I am so sorry this is so long. I didn’t mean for it to be like this, tried arranging some side by side but the size difference is jarring.
Don’t reblog this, The reblog friendly link is right here.
So sorry for the major scroll!! <3
As much as I love that film, it’s extremely problematic, if not offensive to some Black people.
- Once again, Disney reinforced the idea that people of color can only star in movies about them when history allows it. Whereas all of the White princesses exist in their own geographically/historically ambiguous fantasy lands (for the most part, there might be a few references to specify here and there) , many of Disney’s PoC characters are restrained to historical settings. Is this a bad thing? No, not necessarily. But why couldn’t our first Black princess exist in her own fantastical kingdom, instead a time period of segregation?
- Our first Black princess … isn’t really a princess. She’s a poor waitress. To some extent one may argue that titling the film The Princess and the Frog is false advertising since Tiana doesn’t actually become a princess until like, the last five minutes of the film. Her White friend actually has more screen time as a “princess” than Tiana does. I’m not saying it’s bad to portray a hardworking Black woman, but … eh, I couldn’t help but feel that Tiana’s overall character was somewhat inspired by the “strong independent Black woman who don’t need no man” stereotype.
- Some would say it’s problematic that our first Black princess doesn’t have a Black prince. While I was personally refreshed to see Disney portray a PoC couple, I still acknowledge that Disney passed on a great opportunity to have a character for little Black boys to look up to.
- the portrayal of New Orleans Voodoo reflects that of the American stereotype of voodoo being “evil” and Satanic.
- And the most obvious part, Disney’s first Black princess spends half, if not the majority, of her respective film as a mucus-secreting green animal. Not ONE Disney princess received that treatment before Tiana. -__-
Let me tell you a story. Once at a party, I had all the little girls sitting around me and I was asking them about their favorite parts of all the princess movies. The birthday girl was sitting next to me, and tells me, “Princess, your skin is the same color as mine.” I smile and agree, and try to move the game along, but she interrupts and says, “Your skin is brown and you’re a princess. It’s the same color as mine, but you’re a princess.”
“Well, if my skin is brown and your skin is brown, and I’m a princess, then you must be a princess too.” I tell her. And then I spent the next 10 minutes assuring all the black girls at the party that yes, they have lovely skin and yes, they can be princesses with me.
This happens at most of the parties I go to. I have had my arm stroked, my hair patted, my skin color commented on more times than I can remember. I am not simply hired out to entertain a bunch of cute little girls dressed in poofy skirts who want to play with a big girl in a poofier skirt. I am hired out because I am an affirmation. For these little black girls (and boys! I’ve dazzled a few of them too) Princess Tiana is proof that for once, they can be special BECAUSE of the color of their skin, not IN SPITE OF.
Adding some of her pictures for emphasis.
We’ve featured pictures of this lovely Tiana before, but I wanted to add this post to the blog as well :)
TELL ME AGAIN HOW REPRESENTATION ISN’T IMPORTANT AND YOU MAY FIND A SIZE 13 TURNT SIDEWAYS UP YO ASS.
Costume Concepts from The Princess and the Frog
Costume Designs from The Princess and the Frog by Lorelay Bove
Costume Concepts for The Princess and the Frog
Storyboard for the Princess and the Frog