The first line of the 1953 Peter Pan movie is:

All this happened before, and it will happen again. But this time it happened in London.

Within the Peter Pan Disney franchise is there any other mention of a cyclical history where things that are happening, have happened before?

I will also accept if a cyclical history has been mentioned in Peter Pan films/books/cartoons ect that are not part of the Disney franchise.

  • 3
    This might not literally mean that it's the same Peter, Wendy etc. This might be more a comment on some invariability of human nature than a speculation on the "shape" of history. Saying kids will be kids is not the same as saying that history is cyclical. Commented Jun 25, 2023 at 16:13
  • 4
    @EikePierstorff - It might also be something between a repetition with all the exact same characters and something very general like "kids will be kids"--Peter Pan and the Lost Boys don't age, so it could be alluding to the idea that he's had similar adventures with other kids besides the Darling family.
    – Hypnosifl
    Commented Jun 25, 2023 at 16:34
  • 3
    The only cyclical thing I can think of is J. M. Barrie rolling in his grave.
    – Spencer
    Commented Jun 25, 2023 at 18:02
  • It seems to be more about life being a cycle. Childhood leads to adulthood which leads to children and so on. It's not an entirely new notion, check out Ecclesiastes 3:15
    – AJFaraday
    Commented Jun 26, 2023 at 9:08
  • There's also the common notion of "history repeats itself".
    – Barmar
    Commented Jun 26, 2023 at 14:29

1 Answer 1


I'm not sure about the Disney franchise, but this is alluded to in the book Peter Pan by J M Barrie. In the final chapter we learn how Wendy has grown up, and instead Peter comes to collect her daughter Jane; and then in the final paragraph, Jane too has grown up, and Peter comes for her daughter Margaret:

As you look at Wendy, you may see her hair becoming white, and her figure little again, for all this happened long ago. Jane is now a common grown-up, with a daughter called Margaret; and every spring cleaning time, except when he forgets, Peter comes for Margaret and takes her to the Neverland, where she tells him stories about himself, to which he listens eagerly. When Margaret grows up she will have a daughter, who is to be Peter’s mother in turn; and thus it will go on, so long as children are gay and innocent and heartless.

  • 8
    I was puzzled by "heartless" and did some digging. There is a fair bit of analysis of it on line, and it seems that Barrie meant it in its usual meaning, but applied to how children don't care about things other than themselves. But then I found this article: J.M. Barrie’s “Peter Pan”: Cynical Celebration Of A Serial Killer Or Cautionary Tale?
    – Peter M
    Commented Jun 26, 2023 at 13:22
  • 2
    @PeterM, so essentially, once the children become 'aware' enough of duties and obligations that they no longer feel free to just run off to play whenever they want, Peter Pan stops coming to pick them up for adventures, and waits until the next generation. Neat. Commented Jun 26, 2023 at 14:52
  • @PeterM Still, I wonder if a more accurate reading might be "carefree".
    – Spencer
    Commented Jun 27, 2023 at 14:13

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