Snow White and the Seven Dwarves – 98% premiered in 1937 and it should come as no surprise to anyone who hasn’t aged well. In fact, none of the movies from that period have. They have racist and sexist elements that today would not appear in a movie intended for a child audience or by mistake. The most famous of these films, in this sense, is Song of the South. Disney did not release that film on VHS or in any other home format on our continent, nor does it plan to put it on Disney Plus. Why? His characterization of black slaves is problematic and this is because it is based on a work that was intended to show the slave-owning South as an idyllic place.
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That is the most famous, but the reality is that several of them have similar troublesome details. In the particular case of Snow White, the most controversial scene is that of the non-consensual kiss. Many people have not been able to avoid seeing a parallel between her and men who go beyond unconscious women. There was no such scene in this character’s original attraction called Snow White’s Scary Adventures. In fact, it lived up to its name. Many children came out scared of it and for that reason it was not the most popular.
For this reason and taking advantage of the pandemic, Disney decided to change it. It is now called Snow White’s Enchanted Wish. The original attraction ended with the death of the Evil Queen. Now it ends with the controversial non-consensual kiss scene.
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This attracted all kinds of criticism, the main one being that of Katie dowd Y Julie Tremaine in his review for SFGate:
Hadn’t we all agreed that consent in old Disney movies is a serious problem? What is not okay to teach children to kiss when the two parties do not agree to do so? It’s hard to understand why the 2021 Disneyland decided to add a scene with such outdated ideas about what a man can do to a woman. Especially since the company has been putting an emphasis on removing problematic scenes from attractions like Jungle Cruise and Splash Mountain. Why not reimagine the ending while preserving the spirit of the film and Snow White’s place in Disney canon, but avoiding the problem?
They also explained why that kiss is a serious problem for people who still don’t understand it:
[El príncipe] He gives her a ‘true love kiss’ to release her from her enchantment. A kiss that he gives her without her consent, while she sleeps, which cannot be true love if a person does not even know what is happening.
These criticisms sparked controversy on social media. There are people who agree with Dowd and Tremaine and people who do not. Among the latter we have hockey player Matt Traynor of the New York Rangers:
I am sorry. This is what is wrong with this world. Snow White is a fictional character who is revived by a kiss from her future husband. You are taking everything too far by making the gullible believe this and get angry instead of real trouble.
I’m sorry, this is what’s wrong with the world. Snow White, a fictional character getting brought back to life by a kiss by her future husband. Y’all taking things too far and ruining the gullible by making them believe this is what to flip out about instead of REAL issues …. https://t.co/KZhKfNiYSG
– Matt Traynor (@matttraynor) May 3, 2021
What Traynor doesn’t understand is that it is a very real problem that there are people who have non-consensual acts with others who are unconscious. It is something that happens and it is not good to normalize this type of behavior. Nor is it okay to use the excuse that something is fictional in order not to notice the parallels between behaviors in the real world and those that can be learned in movies and series for children.
It must be said that this discussion is not new at all. It has been around for decades, but this attraction has given it a new life. It remains to be seen how Disney will react to this.
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