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20 June 2010 @ 12:59 am
People that hate The Little Mermaid???  

While on Fanpop and theguywiththeglasses (specifically the Nostalgia Chick), I've noticed something that puzzles me.  People can actually hate Ariel?   Is there anyone on here like that?  I know there are character flaws (stubbornness, not very diligent), but to actually hate her?  One of the things they keep bringing up is that she "abandoned her family for a man".  I'm pretty sure she wanted to be human before she met Eric.  And even when she was with Ursula she said, "If I become human, I'll never be with my father or sisters again."  I know it really didn't take much (probably should add gullible to that character flaws list), but she did get used by Ursula.  Ursula even says "Now I got her, boys" during "Poor Unfortunate Souls".  And granted, she does do some pretty dumb things during the series and has to have her dad rescue her half of the time during the series.  Then again most of those conflicts are because Triton,  who Ariel gets her stubbornness from, insists something is dangerous (anything human, Stormy the seahorse) and Ariel stubbornly believes he's wrong and tries to prove it to him.  However, I will concede ONE thing- she hardly even knew Eric.  They both got lucky they met the right person.  Of course, TLM isn't the only Disney fairy tale movie guilty of this-  Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Aladdin, possibly Princess and the Frog, Belle is the only princess who actually spent any time to really get to know her prince/guy pretending to be a prince.  What do you think?  Are they really justified in this harsh criticism?  She does some pretty dumb things, but who hasn't when they were 16?  And anyone who says they never did anything really dumb when they were around that age either hasn't reached that age yet or is lying.
Current Mood: confusedconfused
raindrop_symphony: Sleeping beauty dreamerraindrop_symph on June 20th, 2010 05:36 am (UTC)
Hmmm. I'm not sure if I hate Ariel but I guess she has some flaws.. Like not being contented with what she had and always breaking rules and such.. But I guess if you took away that side of Ariel, the whole point of The Little Mermaid believing your dreams and fighting for what you want would all be gone.. Perhaps Ariel went a little far on that attitude of hers? I hope I'm making sense. ^___^
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 06:03 am (UTC)
Oh, I agree, but you can't really help liking what you like. I'm kinda embarrassed to say this, even on the internet, but I'm a guy, and I LOVE The Little Mermaid and most of the princess movies. Trust me, there are a lot of things I could like that are more socially acceptable, and wouldn't have people probably thinking I was gay for liking it (Which is odd since the Disney Princesses are GIRLS!). My point is you can't choose what you like, you just find it. If you could, finding a career would be much easier.
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cutepoison89: arielcutepoison89 on June 20th, 2010 05:51 am (UTC)
I know right, I can't believe people actually hate her o_0 Sure she has flaws, but so do other Disney princesses and you don't see them get all that hate she's getting. At least she knows what she wants and isn't afraid to go for it on her own. Can't say the same for say Snow White or Sleeping Beauty who had to wait for their princes to come and save them. I like that she's independent and stubborn (which 16 year old isn't?) and I agree that she wanted to be a human before she met Eric, I think meeting him just gave her the final push to do something about it.
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Jon: SUCKShighmagemaxwell on June 20th, 2010 06:01 am (UTC)
Welp, this is gonna get me in an assload of trouble.
I can't stand Ariel. I never liked her as a kid, and a few months ago I rewatched TLM to see if my opinion has changed. It hadn't >_> It's not even about how she marries a man she's known for three seconds (though that doesn't really help either.) She just annoys me. There are no particular traits I can point out that made me feel this way, it's just... sort of her entire character. It's like they took a Fiery Redhead and a Manic Pixie Dream Girl and mashed them together to become something that makes me cringe to watch. She's really the only princess I actively dislike/won't watch or listen to.
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 06:06 am (UTC)
Re: Welp, this is gonna get me in an assload of trouble.
Umm, your icon pisses me off, but I can understand not liking something for no reason. Sometimes you can't help it.
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Savvy "The Artist": Meg Comicsavyleartist on June 20th, 2010 06:09 am (UTC)
Yeah, there are people who really can't stand Ariel (me being amoung them) but I think they tend to be a lot more mellow than say people who hate Twilight. I think it's the combination of the really stretching story and her semi-air headedness. But that's just my opinion. I think the Nostalgia Chick really nailed it on the head. But I'm a big advocate of don't liek don't read so *shrugs* Whatever.

As for doing dumb things at 16, yes no one can say they haven't, but not things like selling their soul, or getting married level of dumb stuff. And yeah theres the whoel teen pregnancy thing, but in all actuallity the numbers not as big as it seems.

Edited at 2010-06-20 06:09 am (UTC)
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 06:18 am (UTC)
Well, I still maintain Ariel was manipulated into signing the deal with Ursula. I know it didn't take much, but if my father flew into a rage and destroyed my most treasured possessions, and tried to smash my dream, I'd be pretty receptive to someone who says they can help me achieve my dream.
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wounded_melody on June 20th, 2010 06:41 am (UTC)
I don't hate Ariel, but there was a time when I did dislike her, exactly because of her leaving her family. Granted, Ursula doesn't give her much time to think about it, but I personally don't think I could give up my family for someone who might not even like me back.
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Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 06:49 am (UTC)
Exactly! My sister moved out to go live with her fiancee almost spontaneously, a man she had only seen in real life a few times, I never thought she abandoned us. My Mom moved in with her fiancee after being with him for a few months, I never once thought she abandoned me, even though she was worried I did, and called me every day to say she missed me, even though I came to their house for dinner and we spent time together every day. I'd also like to add that both my Mother and Sister have been happily married for one and two years now, respectively.
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When you walk away, you don't here me say: Agito XIIIharpie_siren on June 20th, 2010 07:08 am (UTC)
People have opinions, I get that. But I'm rather baffled that people act like the fact that she got married and moved in with her husband is a bad thing. I mean, come on people, that happens in real life all the time, people are supposed to move out of their parents' house.

And in the time before things like automobiles, trains and planes, people would often never see their family again if they had moved far enough away.
vilajunkie: balthiervilajunkie on June 20th, 2010 07:52 pm (UTC)
I don't think it's so much that she got married, but that she got married a) at sixteen, and b) without really knowing her husband beforehand. Whatever the setting of the story, I think the filmmakers were going for modern sensibilities in their characters.
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our lady of the upside down: a light in the darkmambo_chocobo on June 20th, 2010 07:19 am (UTC)
I don't like Ariel for a simple reason, and that's because she's just very... anti-me. It's just odd to watch someone do things in a totally different manner than you'd do them. It made it hard for me to connect to her, you know? I never felt like I particularly cared about her or her plight because I thought she was being beyond stupid, even for a sixteen year old. (And I feel this way about all characters I can't connect with, not just her. It's a sort of roadblock I can't seem to get past apparently. So the fault lies with me and, perhaps, not the creators themselves.)

I have more of an issue of the message the movie sends out, but that's not exactly related to the topic at hand so I'll just leave it be.
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 07:32 am (UTC)
Well, hate to say it, but I'm the same with Snow White. Her voice hurts my ears. I haven't watched in probably over a decade, so I can't judge her character, but if her voice were any more high pitched, only dogs could hear her.

Also, I can connect with her because I've done things that were unbelievably stupid, things that got me arrested, things that resulted in part of my skull being caved in (loooong story), I may know a lot of things, but that doesn't make me smart. My friend once summed it up perfectly, "For someone so smart, you really are stupid." I can't argue with it.
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stjetstjet on June 20th, 2010 07:55 am (UTC)
I myself don't hate Ariel, though like others have said, I don't relate to her character all to well (then again, i can't relate to any of the disney princesses all that much, not that that makes them bad characters, that's just the way it is)

I agree, that the main focus of the story was intended to be he relationship between Ariel and Triton (well, if the behind the scenes, making of is any indication)and the fact that they couldn't see eye to eye on alot of things (though most important, the human world). Personally, I think one problem was I think, it would have been better if they reached a co promise in this area i.e trition learns that he shouldn't consider all humans to be barbarians, and ariel, though personal experience, could learn that humans are just as capable of bad as they are of good.. unfortunately due to the plot, I suppose they didn't have enough time to extrapolate on the problem further.

i think that is the main problem, at least in the Disney version, the story has a well developed enough heroine who has curiosity and a desire for knowledge (if part of your world is anything to go by), and whilst I am not a romantic myself and would love more stories where romance wasn't the main motivator *hint hint Hollywood* falling in love need take away from this. the problem is is that due to the plot and the urgency and need for Eric to fall in love (within three days) the movie, I suppose doesn't allow for much of Ariel to explore the new world further than what people see in the montage.

perhaps, in other words, it's a problem of trying to meld both a character and plot driven story?

On a tangential note, since people have mentioned the other princesses, I think this is essentially the same problem with Belle as well. I don't have anything against her personality, I just happen to think that the story (in my opinion) doesn't exactly mesh well with who she was and her own personal dreams (which was, from my understanding, adventure, as well as other people she could have a half-way decent conversation with, does that sound arrogant? Perhaps, but understandable all the same)

Not that I have anything against her as a character, I just wish I could like Mulan as a movie the way that other people do, but I.. just can't like it as much :/
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 08:03 am (UTC)
I wish the Little Mermaid cartoon was about Ariel learning to live on land. There would've been a lot more material for episodes that way.
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wiedemauchsei: ArielFlowerwiedemauchsei on June 20th, 2010 07:59 am (UTC)
I can understand if people don't like Ariel but I'm sure nobody actually hates her. She's an animated character after all.

Like someone else said before, sometimes you just dislike some people/characters without a real reason and there's nothing you can do about it.
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Plush♥Dreamer: disney-huamulanportraitplushdreamer on June 22nd, 2010 05:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you for posting this article. I enjoyed reading these perspectives.
werkelijkheid90: tiredtianawerkelijkheid90 on June 20th, 2010 09:19 am (UTC)
Ariel isn't my favorite Disney princess by a long shot, but do I hate her? Absolutely not. I think its a little extreme to use the word 'hate' for a fictional character anyway, but that's just me. I couldn't even say Ariel gets on my nerves. I can see how she might have this effect on people, though I'd hope it would have to do more with her personality than the choices she made about her own future.

As far as her courtship with Eric goes, I think their 'whirlwind romance' thing is pretty much par for the course with Disney. In defense of these romances, however, we don't really know how much time elapsed in between their meeting one another and the weddings themselves. I'm also going to have go OT for a second and defend Tiana. She and Naveen spent as much time getting to know one another as Belle and the Beast did, so I don't really think its fair to group her in with the others. In fact, Jasmine and Aladdin were also a really good example of 'falling in love over time'.

So to a point- no, I don't hate Ariel, but I think if someone is going to it should be for another reason besides "*gasp* OMG she got married TOO YOUNG!!!". I just get tired of the whole idea that a woman is always, always letting go of her free-will by getting married and should be seen as less empowered. Personally though, I don't see where that kind of irritation with her would come from, but that's just me.
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 09:47 am (UTC)
Sorry, I haven't seen Princess and the Frog. My mistake. It's why I put the "possibly" in there.
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Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 11:50 am (UTC)
That's it, we're doin' this again!
Wow. I never thought this post would get near as many replies as it did. Granted, a large portion of them were from me, but I try to act as a mediator, so this stays a discussion instead of back-and-forth f-bombings. But since this got people talking, I figure, let's do this again! Tomorrow, let's look at Cinderella-Is she just a Doormat? Of course with all of the Princess merchandise, I'm sure you can actually have a Cinderella doormat.
newhigh.newhigh on June 20th, 2010 01:17 pm (UTC)
I love Ariel but, I see how she is very anti-feminist which a lot of people dislike.

The connotations of giving up her voice to get a man is pretty sickening if you think about it. Yes, she does get her voice back (well, the man kinda GIVES it back to her which is pretty sickening as well) but, I think the whole concept was pretty tasteless. In the original book she had to face the consequences of her foolishness but, Disney of course wasn't gonna have their lead character die haha.
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 07:11 pm (UTC)
Again, I don't really don't think the whole giving up her voice and becoming human was part of her original plan. Remember, Ursula found out she was in love with a human, and decided to use that to get Ariel to make a deal with her. If it wasn't for Ursula, I doubt becoming human even entered her mind. Before "Under the Sea" starts, she talks about going up near the palace, and having Flounder get his attention so she can talk to him.
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SifuKatarasifukatara on June 20th, 2010 01:50 pm (UTC)
Hi! I don't believe Ariel is dumb. In fact, I know she isn’t dumb. She made some bad choices in trying to achieve her dream, but she is NOT dumb! I love her a lot and she actually helped me out a lot in my own life. I'm a huge fan of the series and I don't think her father had to rescue her a lot. Stormy, yes, I'll give you that one. And Charmed, but other than that, I don't remember any episodes when he had to rescue her. Trident true, maybe, but Urchin ended up helping her. Getting help from your friends and family when you really need it isn't dumb at all.
forsakenmermaid on June 20th, 2010 04:51 pm (UTC)
A few years ago, I would have typed up an incredibly long and detailed comment in response to a post like this and gone through a long chain of replies. Now, however, I've come to accept that Ariel possesses traits that certain people will admire and others will not. She is a slave to her passion, and she is so driven by it, that she is willing to do anything it takes to get what she wants as long as it does not involve hurting anyone else. Some people feel that this is foolish and all actions must be thought out logically and not rushed into without any inhibition, but others will admire this sort of drive and wish that they had the guts to chase after what they want themselves without needing to take all the consequences into consideration.

I can really understand both perspectives, but as for me, Ariel has always been and will always be my favorite fictional character because I've always tried to live my life the way that she did--relentlessly chasing after my dreams no matter what it takes without looking back. A lot of people have come to dislike me because of this, and I've finally come to learn that I shouldn't take it personally because everyone just has a different concept of how far a person should be willing to go to get something that they want. That is why I no longer take insults Ariel personally as a blow to my own philosophies, even though I did at one time.
suitetwentytwosuitetwentytwo on June 20th, 2010 07:45 pm (UTC)
I like this response a lot.
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suitetwentytwosuitetwentytwo on June 20th, 2010 07:45 pm (UTC)
Eh, Ariel's my favorite so I'm a little biased. I can def. see the points that people make, and I won't even argue them because she is stubborn and headstrong. She does defy her father and run after a guy she barely knows, but as you pointed out, Belle is the only princess who actually spent any time getting to know her prince (except maybe in Princess and the Frog. still haven't seen it so I don't know.) Personally though, I think a little bit of stubbornness can be a good thing. And it's not like her father was some really great dad who listened to his kids and set really good rules all the time. Her stubbornness came from somewhere, ya know. And as far as abandoning your family for a man, don't all women who marry leave their families to live with their spouse? I think the problem is not her leaving, but HOW she leaves. Also, I don't think Ariel is all that gullible when it comes to Ursula. She knows Ursula is bad and not to be trusted, she just ignores that. Which could actually make Ariel look even worse. Eh, whatcha gonna do?
dark_rapunzeldark_rapunzel on June 20th, 2010 08:35 pm (UTC)
The thing with Ariel, she has the best song ever and the best reprises and the best haunting melody "ah aha ahhh!". And she has the best hair...because it is flowy and long (not because of the color at all). So, even when she annoys me I still have to like her.
<3dreamologia on June 20th, 2010 09:04 pm (UTC)
Yeahhh I dont like The Little Mermaid too much either. She's not the one I dislike the most but she's very close. The movie is boring, she's nothing like me, done things I would never do, and so much more. If I met her in real life she would be the type of girl I imagine to be overly-dramatic and I would pass off as someone who needs some real problems in their life. The last thing I care about is the ~romancin~ situation this girl has taken into in this stage of her life to be honest.

But note I LOVE me some Melody (the daughter right?) I can appreciate what she did to some extent. The fact the she wants to know about another world also....yeah the one her family CAME FROM and her mom wouldnt tell her...big hypocrite Miss.I-Wanna-Be-Part-of-Your-World. I'm not gonna accept any idea that she wanted to protect her from something like Ursula, or the actually villianess - Ursula's sister or something, she still could've told her.
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 20th, 2010 11:57 pm (UTC)
You make a good point. If they actually put some effort into TLM2, they could've expounded upon how Ariel was doing exactly what her father did in the original, and had a scene where she talks with him about how she understands why he forbade her from going to the surface, and, y'know, kept developing a better relationship that was such a key point of the first movie, as well as adding in the Mother-Daughter relationship where Ariel and Melody realize that they have so much in common, but no. There's very little of TLM2 that actually adds any depth to any of the characters.
Abigail: CGI Arielmdmbrightside on June 21st, 2010 01:53 am (UTC)

I'd wager Ariel has three times as many fans as she has haters.

I like Ariel, I always have. To me, she's the Princess with the strongest personality and most energy. Some people watch the movie and get annoyed by Ariel (I can see it), but it doesn't bother me. It's a difference of opinion.

One weird, over-arching thing about Princess criticism is that people base their arguments on what they remember watching years ago. Sometimes they haven't seen the movie since and have no desire to. That's why most criticisms come across as gross estimations - that Ariel doesn't care about her family, that Ariel didn't spend any meaningful time with Eric, that she threw away her life to be with him - all false, but still represented on the internet.

I find humorous pictures often diffuse these situations. That and not getting emotionally-involved.
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(no subject) - life_subaquatic on June 21st, 2010 05:47 am (UTC) (Expand)
dragonsrose15 on June 22nd, 2010 04:13 pm (UTC)
I don't hate Ariel. I find her to be quite charming, and a cute princess. She did have her flaws, but she was a 16 year old princess. She was going to be self centered, and I'm sure in time, she would of figured out a way to meet up with her family.

And as far as the change goes, she was in love. She wanted to be able to have a chance with the person she cared about, and yes, she was taken advantage of, but she was still at a very impressionable age. Also, it did not help that Tritan would not listen to her.
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Devinlife_subaquatic on June 25th, 2010 05:15 am (UTC)
And you shouldn't if your mother's only reason is "she's stupid". Next time she says that, just ask her, "So you never did anything stupid at that age?", and enjoy the moment of awkward silence as she searches for a retort.
candyintheraincandyintherain on June 25th, 2010 03:57 am (UTC)
I like Ariel a lot, but it's mostly out of nostalgia. But where does nostalgia chick ever say that she hates Areil?
Devinlife_subaquatic on June 25th, 2010 05:09 am (UTC)
It's in the top Disney Villains list, I believe. And at the beginning of her review of Thumbelina, her disdain for TLM is clear. She even asserts that Who Framed Roger Rabbit was the movie that revived Disney's animation, if I recall correctly, instead of TLM. It would irk me less if she didn't like her character because of personality differences, like most of the people on here who don't like her, but she gives that trite old "Abandoned her family for a man" reason. In fact, that's what made me start this whole discussion post, trying to ask people why they don't like her, and using facts from the movie, TV series, etc. to bunk that "Abandoned her family for a man" stuff.
(no subject) - candyintherain on June 26th, 2010 10:29 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Dance with me at the Midnight Masquerade: {the little mermaid} Ariel/Ericvampiremasque on June 28th, 2010 08:10 pm (UTC)
Ariel is, and will always be, my favorite.
She's a passionate person...maybe there are haters (the few who were brave enough to post here or everywhere) that just can't handle a princess who wanted something so bad that didn't involve her family. She wanted independence. Plain and simple. I'm not close to my family either, so her leaving them in no way bothered me.
She's fiery, she's adventurous, she's flawed.
I LOVE that she isn't a perfect princess like Snow White or Aurora who doesn't make mistakes.
And please about the whole marrying a man who she knew for 3 days? It's DISNEY! It's called love at first sight...a main Disney theme. Look at every other Disney movie...involves a girl marrying a man she knew less than a week.
Haters will always hate what they envy or something successful.