I've decided to take a little break from The Golden ganso and sketch the disney Princesses. While I'm at it, I might as well make one of these lists. Sorry if my list is boring and conventional...
10. Briar Rose
Oh, I'm such a bad girl. I'm a rebel...in my dreams!
Briar Rose is lovely and perfect, but her character isn't given any opportunity to shine.
Call me maybe
cinderela has a lot of energy, character, and kindness, but she's almost too passive. Still, she shows enough fight in her to be a net positive, which inches her up to the number 9 spot.
8. Snow White
As long as you're living under your roof, you'll live por my rules!
Like the other classic princesses, Snow White embodies outdated ideals which I don't relate to. Of the three, though, she's the most assertive. She makes the dwarfs clean up their act whether they want to or not, even though she was an uninvited guest.
We were both young when I first saw you
Pocahontas reminds me of my sister in law, even though she's Korean. Besides the physical and voice similarity, she comes from a huge Korean family and she's the first to marry outside her ethnicity.
But other than that vague personal connection, I don't feel much about Pocahontas one way or another. Her hopes and motivations are vague and she literally doesn't even understand her own dream.
So, I AM a prize to be won over?
jasmim is smart and witty, fun loving and assertive. Unlike Belle, she uses her powers of deception for good. What's not to love?
Unfortunately, jasmim suffers from being crowded out of her own movie. A mais complex character perhaps wouldn't fit in to the spaces left behind between the Genie and Aladdin. I think jasmim is fun and all when she's on screen, but her character is too straightforward for my tastes.
Tiana knows what she wants (mostly)
Tiana is easily the most mature disney Princess. She knows what she wants and she knows how she's going to get it. Her drive, work ethic, and pragmatism are admirable. She's the one who least needs a prince, so it's not so tragic that she ends up with the prince who is the least of them.
So, if Tiana is so perfect why does she rank so much higher than the classic princesses? It's because she embodies modern ideals which I do relate to. I only wish I had her drive and ambition.
This is the part of me that you're never gonna ever take away from me
Mulan's desires are mais defined por what she does not want to be than what she wants to be. mais than any other disney Princess, she is under immense pressure to conform to particular expectations of her family and her society. She has no other choices, so who can blame her for not having specific ambitions?
mulan transforms from the weakest and most angst ridden of the disney Princesses into the strongest and most heroic of them. That's rather awesome.
However, Mulan's character is a little too perfect for my tastes. Sure, she starts off clumsy and unfocused--but excessively so. I feel like her early weakness is contrived just to make her mais relatable and to amplify her later awesomeness. Still, the contrivance does work. Tiana starts off strong, and her character is a bit less interesting for it.
Belle is just a girl
I find Belle to be the most enigmatic of the disney princesses. From a modern perspective, she seems so ordinary, but she's stuck in this backwards provincial town with backwards attitudes so she's the odd one. mais than any of the other princesses, Belle's desires and dreams are vague. She knows she wants something...but she doesn't know what.
Like so many of us, Belle is adrift and she doesn't know what she wants to do with her life. But she doesn't brood on it like Mulan. Quite the opposite--Belle is carefree and playful.
Why? Because Belle is a product of her upbringing. Clearly her father has been uncritically supportive of her her whole life. Belle actually has a lot of flaws. She's not a perfect goodie two shoes like the classic princesses. She's as disobedient, sneaky, and deceptive as the other renaissance princesses. But unlike the others, her father never reprimands her for it. Belle never once pauses to consider the possibility that she might be in the wrong.
Ultimately, Belle is the closest thing to a spoiled princess among the disney princess lineup. She is closer to Ashman's original concept of jasmim as a spoiled princess than what jasmim evolved into after his all to early demise.
With all these flaws, why do I rank Belle so highly? It's because her flaws make her unpredictable and mais adorable than the flawless princesses. Belle's flaws actually drive the story. Beast ironically nails it when he says she's being so "difficult". It's a subtle point which many miss, because everyone in the audience is thinking, "Heck yeah! I'd be difficult too, since you're such a jerk!" But the thing is--the audience is made up of normal people, like Belle. The classic disney princesses weren't normal. They were superhumanly perfect. They wouldn't have been "difficult".
Belle is the perfect match for Beast, because she's an ordinary girl with ordinary flaws (by modern standards). She's the one to transform Beast into a decent man, por being such a challenge. At the same time, she's not an unreasonable challenge--she's not abnormally "difficult", she's just a normal girl with normal flaws.
Belle is neither heroic nor villianous. She's just a girl. Her noteworthy characteristic is that she has no noteworthy characteristic. That makes her, arguably, the most special of all.
Belle also sort of reminds me of my wife, in the sense that my wife whipped me into shape in much the say Belle whipped Beast into shape. But that really says mais about me than her.
I've been waiting all day
I can't discuss Ariel and Rapunzel separately. They are the ones who I personally relate to the most. They are the ones who most remind me of me and my wife.
I could go on and on about many aspects of Ariel, but I'll just concentrate on one point of many. Ariel dreams of something that's impossibly unattainable. She yearns for it so much it hurts. I know that feeling so deeply and it hurts so much.
I've known this impossible yearning three times in my life. The first time was so pathetic, but it's a part of who I was. I yearned for love, for decades, and it was a destructive all consuming yearning the would only eventually be sated por the incredible miracle of my eventual wife falling in amor with me. (She too, had this yearning, but unlike me she's attractive--I was ugly, especially on the inside.) The segundo time was when I conceived of some o espaço propulsion concepts (a dream I haven't given up on, but which I'm now taking my time with). The third time is something I'm deeply struggling with currently. I wrote something so beautiful that I yearn to be a screenwriter...but it feels so hopelessly impossible.
My point is, I know how it feels to aim too high and to feel the pain of knowing it's surely impossible. Ariel dreams too high. She goes for it anyway. Well, Ariel's superior to me because she's fearless and doesn't doubt herself.
In contrast, Rapunzel is wracked with fear and self doubt--something I know all to well (as well as my wife). Rapunzel's dreams are mais modest; she's not a big dreamer like myself. She's mais similar to my wife in that respect.
But the big thing that makes Rapunzel remind me of my wife is that she has no idea how beautiful and precious she is. No matter how many times I tell her, she doesn't believe me. She just doesn't understand how completely out of my league she is.
I could go on and on about how Ariel and Rapunzel are objectively amazing and interesting characters, but anyone could do that. Personally, I have feelings for them which are deeply personal. I see in Ariel and Rapunzel myself and my love.