by Cayce McCarthy. Arts and Entertainment blogger.
With the new Little Mermaid live-action film by Kingsway coming out this August many people believe it to be a Disney film when it is not. In fact, let’s get something straight that many people are confused by. Disney does not own nor are they the original creators of the fairytale movies they’ve made. True they’re the most famous versions of these stories however, they are not the original and most people fail to realize this because unfortunately more people watch movies than read a delightful book. Actually, if you look back at Disney’s classic cartoons and films of today the majority of them are based on books.
The Little Mermaid was written by Dutch folktale writer Hans Christian Anderson in 1836. His story is much sadder than the feel-good movie done by Disney. True there have been heartbreaking scenes that have left a mark on our childhoods, but they always have happy ending. In Disney’s story, Ariel is sixteen when she runs away from home and makes a deal with the sea-witch Ursula in order to meet her love interest Prince Eric on land, but she pays with the price of her voice. In the end, after defeating Ursula who was disguised as Venessa the two get married and live happily ever after.
In the original story Ariel is eighteen and even though it was frowned upon to be in love with Eric and go to the sea-witch she was allowed to do so because she was seen as an adult. After making the deal with Ursula, which is a lot darker because she didn’t magically give up her voice she cut out her tongue, Ariel began to regret her decision. Especially when she describes dancing with Eric as swords being stabbed into her legs. What’s worse is that Venessa isn’t the sea-witch in disguise but an actual princess that Eric leaves Ariel for. Because of this her deal with Ursula resulted in her death and becoming sea-foam.
Also, they’re no singing dancing crabs or fish either. In this live-action version the mermaid doesn’t go by the name of Ariel and somehow, she becomes trapped by an evil magician who keeps her a part of his traveling carnival. She is discovered by a young reporter and his niece who both realize that she’s a real mermaid and not a carny scam. In fact, not only do they believe she’s a mermaid they believe she’s the real little mermaid from Anderson’s story. But this time she wasn’t turned to sea foam and the villain is a carny sorcerer (To read more scroll down to the right corner of the page and click the read more button).
Here are a few more books based on Disney films that people also mess up. Peter Pan was originally written by the Scottish Author J.M. Barrie and again there are parts in there that are a lot darker than the movie. No Peter Pan isn’t an angel that takes dead kid’s souls to heaven, that was just the story the mother heard when she was little, and, in the book, it explains there are many different versions of Neverland and Peter but in the end, they’re the same. Barrie even used this as a metaphor that when a child grows up their child like spirit goes to Neverland to remain young forever. Thus, the whole “dead child” mix up.
Does Peter Pan kill members of the Lost Boys when they start to become too old and to keep their population low? Yes, however, Captain Hook was never a Lost Boy that escaped this reaping. He was Blackbeard the pirate’s bosun or the man who could boss the crew around, keep the ship seaworthy, did repairs, and more. Probably a why he could easily become a captain. There is something in the book and movie that isn’t explained and that is Tinkerbell’s love for Peter.
Another book people love to over analyze and mess up is British author A.A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh. First and foremost, Pooh is not a girl. The “creator” coming out three years ago about him being a girl was either a rumor, a lie, or completely misunderstood from the origin of Pooh. See one day the author took his son Christopher Robin to the zoo where he met the famous female bear, Winnie. Christopher fell so in love with this bear that he named his own stuffed animal after her and even explained to his father that his toy was still a boy despite the female name. Another thing people do is over analyze the characters of this book.
The book is literally about Christopher Robin growing up with his toys near the woods around his house and his father basing bedtime stories of his son’s toys and games. It’s all make believe but for some odd reason people love to use this book to describe mental illnesses but none of these have enough textual evidence to support that claim. Christopher Robin does not have schizophrenia he’s a child who plays pretend like we all have. Piglet can get easily startled but he doesn’t suffer from anxiety.
I mean piglets can be easily startled by things in the world because they’re so small. Tigger doesn’t have ADHD just because he likes to bounce. That’s based on the fact that Tigers are known to pounce on their prey. Rabbit is seen as OCD however, he’s actually just a perfectionist which is commonly confused with OCD. He may get easily upset when someone ruins his garden but who wouldn’t after all the time and effort put into maintaining one?
Owl may be boastful and arrogant at times, but he definitely does not suffer from a narcissistic personality disorder. Owl doesn’t lack empathy from his friends, he’s not sneaky, he doesn’t tear them down, he doesn’t purposely start a debate just to be right all the time and more. Pooh does love to eat honey a lot but that’s based off a real bear’s appetite, not a gluttonous eating disorder. Roo isn’t autistic he’s a child who is still learning the dangers of the world and stays in his Mom’s pouch because hello that’s what baby kangaroo’s do in the real world.
Kanga doesn’t suffer from social anxiety disorder she’s just a Mom looking out for her son whom she loves and trusts. The only known character whose mental illness is even covered in psychology textbooks is Eeyore who suffers from a type of depression. Let’s just all agree that over analyzing is bad, Wikipedia is the absolute worst information site ever, and you know what? Like the saying goes sometimes the curtains are just freaking blue.
Please just read the actual book, SparkNotes, or do your research from reliable sources that are either newspapers, biographies, autobiographies, memoirs, dairies, journals, scholastic journals, recordings, and more. And just because Disney has done a lot of these films doesn’t mean others can’t do their own versions of these hundreds of year old stories. As long as you’re not plagiarizing by coming up with a story where Aaron and his singing blue crab Sabrina work together for Princess Erica to kiss him before the third sunrise then you’re good.