Earlier this week public pressure managed to convince Disney to drop its make-over of Merida from the Pixar release Brave as she was being prepared for induction into the official 11 princesses in the Disney universe. Her princess model featured a more slender waist, slightly larger bust, make-up, tamer hair, and no appearance of her trademark weaponry. This led to calls of objectification and overly prissing up the girl we can all agree is the most assertive and badass of the royal female heroines in Disney.
Personally, it didn't bother me. Yes, I know, I'm a guy and I don't understand. I am, however, a father to a three-year-old daughter who loves Merida (Even if she sometimes confuses her with Amy Pond from Doctor Who) and the son of a woman who taught him to ride horses, rope cattle, shoot, drink, swear, and punch in the head those who so desperately need punching in the head. I consider myself more of a male tomboy than anything else.
I recognized the make-over for what it was... a unified marketing strategy meant to make all the princesses look like part of the same universe. Merida didn't just change for her inclusion in this weird, decorative stable that Disney created, every single princess did. All of them, from Snow White to Rapunzel. Click that Jezebel link up above, and you can see a side-by-side comparison of all the girls, everything from boob jobs to making Tiana slightly less black. More »