I’m not a Disney fan, and I have a special dislike for fairy tales and the Princess genre. I can’t get behind the idea of girls aspiring to be rescued, while wearing pretty frilly dresses, and tiaras. Or boys being shown that they have a responsibility to be a knight in shining armor, and rescue the fair maiden. It’s limiting, and sexist, and heteronormative, and it gets under my skin.
I know, I know, there are a LOT of people who will say that Disney is fantasy and not reality, and I’m Scroogish for thinking that make-believe has any greater impact beyond entertainment. (I guess I should also say that I’m really not a fan of most media aimed at children, but seem to have a greater dislike of Disney. It is what it is.) But children are like sponges. They will absorb pretty much whatever is placed in front of them.
So anyway, Disney does away with fairy tales and Princesses. I figure I should be jumping for joy.
But I’m not.
I’m irked that Disney is dumping fairy tales because, “the genre has run its course,” and they’re going to focus instead on movies like Toy Story which appeals to a broader audience. Their last fairy tale, “”Princess and the Frog” appealed to too narrow an audience: little girls.” So this reads to me like the all familiar, “If it’s for girlz it must be icky.” Girls can dig boy stuff, but boys sure as hell won’t dig girl stuff, so lets do away with the girl stuff.
Do I actually want to defend princess movies? That can’t be.
I don’t want to defend princess movies. But I DO want to scream and yell about the persistent devaluation of things aimed at women. And I want to point out that in many of Disney’s Pixar movies, there are often few, if any, women characters.
So instead of valuing the little girl market (that I might even argue Disney created) they’re gonna dump it in favor of stuff that boys like.
Great. Fantastic. Another early reminder that what girls want doesn’t mean squat.