Interesting Fan Theories About Belle From 'Beauty And The Beast'

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Vote up the theories that have you dreaming of more.

Disney princesses have always been a major favorite amongst fans. Each strong, smart, and loving in their own way, it's really no wonder as to why. Belle from Beauty and the Beast has a host of admirable qualities, but is best known for her love of books and passionate nature. Some positive fans managed to come up with some truly interesting theories about Belle.

Check out these interesting Belle fan theories, and don't forget to vote!

Photo: Beauty and the Beast / Buena Vista Pictures Distribution

  • 1
    304 VOTES

    The Village Is Also Cursed, But Belle Isn't

    From Redditor u/Hainted:

    The village of Villaneuve is caught in the Enchantress' curse as well. It's stated outright that she erased the memories of the Prince, his lands, and servants from the villagers' minds, but if you pay attention she also locked the village in a time loop.

    1.It's stated several times in the movie, that the curse has been going on for years.

    2.The Beast and transformed servants don't age. Chip is still a child when Belle arrives, and he was a child the night the curse was pronounced.

    3.When the curse is broken, none of the servants are younger than the people they left behind in the village. If the village experienced the normal passage of time they would have been much older than the servants.(Mr.Potts for example) The servants didn't revert to their actual ages either since Chip was still a child after the curse was broken.

    4.Belle's actions and comments. She's able to walk through a crowded marketplace without looking. She knows exactly when everyone wakes up every morning. She talks about the baker having the exact same tray of goods every day.

    5.The Enchantress stayed in the village disguised as a spinster. Why do that unless she's maintaining a spell on them?

    6.Gaston's comments about searching for Maurice for 5 days. Are we really supposed to believe that whole montage took 5 days. For that to happen either the petals started dropping off at a much faster rate, or Gaston's memory has been altered due to the effects of the loop.

    7.Belle and her father are considered odd. Because they change and age! They moved to the village after the curse took affect. The Enchantress' magic keep people from remembering too far back so they don't know why they think Belle is odd, so they make up a reason.

    It's hidden in plain sight, whether intentional or not, it makes so much sense,

    I don't believe it would be a daily loop, as Gaston says he searched for Maurice for 5 days. It could be a week, or a month.(Everyone keeps remarking it's July...)

    304 votes
  • 2
    277 VOTES

    Belle's Favorite Book Is A Different Disney Classic

    From Redditor u/comatoseduck:

    Belle's favorite book is not Aladdin, like people think. It is, a different Disney movie/fairy tale, Sleeping Beauty.

    Theres a prevailing fan theory that circulates around the internet that the book Belle is talking about at the beginning of the movie is Aladdin because she says it has, "far off places, magic spells, sword fights, and a prince in disguise." People think this describes the story of Aladdin, but not all of it fits. Namely, Aladdin was not a prince in disguise, he was disguised as a prince.

    Sleeping Beauty, however, does fit this description.

    Far off places: Not quite as far as Aladdin, but still a different kingdom.

    Daring Sword Fights: Prince Phillip fights Maleficent (who had turned into a dragon) with a sword.

    Magic Spells: Maleficent, Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather all do magic in the movie.

    A Prince in Disguise: When Aurora meets Phillip, she doesn't know he's a prince.

    Also, in Disney World, you can go into Belle's cottage for the attraction "Enchanted Tales with Belle." In their cottage, there is a book open on a table. That book is not Aladdin. It is a well-worn copy of Sleeping Beauty (in French).

    277 votes
  • 3
    288 VOTES

    Belle Does Not Have Stockholm Syndrome

    From Tumblr user ariainstars:

    Is Beauty and the Beast About “Stockholm Syndrome”… Really? Since I have recently come across this theory, I would like to add my two cents.

    Let me begin with the term “Stockholm syndrome”. It came up after a kidnap case in Stockholm where some citizens were kept as prisoners and hostages by criminals. The most surprising aspect was, for the psychologists involved, that after having been freed the victims surprisingly did not hate their kidnappers; on the contrary, they had formed an emotional bond with them during their imprisonment, and felt compassion as well as a need to communicate and help the very people who had kidnapped them.

    For the “Stockholm syndrome” to occur, the victim must be subject to the following:

    - Loss of freedom
    - Fear for their life and / or safety
    - Emotional blackmail (the imprisoner will tell the victim sob stories about how it’s not really their fault and they’re doing this to them because some evil people, environment, society is forcing them to do it)
    - Undermining of their self-esteem (the imprisoner will suggest that the victim is siding with the “evil people” who are “forcing” them to keep them prisoner)
    - Emotional minefield (the imprisoner will hurt and insult the victim one moment, then seem sympathetic and human the next)
    - Negation of their free will (the victim is completely at the imprisoner’s mercy)
    - Strong sensitiveness / emotional fragility on the side of the victim

    Many victims, in particular if the situation goes on for long, will start to develop a degree of sympathy for their abductor. This kind of compassion, or even affection to a certain degree, is not natural; it’s a coping mechanism which springs from the victim’s desperate desire to stay alive, and sane. Instinctively, the victim will understand that the only chance it has to survive, since it is completely powerless, is to subject themselves to the abductor in order to avoid upsetting them any further. On the long run, this can lead to a personal change in the victim, who will end up sympathizing with the very person who is hurting and threatening them. They will not manage to change the abductor’s mind; the abductor, who holds all the cards, will try everything in his power to change the victim’s mind. This can lead to absurd situations where a victim will actually speak up for or refuse to give testimony against their abductor. Some victims may even believe that they “love” the person who took them prisoner and mistreated them. There are other known cases, but the 1973 Norrmalmstorg robbery is the one that gave this psychological syndrome its name.

    Now let us apply this to the 1991 Disney movie.

    Belle is not abducted by the Beast; she goes to him out of her own accord, searching for her missing father.

    The Beast does not aim at imprisoning Belle; she offers freely to stay at the castle in exchange for her father, who is elderly and getting sick.

    The Beast does not blackmail Belle by e.g. threatening to mistreat her, or by keeping her father prisoner and threatening to mistreat him if she leaves: he immediately sends him back to the village. Whatever Belle does, she is in full command of herself.

    The Beast does not keep Belle in a cramped room; he offers her a luxurious bedroom and his servant’s attendance and tells her that she can go anywhere she likes in the castle, except for the West Wing.

    Belle is a prisoner on parole. When she once runs from the castle, frightened by the Beast, she finds neither a locked door nor anyone standing in her way.

    Belle could leave the Beast after he protected her from the wolves. It is her own decision to bring him back home and take care of his wounds.

    The movie emphasizes over and over that these are her very own choices. Belle is an idealistic person who does what she feels is the right thing to do. Her actions are spurred by her conscience, not by fear for her or somebody else’s life.

    It is Gaston, who is set up as the Beast’s foil, who blackmails Belle by pretending that her father is mad and that he will have him locked up unless she marries him.

    The Beast never calls Belle a fool or implies that she is too weak to make decisions for herself. Gaston does.

    Belle knows well where she’s at with the Beast because he tells her right away that if she chooses to stay with him, she must stay forever. When she wants to see him in full light she recognizes what he is - a stark contrast to the first scene where we see Gaston, his face in shade. Gaston hides his true self behind a handsome appearance; the Beast hides away in his castle because he knows that he cannot hide what he is. There is no duplicity on his side as there is with Gaston.

    The Beast does try to bully Belle at first, but he has no chance. She speaks up for herself and the castle inhabitants are all on her side. When he tells them not to feed her, they offer her a sumptuous meal including music.

    Belle is not in danger for her life or physical safety. When the Beast gets angry at her for having discovered his magical rose, he does not touch her, he merely yells at her; his anger and fear are understandable given that she found the object his very existence depends on, and he immediately regrets having lost his temper. Also, Belle obviously was not very frightened by him in the first place, else she would not have mustered the courage to set foot in the forbidden West Wing. When he has another tantrum as she tends to his wounds, she gives as good as she gets.

    Belle sees that the castle is enchanted but she never learns why. The Beast never tells her of the spell that is upon him and that he needs her to break it. He does and says nothing to make her take pity on him.

    Belle does not change. The Beast does. What’s more, she does nothing with the intention of changing him. She gives him a chance, that is all; she has no clue or dream or hope that there might be a prince hiding inside of him and that the run-down castle is in truth luxurious and beautiful. Belle is neither manipulating nor gold-digging. She is compassionate and has a strong self-respect; she shows no sign of the brittle ego a person needs in order to fall prey to the Stockholm syndrome.

    Far from mistreating her, the Beast protects her from the wolves, offers her his library on learning that she loves to read, listens to her when she reads, learns to eat with cutlery for her sake, plays with her and the birds, lets her teach him how to dance. When he first starts to realize that he cares for her, he says to his servants that he wants to do something for her, and his decision is framed as being genuine. A true abuser never does anything for his victim, except if there is some advantage for him involved.

    Once the Beast gives up his selfish attitude and remembers that being a Prince, he was raised a gentleman, he never goes back. He does not treat Belle hot and cold the way an abuser does.

    The Beast is not a criminal; he does not kill, rob, abduct or blackmail anyone. It is said right from the start that he is “spoilt, selfish and unkind”, i.e. he is an immature, selfish young man who grew up used to always having his way. That’s very different from an actual villain. Gaston is the villain, and Belle sees him through - when? After he tried to entrap her in a marriage with him by blackmailing her with her father’s freedom, the exact contrary to what the Beast did.

    It’s not Belle’s “love” that changes the Beast, it’s her fairness that makes her offer him a second chance. And he probably never would have changed at all, had it not been for the Enchantress’ spell. He knows he needs to change, and quickly, before the last petal falls.

    Belle’s feelings for the Beast / prince are not a coping mechanism. Since he does not traumatize her, there is nothing she needs to cope with. No one can say that he dragged her out of her happy life: she had said (and even sung) that she wanted to get out of there and have adventures, and adventures are never pure sunshine and roses, adventures are dangerous by definition. Belle does not develop feelings for the Beast while he is mean to her, only when she sees that he’s trying to change. And when she finally says “I love you” to him, realizing how much she cares when she fears to lose him, she is no longer a prisoner. The difference between Belle and the village people is that she’s not narrow-minded the way they are; when a major change in her life occurs, she quickly adapts and makes the best of it.

    The Beast begins to fall for Belle when she offers to stay in her father’s stead, because this shows him the goodness of her character; she begins to appreciate him after he saved her from the wolves, which shows her that there is real goodness in him, too. The whole point of the story is to emphasize that they don’t fall for each other’s good looks.

    Once the spell is broken, Belle and the redeemed Prince become a happy couple. His sins are forgiven because he finally learned to put someone else before himself - letting her go despite knowing that the spell might never be lifted if she leaves before he declares himself.

    So, is Belle “in love with her abductor, jailer and torturer” due to her instinct to survive a situation that is as terrible as it is inescapable?

    Excuse me? It’s laughable. The feelings of a victim suffering from Stockholm syndrome are not healthy; she does not love a real person, only a construct made up in her mind to cope with terror. And like with any kind of brainwashing, this feeling does not last. Over time the victim will distance herself from the perpetrator, realizing that her free will never had an actual part in her “relationship”.

    288 votes
  • 4
    165 VOTES

    Belle And Adam Are Two Sides Of The Same Coin

    From Tumblr user batbobsession:

    Anyone else notice that Adam and Belle are two separate results of a mother’s passing?

    If Adam’s father had tried to keep his wife’s memory alive, Adam would have ended up more like Belle.

    If Maurice had chosen to try to forget his wife and wipe her memory from the world Belle lived in (including the part of her that lived in Belle) instead of living with the grief and turning it into something beautiful, Belle would have ended up more like Adam.

    The only real difference between them is the fact that Belle had a more humble and caring father.  Adam didn’t even have that.

    165 votes
  • 5
    133 VOTES

    Belle's Coronation Dress Was Designed By Her Father

    From Tumblr user batbobsession:

    Belle’s Coronation Dress

    Okay…I’ve thought of a way to justify the coronation dress at the end of the movie.  There were so many people that thought she should have worn the yellow dress at the end, just like in the original movie. But a thought just occurred to me:

    What if Maurice designed the dress?

    I feel like this makes the most sense. Maurice can be excused because he never saw Belle in the yellow dress, not really. He saw her in the dark, lit by angry torches and leering faces; he saw her in the padded cell; he saw her throw it away as she rode back to the castle to save the Beast.

    That dress might be intricate and beautiful to Maurice, but when he thinks about it, he can’t help but think of what almost happened that night. Had he seen her in the ballroom, he might have thought differently, but he wasn’t there.

    Instead, between the curse being broken and the coronation ball at the end, Maurice is given time to stretch his wings in terms of artistry, and is given any medium he requests. One of which—his favorite pastime—is painting, and he can’t help but paint his wife, and Belle, and her new friends, and Villeneuve and Montmarte, over and over again.

    Imagine his surprise when Adam comes into his study one day and tell him about the coronation. That his daughter was going to be made into one of the court; that he loves Belle so much that he wants her to be by his side forever, begs for forgiveness (because Adam seems like the kind of person that wouldn’t be entirely convinced after just one apology accepted) and asks for his blessing.

    So of course, Maurice says yes, and starts visualizing it. If he’s going to stay under the same roof—well, roofs—as his child, then he will definitely be part of the interior decoration in some way.  He probably saddens a little then, because he knows that his wife would have loved to see Belle’s wedding, and then he gets this idea

    Belle always loved roses because of her mother. Belle’s stared at the painting of her mother every day, and in that painting her mother holds a rose. This whole thing started because Belle wanted a rose like the one in that painting.

    So how can Belle’s mother be with her on her wedding day? Easy. Maurice paints the dress right then and there: traditional white, but adorned and embroidered with rose bouquets, wrapped in pink ribbons, little green leaves here and there. Roses on her shoulders, where her mother would place her hands. Roses around her waist, where Maurice can imagine a mother’s embrace. And all around the skirt, where they’ll dance and twirl with her.

    When she wears it, Maurice thinks, he’ll see her again.

    133 votes
  • 6
    43 VOTES

    Belle Was The First To Try And Break The Spell

    From Redditor u/LadyGrey1174:

    Okay, hear me out.

    There is every chance that the villagers not only KNOW about the castle and the inhabitants, but there may be a long-standing tradition of silence about the whole thing that breaks after Belle and her father move to town and upset the balance with Maurice taking the “wrong road.”

    Consider, working on the “the curse lasts for 21 years” theory (though it also works if it’s based on the 21st Birthday theory, but not as well) – this village grew because of the castle and the Royals living there. The Royals and their servants would have required a massive amount of goods and food being sent to the castle on a regular basis, not to mention if the castle was entertaining guests of any sort (whether other Royals or Nobility.) After the Prince’s debacle with the Witch, no other Royals or Nobility would have had anything to do with the remaining family.

    Now, the story doesn’t touch on the Prince’s immediate family, but you must concede there may have been other Royal family members (while not necessarily siblings, I have always considered the possibility of a King or Queen) who advocated for him among the other Royals and Nobles looking for a young lady of Noble birth who could break the spell and save the Prince. Not a bad gig, if you can stomach a spoiled rich kid in a Beast’s form freaking out and breaking things that USED to be people.

    I would hope (operative word being hope) that the advocate would check in with the optimistically happy couple and realize there was no chance with this young lady – or end up finding her in the dungeons and quickly spiriting her away to avoid her death and her family retaliating. After repeated failures, naturally the advocate would start looking to the villagers for help, since the Nobles would tell this poor guy to “beat feet.”

    Now – from the villager’s point of view; the loss of income from the castle and its constant stream of guests would eventually bankrupt whatever business you owned. Families would begin to starve if something weren’t done to “fix” the Prince. And there was a distinct upside to helping – if your daughter were the one to break the spell; you would be not only the Prince’s savior, but the village’s as well. Plus – your daughter would end up being the Princess (and quite possibly the Queen, though that’s debatable) and your whole family would end up Noble-by-Marriage.

    However, after several years of the townsfolk offering up their daughters to try and none of them succeeding or simply disappearing all together, there would be serious dissension and anger toward the advocate, and he would simply be refused. His supply of “willing young maidens” would dry up and Beast would find himself alone in the castle with his servants, slowly going crazy.

    The villagers would age and start to forget about the “problem” lurking close by in the castle, since it would have happened when they were young. Younger generations (those who were only babies or the unborn-at-the-time) wouldn’t know about the old stories since the Elders would have issued the silence warning to those who lived through the Prince's first few years under the curse.

    Enter Belle and Maurice:

    Every morning just the same
    Since the morning that we came
    To this poor provincial town

    These two don’t know anything about the town’s history or the castle in the woods harboring a dark secret the town Elders don’t talk about. They are outsiders and the villagers already think the two of them are strange (because of Maurice’s odd inventions and Belle’s over-consumption of books) – they aren’t going to bring up the past and have these two weirdos start poking into things better left alone.

    Then all hell breaks loose and Gaston (the erstwhile young hunter and hero-wanna-be) believes it is his job to protect the village from something that has effectively terrorized the villagers for 20 years.

    Little do the villagers know - their savior is the bookworm wandering through town and reading to the local sheep.

    43 votes