Published: May 13, 2013 at 2:05 PM"Left unsaid is an inference that other companies (read: Disney) aren't so accommodating with the filmmakers with which they work."
Avatarland was announced in 2011, there still hasn't been any construction started.
This, along with this article's topic, are fantastic examples of how Disney doesn't know how to work with creative types anymore. The company is so unlike walt's vision it's astonishing.
Published: May 13, 2013 at 2:32 PMWhat bothers me about this "makeover" is that they've turned her into an adult, which is to say, they've sexualized her. Merida is an adolescent. Little girls need role models that show them there is more to being a woman than having curves and a seductive face.
Published: May 13, 2013 at 2:36 PMI want to know why Snow White - one of the "original" princesses is shoved all the way over to the end on the left. She should be front and center with Cinderella and - to a lesser degree - Sleeping Beauty.
Published: May 13, 2013 at 3:37 PMAlthough I can get upset about these things, I'm not. The original films show how the princesses look. These changes are for merchandising only. And you CAN get both the sparkly dress and the more drab original dresses at the Disney Store. The thinner look is for marketing. They certainly capture your attention and kids will want them, but they are not designed for adult consumption. You can stop worrying about the princesses appearing as adults. Kids do dress-up all the same.
The firing of Brenda Chapman, on the other hand, disturbs me, but I didn't know this until now. It is old news. I wonder why it bothers me for someone I haven't even met and for a movie I haven't seen yet? Okay, I'll get over it.
Published: May 13, 2013 at 4:39 PMShe's still kinda ugly either way, so I feel like she conveys the original message regardless of change. It also proves that no matter how much makeup you apply, sometimes it just can't counteract ugliness.
Published: May 13, 2013 at 6:20 PMAs a feminist and the mother of a young girl this sort of thing usually outrages me but this one just doesn't - it's nice to see I'm not the only one. (I'm also a stickler for character continuity). Merida isn't interested in feminine pursuits at her age in the movie, and it's a relief to this progressive thinker to have that sort of girl also represented in the Disney Princess Franchise. For instance, it angers me that Mulan is always represented in her formal dress instead of her battle gear.
However, the thing that bothers me the most is that a LOT of the backlash has implied that to be feminine is to lose one's intelligence & brevity, and I think if one is going to be outraged in the name of feminism as many claim to be, they need to choose wiser words when addressing the issue.
(I am not talking about this blog post - I'm referring to the posts in every major publication including what Brenda Chapman herself had to say about it)
I don't love the illustration. I get it. I don't exactly think it completely strips Merida of her essence but it is decidedly more feminine & they've aged her. I"m relieved to see that the Meet & Greet character is still the same (which is the costume worn for the coronation) and Merida is just as fierce in the few items of new post-coronation merchandise at the Disney Store. Everyone take a deep breath, our girls are going to be just fine, particularly if we keep an open dialog with them.
They're going to sell more tiaras to be sure, but not to me.
From a fact checking standpoint, many of the arguments are also wrong: the dress that Merida is wearing is her original dress (see sleeves and neckline) NOT the one that got ruined when she fell from Angus that she hated in the movie. They added bling at the bottom but that detail existed already on the Meet & Greet Merida, except that the ornamental pattern is not gold at the bottom. Many articles & blog posts have also cited that her hair is less wild, and this is simply the difference between illustration styles - crystal clear CGI hair vs a chunkier graphic design.
She doesn't have her bow and arrow in this particular illustration but she did during the coronation. Does Rapunzel have her frying pan in every illustration? No one freaks out or sees her as weak if she sets it down for a minute.
I don't love the makeup and prefer for her to stay a young girl, but I do not think that wearing makeup means Merida is no longer brave. In fact, to say so (as many, many people have) is to imply that to be feminine is to loose your intelligence and brevity. Also, calling (original) Merida a tomboy is to say she's "boy like" and I just wonder why a girl can't be brave, intelligent and good at a sport without being labeled a boy? Brenda Chapman herself said Merida was "not just a pretty face that waits around for romance." Well, that statement implies pretty clearly that a pretty face is one that just waits around for romance, which is a load of crap and as anti-feminist and anti-woman as you can get. It perpetuates the myth that only unattractive, masculine women are of substance and that makes me very, very angry.
If we're going to make this a feminist issue, I'd love it if someone started talking about things that really matter & not making mountains out of molehills while demeaning femininity while they are at it. I can't think of anything more anti-girl than that.
Feminist issues aside, I think that ALL of the princess redesigns are tacky and unnecessary (when it comes to the illustrations and some of the merchandise). It drives me nuts when they give bogus tiaras to Snow White & Cinderella. I wish we could all stick to the original character design because that's all I'm interested in buying anyway. But sparkle sells.
My daughter picks up her bow and arrow or puts on her Merida wig and she feels POWERFUL. I don't believe this illustration has the power to change that. In fact, I think that they will push Merida into the mainstream more than they have already, and the more girls who discover this willful interesting princess the better.
I'm MUCH concerned about the words that equate being feminine with being idiotic, and strength with being male.
Published: May 13, 2013 at 7:33 PMWait a minute. I think the real outrage should be with Ariel. How does she not have flippers for feet?
Published: May 13, 2013 at 7:44 PMWhile I agree that the change is a bit strange, I am finding that there is more of an anti Disney bent being drilled into this website by Universal. I am down at the Universal parks today and was shocked to hear some of the exact talking points that are appearing in some TPI articles. I love the site, but can Disney ever do right?
Published: May 13, 2013 at 8:59 PMCount me in a part of the "Who Cares?" crowd. This in no way diminishes her personality and characteristics? Do people really want Merida (a girl who openly wipes her mouth with her own clothes after eating) to look awkwardly out of place with the rest?
And I'm trying to figure out what Anthony means by his post. Something about a hand Universal is playing in this?
Published: May 13, 2013 at 11:33 PMEh I don't really care ...brave was one of the most boring Disney and pixar movies ever made. A rehash of the tired out "I want to choose who I want to marry" story. Although girls may love that kind of story I find it incredibly irrelevant as forced marriage doesn't really exist in modern society and people are free to marry who they want. I think Mulan was a far better story if you want a warrior princess...she actually risks her life to safe her father ...very brave. The story was clearly written to appeal to teenage girls. Not the wider audience that Disney movies usually appeal to. And did anybody notice that all the "men" in the movie are mindless, belligerent morons? As a masculinist, Im highly offended that no males were portrayed with a balance of intelligence and physical strength.
Published: May 14, 2013 at 6:39 AMThe Disney & Universal comments on this site are generally about the same that are being said on similar internet sites. I don't detect a general bias on TPI. Most of the issues associated with Disney & Universal have been common talking points on other forums. There's pro Disney people, pro Universal people, and people that enjoy both companies.
Published: May 14, 2013 at 7:46 AMGeez..now I'm scared. I was gonna express my utter outrage that Jessica Rabbit is not represented, then I saw that Brian mentioned the same thing. I fear for my sanity :)
Published: May 14, 2013 at 6:08 PMI'm not against the aging process. I'm not against the pretty dress... but I really don't like the make-over. They could have made her look like an older Merida without changing all her features. She was perfect just the way she was.
Published: May 15, 2013 at 8:12 AMThis absolute obsession with Disney Princess stuff in the parks has always left me kind of cold. I have three sons and they hate it. We have been to Universal 4 times in the last 5 years, our boys have no interest in Disney any more. They feel Disney is more for little kids and girls.
Published: May 18, 2013 at 2:54 PMGood point on the last comment. I think it would be nice if Disney made more emphasis on the princes and other characters... Like Chef Remy, Wall-E, Lightning MCQueen, etc.