Kudos to The Princess and the Frog

8 Jan

Amazing what one finds when cleaning out the old blogreader in the post-holiday lull! The Feministing blog has a nice piece about The Princess and the Frog, going so far as to call it a feminist fairytale.

The more rumors I heard about Disney’s Tiana, the more I was turned off. But as finals week died down and the reviews came in from trusted peers, I decided to look past the whole princess/amphibian bit to see for myself what the first black princess was really all about.And… I really enjoyed myself. That’s because the themes of entrepreneurship and division of labor in the household were so crucial to the film it was kryptonite for any red-blooded feminist. The idea that men can and should play a role in food preparation and that women can own their own business while building viable, healthy relationships was so groundbreaking for a movie with the word “princess” in the title. For this, Disney deserves their props.

I second that emotion.

****SPOILER ALERT*****

The Princess and the Frog busts open the old “someday my prince will come.” Instead, we are given a heroine who many of us can identify with, who wishes on a star, while still saving her tips in coffee cans to work towards that dream. We’re shown a relationship between equals, where she teaches him to work, and he teaches her to dance. And despite the hard work and pragmatism, we’re still treated to a healthy dose of voodoo magic, including one of the most enjoyable villains in recent years.

I can’t help but believe that the increased scrutiny Disney reasonably expected for their first African-American princess led to an improved process in character development. But however this came about, I’m glad it did.

One Response to “Kudos to The Princess and the Frog”

  1. Chris January 11, 2010 at 2:06 am #

    I love this movie. I’m so disappointed that some people will stay away because it’s “for girls.” The princess thing is such a minor part of this movie. There’s a ton of adventure and silly humor–my 7 year old son loved it. Too bad his friends at school think it’s a “girl” movie.

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