Why is Disney awesome?
It just… it just is! There’s singing, and magic, and happy endings, and general happiness for everyone! I mean, doesn’t everyone want to live in a world where animals talk and people express their feelings through song without getting weird looks? Oh. Just me? Well fine then. I mean, Disney movies to me epitomize the life that we all kind of wish we could live only not really. Characters are pretty easily categorizeable (apparently Microsoft doesn’t recognize this as a word… oh well!) as good or evil. Magical things happen all the time. Sad or scary things may happen in the middle, but we can always rest assured that at the end evil will be vanquished, true love will be found, and everyone will live happily ever. It’s nice to be able to step outside the real world, where things don’t always make sense or turn out the way we want them to, and where the future is anything but certain, and for even just an hour and a half be little kids again, cheering on the hero and knowing that everything is going to be ok in the end.
What do you think of all the critics that say princesses are only sexual objects and nothing more?
I think they have issues. I mean, come on, these are kid’s movies! Just believe in the magic and stop trying to ruin it for everyone! I guess it’s not that they don’t have a point. Disney characters are often quite stereotypical- the princess sings her happy little song and falls prey to an evil witch or devil or what have you, whereupon she is helpless to save herself and must wait patiently, possibly in a coma, for her handsome prince to come and save her. And all the while, her hair is perfect and her clothes are pretty and even quite revealing (Jasmine and Ariel, for instance, would definitely get dress code). But it’s important to understand that these movies are based on fairy tales that have been passed down for hundreds of years, and they’ve actually been cleaned up quite a bit to be deemed suitable for young audiences. In fact, a lot of these movies came out before modern feminist ideas became so integral to our culture, and it’s only from this modern perspective that anything seems wrong with the characters and storylines. I’m not saying that it should be excusable for all media to portray such stereotypical gender roles, but I don’t think that all movies should have to do the complete opposite, either. It’s important to recognize that trying to defeat stereotypes does not mean that no one can do or feel anything remotely in line with expectations. Just because I’m a girl
doesn’t mean I can’t love kids. It just means that society needs to recognize that whether you love kids and whether you have two X chromosomes have nothing to do with each other.
And Disney is certainly responding to more modern ideas of gender equality. Mulan was the heroine of her story- she saved all of China! Maybe Meg used her feminine charms to seduce Hercules, and maybe Snow White was an airhead who needed rescuing, but more and more Disney women have strong personalities and hold their own in their respective stories. Jasmine has quite the temper on her, Rapunzel threatened Flynn into getting her way, and Merida spoke out against the unfairness of being forced to marry and give up all her freedom.
So, sure, some Disney princesses have fairly stereotypical characteristics. But there is nothing inherently wrong with treating woodland creatures kindly or singing while cleaning. It is ultimately up to the viewer to decide whether they are going to focus on finding everything wrong with the Disney universe, or just sit back and enjoy the movie and its wonderfulness :)
Do you prefer animal, princess, or other Disney movies?
Probably princess movies. I find movies with actual people as the main characters to be more relatable and, therefore, enjoyable. Not that I don’t still love Lady and the Tramp and Lion King. I just find it easier to put myself in the characters’ places and imagine that I’m part of the story if said characters are of the same species as me.
What’s your favorite underrated Disney movie and why?
Umm… I’m not sure I’ve actually seen that many underrated Disney movies… so…
If you could live in any Disney story universe, which would you pick?
The Little Mermaid. Cause it’d be cool to be a mermaid :)
What’s your all time favorite Disney movie? Why?
Aladdin. It’s just my go-to Disney movie to watch. I kind of just love everything about it. The songs are the best, Aladdin is adorable, he and Jasmine are adorable (I love it when she figures out that he was the street boy she met, and he’s all flustered, and they’re just adorable!), not to mention that it’s got Robin Williams- Genie is the best!
Who’s your favorite princess? Why?
Hmm. It used to be Belle, because she’s smart and has brown hair and is therefore awesome. Plus that’s probably my second favorite Disney movie. But I think Rapunzel might have beat her out, both for favorite princess and second favorite movie. It’s just so adorable!!!! With the songs, and the chameleon, and the hair, and the AWWWW!!!!!!!!
Who’s your least favorite princess? Why?
Well, this isn’t going to be a completely fair choice. I haven’t seen Pocahontas, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, or Snow White in years. But, based on my current memories, my least favorite is probably…Aurora. I just… don’t remember her doing much of anything. She pricks her finger, she falls asleep, she wakes up. That’s about the whole movie. I also remember the fairies fighting over which color to make her dress, but other than that, she didn’t have much personality (that I remember), so she doesn’t really stand out to me.
Who’s your favorite Disney prince? Why?
It’s gotta be Aladdin. He’s just so sweet and adorable! But Flynn and Eric are tied for a close second.
Going along with Jill’s question, do you think Disney Princesses are good role models for little girls?
To an extent. They certainly aren’t bad characters. I don’t think a girl should model her behavior after one specific princess, but taken together, I think they demonstrate some very model-worthy qualities- they do well under adversity, they stand up for what they believe
in, they go after what they want, they are gentle and caring. Of course, they also disobey their parents, run away from their problems, blackmail people, and a few of them can be a bit lacking in personality. But no one, character on person, is perfect. And a lot of the times the bad qualities, like disobedience, come out of extenuating circumstances that I don’t think little kids would think of as something to imitate. Unless they’ve been locked up in a tower all their lives, I don’t think they would consider blackmailing a thief into sneaking them out of the house against their mother’s orders :)
What’s your favorite Disney animal movie?
Lady and the Tramp :) It’s just so cute!
What’s your favorite Disney song?
Oh dear. This is going to take some thinking about…Wait a second, never mind. It’s A Whole New World. Aladdin is really coming up a lot today, but I can’t help it. It’s just good at everything! Although I also really like the Tangled song, See the Light. It’s just so aww :)
Which Disney love story is the most like what you want with your future husband? (it doesn’t have to be from a princess movie or even be between humans, just love)
Ahh, this one’s hard! All the Disney movies have elements that I think are super adorable, but also things that I don’t like so much. It’s so sweet the lengths Aladdin is willing to go to be worthy of Jasmine, but he also lies to her about who he is, which I wouldn’t want. And I love how Belle and the Beast start out almost hating each other, but then they slowly get to know each other and see the good in the other. There’s just the issue of the Beast mistreating Belle’s father and holding Belle against her will. Tangled is sort of a combination of both of those things, they slowly get to know and love each other, but Flynn is a thief and lies and everyone is trying to keep them apart! And Eric is in love with Ariel from the moment he hears her voice, but then he doesn’t think it’s her, so it’s all one big misunderstanding, and he almost gets conned into marrying Ursula. Maybe I’m just overthinking this a little bit? :P
Ooh, what about Howl’s Moving Castle? Howl literally sweeps Sofi off her feet and you know they’re perfect for each other from the beginning. There’s just the small issue of Sofi being cursed into an old woman and Howl almost dying…
Ok, Disney movies are romantic and adorable and all, but upon reflection, I don’t think I’d actually want my love story to be like one. I don’t want my relationship to be based on abuse or deceit, and I don’t want people rooting against us and trying to pull us apart.
I seriously think too much…
Why do some animals in Disney movies talk and others don’t? Example: In Cinderella, the mice talk but the horse and dog don’t.
It’s a matter of the fantasy genre in general (I should know, I just wrote a whole unit study about it :) It’s up to the creator of the universe to create the specific rules that the story will have to follow, since it doesn’t follow real world norms about animal communication and laws of physics and such. So if the creator decides that dragons can talk but crickets and horses can only communicate in grunts and squeaks, then that’s how it’s going to go. Come to think about it, do horses talk in any Disney movies? People ones, I mean. The horse doesn’t talk in Tangled, or in Cinderella, or in Mulan. I can’t think of any talking horses. Maybe they’re just not very chatty or something. Anyway, the writers decide the rules of the movie’s universe, and as long as they follow those rules and don’t break them and create unexplained inconsistencies in the following of those rules, it’s all hunky-dory.
Who’s your favorite Disney character?
Umm. There are so many choices :/ It might be Peter Pan. I just love him :) Or Rapunzel, cause she’s the best. Or Aladdin, cause he’s Aladdin.
Should Giselle be a Disney Princess?
Probably not. I love Enchanted, but it strikes me as more of a spoof on the typical fairy tale, drawing from and expanding on other stories, than a fairy tale in its own right. Plus, Giselle spends most of the movie as a real person instead of an animated character, and that’s just not acceptable if she wants to be a Disney Princess :P
Well, Dopey, of course! He’s just so clumsy and adorable :)
Though Grumpy is a close second.
Why is there no blood on the knife at the end of Tangled?
For the same reason that you rarely see blood in Doctor Who- it’s gotta be kid friendly, even if that means sacrificing realisticness. I mean, come on. It’s not like Tangled was very realistic to begin with :P
Why does Pocahontas 2 exist?
Because, awesome as Disney is, they never learn to quit while they’re ahead. I think this is a common feature of big companies in general, so we can’t be too hard on them.
What is the animal Gaston killed in Beauty and the Beast? You know, the one Lafou carries around before the Gaston song.
I couldn’t find a picture, but if memory serves, it appeared to be some species of Deercoon.
Who are the best Disney parents, and who are the worst?
First, I would like to ask if anyone else has noticed how rare it is to find a good mom in Disney? It seems like she’s always dead (Tarzan, Aladdin, Little Mermaid, Cinderella, Snow White, Beauty and the Beast), and sometimes even replaced with an evil stepmother. What kinds of childhoods did these writers have?
As far as the best go, though, I’m thinking Peter Pan. Mrs. Darling is caring and gentle and good at telling stories, and while George Darling loses his temper a little bit in the beginning, it’s mostly because he’s stressed. Once he learns not to care so much what the neighbors think, you see how unconditionally he loves his children.
The worst parent award probably goes to… I don’t know. As far as biological parents go, most of the ones I’m thinking of seem to be great parents. They love their kids and want what’s best for them. Sure, they may lose their tempers or display intolerance, but they generally learn the error of their ways in time for everyone to live happily ever after.
Step parents on the other hand, mothers in particular, tend to be quite ghastly. Out of these, Snow White’s is probably the worst- not many step-mothers actually try to kill their stepdaughters. They usually settle for holding them captive and/or forcing them into eternal
If you could have any Disney character for a grandparent, who would you pick?
Of course you would ask this question, AB :P I’d have to say… Belle’s dad. As a father, he’s already tiny and adorable, and it would be fun to see all his experiments and help him try new
Should Merida from Brave be an official Disney Princess? Why or why not?
I see no reason why not. She is Disney, and she is a princess. Sure, it’ll wreck the whole even number ten thing, but Puerto Rico would wreck our even number fifty, and I still think they should have the right to statehood.
Does it matter if a Disney Princess doesn’t have a prince counterpart?
No, a princess is not defined by the man in her life. This is the twenty-first century, after all. Sure, love stories where the prince and princess fall in love and get married are adorable, but they’re not the only stories worth being written. Merida’s story is a pretty great one, and one of the main points was that she wasn’t ready to get married to some strange boy she hardly know. Had she been forced to go through with a marriage, it would have been kind of demoralizing and defeating. Though, now that I think about it, it might be kind of adorable to see a sequel where she falls in love with one of the princes…
Were there any Disney movies or characters that scared you when you were little?
Mulan was probably the one that scared me the most. Especially the part when the Huns started popping up out of the snow.
If you had to pair up characters from different movies (like a crossover), who do you think would make a good couple? Who would be best friends?
Well, I certainly wouldn’t want to break up any of the existing relationships. But I think Jane and Belle would be best friends. They’re both really smart and like learning and adventure and stuff. And Rapunzel would get along with everyone. I think Disney should just make a movie where they all meet each other and general awesomeness happens. Disney style. Not Once Upon a Time style.
Relationship-wise, I really don’t know. Once you eliminate the main characters, who are already spoken for, there aren’t that many choices left. At least that I can currently think of. Lol. I think it would be funny if Lotty from Princess and the Frog and Yao from Mulan- the short angry one- got together. Wouldn’t it just be adorable to see her running up to him and attacking him with a giant hug?
And that’s all the questions we have for today! I think Anna Beth wins this one- the love story question was fun to think about. I think I said the winner could have Question Tuesday again. So congrats :) I can’t wait for the rest of Disney Week!