tbh same anna prince hans is one dream hunk
For my first article, I decided to start with a light, fluffy
topic! Kidding, of course, but I think this is a rather crucial topic that needs to be discussed. Something to keep in mind before reading this article, I'm a fan of Frozen, I'm a fan of the Disney Princesses, and I'm without a doubt a fan of Disney! You can be a fan of something and still criticize it (Spoiler alert for the article? Ah well..) Anyway, onto the article!
First things first let's discuss the racial makeup of Frozen's setting. Oh WAIT, we can't because Frozen takes place in a fictional land! That's something that seems to often be forgotten when people defend Frozen's lack of racial diversity. They claim, "Oh, but Norway
is filled with blonde haired, blue eyed people!" And yes, that's true, but just because Frozen's animators went to Norway for inspiration doesn't mean that it explicitly takes place in Norway.
Without them saying where it takes place, we can't just make inferences. In a land where there are trolls, talking snowmen, and princesses with ice powers, God forbid
we throw one POC in there. "Oh, but look! There there and there! People of Color in the background! Take THAT!" Yeah...no. Having to look at the film frame by frame to find one POC in a sea of white people is anything but progressive.
It's not even that they needed to make the entire film filled to the brim with POC, they could've easily stuck with the Norwegian based theme while still including POC. Why did Hans and the Duke have to be white when they were both foreigners from the land? They could've easily been made into a Spanish prince and a Portuguese dignitary, but no, no, they had to be white as well. It's a real shame that Disney didn't make Prince Hans a POC, seeing as we've never seen an interracial Disney Princess couple (besides Pocahontas, but that's problematic in a lot of ways).
Of course having Hans being a POC with the current storyline would be a bit of a problem; having the only POC be the villain is problematic in so many ways (HTTYD 2 *cough* *cough*) and having Anna choose the white guy in the end would be even more racist, but all I'm trying to get across is that Frozen had chances to add in POC and they didn't take them. Kristoff could've been Saami (which, before you comment, were indigenously POC, though modern Saami often have blonde hair and blue eyes).
Another huge problem with the lack of POC in Frozen is Big Hero 6. How does Big Hero 6 have anything to do with this you might ask? Well Big Hero 6 was originally a comic that took place in Japan with a cast full of Japanese characters, but in Disney's reboot of it only two of the leads are Japanese. Yes they added in some more diversity, but they did that by taking away the traditional Japanese setting and whitewashing it.
The fact that it was okay that they did this to a Japanese story, but that they "couldn't meddle" with a "white story" and add in POC is simply racist. How easy would it have been to make Anna and Elsa from a tribe up in Canada where they have tanned skin? "Oh, but Brother Bear takes place in-" Okay, do you know how
many Disney films take place in Europe? A lot, okay. Just because there's one princess from the Middle East, one princess from Eastern Asia, one princess from Native American tribes, doesn't mean that that's enough!
We need to ask for more from the largest animation company in the entire world! We need to stop accepting the fact that there's going to be three white films for every film with a POC, that there's gonna be more films about foxes than films about POC! We need to demand for representation, because representation matters.
It really does. This is a battle that as a community who idolizes the Disney Princesses we need to fight, because if we don't who will?
That's it folks! Hope you enjoyed, or at least I got you thinking!