Animated These Disney Princess Were Absolutely Terrible Role Models  

Molly Mahan
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List Rules Vote up the princesses who are poison apples.

The Princesses in Disney films are some of the most popular characters in the world. Little girls everywhere have at one time or another wanted to grow up to be one of the princesses, from singing songs with cute forest animals to marrying Prince Charming while wearing their amazing wedding gown. Snow White, Belle, Jasmine, Cinderella and the rest are considered role models, but has any one taken the time to look behind the dough eyes and catchy songs? Could it be that these adored characters are nothing more than anti-feminist propaganda? This list will show some reasons that you might not want your little girl to grow up to be a Disney Princess.

The Disney Princesses used in this list are the current lineup of "official" Disney princesses. Other Disney heroines like Alice (Alice in Wonderland), Princess Kida (Atlantis: The Lost Empire), Nala (The Lion King), etc. have not been reviewed, so please do not feel slighted because Megara or Esmeralda did not make the list and you believe they are worse role models than those present.

And just in case you think it couldn't get any worse, check out Ranker's list of Racist Disney Cartoons.
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Princess Ariel


Ariel is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list These Disney Princess Were Absolutely Terrible Role Models
Photo: via Tumblr

Anyone who says that Ariel is her favorite Princess is usually either a bitch or a redhead. Or both. Anyone who thinks that Ariel is a good example of what a woman should be probably hasn’t seen the movie or doesn’t really understand what "independent" means. Ariel certainly is strong willed, but she is hardly independent. She wants to leave the sea, which is ruled by her caring, land-loathing father, to go on land to marry some guy she doesn’t know a thing about, who rules some little principality in whatever European country that the movie takes place in. Her station isn’t going to change.

It’s not like she wants legs to become a dealer of rare and collectible forks. No, she wants legs to try and bang some dude she doesn’t even know— who makes it a hobby of feeding on some of her best friends—in hopes that life on land will somehow be better than being the most beloved princess in the ocean. Hell, the whole message of "Part of That World" is about how her life is perfect under the sea, but that just isn’t enough for her. Further, to get those legs, Ariel has to sell her voice (the original Hans Christian Andersen story tells us mermaids don’t have souls) and the sea witch, Ursula, even tells her how useless a voice is for a woman in "winning" a man, anyway. Her body is supposed to be her key to his heart, not her thoughts or vocal ability (how was she to know Eric had a thing for sopranos?). It’s to be a romance based in nothing but how pretty each is to the other.

Now, if Ariel actually knew a thing about Prince Eric other than how he likes boats and how he's handsome, then I’d be all for their star-crossed romance. Instead, we’re given a heroine who tells her family (who all love and support her) to F-off and sells her voice to a witch to have a chance to be with some guy she doesn’t even know. All of this is definitely the message you want to give to your impressionable young children.

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Princess Aurora


Princess Aurora is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list These Disney Princess Were Absolutely Terrible Role Models
Photo: via Tumblr

Sleeping Beauty is the last princess movie to have had Walt Disney’s personal hand on it. She’s a princess who doesn’t know she’s a princess and therefore has no aspirations besides meeting other humans—preferably male humans. After 15 years of seeing animals bang in the woods, Briar Rose sings a little ditty called "I Wonder" where she basically mourns the fact that all the lady animals are getting some from their male cohorts and she hasn’t laid eyes upon a man in the entirety of her life. In fact, the only other people she knows are 3 fairies masquerading as humans to take care of her.

She’s so lonely, in fact, that she creates an imaginary "dream prince" and the animals play along (the owl acting as the prince). While they’re dancing and singing, however, a real prince comes along and starts dancing with her. This startles Briar Rose until Philip’s smooth line of, "We’ve met before … once upon a dream," wins her over. Yeah, nothing like telling a poor, desperate girl that you’re her dream prince to get some. It actually makes me wonder if the entirety of Sleeping Beauty happens in Briar Rose’s head (and how awesome, albeit f**ked up, would that be?). A girl so desperate for love, she rather sleep and dream of imaginary princes than live a life on her own, be it within the forest or outside.

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Cinderella


Cinderella is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list These Disney Princess Were Absolutely Terrible Role Models
Photo: via Twitter

The coolest thing about Cinderella is that her stepmother’s cat is named Lucifer. But this list isn’t about awesomely named animal sidekicks (though that list will surely come), so back to the princess at hand: Cinderella. So, she meets the prince, whirlwind romance, midnight strikes and she flees the scene. We all know the story. But the thing that I never understood about the story is those damn glass slippers: why didn’t they return to whatever matter they came from? The carriage returns to a pumpkin, the princess is once again a bumpkin, and yet the glass remains in slipper form. And what kind of a woman wears a glass slipper? Standard heels scare me enough, the chance that I might slip and it’ll shatter and tear my Achilles tendon does not do anything for me, but I’m obviously no princess. But neither was she, until she got a little help from a fat, old blue fairy woman.

Aside from constantly cleaning the house, putting up with three bitches and having rodent friends, Cinderella’s life wasn’t too bad. She lived without any sense of eminent danger, and she has a Fairy Godmother. Though, Cindy doesn’t know that until she wants to go to the royal ball. Seriously, where has that tart been all her life? "No, Cinderella, I wasn’t here because cooking and cleaning without talking back are all necessary skills you will need in life." But once that wicked stepmother cock blocks Cinderella from meeting Prince Charming? You better f**king believe the Fairy Godmother is going to appear and bibbity-bobbity-boo the f**k out of the situation to ensure that Cinderella gets her chance at some royal sausage. Again, girls, do your chores and get married. Aspire to nothing else. At least she and Prince Charming had some fine conversation for, what, five minutes at that royal ball, right? Enough to leave an impression that separated her from the other fine vixens of the kingdom.

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Princess Jasmine


Princess Jasmine is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list These Disney Princess Were Absolutely Terrible Role Models
Photo:  Aladdin

What’s so bad about Jasmine? I mean, really she has a tiger! She actually attacks the villain! She’s one of the few princesses who is actually born a princess! That may be true, but unlike the other princesses on this list, Princess Jasmine is a supporting character, not the lead. The movie, as you may be able to guess by the title, is about Aladdin, not her. Although her existence as a woman who wants to live her life her way rather than according to the laws of men or her palace is an important turning point in the history of the Disney Princess, she is still very much a pawn in the film.

Her whole story arc in the film is about whether or not she’ll be married by her next birthday, so the next ruler of Agrabah may be chosen. She doesn’t get to rule the kingdom when she becomes queen, even though she is the sole heir! Nay, her husband gets the power and the p***y; she just gets stuck with some dick (take whatever meaning you want). The sultan, her father, spends a bulk of the film trying to find a suitable suitor for her. Additionally, this plot point is integral to the villain Jafar’s master plan as he desires her hand in marriage, not because he loves or cares about her, but for the title and power that would give him if they wed.

To Jasmine, the idea of marrying someone is so repulsive that she runs away. She is successful in her escape until she realizes she doesn’t understand a thing about how economy and trade works (which perhaps makes it a good thing that she won’t have any actual power as sultana) and is forced to reveal her identity to the guards and is ushered back into the kingdom. Obviously, she’s not too keen on the forethought. Nevertheless, despite all her rage, by the end of the movie, she finds a suitor. Granted, he is one of her choosing and so she is very much happy to have him, she is still following the orders of those men who were irritating her so furiously in the beginning of the film. So she’s a happy Sisyphus, at least.

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