On Saturday I had a birthday. I love my birthday. Part of it is the ego thing-MY BIRTHDAY IS ALL ABOUT MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! And I am awesome. Like, way better than everything else in existence awesome. Right?
But I have an equal love of Christmas, because of two things: the gifts, which I love getting (duh) and love giving (I seriously have fits when people won’t open their present(s) from me within a short time of my handing them over.) the other thing is the magic. Christmas is about magic for me.
On Saturday, my parents came by, and as is not unusual on someone’s birthday, brought birthday presents. One of those was Pixar’s Brave.
I’ve always loved fairy tales, and with the exception of m early adolescence, when I was “too cool” for Disney cartoons, I’ve held Sleeping Beauty to be the best for a number of reasons. 1. Actual fairies in the fairy tale. 2. The prince has a name and a personality. 3. THERE’S A MOTHERFUCKING DRAGON. But I have to say, after years of learning about the history of fairy tales and also about feminism, I wonder if it hasn’t been toppled by Brave.
Magic: Totally in there. Will-o’-the-wisps, a witch, magic spells. No dragon, it’s true, but we’ve got some representations of the fair folk and we’ve got a crow hangin’ out with a witch, too.
Fairy tales: Merida isn’t an orphan, as the heroes and heroines of fairy tales often are, the parents aren’t evil (as the often WERE, before the introduction of evil step-parents), there is no rape (as the original Sleeping Beauty had) or forced marriage (as the Disney one did, though it turned out in their version force wasn’t ultimately necessary)
Feminism: no forced marriage! yay! Mother figure isn’t evil! yay! the witch, also not evil! yay!
I definitely like the evolution of the Disney princess. I can’t say for certain that Merida’s story should take ascendency in my heart, having only seen it once, but…there was a little of that Christmas magic in my birthday present this year.