A TikToker has gone viral after she made a very passionate case about the Disney Princess lineup, and honestly, she’s right. In the original video, creator Babbity Kate explained that she hates how Disney has given Ariel a green dress. She explained, “At some point, I aged out of receiving copious amounts of Ariel merch, and while my back was turned, they decided to mess with her.
“There seems to have been a transitional period where they had her in the pink dress [which was] recolored a really light teal, and then at some point, they just fully committed to that and made her this new dress … and I hate it. I’m pretty sure everybody hates it.”
Now, I don’t know about everybody, but I do hate it. It’s bugged me for years.
However, this woman went down a rabbit hole and opened a whole can of worms, with one particular point being about the whole lineup.
Another user left a comment under her original video with their theory as to why they changed the color, saying, “It’s because pink is Sleeping Beauty’s color and for merch purposes, it’s better to give them separate signature colors :/.”
It’s safe to say that Kate had her answer prepped for this one. She very passionately argued that, well, yes, you could say they did that to make it comprehensible to kids, but then Jasmine and Ariel, in her green dress, literally have the same color clothing. In the video, she also pointed out hair color, comparing Ariel and Aurora, because, and I quote, “What business does Arura have wearing a pink dress in the first place?”
She then went on to say that people had suggested that maybe the dress’s color was to tie in with her tail, but as she emphatically stated, “Her tail is green!” rather than teal and that it “clashes with the rest of her coloring.” She argues that purple could have been a good choice, to of course coincide with her seashell bra. And I know what you’re thinking, but … Rapunzel?
Well, Kate said that the lineup change was “years and years” before the release of Tangled, so it would have been fine. However, I would have to counter her argument because fans have said that, though there’s no definitive date to Ariel’s questionable dress, it was sometime in the early 2010s, which means by then Rapunel had joined the lineup (Tangled was released in 2010) … but I digress. She believes that it would’ve given the character a “fun and fresh feel.” It would also relate to one of her outfits in the 2000 Sequel The Little Mermaid: Return to the Sea, as well as the dress that she wears at the very end of the 1989 film when she reunites with Prince Eric.
However, these aesthetic issues with the lineup aren’t the only ones worth addressing.
There have been conversations online, especially on platforms like TikTok and Reddit, that discuss the idea of Pocahontas being removed from the lineup, at least in terms of merchandising. There has been a lot of discussion about the 1995 film being problematic, offensive, and racist towards those who are Native American, and how it harmfully represents the real-life Pocahontas herself, Matoaka.
Unlike the other princesses, she really existed, and her relationship with John Smith and the white settlers was heavily fictionalized for the film. As someone who is not Native American, I don’t feel like I can really comment on what the best course of action would be to remedy the situation, but it wouldn’t be the first time Disney has done away with a part of its history that did a disservice to real-world history. I will say that I think that Disney could at least acknowledge their wrongness in some way, as they have with Aladdin and other films.
They have a track record of being horrifically offensive, with a warning that proceeds the film and reads, “This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures. These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now. Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together …”
But again, it took them a long while to do that, so I wouldn’t exactly hold a collective breath.
Watching Kate string her thoughts together about the princesses’ attire is fascinating. Her points make so much sense, and watching her in conversation with Disney executives would be so funny. Get her working for them, I say.
(featured image: Disney)
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