James is the son of King Roland II and his first wife Queen Lorelei. Roland and Lorelei desperately wanted a family but she could not bear children. One day, Roland found a Wishing Well in the castle gardens and wished for a family. The wish was granted and James and Amber were born, James seven minutes before his sister, but the birth took a great toll on Queen Lorelei and she died, leaving Roland devastated and his newborn children without a mother. Roland was a devoted father to the twins and they had a happy childhood, but he wanted them to have a mother. One day, Roland met a shoemaker from Dunwiddie Village, Miranda, and they fell in love and were married, with Miranda and her daughter Sofia joining the Royal Family as the new Queen and Princess.
James is a young boy with fair skin, blond hair and hazel eyes. His prominent outfit is a white vest with a green jacket, a golden badge in the shape of a star, a teal bowtie, brown pants, white stockings, and black laceless shoes. Other outfits of his tend to be the same, the only difference generally being the color scheme. So far, his jackets have been light green, dark green (worn on Wassalia), light blue (worn for his father's wedding to Miranda), dark blue (worn for the School Fair) and dark red (worn for Sofia's debut ball).
For Flying Derby, James wears the school riding uniform; a pink shirt under an aqua waistcoat with the school crest, khaki trousers, and black calf-length boots. He also wears a light blue helmet.
When he and his family became bakers in "The Baker King", James wore clothing more in line with a village boy, namely a beige shirt under a brown waistcoat, a green necktie, yellow trousers, white stockings, and black shoes. He wore a nearly identical outfit in "Tri-Kingdom Picnic", the only difference being the necktie color.
Personality and Traits
Unlike Amber, James isn't vain at all and is very helpful to Sofia, as well as being very kind and humble towards those of non-royal status, showing that he does not regard himself as being above others despite being a prince. Also unlike his twin, James is more down-to-earth and adaptable to changing circumstances, in contrast to Amber who tends towards melodramatic panic whenever things don't go according to plan.
Also like his father and twin, James is naive when it comes to magic due to not really understanding it. James is also very brave, as shown when he willingly distracted a marauding baby giant despite the considerable danger such an act posed to his personal safety. James is also distinguished by his large appetite, sufficient to eat a serving of pancakes intended for both him and Amber and still be eager for more, and has a particular fondness for sweet things, especially cookies and jiggly-wiggly pudding.
While James demonstrates fewer personality flaws than Amber, they are by no means non-existent. As is quite common with boys his age, James can become a bit too competitive and focused on winning to the point where success goes to his head and failure is unacceptable. When competing in the picnic games, this behavior caused him to inadvertently drive away all his friends, but he learned the error of his ways and improved his conduct. He also doesn't take his role as a Prince very seriously, as seen in the episode, "King for a Day", and grew quite jealous of Amber when it was revealed that Amber is supposed to inherit the throne, attempting to sabotage her efforts to prove herself.
At first, James had a very naive idea of what it meant to be a true Prince or knight, thinking it just meant heroic gestures and swinging swords and was quickly overwhelmed by the hard work and dedication required. However, with some inspirational words and help from Sofia and his Aunt Tilly, James rose to the challenge magnificently. When his family was fleeing from Vor in a boat, James was inspired by his sisters' display of courage and insisted on going back to fight and protect Enchancia.
Role in the Series
James first appears when Miranda and Sofia arrive at the castle. James accepts Sofia as his new little sister and Miranda as his new mother immediately. He is further elated when his father announces that Sofia will have a Royal Ball in honor of her Royal Debut. The next day at Royal Prep, Amber convinces James to give Sofia a ride on the Enchanted Swing Set. James does so and the swing ride sends Sofia sailing into the water fountain. James instantly realizes that Amber tricked him into wrecking Sofia's chance to make a good first impression and feels guilty for humiliating Sofia especially after Zandar lets him have it. When they get home James tells Amber off.
For the next few days, Sofia avoids James and the other kids and dedicates herself to her studies. James is able to see that she is struggling and wants to help but she refuses him every time. On the day before her Royal Debut Ball, Sofia is having tea with her villager friends Ruby and Jade. Having had enough of Sofia avoiding him, James comes over and pours the tea for her to the delight of Ruby and Jade who swoon over him. Sofia asks him "What are you doing here?" in a way that reveals to James why she is avoiding him and he apologizes to her and helps her prepare for her Ball. He also tells her about Professor Popov's dance class, unaware that Amber is spying on them.
At dance class, Sofia is sent bouncing around the class. When she gets back up and gives Amber a nasty glare James realizes what's going on. When they return to the coach, Amber claims she gave Sofia trick shoes by mistake and James sees through her lie. That night, James confronts Amber telling her he knows she gave Sofia the trick shoes on purpose because she's jealous that everyone likes Sofia more than her and tells her that because of what she did he likes Sofia more than her too and storms out. Later, he becomes one of the many victims of the sleeping spell that teaches Sofia not to mess with magic. When he wakes back up, he is surprised but happy to see that his sisters have reconciled. He dances with his mother and then his whole family.
James is a major character in the series, though there are not many episodes which focus on him. While he means well, he has shown from time to time to be somewhat of a rule breaker, irresponsible and a bad sport with Sofia always there to try and get the best out of him. James has shown numerous times to have a habit of being disobedient when it comes to rules. Most notable in "A Royal Mess" when he breaks the window Roland made for his mother as a gift, he tried to hide what he did but his ideas only increased the damage. By the time his parents arrived the window was completely destroyed. He was about to tell his father what happened only for Sofia to step forward and take the blame. Letting his sister take the blame left him feeling guilty until finally confessing the truth. Despite being irresponsible he remains as a supportive loving brother towards both Sofia and Amber, as well open-minded and able to come down to earth whenever things get out of hand. An example is shown in the episode "The Baker King" when he and his family become simple village bakers thanks to a magic mirror. James takes it in stride, in contrast to Amber's hysterical screaming when she finds out, and enthusiastically takes to his new life despite knowing next to nothing about baking, attempting to retrieve eggs from a chicken by chasing her and requesting the eggs, and is the only one to show disappointment when Roland decides to become king again.
James is shown to like sports, specifically Flying Derby and Ice Hockey. In "Just One of the Princes", James helps Sofia learn how to ride a flying horse and accomplish her goal in becoming the first Flying Derby princess, despite everyone telling her that it is not meant for princesses and his own concerns. Eventually, James and Sofia won the tryout race and made the team. From this point on, James and Sofia become quite the best of team-mates when working together, but in "Tri-Kingdom Picnic" and "Enchanted Science Fair" James has shown on rare occasions to be competitive and determined to win at anything which can sometimes get out of hand. During the Tri-Kingdom Picnic, James is shown to be both a sore winner and loser: Whenever he won something, he bragged and rudely rubbed it in the other kids' faces and whenever he lost, he throws a tantrum and demands a do-over which he backs up by making a bunch of excuses up. This behavior often upset Sofia and his friends to the point where they did not wish to play with him anymore until Sofia helped James learn good sportsmanship.
James also tends to get into trouble due to not thinking things through. In "Princesses to the Rescue!", he and Prince Jin end up trapped by the Jade Jaguar when they go hunting for his treasure, and his mindset that fun is the solution to everything led to a giant going on a rampage in "King for a Day", both times necessitating Sofia's intervention to help him out of it.
James finds his life turned upside-down in "A Royal Wedding". James is lamenting the boring duties he has to do as Heir to the Throne at his Aunt Tilly's Wedding to Sir Bartleby. However, when it's time for the Royal Painting, Grand Mum reveals that Amber is the true Heir to the Throne since she is the eldest child. He is devastated when this is confirmed to be the case and sets out to prove that Amber is a fool so he can regain his former position. He believes his chance will be when Amber's greeting the guests since he found this hard as he found Majestic Formalities the most boring class at Royal Prep. However, to his shock, Amber does a great job with ease. Sofia tells him that is because Amber loves and excels at the things that he found boring. Very soon, everyone is saying that Amber will make a great Queen. James deliberately sabotages Amber which upsets her to the point of doing what he wanted. James feels guilty to the point where he confesses his actions and fixes everything. Ultimately, James embraces the fact that he will make a better knight than a king and endeavors to become the greatest knight in Enchancia.
In the series finale, "Forever Royal", James and his siblings and friends all graduate from Royal Prep, singing a rendition of the school song to the audience. Unfortunately, the festive atmosphere is shattered when an evil witch named Vor invades the castle ballroom with an army of crystal minions and places James and his family, including his aunt and grandmother, under a mind control spell which forces them to surrender the kingdom and lock themselves in Cedric's tower. Sofia manages to break the spell and they flee to the harbor, where they board the Royal Schooner to escape the kingdom. However, Sofia insists on going back to save Enchancia from the evil witch and Amber takes off with her. Inspired by his sisters, James insists that as a Prince and future knight he must fight to protect his kingdom, supported by Aunt Tilly and Cedric. When they do get there, they find Amber kneeling by Sofia's Amulet and are told that she trapped Vor inside it, but was pulled in herself. James is so horrified and saddened that all he can utter is a whispered "Sof?" and watch nervously as Roland implores Cedric to get her out. In conjunction with his family, friends, teachers and Sofia's animal friends, James concentrates his energy into the spell necessary to free Sofia, which releases her from the amulet. He is then amazed when she is anointed as a full-fledged Protector and then goes back inside to resume the celebrations.
During class, James notices that something is bothering Sofia. When Sofia explains what it was, he concludes that it was just a daydream. When Flora dismisses them for summer vacation, James excitedly heads for the coach so he can get home to find out where they are going for their summer vacation. However, when he meets up with his parents they reveal that they still have not picked a place out. James tries to solve the problem by picking a place with a dart. However, when the dart is thrown Roland refuses to go where it landed: The North Pole. Sofia comes up and tells them they should go to the Kingdom of Avalor, which James is all for. When they get to Avalor, James spends most of the time being entertained by Armando. Suddenly, Sofia insists that they play hide and seek. After this makes Amber ask her what she's up to, Sofia simply tells them that she needs them to stay hidden for as long as possible. After Sofia leaves, Amber glares at him for not helping her get the truth out of Sofia to which he shrugs and drags Amber off to hide. When Armando finally finds them, Shuriki has her guards seize him and his family and throws them in the dungeon. Sofia and Elena show up to let them out and together they free Elena's family and the kingdom.
Elena of Avalor
James, now a teenager, appears in the final episode "Coronation Day" with his family where they attend Princess Elena's coronation as Queen of Avalor. He joins in the song as they celebrate Elena's ascension to the throne, sharing a dance with Princess Isabel.
James has a very strong bond with his younger sister, Sofia. When they first met he was a bit bemused by her villager behavior, but almost immediately accepted her into the family. She is often thrown off by his immaturity, but she's very close to him. James is very protective of Sofia and dislikes her secrecy. Unlike Amber, James proves that he deserves Sofia's trust and has never betrayed it. When Sofia requests that they distract Shuriki's minions for her so she can accomplish a secret task, James instantly agrees and doesn't ask why, showing that he trusts Sofia completely. The two often act as a team for sporting events and are sparring partners in fencing.
Sofia in turn cares deeply for her brother, though can be irritated by his less mature behavior. She has helped him on several occasions to better himself as a person, namely by learning good sportsmanship and becoming more patient.
Amber and James have a bit of a sibling rivalry, but Amber is shown to love James when she got hurt after telling her that he likes Sofia more. Amber is twin sister for him and they have their own communication. We can see that Amber loves her twin brother when she sings a touching song of the twins. James is also more attached to the idea of being a twin than Amber is and is less inclined towards emotional outbursts, despite her claiming to be more mature than him. When Amber is revealed to be the real Heir to the Throne, James initially doesn't take it well and tries to sabotage her efforts to prove she is worthy of it, only to eventually feel horribly guilty and help turn things around. When Amber admitted that James was right in that Sofia didn't need to worry or stress about picking a new school, James beamed widely in delight, implying that he values Amber's opinion of him.
James gets along very well with his father. Roland often tells his son to be more careful when it comes to something risky. Roland also often has to remind James to act more mature and responsible but loves his son dearly.
As revealed in "Forever Royal", James's birth was a source of great joy for his father as he had desperately wanted children but Queen Lorelei had been unable to have any until Roland wished for it. Roland was very much a loving father, spending a lot of time playing with his children in their toddler years.
James accepted Miranda as his new mother immediately, and he gets along with her very well. They both have a dislike of spying as shown in "Her Royal Spyness".
Unlike Amber, James instantly accepted Ruby and Jade's presence in Sofia's life and is quite fond of them, since they share his easy-going and fun-loving nature. The two are shown to have crushes on James to the point where they get excited when they see him, which bewilders him somewhat. However in "A Tale of Two Teams", James shows that he cares more about winning than them as shown when he tells Sofia "Come on. You'll feel better after we win." after the pair storm off feeling hurt.
Like Sofia, James didn't have as rough a start with Lucinda despite getting hexed a lot. This is because Lucinda's mother did those hexes and he found them, for the most part, amusing. When Sofia revealed that Lucinda is her friend he was shocked and angry that she kept that from him.
James and Prince Hugo were originally enemies. Hugo made fun of James for helping Sofia, and James stood up to him for Sofia. In "The Flying Crown", when James sprained his wrist and Hugo took his place to ride in the championships, James was so anxious to help the flying derby team that he wasn't too concerned with Sofia being paired with their old flying derby rival. After the race, after Hugo reformed, James accepted him as a friend. After catching Hugo ice-dancing, James admitted that he's okay with it, knowing how Sofia went through the same experience. After seeing Sofia and Hugo in the ice-dancing recital, James was the first on the hockey team to ask Hugo to teach him how to ice-dance.
In contrast to his father and sister, James gets on quite well with Cedric and rarely has anything bad to say to or about him. Despite the magician's apathy towards children, James has consistently been nice to Cedric and gave him ample credit to his father for helping him during his one-day reign in "King for a Day". Cedric was quite touched by James's words and genuinely thanked him. In "Two Princesses and a Baby", Amber asks Cedric to make James two months younger than her but he instead accidentally turns him into a two month old baby. Cedric is shown to be immediately horrifed at this, but much of this was due to concern for himself if anybody found out. After Cedric tells the family how he wanted to take over Enchancia because he was disrespected and proves he can stay on, James half-jokes for him to show them a magic trick, showing that he forgave Cedric almost instantly.
- James is younger than Amber by seven minutes.
- James enjoys cookies - they are the only things that brought him to the tea that the girls were having, and he ate all of the swan cookies that Amber and Sofia had planned for the tea party. In general, he likes eating.
- He loves chocolate cake, as revealed in "Two Princesses and a Baby". Amber also revealed that he picks chocolate cake every year for their birthday.
- He gets more cake on his face than in his mouth, as revealed by Amber.
- James has an obsession with cannons because, as revealed in "Sidekick Clio", he loves making things explode. This obsession is shared with Prince Zandar, his best friend, though it is toned down in later series.
- James experienced his first transformation when Cedric accidentally turned him into a toddler in "Two Princesses and a Baby", but had no memory of the experience.
- Amber and James used to have water fights when they were little.
- He and Amber have a "royal twin song."
- He dislikes peas, as revealed when Sofia tried to feed him some of them.
- As revealed in the episode "King for a Day", James is very good at gymnastics.
- Both his pets, Rex and Freedo, are known to cause trouble while creating problems for James.
- James plays the bagpipes, though is a bit rusty at it, as revealed in "Her Royal Spyness". He can also play the drums quite well and is a member of the school band.
- For the first season, he was voiced by Zach Callison, but he was replaced by Broadway star Tyler Merna due to Callison working on the popular Cartoon Network show Steven Universe. By mid-season 3, Merna stepped down from the role due to going through puberty and was thus replaced by Nicolas Cantu starting with the episode "Camp Wilderwood". This makes James the only main character to end the series with a different voice actor.
- James is the only one of his siblings who has not been cursed by the Amulet of Avalor, though he was affected by Princess Ivy's cursed Dragonflies.
- Until the finale "Forever Royal", James and Amber's mother remained unknown and unseen. She and Roland desperately wanted children and Roland used the magic Wishing Well in the castle gardens to wish for a family, resulting in James and Amber's birth but at the cost of their mother when she fell gravely ill and died.