|“||In a different world, maybe we could have been friends, but I have to do what's right for Fang.||„|
|~ Namaari betraying Raya.|
|“||Namaari: I never meant for any of this to happen.
Namaari: I don't care if you believe me. Sisu did, but you didn't trust her. That's why we're here. Do whatever you want, but you're as much to blame for Sisu's death as I am.
|~ Namaari expressing her remorse to Raya.|
Namaari is the central antagonist of Disney‘s fifty-ninth full-length animated feature film Raya and the Last Dragon.
She is the warrior princess of the Kumandra region named Fang who desires to return home from her past greatness, which led her in her youth to take part in a high-profile betrayal to seize a magical Gem that released a dangerous creature named Druun into the world. Six years after her misdeeds, Namaari now tries to reunite the pieces of the Gem by all means, which put her in conflict with her former friend-turned-arch-nemesis-turned friend again, Raya, as well as the last dragon, Sisu.
In Namaari's youth, she seemed to be quite shy around everyone before easily opening up to Raya and then befriending her due to their shared passion for dragons. However, this was only a treacherous façade to hide her devotion to her mother and her clan, which she brought to light when she mercilessly betrayed Raya after the latter was trusted to show her where the clan Heart was guarding the Gem.
Six years later, Namaari's personality has grown much colder, hot-tempered and more ruthless, not hesitating to use force on a reluctant subordinate or even threaten to set an entire village on fire just to have a piece of the Gem. Despite her cruelty, she sometimes displays a sarcastic and macabre humor towards Raya. Although confident, she does not underestimate an enemy.
Basically, the only thing Namaari wants is what's best for her people, her loyalty to her mother easily clouded her judgment, since she willingly admitted that she never wanted to hurt anybody. She also retained her love for the dragon kind from her childhood and deeply admires Sisu, who was indeed the only person she would never have wanted to hurt on her own accord.
When Sisu accidentally died by Namaari's arrow, she let her anger explode at Raya in their final confrontation and when she finally lost, she burst into tears and admitted her guilt for all that happened, holding it partly responsible of what happened to Sisu. After Raya spared her, Namaari had a change of heart and didn't hesitate to sacrifice herself when Raya and then the others entrusted her with their pieces of the Gem with complete trust in her.
Namaari is a young Asian woman sporting a slender figure and quite muscular. Her hair is styled sideways, her eyes are brown, and her skin is tanned. Her outfit consists of a beige tank top, brown baggy pants, and boots with pointed toes. Her most distinctive accessory is her golden earring.
- Leadership: Namaari is an excellent leader, competent enough for her mother to entrust her with their army.
- Swordswoman: Namaari is a master of the wielding of the formidable yet deadly sword, easily able to compete with Raya's own mastery.
- Martial Arts: Trained from an early age, Namaari is a very good melee fighter and has already managed to dominate Raya in one of their struggles as a teenager.
Youth and betrayal
Namaari was raised in the Fang tribe by her single mother, Fang's chieftess Virana. What became of the father is unknown. From an early age, Namaari revered the long-deceased dragons that once inhabited Kumandra. She owned various artifacts related to the serpentine beings, including a scroll detailing the legend of Sisu, a dragon said to have created the Gem and the only surviving member of her species, and a necklace bearing the water dragon’s likeness. Namaari grew up to be devoted to her mother and tribe. In her youth, Namaari accompanied her mother and the other tribes to a gathering among the five tribes, hosted by Chief Bengu of the Heart tribe, whom are in possessing of the Dragon Gem.
During the gathering, Namaari approached Bengu's young daughter, Raya, and the two bonded due to their shared interest in dragons. Their friendly interaction prompted the five tribes to gather up for a feast, during which Namaari and Raya playfully teased and talked with one another about their clans and habits, such as their combat preferences. The two quickly became close friends after Namaari shares the legend of Sisu with Raya, explaining that it is told that Sisu is secretly hiding out at the end of an unknown stream, of which there are hundreds. After Raya expresses a desire to rebuild Kumandra, Namaari gives Raya a dragon pendant, saying it is "One dragon nerd to another".
Unbeknownst to Namaari, this kindness was a farce intended to locate the Dragon Gem. The gift was the final action needed to secure her trust. Without telling anyone else, Raya took Namaari to where the Heart tribe keeps the Dragon Gem. Once they locate the Gem, however, Namaari turns on Raya and announces her intentions to steal the Gem, saying that she wants to do what is right for Fang. Refusing to allow this, and outraged by her deception, Raya engages Namaari in hand to hand combat. Having been trained in swordplay rather than martial arts, Namaari finds herself outmatched and ignites a flare, alerting all of the tribes to the attempted theft.
Her actions caused a fight to break out, resulting in the Gem's destruction and the return of the Druun. The Druun proceeded to turn everyone into stone that they can get their hands on, including Benja, who sacrifices himself to save Raya. Namaari, meanwhile, fled the scene along with her mother and one of the five pieces of the Gem, with the other four taken by the other tribes.
Meeting with her former friend
|“||Namaari: Binturi? That's not a very nice way to describe an old friend.
Namaari: What's drippin', dep la? Oh, I see you've finally made a new friend, and here I was worried you were gonna end up becoming a cat lady like me.
|~ Namaari to Raya.|
Six years later, Namaari reached adulthood and trained to become a much fiercer warrior. The tribe would be insolation during this time due to being surrounded by rivers, the only thing keeping the Druun from swarming the tribe. Her skills in hand to hand combat and swordsmanship have improved significantly. Namaari commanded her own unit of Fang soldiers and worked diligently to sustain her homeland’s survival. As both a warrior and a leader, Namaari was revered by her people. She was particularly popular amongst children. Dialogue suggests that Namaari had little in the way of actual friends. Her only known companion was her Serlot, a cat-like creature that served as her steed.
During this time, following the theft of Fang's dragon scroll, Namaari quickly deduced that Raya and was responsible and worked to track down Raya, who followed the legend of Sisu and eventually located the dragon within a shipwreck in the Tail tribe territory. Leading her unit, Namaari picked up Raya's trail after spotting a ring that she had dropped during a Druun attack. One of Namaari's men questions whether it is worth the risk to pursue Raya into Tail tribe territory, noting their notorious reputation for deadly bobby traps. Namaari responds by knocking him to the ground and asks if anyone else objects, which nobody does. They resume riding towards the shipwreck and entered it, but find that Raya had already left.
Continuing on, Namaari and her unit went on to investigate deeper within Tail tribe territory, eventually arriving at the tree where the Tail tribe stored their piece of the Dragon Gem. After six years, Namaari located her former friend taking the Gem piece with a human companion. Engaging in conversation riddled with various taunts, Namaari asked why she is gathering the Gem pieces, but Raya refused to tell her. Deducing that she is still searching for Sisu, Namaari laughs off her ambitions. Namaari also asks the identity of her companion, whom Raya reveals is Sisu herself, in a human form. Not believing her story, Namaari ordered her unit to seize Raya and take her Gem pieces.
Raya responded by setting off a booby trap and running off with the human Sisu, with Namaari and her tribe in close pursuit. Setting off more traps to slow them down, Raya and Sisu rode off from the cave, pursued by Namaari's unit on their cats. Realizing that the cats hate water, Raya and Sisu swim to a boat owned by a young entrepreneur, Boun, on a nearby dock. Namaari's unit circles around to reach the docks on land, but fails to catch up before Raya's boat sails off. One of Namaari's unit members suggests that, if Raya is gathering Gem pieces, her next would be the Talon tribe, but Namaari calls off the pursuit for now and decides to head back to Fang to speak with her mother.
Searching for the Gem Pieces
Heading back to Fang, Namaari and her tribe stop by a graveyard filled with dragons that have been turned to stone by the Druun, before continuing on. Inside Fang palace, Namaari meets with her mother, who is discussing potential expansion for the tribe due to their need for additional space. Virana dismisses any prospect of expansion due to the Druun lying in wait, noting that it would be a death sentence for their people. Making herself known, Namaari informs Virana that Raya has been locating Gem pieces and asks to take the Royal army in order to intercept her in the Spine tribe's territory.
As the Spine tribe are very dangerous, Virana doubts there will be anything left of Raya to intercept, but Namaari insists that she is more capable than she looks. During a walk with her mother, Virana expresses content that they are safe in the tribe's borders and questions whether Namaari's desires to catch Raya are out of emotional impulse. Namaari reasons that if they can gather all the Gem pieces and reconstruct it, they can use the Dragon Gem to repel the Druun and secure the land they need. Impressed with her daughter's wisdom, Virana expresses admiration with her for become the leader that she raised her be and gives her permission to command the Royal Army. Namaari thanks her and swears not to let her down, before departing for the Spine tribe's territory.
Sometime later, Namaari and the Royal Army arrived outside of the main gate of the Spine tribe. Unaware that nearly the entire tribe was already turned to stone by the Druun, Namaari demands that they hand over Raya or risk an invasion. When they receive no response, Namaari orders her archers to burn down the wooden gate with flame arrows. Before they could, Raya, having just obtained the Talon and Spine tribes' Gem pieces, arrives outside the gate to confront her. Namaari demands Raya surrender herself and the Gem pieces, but Raya refuses. When the archers prepare to shoot Raya, she taunts her about the odds of defeating her alone. Changing her mind, Namaari has her archers stand down and decides to battle her former friend alone, holding a spear in her hands, believing that it will not take long.
A heated duel quickly ensued, with Raya disarming her opponent with a chain. Namaari was able to disarm Raya in turn, but decided that she did not need the sword and engaged her in hand to hand combat. Unlike six years ago, Namaari is much more prepared and disciplined, quickly overpowering Raya. After Raya gives mocking answers as to why she is gathering the Gem pieces, Namaari prepares to knock her unconscious. However, Sisu, having regained the ability to enter her dragon form, interrupts this and scares away the Royal Army.
Namaari is shocked that Raya was telling the truth about Sisu and does not flee, simply staring at Sisu even as the dragon roars into her face. After a period of eye contact, Sisu departs with Raya and her friends as the moved Namaari continues to watch.
Returning to Fang, Namaari interrupts a lesson that her mother teaching to some children to inform her of the events at Spine. Having already learned of the events from Namaari’s general, Virana listens as Namaari recounts Sisu's appearance and announces her belief that they can restore the world. Virana explains to her daughter that this is what scares her; she believes that if the world is restored, the Fang tribe will be blamed for the apocalyptic six years. Virana then suggests that if they had Sisu along with all the Gem pieces, they could save the world themselves and potentially earn forgiveness. When Namaari notes that Raya will not simply hand over Sisu to them, Virana replies that they will not give her a choice and tells her daughter that she will handle it from here.
That night, while sitting on her bed, Namaari notices that Raya's friends have smuggled something on her window. Investigating, she finds a note written by Raya asking her to privately meet and hand over Fang's Gem piece, the last one needed to reassemble the Gem. Amongst the message is a gift in exchange for the Gem piece: the same dragon pendant that Namaari had given Raya six years ago. Namaari agrees to the meeting, sending out a flare to make her agreement known. The next morning, Namaari awaits in a small patch of land near the rivers surrounding Fang for Raya to arrive, holding the dragon pendant.
Once Raya arrives, Namaari expresses her amazement that Raya kept the dragon pendant all this time, to which Raya replies that she had been taking good care of it. Once Sisu also arrives for the meeting, a humbled Namaari hands over Fang's Gem piece, allowing Sisu and Raya to finally bring everyone back. However, when Namaari sees that Raya has all the other Gem pieces with her, she holds her loaded crossbow at them. Seeing an opportunity to save her tribe and fulfill her mother's wishes, Namaari demands that Raya hand over all five pieces along with Sisu. Raya and Sisu attempt to talk her down, but Namaari is convinced that she has no other choice.
As Sisu slowly approaches Namaari, pointing out that Namaari only wants a better world like the rest of them, Raya panics and throws her sword at Namaari while her finger is on the trigger of the loaded crossbow. Namaari blocks the blade with the crossbow, causing to go off and shoot Sisu in the chest, killing her. As a shocked Namaari and Raya's group looked on, Sisu's body fell into the river. With the death of the last dragon, all the water dries up, removing the only barrier between the Druun and Namaari’s home. Horrified and ashamed, Namaari grabbed Fang's Gem piece and ran back home while the others were distracted by Sisu's death.
Namaari returns to the palace to secure her mother, but is too late to stop Virana from being turned into stone by the Druun. As a distraught Namaari mourns over her mother, an equally devastated and vengeful Raya storms into the palace to confront her. With nothing left to lose and blaming Raya for causing her to kill Sisu, Namaari draws her twin daggers and engages her former friend in a third and final duel. With anger having consumed them both, Raya and Namaari battle to the death across the throne room, with Raya's rage making her a match for Namaari. Using her chain, Raya brings down some rubble and the dust disorients Namaari momentarily. Unleashing a series of furious and rapid strikes, Raya disarms her of both daggers and knocks her to the ground.
Defeated and exhausted, Namaari grabs a hold of the dragon pendant and tells Raya that she never meant for any of this to happen. When Raya dismisses her as a liar, Namaari asserts that Raya's much to blame for Sisu's death as she is due to her rage and especially her inability to trust others. However, Namaari no longer cares if Raya believes her or not, and awaits for her to decide her fate. Coming to her senses, and noticing that her friends have been evacuating Fang's people while she was pursuing her vengeance, Raya spares Namaari’s life and runs off to assist them. When Namaari sees that Raya and her group are about to fall to the Druun, Namaari also comes to her senses and decides to aid them with the fifth Gem piece.
Despite their efforts, Namaari and Raya's group are soon surrounded by the Druun, with the Gem pieces' power slowly diminishing. With no other option, and seeing that her friends do not trust Namaari, Raya gives her Gem piece to Namaari and allows the Druun to consume her. Raya's friends follow suit, and once she has all the pieces, Namaari attempts to escape. However, seeing Raya and her friends in stone, Namaari finally gives in to her guilt and reassembles the Dragon Gem, but it didn't appear to work. Having lost whatever sense of hope she has left, Namaari stood beside Raya as she accepts her fate being turned into stone by the Druun.
Though it would've appeared that the Druun has succeeded in turning everyone into stone, Namaari's final act of selflessness and trust causes the Dragon Gem to activate and vanquish the Druun, as well as restoring all of the Druun's victims to life, including Namaari and Raya. Sisu and all of the dragons are also restored to life, with Sisu reuniting with Raya. When Namaari approaches Sisu, she felt too ashamed to talk, but Sisu nonetheless embraces her in an act of forgiveness. Raya and her friends also forgive Namaari and happily embrace. Sometime later, Namaari, a restored Virana, and the other clans arrive at the Heart to greet Raya and a restored Benja. Along with everyone else, Namaari bows to show that the people of Kumandra are united once more.
- Unlike many of the other main female antagonists in Disney films, Namaari is a princess instead of an evil queen.
- Even though the Druun are the main antagonists of the film, Namaari is the central antagonist because she actively pursues Raya and even engages her in battle multiple times throughout the film. She is also responsible for the Druun getting released again and nearly destroying Earth and the human race.
- Gemma Chan would later portray Sersi in Eternals, which also came out in 2021.