Defending Disney

I hate seeing pictures and hearing girls’ comments about how Disney deceived them for life by telling them that every girl will get their prince charming. Disney didn’t deceive anyone, at least… Not the way you would initially think.

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Upon seeing this, as a girl who was raised on these movies, who BEGGED for the VHS ( do you guys remember those? They were like black bricks and you put them in the thing. Nothing was more tragic then when your player ate the film inside?) of Sleeping Beauty, knew all the words to all the songs in The Little Mermaid.
When I saw this, my entire childhood shattered.
Until I realized how one-sided this picture is.

In the words of Walt Disney, about Cinderella to start with, “She believed in dreams all right, but she also believed in doing something about them. When Prince Charming didn’t come along, she went over to the palace and got him.”
Because more then one person needs to put in the effort for a happy ending.

Or Belle. Who doesn’t save the beast’s life with her sexual interest as the picture depicts. He is saved by her love.
Because you need to love and be loved for a happy ending.

While Ariel’s story in the picture is quite true, she had changed her appearance to win the affections of the prince, paying the price of her voice. The part about her having nothing valuable to say…Well I just don’t think that’s right.
Oh! But before we think that Ariel is totally helpless, lets remember she saved Prince Eric’s life not once, but twice. Once while he is drowning, and once more as he is about to marry Vanessa/Ursula.
Eric suspects that she’s (Ariel) is the one that saved him as he meets her on the shore, but quickly disregards said suspicion because she can’t talk.
You know, because you have to talk to be able to swim and save someone from drowning right? Right? Sorry this guy’s kinda a moron. But that’s neither here nor there.
She sacrifices her tail and voice to be with Prince Eric. And proves perfectly capable without them, so long as she has her friends, and saved him from Vanessa/Ursula’s grip.
Point being, every happy ending costs something. You can’t get there without sacrificing.
Also, you can do anything with your friends. We-as humans- were not MADE to journey alone.

Jasmine, from the get go, was angered that people were treating her like a trophy. Alladin had to win her heart, she didn’t just throw herself at him.
Sleeping Beauty and Snow White weren’t saved by their physical appearance. Snow White was saved by her compassion for others ( in her case, the Dwarves), and Sleeping Beauty had a spell casted over her where she would sleep. So what the hell was she going to do? SOMEONE had to go get her, might as well be the Prince. If he didn’t go through the thorns and slay the dragon…Well then he wouldn’t have deserved a girl like her.
Actually Sleeping Beauty and Snow White is kinda where this arguement falls short because I hadn’t cared for either of those movies when I was younger, but the point is:
You have to respect yourself to get to a happy ending.

Disney deceived no one. Stop blaming multi-billion dollar franchises for your lack of dates and focus on something other then boys. All of these girls knew that one day they would fall in love, and they didn’t toss themselves at everyone until they found Mr. Right. Cinderella cared for her friends, Belle read books, Ariel was fascinated by human life, Jasmine had a f*cking tiger so if that’s not some form entertainment I don’t know what is. Princess Tatiana even had a GOAL that didn’t involve getting married. In fact, she even cared about hygiene, she ¬†definitely didn’t want to kiss that frog.

Oh, not to mention that nothing that comes out of Disney is original, all their movies are based off of books and folk tales. But it’s easier to just point one finger, I guess. That’s a whole different playing field.

Living Up to the Princess Influence

When we’re younger, a huge amount of us girls grow up with The Princess Syndrome. A lot of us latched on to a favorite Disney princess. If not Disney, perhaps another storybook princess. She helped to shape us as we grew up and for good reason. She was beautiful, kind, smart, loving, maybe animals flocked to her when she sang. It was all very awe inspiring.

As we grow up, do we lose The Princess Syndrome? Is it something we should hold onto? While I don’t always agree with waiting for Prince Charming to save you, I think that Princesses still offer a good framework for an individual.

Princess stories are often a transformation tale which can still remind us to not lose sight of becoming the best we can be.

Princesses are often very kind, caring, and empathetic which is something a lot of people lose when they get older and get out into a colder world. It’s something to hold onto. It’s a gift that keeps on giving.

Princesses are often kind to animals. This is an important thing to learn as a child and something we should hold onto. Relationships with animals are incredibly rewarding.

Princesses are often courageous. Fighting for what’s right and for their own happiness. I know so many people who forget this. It’s something you should never stop fighting for.

In Cinderella type stories we are taught to never give up and that your situation does not define you.

Princesses like Belle teach us that beauty starts from the inside and it’s best to look to see who people really are outside of appearances.

Snow White was kind to animals and less fortunate individuals. She teaches us to look after the needs of others.

Ariel teaches us to be strong willed and brave. She also teaches us that what seems impossible can in fact be possible if you believe and if you try hard enough.

All of these things can and should still be implemented into our lifestyles as we become adults. Perhaps the biggest change I would make in Princess stories would be to show that you don’t need royal blood or a marriage to be a Princess. Every girl can be one in her own right. It’s all about embodying the positive traits and outlook. Sometimes it’s still a good thing to look back to our childhood heroines to remind us of things that are easily forgotten.