Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Forgotten Disney Princesses: A Tribute

There is one truth we know to be self-evident: that in the vast, varied frontier of the Disney canon, some fantastic characters fall through the cracks. Everyone knows and loves the usual lineup- Cinderella, Snow White, Rapunzel, et cetera, et cetera-, but what about the unsung heroes (or in this case, heroines) of Disney films gone by? What of these grossly under-appreciated gals, whose films have been glossed over in lieu the box-office giants of the nineties (cough- The Lion King- cough)? All three of these girls hold a very special place in my heart, and today, they get their day in the sun. So, without further ado,here is my little tribute to the three most egregiously looked-over Disney ladies!

3) Odette, The Swan Princess (1994)

Guys, this movie is great, and it deserves so much more attention than it gets. Adapted (albeit rather loosely) from Tchaikovsky's ballet of the same name, The Swan Princess presents the ultimate fairy tale, with a heroine whose character resonates beyond just a pretty face. Odette, while still adhering to some very princess-y tropes, understands that beauty shouldn't be the only important feature in finding a mate* and takes fate into her own hands when held captive by an evil sorcerer.

*This is probably fantastic news to Prince Derek, who sports a very silly 'do throughout all three Swan Princess films.

The only thing that surprises me more than Odette's complete obscurity in the Disney community is that her trusty anthropomorphic sidekicks don't get any attention whatsoever! Odette's token sidekicks- General Puffin, Jean-Bob the frog, and Speed the turtle- are an untapped merchandising goldmine. I want all the plushes, and I want them now!

2) Thumbelina, Thumbelina (1994)

I'm always stumped when I see the lack of love for this little lady, especially since she shares a voice with another, far-more-popular princess! Jodi Benson's Thumbelina is sweet and optimistic, though perhaps a bit too apt to trust complete strangers (then again- what good princess isn't?). Her travails can prove a bit too whimsical for some, but Thumbelina's story offers a colorful cast of character's that just can't be beat. Throw in music by Barry Manilow (check out "Let Me Be Your Wings"), and this movie is sent over the moon.

Like the aforementioned Derek, Thumbelina's prince- Cornelius, by name- has got some slightly problematic hair going on, but he's so sweet that it's pretty easy to overlook. Besides, I feel like his cool factor compensates with the fact that he's got wings and a sweet bumblebee as a ride.

1) Anastasia, Anastasia (1997)

Anastasia's lack of recognition in the Disney community is downright puzzling to me. In fact, anytime you try to look her up, all you see is this girl:

 (Seriously- what is she even from?)

 Anastasia is just amazing; she's headstrong, adventurous, and has considerably better taste in princely hairstyles than the previous princesses on this list (I'm sorry- this quality is just really important to me). Based on the real-life tale of the lost Romanov daughter, this movie is a Disney lover's dream. The score is stunning, the animation breathtaking, and the villain is among the best of the best (Maleficent, meet Rasputin.). I suppose some of the movie's criticisms could come from its highly fictionalized retelling of a historical tale, but Pocahontas has fared just fine in similar circumstances. Come on, Disnerds- we've got to step it up!

Who are your favorite under-appreciated Disney girls! Let me know in the comments!

Love and Pixie Dust, 
Becca :)

P.S.- Before the comment wars begin... just check the posting date! ;) 


  1. Replies
    1. Haha, thanks! The Disney community always has such fun on April Fool's- I couldn't help but join in! :P