As popular as the “Disney Princess” franchise is, it isn’t without its flaws. Of course, as time passes, certain elements that were acceptable at the times of their films’ releases would not be okay today. And vice versa.
While many of the recent princesses have set better examples for girls or anyone, such as bravery, taking risks, and learning independence, some of the princesses from the 20th century did the opposite. But that might have happened due to females’ rights at that time.
Below are some moments with Disney Princesses that knocked my shoes off my feet.
Anna not knowing about how relationships work
This surprised me a lot, especially since Anna is supposed to be 18 in the main events of Frozen (2013). She meets Prince Hans and wants to marry him, despite just meeting him.
Elsa informs her that she cannot marry a guy that she’d just met and denies consent for the tying of the knot.
How on Earth would Anna not know that, especially at her age, which would make her an adult in today’s society? I knew better at that age, and even much younger, despite the fact that I am asexual and aromantic, which means I can’t fall in love.
Anna and Elsa’s parents died 3 years before the main setting of the film. But maybe because of the reduced staff and the little contact Anna had encountered with other people (as revealed in the song, “For the First Time in Forever”), perhaps, no one had taught her about relationships and how they worked. She probably never got a chance to meet a romantic partner, or maybe her parents did not deem her old enough to learn about forming relationships. Who knows?
When Robert kissed Giselle to wake her up
You’d think that Disney would prohibit this trope from occurring in the 2000’s decade, since “Enchanted” had come out in 2007. After all, you need consent to kiss someone unless you’ve been in a relationship with them for a long time, are engaged, or married. Plus, kissing an unconscious victim is creepy.
There is a scene where Giselle is forced into a deep sleep. First the prince she’d originally wanted to marry (from the animated fairytale universe) kissed her, and that failed. Then a man from the real world, named Robert, kissed her, and she woke up. This surprised me.
But the next moment really shocked me.
When I found out Snow White and her prince’s age differences
I’m not sure if Snow White’s age makes it into the movie she is from or is, at least, subtly hinted at, but she is 14 in it, and that is common knowledge.
But what made my eyes pop out was her prince’s age: 31. When I first discovered that, I thought to myself, He’s that old?! Oh, God, that’s gross.
For years, I had assumed he was likely no older than late teens or early 20’s. But 31, and in love with a 14-year-old, even if she looks old for her age? Yuck! He’s biologically old enough to be her dad.
What’s even crazier is that a YouTube video called that a fun fact. I thought to myself, Fun? That’s not a fun fact. That’s a gross, disturbing fact.
Maybe this was all right in the 1930’s. But if a movie about a 14-year-old girl and a 31-year-old man in love were to be released today, there’s no way it would be rated G. In fact, I don’t know if it would even be green-lit.
It might involve too much controversy. Even if they required every auditioner to be over 18 to play the 14-year-old girl (and give her a mature physical appearance) and rated the film R or NC-17 (which doesn’t get used too much), it could still offend mature audiences. It could even get banned and earn as bad a reputation as the movie, “Song of the South.”
Despite these shocking revelations, I still support the “Disney Princess” franchise.
Yes, there are other princesses with large age differences between their princes that people today would frown upon (i.e. Aurora and Philip), and there might be more shocking facts and moments that I am unaware of.
Still, it continues to succeed, and I bet Disney will continue to produce more “Disney Princess” films in the future.