Friday, January 31, 2014

Princesses of Badassdom

There were no survivors.

Trend Alert! TREND ALERT! The Fad Herald hath visited the noble countryside and announced a brand new trend that we are all to adhere to! Hence when logging into the Facebook, you are to take one of these personality quizzes, and then use the results to announce to the world which personality type are you: be it Harry Potter, Disney Princess, Star Wars Character, but sadly not which Nicolas Cage Character you are. 

Of course, the answer to that is that we are all Nicolas Cage, and he is us. The Nicolas Cage is love.

Yes, once again the fad that is Facebook has managed to grab a sub fad, thus proving it’s relevancy once again before we are all making Facebook jokes as if it were a mere Myspace or a Friendster, because social media, LOLz, amirite? Seriously, when is the pendulum swinging back to Myspace? I have some good Facebook jokes I’ve been saving for when we’re all back on that. Like this status now for a promise of being in one of my top eight spaces. 

The problem with these personality quizzes (and I know they’re just for fun. It’s this, or another post about Leonardo DiCaprio not winning an Oscar. You’ll read this over analysis and love it) is that they tend to accentuate the good in a character for the sake of “personality” but they tend to ignore the bad about them, which is a little bit silly. It’s some of their badness that tends to give them flair. However, today I want to talk about what’s being ignored when it comes to these Disney Princesses. The fact that they are straight up out of a Quentin Tarantino movie, and no one seems to point this out.

Let’s see one of the most popular Disney Princesses around, Belle. She is probably one of the more popular ones I’ve seen floating about. The problem is that her description tends to ignore the fact that some of her very first scenes are all about how she’s pretty much better than the town. Then she spends the rest of the movie falling in love with the man that kidnapped her. No, seriously, “Be Our Guest” is one of the most disturbing moments in a Disney Film, mostly because she really isn’t their guest, it’s eat after this song and dance number or starve until we all accept our fate as living as the clearance rack at Ikea for the rest of eternity. (Chip was an adorable chipped cup for twenty years.) It’s really a quipping candlestick away from being a Lifetime movie of the week. 

This part is largely ignored, but it’s what gives her edge. Belle was the prisoner of the Beast, but within a week she was running the place. That’s the part that gets ignored in these frilly personality quizzes. Stuck up? Absolutely. The marriage is over once she’s able to leave freely? Yes. (Remember, the Beast was the Beast because he was a jerk.) But she was able to take that and channel it into perhaps the finest moment of Disney Princessdom outside of Rapunzel’s Ninja hair: turning the tables on her kidnapper to the point that he was enthralled with her.

Let’s take Cinderella now. There’s a lot we could talk about, the fact that years of scrubbing probably made her stronger and harder than the Prince she fell in love with. Keeping a place clean isn’t just good cardio, it builds muscles. She could probably bench press that entire magical cart by the time she was ready to go to the ball. Let’s not even discuss her army of talking, clothes wearing rodents that were ready to do her bidding. She had a magic fairy godmother helping her out. Straight up Bippity Boppity Booed her way into ganking some evil stepsisters if she really chose.

No, Cinderella’s real superpower is the ability to hypnotize men to fall in love with her as well as running in glass footwear. First of all, how many of you would be brave enough to wear glass? On your feet? That doesn’t give that doesn’t bend, and she should consider herself lucky she just lost a slipper. But no, after not even an entire night - before midnight - she was able to get this Prince to scour the countryside looking for her.  THE. ENTIRE. COUNTRYSIDE. Using a shoe. And these aren’t fingerprints people, and that wasn’t a small little gathering either, are you telling me that no one had the same shoe size. No, this was straight up witchcraft. 

And are we saying it’s a bad thing? Nope. She was in a bad situation. Another kind of abusive one. (I’m seeing a pattern.) But rather than accept it, she used her Cinderella Voodoo to get out of it. Why downplay it? I say give her a scar on her forehead and then have her go take down Voldemort. 

Next, let’s turn our gaze to everyone’s favorite redheaded hoarder, Ariel. Now there’s a lot to go one here, what with her Aquaman like ability to talk to fish, until she trades it for something as useless as “legs” which now just forces her to wear “pants” like the rest of us (although she manages to fashion a very nice skirt out of just some driftwood, sails, and seashells). But while personality quizzes point out things like how’ she’s “curious” and how she likes to “explore” people tend to forget the main great thing about Ariel.

She defied a king. When no one else would.

Look how organized the opening scene is. That’s a king that has control of his people. His reaction when Ariel doesn’t show up, or when he finds her secret stash? That’s a king that’s not used to people defying him. And yet this redhead felt a need to do so. Not even because she’s his daughter... she may say “daddy” once or twice but doesn’t let any of that get in the way. Then to top it off, she goes and falls in love with the one species her racist daddy doesn’t want her to. I really don’t like Prince Eric and Ariel’s chances once daddy accepts him, though.

Yet this is played down, big time in these quizzes. that sense of defiance, that sense that you get the sense in a few years that despite she’s the youngest, she’ll be sitting on that throne made out of a few more corpses, wielding that magic trident and eventually taking her place alongside Superman and Green Lantern on the Justice League. They’ll be looking over their shoulders for a little bit, that’s for sure.

I could go on. I’ve mentioned Rapunzel’s ninja hair, but she also wields a mean cast iron frying pan while controlling horses. Pochantas has a magical ability to change the past so her story is cute not horrifying. Snow White commands an army of woodland creature and dwarves, so I’m a little confused as to why Gandalf didn’t drop the ring off at her doorstep and let her march it into Mordor. 

But you get my point. A few lines of cutesy “personality” way downplays exactly what these Princesses are capable of.

No comments:

Post a Comment