So I’ve seen a lot of people on Tumblr complain (what else is new) about how Tiana in Princess and the Frog got turned into a frog and spent most of the movie that way and how it’s Disney being racist.
Yeah, because they didn’t do that already in Brother Bear or The Emperor’s New Groove.
The protagonists in all of those movies are POC. Your point is?
My point being that it’s not just specific to that movie, it’s a common trope in stories, to change the physical body of the protagonist to teach them an important lesson. But it being Tumblr they have convienently forgotten that they already did this twice to the few male protagonists that Disney actually has.
Disney has plenty of male protagonists, especially when you include Disney Pixar movies. Anyway, the point is that a good chunk of Disney movies with POC protagonists are turned into animals throughout most of the movie. Do I think it’s a purposeful move on Disney’s part? No. But I think it’s not something to completely ride off as it just being a trope.
Well Mowgli wasn’t changed into an animal and his story is really no different than that of Tarzan’s. And Mulan, also a character of color, wasn’t turned into an animal.
And if I remember correctly, there’s plenty of humans in Emperor’s New Groove, The Princess and the Frog, and Brother Bear who are PoC and not turned into animals. So obviously the whole “being turned into an animal” thing has to do more with their being the protagonist than it does what they look like.
And as far as Disney goes, male human protagonists are kind of slim. Before 1990, there were twice as many Female Human Protagonists in Disney Animated Films as there were Male Human Protagonists. Even Peter Pan, which is named after the male character, is actually about Wendy. By 2000, it went from 6 and 3 to 9 and 7, which is better, but they added another Princess in that time frame so they continued to market the whole Disney Princess thing even in a movie staring a male character.
Total, they’re even with 15 Animated Human Protagonists a piece but since 1990, even when the male character is the protagonist, most of the time there’s always been a strong female character in the movie. Meanwhile, until 90’s, every time there was a male character in a Female Protagonist’s movie, they might have been strong but they had no speaking parts or they were incredibly stupid.
So everything is pretty balanced, even though until the late 90s there weren’t that many animated male protagonists that were human. And in the last four years, all of their human protagonists have been female except for Up.
So it is most likely a trope because the story needed those characters to be turned into animals because of their flaws, not their skin color.
Because this is getting so long..