Once upon a time (we’re talking about Disney princesses, I had to use the stock phrase) I was listening to a guy talk about how Mulan was his favorite Disney woman. And I have to say, I agree that she is pretty dang awesome. I mean, she pretty much single handedly took down an invading army of Huns. And blew up Shan Yu in one of the more visually stimulating Disney villain deaths. Mulan is smart, strong, brave, and pretty. Talk about a girl worth fighting for. You know, despite the fact that she could totally take down the entire Hun army without your help.
That, however, is about where I had to stop agreeing with the guy talking. This was a mental disagreement, since he wouldn’t stop talking long enough to let me say what I thought. Not that I’m still bitter about it…
Anyway, he proceeded on to tell me that all of the other Disney princesses were inferior, and in fact that most of them were pansies. Since he didn’t let me give my opinion I will choose now to point out that this is absolutely preposterous. Many, if not all of the Disney ladies are awesome. Yes, some of them are a little more on the girlie side. But my personal opinion is that being girlie isn’t the same thing as being weak. In fact, sometimes it’s just what does the trick.
Take Rapunzel for example. Wears pink, freaks out about a rabbit in a bush, and is a confessed lover of ducks. Pretty girlie right? But she still manages to be pretty hard core. I mean for one thing, she manages to subdue a pub full of thugs. And that was actually accomplished because she was girlie, not because she beat them all up.
I’d just like to go through and show a few of my favorite moments for the women of Disney. Witty comebacks earn extra bonus points.
Esmerelda: So despite my personal opinion that maybe the whole plot of the Hunchback was too dark for children, I enjoy the romance between Phoebus and Esmerelda. I especially like this scene in which he attempts to strike at her with her sword and she begins sparring with him using a candlestick as a weapon (for those of you who didn’t catch it, that was a dangling modifier, which as you know from my previous post are fun. For the record Esmerelda is using the candlestick, not Phoebus. I guess the picture would have cleared that up…). He’s impressed with her mad skills and tells her she fights almost as well as a man. She quickly comes back with, “Funny, I was going to say the same thing about you.”
Jasmine: Another smart, independent woman. Jasmine refuses to let her marriage be decided for her, sneaks out of the palace to experience life as a commoner, and first impresses Aladdin with her skills as a “quick learner.” She also uses her feminine wiles to trick Jafar at the end.
"And your beard is so... twisted."
Tiana: The most notable character trait for Tiana is her determination. She’s a hard way and doesn’t let anything. Now sometimes this actually becomes her biggest flaw, but in the end she finds balance and with it a happily ever after.
Pocahontas: Confession, it’s been awhile since I’ve seen this one and the details are blurry. But I do remember that Pocahontas is brave, that she saved John Smith’s life, and in the sequel saves her entire tribe from war with the British.
Other Disney women who are pretty much awesome. And if you don’t think so, I am respectfully here to tell you that you’re totally wrong:
Megara from Hercules
Jane from Tarzan
This is Eilonwy from The Black Cauldron. Pretty obscure, but cool nonetheless. She helps Taran escape from the dungeons of the Horned King. And though the movie is nothing like the book, I do really like her in the Prydian Chronicles as well.
Chicha from The Emperor's New Groove
And last but not least, my favorite of all the Disney women. Belle from Beauty and the Beast. Unlike Mulan and Esmerelda, she isn’t a good fighter. Unlike Jasmine and Meg, she doesn’t use trickery to deceive bad guys. She’s just a great person. Her affinity to books makes her a favorite of mine for obvious reasons. But she exhibits a remarkable ability to see past the Beast’s exterior and fall in love with the Prince on the inside.
So, as awesome as Mulan is, she isn’t alone. Disney has a number of strong, independent, lovely, and intelligent women. Imagine all the gals (I’ve been made fun of so much for using that word since I’ve left Montana) in this blog teaming up. I wouldn’t want to get on their bad side. Nobody in their right mind would. Don’t try to get in the way of their happily ever after. Unless, that is one of the following fates sounds good to you:
- Exploding with a whole mess of fireworks
- Disintegrating while falling from a tower
- Falling from a cathedral into something molten
- Being imprisoned in a itty bitty living space for a few millennia
- Being taken by your not-so-friendly friends from the other side because you didn’t repay your debt
- I can’t remember what happened to Ratcliffe, but it was probably bad.
- Having a bunch of slimy souls from the River Styx crawling all over you and extinguishing your hair
- Being hanged by some vines after an altercation with some apes
- Anything involving a cauldron with black magic oozing from it
- Turning into a cat with a squeaky voice.
To avoid these sorts of things from happening to you, I recommend not being an antagonist. Just sayin.