The Valiant Little Tailor
Jack and the Beanstalk
Beauty and the Beast
Puss in Boots
The Twelve Dancing Princesses
The Little Mermaid
Goldilocks and the Three Bears
Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves
The Princess and the Pauper
The Snow Queen
HBO’s “Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child” 1995 - 2000
(from the same people who eventually brought us “The Proud Family”)
Over 8K notes now and people still mentioning the resemblance to The Proud Family (Hint: Read this.), reminiscing about the show, wondering how they missed its existence, and raising critical questions about PoC representation today in other similar media (Disney).
I love it. I’m so happy this took off the way it did. I only wish I had the ability to share the actual series itself with people who are interested.
My favorite episodes are: Rapunzel (Tisha Campbell as Rapunzel with Whoopi Goldberg as the evil Hoodoo Diva, Madam Zenobia. It shits all over Tangled and shows PATF how to do NoLa influenced mysticism right), Goldilocks and the Three Bears (Raven Symoné as the plucky, dreadlocked titular character), The Princess and the Pauper (Raven again with a spin on the Twain tale), White Snow and the Seven Dwarfs (three words: Buffy Sainte-Marie), Rumplestiltskin, The Little Mermaid (Tia Carrera as the titular character), Little Red Happy Coat, and Sleeping Rosita.
So many of these episodes have stood the test of time (particularly Rapunzel, my favorite of the entire series…). Why they aren’t all available on DVD, I couldn’t tell you. :(
There was a Latin@ Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Twelve Dancing Princesses, The Fisherman’s Wife, and quite a few others.
The art style reminds you of the Proud Family because many of the same animators worked on both series, even though FTFEC predates The Proud Family by several years.
:( I know the feeling. HBO Family airs them every morning at 9 and 10, back to back. Also, I think they even have episodes on their On Demand service. And there’s also some bootleg videos (with poor video quality) on Youtube.
:’) Thank you so much for this! That’s the reason I posted it because it had been weighing on my mind. Especially with discussion of Disney and POC representation in their fairy tale adaptations. I grew up watching the series… from beginning to end. I remember purposefully getting up early every weekend (when it originally aired) to watch it, and waiting weeks for new episodes. The FTFEC version of Rapunzel is my favorite take on the tale. And there were so many other stellar stories… I think, in part, being able to SEE myself and others like me reflected… it gave me the passion to dream. It made me want to put more of that out there. It’s just so amazing to me that we as a culture (in terms of media, anyway) were more pluralist two decades ago than we are now.
I remember this show. I don’t remember what it was called though
I REMEMBER THESE!!! THEY WERE ON HBO SHOWTIME!!
I STILL WATCH THESE ON HBO on demand! Yo I have the best mom yo! She was constantly working on my self esteem as a poc! Thank you Charlotte Laney!!!
You cant even begin to understand what this show did for me as a child.
I believe this subconsciously inspired my fairy tale project.
Since it hasn’t been mentioned, the name of this series is Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child
I also wish I could throw in screen-caps of the few stories not included in this set like Little Red Riding Hood (Chinese), and King Midas (african).
Overall, it was a good show.
The third season is a mixed bag, though. I’m sure they got some new writers on staff or something because the tone visibly changed. About a third of the episodes talk down to the audience and stilted awkward dialogue in some episodes (Henny Penny and Robinita Hood). Then again, another third of that season is some of the best in the entire series (Empresses’ Nightingale, Happy Prince). The last third feels the same as the series always did, which is still very good (Snow Queen, Princess and the Pauper).
It’s not a phenomenal series, but it is still very good. I’d certainly recommend it.
Hyperion Studio produced this series in the mid- to late 90s.
Bruce Smith (“Bebe’s Kids”) joined with them to create Jambalaya Studio which produced The Proud Family. Hence the resemblance.
I think it’s interesting to note that these are all fairy tales taken from the canons of Hans Christian Andersen, The Brothers Grimm, etc. Authors of stories originally set in Anglicized locales… but these renditions weren’t bound by those constraints, nor were they restricted by gender (in the third season, they not only changed the ethnicity of Robin Hood, but her gender as well). They took old established stories (Rip Van Winkle, Ali Baba) and put clever spins on them that made them not only interesting, but inclusive and unique.
The writing may have been stinted at times and production values weren’t always the best (and it’s impossible to find every episode on DVD), but this show deserves to be remembered and celebrated.
It did more for representation of PoC in three seasons than Disney has done in over sixty years. That needs to be addressed in depth.
I am just elated at how this has taken off. I see people in my notes not knowing what this series is. Knowing that I’ve helped introduce them to it means the world to me.
"I wish Disney would take some notes from Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child, and see that kids love seeing characters that look like them. When I was younger, seeing a Rapunzel that looked like made me so happy. My friend loved seeing Cinderella, because it looked like HER. I just wish Disney would do that. I don’t think it’s happening with ‘Frozen’ though."