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Wednesday, September 12, 2018

The Darker Side Of Disney Classics

Dwarfs, fairies, giants, goblins, mermaids, witches, and princesses – what is so common about them? Yes, they are our favorite fairy tales' characters. Fairy tales – who does not like them?

dark side, fairytales

Every one of us has enjoyed our childhood by reading stories or watching movies about frogs that are kissed by princesses, wolves that huffed and puffed, and gingerbread men that ran away. Isn’t it amusing?

But what if I told you that the Disney classics we grew up with are not really telling the whole story? What would be your reaction?  

Whether they're a creation of the Brothers Grimm or the dark, twisted mind of Hans Christian Andersen, the fairy tales we know and love came from much darker original stories. 

Get ready because your childhood would be ruined!


1. Cinderella contained blood and mutilation

The story of Cinderella has the perfect recipe for a fairy tale romance - poor little girl, ugly sisters, fairy godmother, a handsome prince, and of course, a lost slipper.

cinderella

Disney’s Version:

In a faraway kingdom, there was a beautiful girl called Cinderella and she had a stepmother and two ugly stepsisters who were very unkind. A special invitation arrived at Cinderella's house, inviting all young maidens to go in a royal ball. They did not allow Cinderella to attend the ball. But her fairy godmother came to help. She went to the ball and met the prince but has to escape before midnight and loses a slipper in her hurry. Then the prince takes the slipper and has young ladies in the entire kingdom to try it on to see if it fits. He finds Cinderella, whom it fits perfectly, and they live happily ever after.

cinderella

Original Version:

In Grimm Brothers version, when the prince arrives at Cinderella’s house, one sister cuts off her toes, and the other her heel in an effort to try to fit into the tiny slipper.  Of course, their plan does not work, and Cinderella gets the prince and a happy ending.

cinderella

But still, the two sisters attend Cinderella's wedding, only to have their eyes later plucked out by crows and spend the rest of their lives as blind beggars.

cinderella


2. Sleeping Beauty was raped

Sleeping Beauty is a classic fairy tale about a prince, princess, an evil witch and how good always triumphs over evil. 

Sleeping Beauty

Disney’s Version:

Once upon a time, there lived a king and a queen, who had no children for a long time. But at last, after many years, the queen had a daughter. The king and queen looked throughout the kingdom for fairies to be her godmothers but they forget to invite the evil fairy. Offended, the evil fairy cursed the princess and said that one day the princess would have her hand pricked by a needle on a spinning wheel and she would die.

Sleeping Beauty

But a young fairy stood up and give her last gift, saying, instead of dying, she shall only fall into a deep sleep, which shall last a hundred years, and could only be awakened by a true love’s kiss. On the princess’ 16th birthday, she pricks her finger on a spinning wheel’s spindle and succumbs to eternal sleep. Hundred years later, a brave prince rescues her with a kiss, and they both live happily ever after.

Sleeping Beauty

Original Version:

In the Giambattista Basile version, Aurora was raped by the prince and is not waken up with a sweet kiss, but with the birth of her twinsOne sucks her finger, eliminating the curse. Oh, I forgot to mention that the prince doesn’t kiss her here — he gets her pregnant and then leaves, because he’s married. The prince’s jealous wife kidnaps their children and orders the cook to kill them and feed them to the prince. The jealous queen also threatens to burn Aurora, but the prince has his wife burnt to death instead.

Sleeping Beauty


3. Belle was devoured by the beast

The story of Beauty and the Beast tells us that outside appearance doesn't matter and beauty lies from within.

beauty and the beast

Disney’s Version:

A long time ago, a girl named Belle was dissatisfied with her village life. One day, her father traveled and asked what she wanted as a gift and she requested for a single rose. Her father arrived at the Beast’s castle looking for a rose.  The beast was a handsome prince that was cursed because of his arrogance.

beauty and the beast

 Belle was kidnapped by the beast in exchange for her father and lived in a luxurious castle with talking utensils until she discovered the monster’s inner beauty. In love, she kisses him and saves him from the spell that made him ugly, because physical beauty does matter.

beauty and the beast

Original Version:

In the original story by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve, Belle convinced the Beast to let her visit her sisters for a week before their marriage. Upon seeing her covered in jewels and hearing about the luxurious life she has, the sisters persuaded Belle to stay longer, with the intention that her delay will drive the Beast mad. The Beast, angered by Belle, ends up eating her after the wedding.

beauty and the beast


4. Snow White is not that kind as we thought

The tale of Snow White features one of the most fabulous baddies of all time in the form of the Wicked Queen, vainly peering into her mirror and asking – Who is the fairest of us all?

Snow White

Disney’s Version:

Snow White is a lonely princess living with her stepmother, a vain and wicked Queen. The Queen fears that Snow White's beauty surpasses her own, so she forces Snow White to work as a maid and asks her Magic Mirror daily "who is the fairest one of all". For several years the mirror always answered that the Queen was, pleasing her.

evil queen

One day, the Magic Mirror informs the Queen that Snow White is now the fairest in the land. The jealous Queen orders a huntsman to kill Snow White and bring back her heart as a proof. For that reason, she has to escape to the woods, where she ends up living with seven dwarfs. It is there that a wicked witch poisons her, the dwarfs attempt to avenge her, and the witch falls to her death. While she’s still asleep, a prince comes out of nowhere and revives Snow White, and of course, they live happily ever.

Snow White

Original Version:

In the original ending of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, it wasn't a quick tumble off of a cliff that ended the life of the Evil Queen but some sweet revenge acted out by Snow White herself.
After her Prince helped remove the poison apple from Snow White's throat, the two had their quickie wedding ceremony. The Evil Queen is invited, and not to be one to miss a good party, she attends. As an act of punishment, she is forced to wear hot iron shoes and dance until she died. Definitely not an ideal party favors.

dark side of snow white


5. The Little Mermaid will tell you that there is no such thing as ‘forever’

The Little Mermaid is about a mermaid princess who is willing to give up her life in the sea and her identity as a mermaid to gain a human soul. You will be transported to the magical underworld gardens of the mermaids.  It will tell you to go after your dreams no matter how impossible they may seem.

The Little Mermaid

Disney’s Version:

Ariel, a sixteen-year-old mermaid princess, is dissatisfied with the underwater life in her kingdom and is curious about the human world. She ignores the warnings of her father King Triton that contact between merpeople and humans is forbidden.

The Little Mermaid

On one of her visits to the surface, she falls for a human prince. Determined to be with her new love, Ariel makes a dangerous deal with the sea witch Ursula to become human in exchange for Ariel's voice. Within these three days, Ariel must receive the "kiss of true love" from Eric. If Ariel gets Eric to kiss her, she will remain a human permanently; otherwise, she will transform back into a mermaid and belong to Ursula. 

ursula

Eric finds Ariel on the beach and takes her to his castle and eventually fall in love with her. However, Ursula has her own plans for Ariel in order to get revenge on her father.

prince eric, the little mermaid

But Ursula did not succeed with her plans and was killed by Prince Eric. Realizing that Ariel truly loves Eric, Triton willingly changes her from a mermaid into a human and approves her marriage to Eric. Ariel and Eric marry on a ship and depart.

ariel, the little mermaid

Original Version:

In the original fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson, the little mermaid we all adore suffers a truly horrible fate.

As Ariel made the deal with Ursula, the witch cuts her tongue and stole her voice in exchange for the human legs. Also, the fin-splitting wasn't just a quick, glowing transformation from tail to legs. Consuming the potion will make her feel as if a sword is being passed through her body, she will bleed and every step she takes is like walking on broken glass.  

human ariel

If going through all of that wasn't bad enough, Eric ends up leaving her and marries another woman.
As a last resort, the witch tells Ariel that she must kill Eric so she can live on as a mermaid or she will face death. But she loves him too much. 

ursula and prince eric

The story ends with the Little Mermaid turning into a little patch of sea foam.

true ending of little mermaid

Written by Gel Bautista, Lucis Philippines contributor.

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