Top 5 Disney Characters Frozen in Time

Every Disney character embarks on a journey of personal discovery and change. None are the same at the end of their movie. Usually the character is stronger and better for the effort, and we cheer when we see the ‘New Them’!

But do we always see them in their new and improved versions? Here is a list of my Top 5 Disney characters that we stubbornly insist on seeing as they started, not as they finished:

N U M B E R     F I V E

Rapunzel

    

Rapunzel went through quite a change in the course of her movie. From a shy, dominated shut-in to an independent go-getter with a frying pan! She chose to follow her dream and found true love by helping to redeem a lost soul. Not bad in just under 2 hours of screen time!

The most visible change was the cutting of her hair at the end of her movie, which robbed her of her healing powers (mostly) and her trademark long golden locks. But we refuse to see her as a short-haired brunette and so she is forever stuck in our minds and hearts as a blonde with mile-long strands of hair.

N U M B E R     F O U R

Ariel

    

Ariel is another Princess who had a lot to learn before she matured. Making the journey from an irresponsible daughter to a strong bridge between two worlds wasn’t easy, but Ariel made the journey one step at a time. And that brings us to our premise.

Ariel starts off as a mermaid, complete with tail and land-based mobility issues. But thanks to some undersea magic, she switches to legs and… what are those things called again? Oh yeah: feet! Ariel is lower on this list because we do see her in both configurations.

But with a nickname like The Little Mermaid, I think it’s safe to assume that the vast majority of us still see her with a tail, even though she walked into her happily ever after on two strong legs.

N U M B E R     T H R E E

Beast

    

For the majority of his time in the movie Beauty and the Beast, the Beast was, well… a beast, not a man. It wasn’t until he won the love of Belle in the last few minutes of screen time that he became the human prince of Belle’s dreams.

But we definitely see him as he was, not as what he became. And after all, if we didn’t, we’d have to change the title of the movie to Beauty and the Prince, which we all can agree just wouldn’t be the same!

N U M B E R     T W O

Bambi

    

The Prince of the Forest made quite a transformation in his movie, actually growing up into a majestic stag before our very eyes by the end credits. But just like overly possessive parents, we still think of Bambi as our little baby!

Bambi is high on this list, although not Number One, because he made one of the most drastic transformations, but we still refuse to acknowledge it.

N U M B E R     O N E

Pinocchio

    

So who went through more changes than our Number One Disney character stuck in time? Pinocchio started off as just a piece of wood carved to resemble a little boy. Then, this marionette came to life, walking and talking and getting into all sorts of mischief. But this wasn’t the end of little Pinocchio’s journey!

By the end of the film, Pinocchio achieves his fondest wish: To become a real boy. The Blue Fairy deems the puppet worthy because of his selfless act to save his ‘father’,  Geppetto. Now that’s a change, not only worthy of cheering, but remembering!

But poor Pinocchio! He is doomed to live out his time in our memories as an animated piece of wood, and not the real boy he worked so hard to become.

disH O N O R A B L E     M E N T I O N

Yzma

    

Yzma spends most of her screen time in The Emperor’s New Groove as a very old woman who most describe as ‘scary beyond belief’ before becoming a cute little white kitten. A cute little white kitten with homicidal tendencies, but a cute little white kitten nonetheless.

However, despite transforming into a completely different life-form, we still remember her as that scary-beyond-belief woman of our nightmares. Doesn’t seem fair somehow…

So did I miss any Disney characters that you feel are stuck in time? If so, fill us all in by leaving a comment below!

Festival of Fantasy

27 Days: Festival of Fantasy Parade

Festival of Fantasy

The Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade at the Magic Kingdom is a new parade, and is our choice for #Day27 in our #DisneyWorldCountdown! Image ©Disney Parks

Hello everyone, and welcome to day 27 in our Disney World Countdown series!  Today we are taking a look at a brand new parade that opened at the Magic Kingdom this past March 9th!  It’s called the Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade, and features some incredible costume design, floats, and so much more!  I can’t wait to check this parade out when we visit next month!

Festival of Fantasy

Take a look at the dragon, part of the Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade! Image ©Disney Parks

The Festival of Fantasy parade features some incredible floats, including floats for Belle and the Beast, Rapunzel and Flynn Rider, Anna and Elsa, Cinderella and Prince Charming, and Ariel!  The vivid colors that are used in these floats are absolutely incredible!

Festival of Fantasy

This is just one of the shots from the Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade! Image ©DisneyParks

See how vibrant those colors are on the characters?  Stunning is all I’ve got to say about it!

Have you had a chance to see this parade yet in person?  If so, what did you think of it?  Or, if you haven’t, do you think you’ll take time to view it the next time you are there?  Please let me know in the comments, and thanks for stopping by today!

Voyage of the Little Mermaid

58 Days: Voyage of the Little Mermaid

Voyage of the Little Mermaid

Voyage of the Little Mermaid – part show, part animation

Hello everyone, and welcome to #Day58 in our #DisneyWorldCountdown!  Today we’re taking a look at a show over at Disney’s Hollywood Studios — Voyage of the Little Mermaid!  This is a unique show in that it tells the story of Ariel from both a live acting perspective as well as an animation perspective.

We all probably know the story of Ariel, the Mermaid princess who fell in love with Eric.  The only problem was that Eric was a human, not a Merman!  Day after day Ariel longed to be able to meet him, to experience life on land, but to no avail — until Ursula the Witch gave her legs in exchange for her voice!

The Voyage of the Little Mermaid does a good job of combining live actors and animated scenes, as you can see from this picture:

Voyage of the Little Mermaid

Ariel and Prince Eric, with King Triton animated.

The Voyage of the Little Mermaid isn’t a show that we see on every visit to Walt Disney World, but it is one that we’ll see every couple of years.  If you like the story of the Little Mermaid, I urge you to check it out if you haven’t yet, especially if you have young Princesses of your own that love Ariel!

Do you and your family stop by to see Voyage of the Little Mermaid, or do you skip it?  Let me know in the comments, and tell me what your favorite part of the show is!  Thanks, now go out and make today a great Disney Day!

Where Have All the Disney Princes Gone After the Movie?

The camera pans to a large leather-bound book. It has gold leaf edges complete with a hand-painted scene on the cover. It depicts a beautiful maiden in the arms of a handsome Prince. The music swells as the cover of the book is opened to reveal the immortal fairy tale words: ‘Once upon a time, in a Kingdom far, far, away, lived…’

You know the rest. Snow White; Sleeping Beauty (above); Cinderella; they all got their start this way. Along with just about every other cartoon soon-to-be Princess! But this storybook opening isn’t the only constant to be found in feature-length animated fairy tales.

The other constant is the minimal role of the Prince himself. Usually he is a handsome young man (unmarried, this is very important) who just wants to find true love. He happens upon a peasant girl who sings beautifully, talks to animals, and is drop-dead gorgeous! Oh, and some very powerful person hates her and is bent on destroying her. If I was a Prince looking for my lady fair, I’d want to know this going in, but that’s just me.

Next comes the duet (how do they both know the words?) the loss, the chase, the harm/death sequence, all concluding with a kiss. Oh, and a marriage with the obligatory ‘Happily ever after’ tagline! But this entire plot manages to take place with the Prince getting about 10 minutes or less of screen time. When all is said and done, the Princess is in our hearts and the Prince is all but forgotten.

Until Disney decides to include the Princess in a parade or stage show in the Parks. Then she needs some eye-candy on her arm and our Prince is resurrected for a brief cameo. When a new Princess appears, her Prince fairs a little better. He gets to stick around for the Meet-and-Greet, but only for the first few months. Then he is ‘fired’ and sent back to the pages of the storybook he came from.

          Enjoy it while you can, boys!

Why does Disney DO this?!?

I first started to ponder on this when I heard about the ‘firing’ of Flynn Rider from the Rapunzel meet-and-greet. When that happened, I tried to remember if there were any real Prince meet-and-greets. Answer: None. Nada. Zip. Not even one.

Well, Aladdin manages to hang on over at EPCOT, but usually on the arm of Jasmine. So we’ll call him Mr. Exception for now (but that’s still Prince Ali A Bu Bu whatever-whatever to you).

Aladdin was posing alone at Disneyland in 2013

With the popularity of the Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boutique and it’s propensity for pumping out little Princesses by the carriage-load, am I the only one who sees the marketing and photo-op potential of a Prince meet-and-greet right next to the exit? And I don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to believe that a few of the little Princesses’ mommies would get a kick out of snuggling up to Prince Eric or Prince Charming themselves = Girls Day Out at the Prince Meet-and-Greet!

Come on Disney! Give the old Princes a new lease on life. Let them have their day in the sun. After all, some of them had to fight long and hard to get their lady fair (albeit, mostly off-screen), so the least you could do is give them some face time! OK, it’s true the ladies can find some beefcake to pose with while running the Princess Half Marathon, but making women run for miles until they’re hot and sweaty before you let them pose with gorgeous men might not be as appreciated as you think!

Of course, I’ve never heard a Prince complain about this. Maybe they’re at home in their Man Cave in the basement of the castle enjoying Pay-Per-View wrestling events and drinking mead. Maybe they’re laughing at how their Princess is out there getting mauled by long lineups of strangers for nothing but a ‘Thank You’. Maybe they’re thinking to themselves: “It’s good to be the Prince!

Magical Blogorail

Magical Blogorail – Favorite Character Dining!

MBRed Logo 2013

Welcome to those of you joining me from Growing Up Disney and those of you just hopping aboard. I am the 4th stop on our Magical Blogorail.

Normally when we travel to Disney parks, we travel to Walt Disney World — so I was all set to write about my favorite character dining restaurants there.  But then, when I started thinking about it, I decided that I would write about the two character dining restaurants that we did at Disneyland.  Those were Ariel’s Grotto and Storyteller’s Cafe.

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