Parents blast Disney's new Merida as too sexy
The company's $4 billion princess franchise is adding the 'Brave' heroine to its lineup. But some parents don't like her new look.
Walt Disney (DIS) will officially anoint a new princess on Saturday, when "Brave" heroine Merida joins the $4 billion franchise. But the coronation isn't going so smoothly, with thousands of parents outraged at what some are calling a Victoria's Secret makeover for the character.
The original Merida (pictured at left) was touted as a healthy role model for girls when the Pixar film was released last year. The character is strong, smart, independent and wickedly talented with a bow and arrow. Her hair swirled about her in a mess of red curls, far from the coiffed 'dos worn by other Disney heroines like Cinderella or Snow White.
To get her ready to join the princess lineup, Disney has given her a makeover, with neater hair and a thinner waist (pictured at right). She has also ditched her bow and arrow.
That's spurring calls for the princess to get rescued from Disney's clutches, with more than 47,000 people signing a petition on Change.org asking the company to keep Merida's original look.
The makeover "does a tremendous disservice to the millions of children for whom Merida is an empowering role model," the petition says. "Moreover, by making her skinnier, sexier and more mature in appearance, you are sending a message to girls that the original, realistic, teenage-appearing version of Merida is inferior."
The outrage has continued on Twitter, with one consumer writing, "So @Disney, your film was all abt #Merida being BRAVE but merchandise is all abt her being HOT?" Others say they are unhappy with the makeover and liked the original better.
Even beauty editors got in on the criticism, with Glamour's Petra Guglielmetti writing that the makeover gives Merida curls "more like Victoria's Secret model waves."
Not everyone is outraged. One writer at the parent-focused Mama Pop wrote, "I'm having trouble seeing the scandal here."
However you might feel about the makeover, the issue is more than skin deep for Disney. The princess franchise is a huge moneymaker for the media company, which first brought together the princesses in 2000. Since then, the franchise has racked up $4 billion in retail sales, with themed products such as books and night lights.
Aimee Picchi owns shares in Disney but hasn't bought or sold in at least 12 months. Follow her on Twitter at @aimeepicchi.
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Have these parents not seen Aladdin??? Jasmin's outfit is very revealing.
Parents like this = reason why I do not want kids. Worry about their grades and teaching them to be decent moral people (The Big Stuff)...this small stuff is a waste to worry about and you make your kids grow up to be critical self entitled everything must be my way or it is wrong spolied brats! I would like to see if a 4 year old little girl looks at this doll and thinks "OMG the pressure for me to be sexy is just too much!!". Kids this age having sex image problems?Really???
If people are getting bent-out-of-shape over this then they clearly have too much time on their hands and need to focus on something IMPORTANT.
Í don't see what the blow up is about.... if you pay attention to all of the princesses from Cinderella to Merida, they are all drawn with small waists and cute shapes. So are our daughter's Barbie dolls. I do think they need to leave her character in place along with her bow and arrows. those are her trademarks for independence. Little girls need to know that even princessses grow up to be adults.
Ahh but Mom and Dad Disney lacks creativity and originally so they have nothing of true entertainment anymore and think that they can lure kids in with Sexy and Sexist Characters.
---this character also looks like Shrek's Wife before her transformation back to an Ogar!
They have gone overbaord even in the TV shows on DISNEY.
I remember a few years ago while babysitting a neighbor's kid when those 2 little blonde boys perked up when one said something as: "Hey Dude 10:00 Hot Babe" and then as these 2 little boys who most likely hadn't even had a Wet Dream yet, and both saw a young girl maybe a year or so old look over her shoulder and flip her long locks at them as she was a sexy celebrity over that of just a kid in a too short lacy dress!
I will never forget that scene! But did change the channel rapidly and this child and I watched Little House together----she loved it too and quickly became a Little House Fan! No sex, no sexual innuendos, and no sexist scenes made with little boys!!!!!!!!!!
Anyone remember the original Tinkerbell? Looks nothing like the current one. People need to just lighten up and quit complainging about everything.
It makes me wonder if Disney hadn't ditched her bow and arrow how many idiot anti-gun liberals would be throwing a fit over the "violent" toy they were pushing on their kids. Hear about the little kid that got suspended for making gun noises with a pencil? Or the one with a soap bubble gun? People are completely out of control. Or should I say they're using such things to gain control, and the sheep (our majority) are letting them. The US used to be strong and would stand up to bullies like this whatever their form, now we just let them walk all over us and our rights. At this pace can you imagine what it'll be like in 40 years? Would anyone believe life here today 40 years ago?
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