adventure film produced by Walt Disney Television Animation, the sequel to the 1989 Disney animated film The Little Mermaid and final installment in The Little Mermaid trilogy. Directed by Jim Kammerud and Brian Smith, the story of the film takes place 12 years after the original, and focuses on Ariel and Eric's daughter Melody, a human princess who longs to swim in the ocean despite her parents' law that the sea is forbidden to her. The film features the voices of Jodi Benson as Ariel, Tara Charendoff as Melody, and Pat Carroll as Morgana, the film's new villain. In 2008, Disney released a third film in the Little Mermaid series, The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning, which is a prequel to the original film. This was Buddy Hackett's final film role before his death in June 2003. The film received mixed to negative reviews with criticism directed at the plot, which many considered to be a generic rehash of the original film.

The Little Mermaid II:
Return to the Sea
The Little Mermaid 2 Poster.jpg
DVD cover
Directed by
Produced by
Written by
  • Elizabeth Anderson
  • Temple Mathews
  • Elise D'Haene
  • Eddie Guzelian
Music byDanny Troob
Distributed byWalt Disney Home Video
Release date
  • September 19, 2000 (2000-09-19)
Running time
75 minutes
CountryUnited States


Ariel and Eric celebrate the birth of their newborn daughter Melody on a ship at sea with all the merfolk of Atlantica present. Ariel sings a lullaby to baby Melody expressing her love and how she hopes Melody’s heart will always belong to her and the sea because of her mermaid heritage. Ariel's father King Triton presents Melody with a magic locket with her name on it. The party is interrupted by Ursula's younger sister Morgana, who threatens to have Melody fed to her pet tiger shark, Undertow, unless Triton surrenders his trident to her. Morgana then announces her plan to use the trident to avenge Ursula and take over the ocean. Ariel and Eric work together to foil Morgana's plan, and Triton shrinks Undertow to the size of a piranha. Morgana escapes, eluding the attempts of King Triton's forces to capture her and declaring that she will someday exact her revenge on both Ariel and Triton and avenge Ursula's death.

Fearing Morgana and remembering Ursula, Ariel decides that, until Morgana is captured, they will have to withhold all knowledge of the sea world and her heritage from Melody in order to protect her. Triton tosses the locket into the ocean, and a massive wall is built to separate the royal castle from the sea. Triton assigns Sebastian to watch over Melody.

12 years later, Melody remains unaware of her mother's mermaid heritage and is forbidden from ever going into the sea. However, she has been sneaking out of the castle regularly to swim, and one day finds the locket. She later returns to the palace for her 12th birthday party, but has a hard time fitting in with the other children her age, who thinks she's strange for "talking to fish". The party was a disaster after an accident indirectly caused by Sebastian, and while Ariel tries to comfort her, she sees her name on the locket. Melody and Ariel have a heated argument about Ariel’s refusal to answer her questions, Melody steals a small boat and sails away from home. Melody is discovered by Undertow, who leads her straight to Morgana.

In a panic, Sebastian confesses to Ariel and Eric that Melody went out to the sea. Meanwhile, Melody meets Morgana, who reveals that Melody's background is marine, and uses the remains of Ursula's magic to transform Melody into a mermaid. Triton prepares search parties, and is convinced by Ariel and Eric to use his trident to transform Ariel back into a mermaid in order to help in the search for Melody. Ariel searches the sea for Melody, regretting not sharing her heritage with her, while Melody explores her newfound abilities as a mermaid, and has a strong feeling that she was meant to be part of the sea.

Melody visits Morgana to thank her, only for Morgana to tell Melody that the spell was only temporary, and that she can only make the spell permanent if Melody retrieves the trident from her grandfather, which Morgana claims he stole from her. Melody decides to get the trident, and during her search befriends Tip and Dash, a penguin and walrus duo who join her.

Melody succeeds in stealing the trident, and returns to Morgana, but before Melody can hand the trident over to Morgana, Ariel arrives and pleads for Melody not to give Morgana the trident. Melody refuses to listen to Ariel, having been angered by Ariel's decision to lie to her, and gives Morgana the trident. With the power of the trident in her hands, Morgana reveals her true intentions, and traps Melody in a cave by sealing the entrance with a thick layer of ice, while also informing her that her time as a mermaid is about to expire. Morgana uses the trident's magic to be lord over the ocean, rising to the surface to gloat before restoring Undertow to his original, terrifying size.

Scuttle, Triton, Sebastian, and Eric arrive, and a battle ensues against Morgana and her minions. Undertow goes after Tip and Dash, trying to eat them both. Meanwhile, Morgana's spell on Melody wears off, causing her to revert into a human and nearly drown. Tip and Dash defeat Undertow by having him smash through the layer of ice covering the entrance to Melody's cave and crash straight into the solid rock wall behind it, knocking him unconscious and causing all of his teeth to shatter and fall out. Afterwards they grab Melody and drag her to the shore, saving her. Melody then manages to get hold of the trident and throw it back to Triton, who encases Morgana in a block of ice, which sinks underwater along with a picture of Ursula.

Melody reunites with her family, Eric and Ariel apologize to Melody for not telling her the truth years earlier, and Triton offers his granddaughter the choice of becoming a mermaid permanently. Instead, Melody uses the trident to disintegrate the wall separating her home from the sea, reuniting the humans and the merpeople.



Home mediaEdit

The film was released directly-to-video on September 19, 2000.[1] On November 6, 2006, the film was released in a bundle together with the original film in the Region 2 release.[2] The original DVD release was later discontinued and a special edition DVD with a deleted song, "Gonna Get My Wish", and a new game was released on December 16, 2008.[3] A package called The Little Mermaid Trilogy, which includes all three Little Mermaid films, was released on the same day.[4] This film, along with The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning, was released in a 2-Movie collection on DVD and Blu-ray on November 19, 2013.[5]


The film received mixed to negative reviews from film critics. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported that the film has a 33% "Rotten" score based on 9 reviews, with an average rating of 4.5/10.[6] In 2011, Total Film ranked it as 27th among the 50 worst children's films ever made.[7]


Songs from The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea & More!
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedSeptember 19, 2000 (2000-09-19)
LabelWalt Disney Records
ProducerBambi Moe, Don Mizell, Eric Silver, Leonard Jones, Shepard Stern

The film's official soundtrack was released on September 19, 2000,[8] and again on October 31, 2000 in a special edition double pack with the original film's soundtrack.[9] Additionally, two limited edition two-tracked CD samples were released as a promotion for the soundtrack.[10]

No.TitleWriter(s)Recording artist(s)Length
1."Down to the Sea"Michael Silversher, Patty SilversherJodi Benson, Rob Paulsen, Clancy Brown, Kay E. Kuter, Samuel E. Wright and Chorus3:29
2."Tip and Dash"Silversher, SilversherMax Casella, Stephen Furst, Tara Charendoff1:59
3."Iko Iko" (*)Barbara Ann Hawkins, Jessie Thomas, Joan Johnson, Maralyn Jones, Joe Jones, Rose Lee Hawkins, Sharon JonesWright3:49
4."Octopus's Garden" (*)Richard StarkeyWright2:47
5."For a Moment"Silversher, SilversherBenson, Charendoff2:28
6."Give a Little Love" (*)Albert Hammond, Diane WarrenWright3:57
7."Hot, Hot, Hot"Alphonsus CassellWright5:08
8."Here on the Land and Sea" (Finale)Silversher, SilversherBenson, Charendoff, Wright1:44
Total length:25:21

The film's ending credits play a new recording of Part of Your World, performed by country singer Chely Wright. Another version of the song, performed by Ann Marie Boskovich, was used in some international releases of the film.[11]


  1. ^ "The Little Mermaid II - Return to the Sea: Tara Charendoff, Pat Carroll, Jodi Benson, Samuel E. Wright, Buddy Hackett, Kenneth Mars, Max Casella, Stephen Furst, Rob Paulsen, Clancy Brown, Cam Clarke, René Auberjonois, Brian Smith, Jim Kammerud, David Lovegren, Leslie Hough, Eddie Guzelian, Elise D'Haene, Elizabeth Anderson, Temple Mathews: Movies & TV". Retrieved November 2, 2011.
  2. ^ "The Little Mermaid/the Little Mermaid II Box Set DVD: The Little Mermaid: Film & TV". Retrieved November 2, 2011.
  3. ^ "The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea [Special Edition]: Jodi Benson, Pat Carroll, Max Casella, Stephen Furst, Buddy Hackett, Kenneth Mars, Rob Paulsen, Sam Wright, Tara Charendoff, Jim Kammerud, Brian Smith: Movies & TV". Retrieved November 2, 2011.
  4. ^ "The Little Mermaid Trilogy: The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning, The Little Mermaid, The Little Mermaid II: Return To The Sea Special Edition, .: Movies & TV". Retrieved November 2, 2011.
  5. ^ "The Little Mermaid II and Ariel's Beginning: 2-Movie Collection". Amazon. Retrieved August 27, 2018.
  6. ^ "The Little Mermaid 2: Return to the Sea (2000)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved May 7, 2015.
  7. ^ Winning, Josh (November 8, 2011). "50 Worst Kids Movies". Total Film. GamesRadar. Retrieved October 24, 2015.
  8. ^ "Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea: Jodi Benson, Tara Charendoff: Music". Retrieved November 2, 2011.
  9. ^ "The Little Mermaid & Little Mermaid II (Special Edition Double Pack)". Retrieved August 23, 2011.
  10. ^ a b c "Little Mermaid II - 2 Song CD: Ariel, Sebastian, Melody: Music". Retrieved November 2, 2011.
  11. ^ Miccio, Anthony (January 28, 2009). "Idol Lies: Is Anne Marie Boskovich this week's Joanna Pacitti?". Retrieved May 7, 2015.

External linksEdit