Mayim Bialik Can’t Let It Go, Blames Frozen For Downfall Of Feminism
Most people feel very strongly about the movie Frozen, one way or the other, especially if those people are part of the ten-and-under age group and are currently agitating for you to buy them an Elsa costume for Halloween. As it turns out Mayim Bialik is one of those people too, but her feelings toward the film are on the chilly side, and for some seriously off-the-wall reasons. Frozen isn’t feminist enough! Also, it bashes men! Slow down, Bialik, all this eye-rolling is making it hard to read your blog.
So why doesn’t Bialik like Frozen? This Disney princess film is apparently not feminist enough, because Anna‘s attempt to hook up with a prince is its “reigning plot line”. Um, what? Did Bialik and I watch the same movie? Because the one I watched seemed to revolve around familial love, sacrifice, and identity – with, yes, some romance-grubbing from Anna, but I think to consider that the main point of the movie, I would have had to turn it off twenty minute in. But Bialik doesn’t just think the Anna/Prince Hans business makes for a bad movie; it is also ruining society as we know it:
I’ve had just enough already with this finding a man business in most every kids’ movie. Disney classics were all about this and look where it’s gotten us! Naked billboards of singers and women still not paid equal pay for equal work and ridiculous standards of beauty and body image and campaigns such as “Why I Don’t Need Feminism” and tons of other things proving we still have a ways to go.
Look, I am sick of romance-centric Disney movies too (part of why I loved Brave so much). But the idea that we can lay our misogyny-drenched society at the feet of Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty is off the wall. Frozen isn’t a perfect feminist utopia of a film, but a movie that revolves around the relationship of two sisters and depends on their love to resolve the plot is a pretty big step in the right direction as far as I’m concerned.
As if to apologize for her uber-feminist first complaint, Bialik’s second issue with Frozen is that having Hans turn out to be a bad guy is … man-bashing. Yes, having a male villain is now apparently an unforgivable Hollywood offense, which means that something like half the movies out there must be difficult for Bialik and her family to watch.
I will grant her last point that the character models are lazy, terrible work by the design team. Anna and Elsa are sisters (and Rapunzel from Tangled must be their cousin, I suppose) but I also have a sister, and she and I do not look like someone bought two Bratz dolls and then re-painted the hair and eyes on one of them. And there are certainly other reasons not to jump on the Frozen bandwagon: a mostly-forgettable soundtrack; the complete inversion of the original Hans Christian Anderson story to remove the core plot of a young woman setting out on a quest to save her male friend’s life; the feeling that you will actually lose your mind if you hear your child start belting out “Let It Go” even one more goddamn time. But complaining that Frozen isn’t doing feminism right while also crying “but what about the poor men!” doesn’t make any sense, and if you hate this movie for not meeting your standards, I have some seriously bad news about a solid 95% of the other kids’ movies that came out last year.