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Hypable

Brenda Chapman, the co-director of Disney Pixar’s Brave, is lashing out at the studio for re-designing Princess Merida.

A few weeks ago we told you about Disney’s decision to hold a coronation ceremony to make her the 11th Disney Princess. Along with the coronation (held last week in Disney World), Princess Merida underwent a redesign so she matched the other princesses in their merchandise line. The new Merida is slimmer and more sparkly, which deviates from the character we saw in the film.

The Independent Journal reached out to Chapman on Saturday and received a fiery response from the co-director, who also won an Oscar for the 2012 Pixar film.

“There is an irresponsibility to this decision that is appalling for women and young girls,” she said. “Disney marketing and the powers that be that allow them to do such things should be ashamed of themselves.”

“I think it’s atrocious what they have done to Merida,” she added. “When little girls say they like it because it’s more sparkly, that’s all fine and good but, subconsciously, they are soaking in the sexy ‘come hither’ look and the skinny aspect of the new version. It’s horrible! Merida was created to break that mold — to give young girls a better, stronger role model, a more attainable role model, something of substance, not just a pretty face that waits around for romance.”

Chapman believes that Disney could’ve had just as much success with a Brave merchandise line had they not changed her appearance. “They have been handed an opportunity on a silver platter to give their consumers something of more substance and quality — THAT WILL STILL SELL — and they have a total disregard for it in the name of their narrow minded view of what will make money,” Chapman wrote. “I forget that Disney’s goal is to make money without concern for integrity. Silly me.”

Princess Merida was Pixar’s first female lead character. It’s a shame that honor has now been tarnished in a makeover.

You can compare the two Merida’s below. The new look, in line with the existing Disney Princesses, is on the left. The original Merida design seen in Brave is on the right.

Princess Merida Brave

Here is the full Disney Princess line up:

Disney Princesses 2012

  • Daughter of Eve

    I don’t like the new Merida look at all. Chapman’s right, there’s a responsibility towards women and young girls which Disney Marketing should take into consideration.

    • http://twitter.com/FailGloriously Hannah Howden

      I don’t like it either. I get changing the dress design, even if that means it’s no longer historically accurate, if Disney is insistent on keeping with ‘fairytale’ theme (what does fairytale mean nowadays anyway?), but to change the entire character’s appearance to make her a near mirror-image of the other princesses? I would even say that’s more unfair on the original creators of ‘Brave’ themselves than just unfair on the young girls that look to her as a role model. It’s like Disney is saying “oh, our artists can do better than yours”.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dlmarvin05 Dominique Marvin

    I honestly think all the princess makeovers are awful. They are all over the top and look nothing like the beautiful originals. It’s atrocious

    • Penthepoet

      Indeed.

  • KleppMelk

    The new design is just weird looking, and not very reminiscent of Merida at all. She’s not the kind of girl who’d have an interest in pretty and sparkly thinks. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, it’s just not her character.

    • Charlie

      I’m not sure that kind of sparkly dress would even fit in the setting of the movie, to be honest.

      • Princess101

        I think it is supposed to be the dress that her mom makes her wear the first time she meets the suitors

        • Charlie

          I’m pretty sure the suitor dress went up to her neck, and didn’t have the baggy parts on her elbows because it was supposed to be too tight to shoot a bow in. I think they have used the colour of the suitor’s dress though.

          • Princess101

            I think it is the same dress, but updated in a similar fashion to Merida

        • Ellie

          It is a combination of the suitor dress and the one she wears throughout the film. The bottom designs are Suitor, the belt is Suitor-like, but the neckline is like the one she wears throughout most of the movie, except moved off her shoulders.
          The Suitor dress actually doesn’t go all the way up to her neck, it has a square neckline, and then she wears a separate dress underneath.
          Though I do think the designs on the bottom are beautiful, the fact that they used a Suitor-like dress really bugs be, as she absolutely hated that dress and a big part of her story was rebelling against it and all that it represented.

          • Charlie

            I agree. I like the design itself (well, I’m not so sure about the sparklyness) but its too similar to the clothes she specifically hates in the movie. It’s like when they sell dolls of Mulan wearing the fancy clothes and makeup she feels uncomfortable in at the start of the movie. I mean, I appreciate that they didn’t outright stick her in the suitor dress, but I think making this one so similar was kind of a mistake. It gives the impression they don’t care about what happened in the movie.

            I think the problem is that Merida’s other clothes in the movie- the blue dress she wears for most of it, and the dark purple one she wears at the end- are kind of dark and drab compared to the other princesses’. They’re quite pretty in their own right, but not what the merchandisers are probably looking for, so they’ve ended up pushing a design that seems at odds with the movie. Most of the princesses are given special dresses at some point in their movie (Cinderella, Belle, Aurora, Tiana, Ariel) which work as fashion dolls, but Merida doesn’t really care about her clothes beyond whether they’re comfortable. Eleanor wears more decorative outfits, really.

          • icwongmusic

            Forget the outfits. What about the alteration of the face, body shape and posture? They don’t portray who Merida is at all!

          • Charlie

            I mentioned those in other comments.

          • http://twitter.com/CuriousCarson Carson

            I agree she should be in the dark green dress that she wheres for most of the movie. It’s who she is and where she feels most at home. I had a similar issue with Mulan being in the pink purple dress she wheres to the matchmaker. I always thought she should where the green dress she wheres in the end in the parks and on merchandise because that is post-character development. She feels at home in that dress. It now looks like they’re using that color scheme but again with the sparkles and
            “sexy”ness. It just makes me mad!

            Disney’s merchandising in general is upsetting. I understand that they want to make money. But they sacrifice the integrity of the movie, of the character, and of the company. These sexist products and depictions, I feel, give the company a bad reputation more than the movies.

            Have they learned nothing! Brave was so successful because it had a complex, non submissive female character. Surely they now realize they can put out good, not sexist products, without compromising sales and income. And yet they continue to do this! Ugh!

  • http://www.facebook.com/amytraf Amy Trafankowska

    Oh I’m disappointed by this. As someone who has spent their childhood growing up with both Disney and Pixar, I was really pleased to see a character like Princess Merida because she seemed more real than the other Disney Princesses. She wasn’t a thin blonde hair, blue eyed girl who was looking for her prince. I appreciated the message of Princess Merida being a strong female who didn’t wait around for romance and who fought for her independence. I felt that was a very important message to show young girls who are constantly seeing thin sticks of women in the media and especially since women are still fighting for equality. I absolutely prefer the original Merida, shame on Disney for changing it. I can tell you now, my 8 year old cousin who loves Disney Princesses, loves Merida just as must as she loves all the others. Never saying she didn’t look like a real princess. Just when it seems like we’re getting somewhere…

  • http://twitter.com/thejasonology Jason L.

    PREACH.

  • TheOneAndOnlyCliche

    Whoever is responsible for the change has some real nerve because it was a conscious decision to say ‘Make the eyes sharper, slap on some make-up, slim the waist, lower the neckline’. An artist doesn’t do these things accidentally – unless this particular artist sucks, which I doubt is the case.
    I do wonder about minds in Hollywood. No one is safe from that mind-set of ‘This is how a woman should be’. Even Jennifer Lawrence, someone I do respect, has been quoted as saying that she wants to punch people in the face for saying the like to work out after being asked to lose weight for THG – and this only bugs me because – woman or man – that’s a lifestyle decision that people should not be judged for. I’m sure it was said jokingly, she’s a funny person and it’s half of why so few can dislike her but whether it’s ‘Women should have curves’ or ‘Women should have small waists and big boobs’, everyone’s got some idea of how women should be, look, what they should do what their body, what they should aspire to, and now we must deal with people deliberately changing a young female hero into someone slimmer and – the biggest offence – more sultry…a character who gives little or no thought to how she looks, designed to look like someone who sat down in front of a mirror to apply some mascara and tame her curls – innacurate and offensive.
    I call bullshit, Hollywood.

    • TheOneAndOnlyCliche

      I want to follow this up by saying that the problem isn’t the fact that new version is ‘prettier’ and therfore less realistic – that in itself is problematic and offensive, to say a strong beautiful woman is unrealistic put up against a slightly bigger-boned tom-boy. The issue is that the changes they’ve made to her image do, in this case, go against the character. They could have had her with shorter hair – not offensive. They could have put her in a blue dress instead of green – not offensive. Slight differences, maybe they wouldn’t make sense, but unoffensive. Instead, they put her in a dress she rebelled against and, as I said, made her up where she wouldn’t have gone near make up, changes that go against what the character represented to young girls who thirsted for adventure as opposed to pretty dresses. There are girls who like pretty things over adventure, but they HAVE their princess, they’re represented.

      We shouldn’t be arguing about how unrealistic a brave, pretty princess is, the problem is what they’ve taken away from young girls by beautifying Merida this way. She’s a cute, feisty, brave, somewhat-stocky young woman. She’s not a beauty queen. It’s not an unrealistic notion, it’s an unrealistic depiction, and there’s a very fine difference between the two.

  • http://hypable.com John Thrasher

    Totally agree with Chapman. Disney has a notorious history for not being thoughtful about female stereotypes and it looks like this is continuing that disastrous conversation.

    • Peg

      I’m glad she is speaking out about her frustrations. I think that shows Chapman’s integrity where Disney has disregarded it. I recently watched a great documentary on this topic. “Miss Representation.” It can be found on YouTube for anyone interested.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Maria-Wang/542480760 Maria Wang

    Disney butches all the princesses! Mulan and Merida are the worst! What is wrong with these people????

  • Chris

    It’s also worth noting that Merida is sixteen years old, and the alterations they’ve made to the waist and chest and neckline just make me really uncomfortable. It reminds me of when some idiot decided to airbrush Emma Watson and enhance her breasts on the Order of the Phoenix posters.

    And why get rid of her bow and arrows? At least try and make her vaguely recognisable.

    • http://www.facebook.com/kaitlinbledsoe Kaitlin Bledsoe

      They actually kept her bow and arrows; look at the Disney website for such.

      That said- the rest of the edits are appalling.

  • mark

    Is it just me or does the new Merida look a little Asian?

    • Winkyxx

      no she does! Its like a sprinkle of Mulan!

  • Charlie

    Although I think that Merida has transitioned into 2D better than Rapunzel did, I agree that the changes are a little insulting. Putting the movie version next to the merchandise version really shows just how much they’ve changed. It’s kind of uncomfortable really. They’ve exposed more of her shoulders and seem to have slimmed her waist down to make her chest more prominent. Which is kind of creepy considering she’s supposed to be in her mid-teens.

    I can’t help but feel that some little kids are going to be disappointed by the merch not looking like the movie character.

    • Charlie

      Also, I feel bad for Ms Chapman. First she gets taken off of her own movie, then the merchandisers start misrepresenting her own character.

      • swanpride

        I feel the other way around…I originally felt bad for her and wondered if the movie had been any good if she had been allowed to finish it, but reading this interview, I’m beginning to feel angry with her. If you don’t like Disney Princesses, don’t try to create one!

  • http://twitter.com/madge_witt Madge Witt

    I feel like this is all getting way out of hand.

  • PotionWillow207

    I don’t care for the makeovers of the Disney princesses, in general. But I don’t see what all the fuss is about in Merida’s case. True, she’s in a sparkly dress now, but she doesn’t look any skinnier to me and her dress is only slightly lower cut.

    But what difference does it make what she wears? Everyone wants little girls to be aware that you don’t have to dress sexy or be skinny to be self-assured or successful. Then why not use this to teach that lesson? It doesn’t matter whether you wear ratty T-shirts and have frizzy hair or if you wear a sparkly dress. Merida is still the same brave, self-confident girl that she was in the movie. What she puts on or how she looks in general doesn’t change that. Changing the outside doesn’t change the inside. And I am a girl who has curly red hair and dresses in T-shirts and jeans 95% of the time, so no one can accuse me of being biased. LOL.

    • http://twitter.com/AntaraC Antara Chowdhury

      Her entire face is different and her waist has definitely been slimmed down. If you don’t see that she’s skinnier, no one can make you see it, but they definitely have altered her waistline. What she’s wearing isn’t the issue. If they’d put a sparkly dress on her, but kept her face and body shape the same, then people wouldn’t be outraged over it.

    • Charlie

      I think the problem is that most of the Disney princesses already wear sparkly dresses. Merida was a chance to depict something different, but they’ve homogenised her to fit with the others.
      And yeah, they’ve made subtle changes to her figure. In her original design she’s pretty clearly not an adult. These new images make her look older, which is a bit boring considering most of the other princesses (except maybe Snow White and Rapunzel depending on the artist) look like adults.

      • swanpride

        That’s nonsense…in fact, most of the Disney Princesses DON’T wear a sparkly dress in their movie (don’t believe me? Well, show me the sparkly dress of Rapunzel, or Pocahontas, or Snow White, or Mulan (her Matchmaker dress she hates aside, and that doesn’t really sparkle), or Ariel (well, she wears one, but that’s not the one she wears in the line-up), and those who do, nevertheless wear simple work outfit most of the time. Merida is hardly the first princess who isn’t really a “sparkly girl” (see Mulan and Pocahontas), so if you want to make a fuss, you better make a fuss about the whole damned franchise, and not just Merida. What irks me about this interview is that Chapman acts as if all the other Princesses in the franchise are actually sparkly dress bimbos – and they aren’t. They are as much strong female characters as Merida is. She is nothing special.

    • Emily

      The problem isn’t just the fact that they made her skinnier- they also made her face longer and her eyes more defined, and she appears to be wearing makeup as well. While wearing makeup is not inherently bad, Merida would never have consented to wear any; it’s completely incongruent with her character. The problem in this case has less to do with the physical changes themselves (although that’s part of it- see below) and more to do with the contrast of Merida’s redesign with her personality.
      Now, about her dress. Like you said in your post, we want little girls to know that they don’t have to dress/act “sexy” to be successful. So why did they have to change Merida’s dress to make it more revealing? Her original dress was simple, practical, and much more typical of Merida than her new dress. By taking the old dress away and replacing it with a new, more sparkly, “sexier” dress, Disney is teaching girls that that’s what they should wear.
      Which brings me to my final point. Merida started out as a rough-and-tumble tomboy who really didn’t care what she wore or how she looked. She wasn’t fat and she wasn’t thin, she just WAS. She provided a relatively realistic standard of beauty for young girls, compared to most of what they see today in movies and magazines. The redesign took that away by unnecessarily making her thinner, accentuating her bust, and making her fit the standard image of beauty. By doing this, they’re providing girls with idealized, unrealistic standards of beauty and contributing to the dangerous sexualization of women and girls in the media. I mean, Merida’s only 16 in the movie, but the redesign makes her look 25. All of this has made people very frustrated as they feel they’ve been robbed of a more realistic-looking princess with a much better, healthier outlook on life and fashion.

      • PotionWillow207

        Idealized and unrealistic standards of beauty? Maybe that’s because Merida is idealized and unrealistic. She’s a cartoon character. And honestly, if a 6 year old is looking at her skinny waste (and people say it as if she wasn’t already skinny in the movie) and her rosy cheeks then they already have body issues that needed to be discussed with the parents LONG before this. It’s only an issue if the adults make it an issue. And as far as I can tell, it IS only adults making an issue.

  • giddygidgid

    That looks nothing like her.

  • ThelostWeasley13

    It is so sad that Disney feels the need to change any of the princesses. Whatever happened to embracing differences and that every little girl is a princess. Or does Disney think that only the skinny girls with perfect skin can be princesses?

  • http://www.facebook.com/clare.hagan Clare C. Hagan

    https://www.change.org/petitions/disney-say-no-to-the-merida-makeover-keep-our-hero-brave#share
    104, 000 have already signed. They need 150,000 signatures
    Hypable, will you please share the petition against the redesign?

  • Chicken

    Even though I haven’t been too pleased with the Disney Princess makeovers, I think the ceremony they did at Disneyworld with the face characters was a lot more true to the characters and message of the movie. They had Merida’s mother crown her in her normal outfit.

    • http://twitter.com/Tygridia Tygridia

      And the actress that played Merida was perfect!

  • Jess

    agree. my son, who adores merida and brave, didn’t even recognize her when he walked past the computer. he said, “who’s that lady?” then, after i said, that’s merida, “no that’s not! merida’s a girl, not a grown-up lady! her face and hair are different. they look weird. where’s her bow? that’s not merida. merida’s brave and cool. that’s a different lady. ” my 5 year old knows that’s not merida. that this is wrong. why doesn’t disney?

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Carol-Taylor/100000119375349 Carol Taylor

      Smart boy!!

    • http://twitter.com/ashleyaustrew Ashley Austrew

      More like your 5-year-old knows changing a girl’s hair and make-up apparently also alters whether or not she’s “brave and cool” anymore. Can’t wait until he grows up and applies that to the way he views actual women.

  • Peter Mc Connell

    Everyone else seem to hate this, but doesn’t bother me. Just looks like an older version of the character to me.

  • http://twitter.com/notenoughpuff Sarah

    I love Merida’s dress, but I think that the fact they narrowed her hips and showed more of her skin was ridiculous.
    I think the worst “redesign” of them all was Rapunzel’s. Practically all they did was add more sparkle.

    • Charlie

      Yeah, the Rapunzel one was kind of stupid. Her dress is pretty simple compared to the others, and adding sparkles just made it look weird.

  • ilikecheesegirl

    I feel like they could have made her match the other princesses without taking it so far. The dress doesn’t have to be more low cut, her waist doesn’t have to be smaller, her boobs don’t have to be bigger. They could have drawn her in a similar style while still keeping her HER

  • Jill

    I think maybe they should use and sell both, see which does better. I personally prefer the original design like most people will but to each their own.

  • I<3Books

    This really is a shame. The fact that Disney felt the need to make Merida look more feminine is outrageous. She was just fine the way she was. The whole point of Merida was to show a new kind of princess. The kind of princess that is independent, even a little tomboyish at times. Not another pretty girl waiting for her prince. I mean, it’s in the title of the movie. Merida was brave, unlike many (not all, but many) of the other princesses. The redesign doesn’t look brave—it looks like all of the other princesses. I have many cousins between the ages of 2 and 5, and I feel like, especially at the age they’re in, they see all this media about what “pretty” is. Merida was Disney’s opportunity to teach a lesson to these young girls. To say, you don’t have to be “beautiful” to be a princess, to be a good person. These changes were completely unnecessary and just plain stupid in my opinion. I grew up with a skewed vision of what a princess is, thanks to Disney. It’s too late for me, but I hope it’s not too late for my cousins.

    • http://twitter.com/Tygridia Tygridia

      I agree with you on everything but one thing. I think Merida shows a different non-canonical beauty. She IS beautiful in a different way; she is not Belle or Cinderella, but she is really pretty. Young girls really need a role-model that shows that you can be beautiful without looking like a skinny model, and old Merida was perfect for that!

  • Alex

    I personally think people are blowing this out of proportions. People and children who saw the movie know how she is. The fact that she looks more stylized doesn’t mean that she has lost her personality. What, a girl can’t be pretty and brave at the same time? This is just how she is marketed in order to fit in with the rest of the princesses, besides, in some merchandise she doesn’t has sparkles on her dress and still has her bow and arch. Also, her movie is computer-animated, while most of the other princesses come from hand-drawn movies, so they had to change her a little. I don’t think she’s that slimmer and I personally don’t get any sexy vibes from her. What’s the big deal about her showing her shoulders? Anyway, I think she looks pretty and I think children and fans know who she is, and that’s not going to change because of this new makeover. If parents take time to educate their children they needn’t worry about this so called “bad influences”. I think making such a big deal about it it’s ridiculous.

    • Bradlee Scott

      Preach! Thank you so much for saying this.
      I am so sick of hearing people squeal over the redesigns by saying they’re all sexy and come hither. You wanna know why they seem that way to you- you’re not a child. People are placing their own ideals onto the film icons by saying that they’re starting to look too grown up.
      Is the redesign of Merida perfect? Not at all. I do think that they pulled her waist in too much. But they also adapted her from 3D to 2D and to fit in with the Disney Princess line.
      At least she didn’t get turned into a completely different person like Rapunzel did. Merida still has her Bow and Arrow in most of her poses, she still has that wild hair, and she is still in her green gown that has been accentuated to look more like she can stand with the rest of the girls and blend well. That’s it.
      Rapunzel looks NOTHING like her 3d character. The only thing similar is the eyes.
      So before people start ranting about what’s so wrong with these people and saying that their three year olds and four year olds are upset about it- just stop. These princesses are more than their movies now- they’re a brand. They were updated because they looked a little worn down after so many years. And if you hold them side by side- most of their poses are exactly the same. Their outfits and hair are just different.

      • http://twitter.com/inkasrain Michal

        The three-and-four-year-olds are not upset about it. (Well, maybe some are; I wouldn’t know.) But as an adult, I am upset on their behalf that they will continue to grow up in a world where the images of physical beauty marketed at them are unrealistic and create toxic expectations. This is not a projection. It is a choice made by Disney to force their characters into a specific physical mold – even when those choices subvert the character’s identity. This is a bad thing, even if the children playing with these lifeless characters aren’t yet aware of it.

        • Bradlee Scott

          But these characters are cartoons. They’re already completely unrealistic. While I understand that children are going to grow up in a shit world where nothing but stereotypical ‘beauty’ is going to be thrown at them- it’s your job as a parent to make sure that they are loved and beautiful in their own way. Not the company that makes the products. Is it morally right? Not at all- but it’s how it is.
          What kills me is that EVERY FREAKING DAY you see superhero toys with ripped bodies and oversexualized nature sold and marketed towards little boys and nobody says a single word about. Nobody. But God forbid a female character be modified at all without a million moms bashing down somebody’s door screaming for blood.

          • http://twitter.com/inkasrain Michal

            First of all, I agree that “toys for boys” should be designed more realistically. But 1) That is not the issue at hand, and 2) The operative difference is that Merida and countless female characters before her are designed with a mind toward emphasizing their sexuality, while male characters are designed to emphasize their physical strength. Disney didn’t give Merida an archer’s biceps; they gave her a bitty waist, because it’s sexy.

            Next: It is eminently possible for cartoons to be designed with a respect toward real bodies, even while remaining caricatures. Any company or corporate entity that caters to children does in fact – in my mind – have an ethical responsibility to make sure that the products they create are healthy for their consumers. This means making sure that toys don’t have lead paint, that television shows for toddlers don’t involve swear words, and yes – that designs send healthy messages.

            I fully endorse parental responsibility, and agree that it is the most vital element in raising healthy children. However, children will absorb the messages of marketers unless you raise them in a media-free environment, and those messages are incredibly powerful when repeated over and over and over again. It’s our responsibility as a society to try and make sure that those messages are at least closer to healthy than Disney’s current assembly line.

        • kaystiel

          These character redesigns are awful, every single one, not just Merida, but do to public upset, they’ve changed Merida back on the website but not the other, all the girls are now lighter toned, and they whitewashed Mulan – when in her film she rebelled against that and symbolically washed the paint off! I didn’t think it was possible to ROB PERSONALITY from DISNEY CHARACTERS but Dissme managed it. When my kids looked at these illustrations they couldn’t even recognize Belle. But maybe this is why my kids are more attracted to Studio Ghibli films.

  • http://twitter.com/atalyce Alyce

    The bust cut is lower and her waist is thinner. Why is this a necessary decision to make when your target audience is little girls??

  • Zack

    I find this disgusting. Merida is a rebellious, non-glamorous girl. I’ve seen Brave and Merida hated the very dress she is wearing in the new picture.

    Is this what all “princesses” look like? Tall, skinny, curvy features, wearing an elegant dress that shows off skin? Again, Merida hated all of that, and rightly so. To have a very strong heroine who doesn’t care about glamour and then ditch that for a skinnier, prettier version doesn’t exactly send a very nice message to young girls who look up to these characters.

    Same goes for boys. All these muscular, tall, strapping heroes sends an unrealistic vision to young boys.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sara-Jung-Classen/1241201109 Sara Jung-Claßen

      To be fair, the cut of this dress is the same (except for the lowered neckline) as the one on the right. The dress her mother made her wear had a very different cut, although the colour is the same.

      And all the princess make-overs lean very heavily on the showing-off-skin bit. My favourite example up to this point is Belle. Just horrible.

  • Amy

    That waistline is worse then Barbie… Come on, Disney. Being accurate to the time and place of the film should be thought about, too… The clothing would not have been that sparkly. I think this is really disrespectful to the beautiful original and insulting to young girls. Honestly, as a little girl I would have loved Merida. I was always more drawn to the strong female leads and not really the sparkles. In Sleeping Beauty I always wished she wore the plain dress that she had in the woods for the whole movie. I remember being dissapointed when the dolls in the Disney store were all wearing sparkly pink.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cassidy.howell.98 Cassidy Howell

    needs less sparkle and more dirt

  • H

    This irks me but doesn’t surprise me. Haven’t ALL of the princesses gotten pretty much the same treatment over the years?

    • Alyssamz

      Exactly !
      Everyone needs to calm down.

      • Charlie

        It’s kind of disappointing that they’re doing it less than a year after the movie’s release date though. Most of the other princesses got at least a few years worth of keeping their original design. Although to be honest, I don’t think they should have made Merida part of this merchandising line to begin with.

  • Debra Leonard

    This is terrible! The new version looks like some gross bobble head. The first one looked like a real girl. This is another vapid Kardashian wanna-be.

    • Alyssamz

      The Kardashians are not at all especially skinny? Very beautiful figures.
      As for personalities, A PICTURE of a CARTOON character doesn’t in any way show it’s personality.

      People getting all worked up over this is absolutely ridiculous.

  • http://twitter.com/Aerilon9 Karina Garcia

    Not the first time Disney completely forgets what their own princesses want. Mulan HATED wearing that dress and she would rather ride horses and save her people. Disney dressed her up in an outfit that goes against what she believed in.

  • Plat

    Yea they made her face skinny and more sexy, and they even took away her bow! How lame..

  • Aria Stark

    I think the new Merida looks a little younger than the first design, and quite frankly, I like the old and the new Merida. For the Disney/Pixar movie, I believe that this new look for Merida compliments her wild and childlike personality far better than the older one would have. The older Merida design looks a little more prim and propper than her movie character counterpart is. I think Disney made the right move.

  • JamieK

    I just polled my two young daughters ages 5 @ 3, and they both agree the original Merida is the “right@ one. They prefer the original, so why can’t Disney leave her alone?

    • PotionWillow207

      Wow, your 3 year old must be a genius and have the eyes of a hawk since most don’t have the mental acuity or focus necessary to distinguish between a couple of millimeter’s difference in a collar or a waistline. So I would guess they were coached into that answer.

      • Zack

        Or you are just assuming. What would the OP gain in lying?
        And, please don’t underestimate children. I think they can recognize their favorite movie characters and say which one look like the “right” one.

        Again, why lie? I mean, really?

        • PotionWillow207

          I didn’t say she was lying. She probably did “poll” her kids, and they probably did say that they like the original Merida better. But I would guess that the “poll” involved some leading question that would hint to them that the “right” answer was to say that the original Merida was better.

          And I’m not underestimating children. Anyone who has had any kind of developmental biology or psychology class will know that a child’s brain is not developed enough to differentiate between such minute details. That’s why when we teach children their colors, we don’t teach them hunter green, emerald green and olive green. We teach them green. We don’t teach them teal, turquoise and robin’s egg. We teach them blue. That’s why illustrations in books for children under the age of 5 are larger, less detailed and involve more primary colors. It has nothing to do with underestimating them. It has to do with understanding the development of their brains.

  • http://www.facebook.com/pablo.mosqueda.7 Pablo Mosqueda

    All this was totally unnecessary, cause they should’nt even have Merida be a “Disney Princess” as she was not created solely by Disney but Pixar. Brave/Merida does well on her own but its cause Disney wants to put her side by side with the other princesses in their merchandise,events,etc was the reason that they even did this. The redesign doesnt bother me cause it was bound to happen once Disney got their hands on her but I can see why people are mad about this

    • PotionWillow207

      Except that Pixar is owned by Disney, so anything that comes out with Pixar’s name is essentially Disney.

  • http://twitter.com/Merina2 Merina

    This is probably going to be an unpopular opinion…but I don’t mind her redesign? Sure, she’s a little more sparkly and a little bit slimmer…but I don’t see this as being the end of the world, when /all/ the other Disney princesses are so insanely glammed-up and different-looking from their movie counterparts. Nobody takes these redesigns seriously, and nobody ever has – I’m relived she’s even /on/ the list, quite honestly!

  • Leslie

    I honestly can’t see what the big deal is with this make-over. Yes, the dress is sparkly, big deal. The waist line really isn’t even that big of a difference, of course Pixar has always had fuller waisted characters solely because of the way the movie is made and animated. Drawn out, of course the waist looks smaller. And the whole shoulder thing, really? Really? Is 2 inches REALLY that big of a difference?

    I just can’t stand how people like to bag on Disney Princesses. And the most common argument I’ve seen all over this page is “they always emphasize sexuality with princesses”. Do you really think that the people that sit down and do these sketches really sit there and think “how sexy can I make this girl?”. Seriously…do you honestly believe that the animator sits down at the table and this is the sole purpose of their day? That that is how they get their kicks? That the whole entire purpose of spending outrageous amounts of money to produce this film to make your daughter feel inadequate or make her think “this is what you should look like?” Absolutely not.

    As a person who watched princesses movies EVERY DAY growing up, I never once got this feeling of “I need to be pretty and get and married and meh!”. Princesses never meant looking up to this supposed “image of beauty”. Princesses meant happiness. They meant kindness, strength, loyalty and courage. Yes ALL OF THEM have at least some good qualities. Snow White taught me kindness and to try to be cheery even when shit sucks, Cinderella told me it was okay to dream of something better. I always thought Ariel and Belle were brave for going out of their homes searching for someone they loved and the sass that comes out of Jasmine’s mouth is fantastic! Tiana works hard and at the end gets the just rewards and Rapunzel is brave enough to chase after what she’s dreamed of all her life.Pocahontas stands up for someone who couldn’t stand up for himself. Merida is my favorite princess because she’s adventurous, spirited, and full of life and fun and yearning for all that her world has to offer. But you never, EVER hear about any of these good qualities that princesses show us nowadays. Nope, everyone is so focused on the way they look that nobody seems to care anymore the type of characters they are. And, as much as some of you may hate to admit this, that’s not a Disney problem, that’s YOU problem. By overthinking this beauty situation, so many people loose the real meaning behind these films and girls. To entertain, to enchant, to give hope and magic and wonder to your daughter (or son, whatever floats your boat), not these ideas of beauty that everyone so centered on.

    And further more, another argument being made on princesses is that “they teach girls that they need to get married to be happy”. I’m sorry, have any of you that have this idea actually sat and watched any of these films? Because if you had, you realize your argument is invalid. Let us start from the beginning. Snow White DID NOT leave home to find the prince, she left home because the queen told the gardner to kill her and he told her, quite plainly, you need to get out of here if you want to live. So she did and ended up in the cottage. Cinderella DID NOT go to the ball to find the prince. She went because she wanted to go to the fucking ball….period. Now if you have anything against your daughter going after what she wants, by all means speak up! Princess Aurora DID NOT go to the palace looking for a prince, she went back because she was INDEED a princess and it was time for her to return home. Belle DID NOT go to the Beast’s castle looking to marry him. I mean come on, really? Really now? Those that even try to pull this shit with “Beauty and the Beast”, you are just wrong. Jasmine DID NOT even want to get married at first, how was her goal just to get married? This was established in the first fifteen minutes of the movie! Pocahontas was just curious about the new men rowing up to shore. You really think she looked down at the strange new white men and said “YES, I WANT THAT!” Tiana certainly didn’t go looking for Naveen, in fact she spends a greater portion of this movie doing most of the work and being pissed at him. Rapunzel certainly didn’t want Flynn Rider at the beginning, she kind of used him as a tool to see the world (not the most admirable thing, but for those that will say she only wanted to get married…no). And we all know Merida has no man, which is fine and dandy too. Now the one princess you can argue about with is Ariel, she does unfortunately leave the sea in search of Eric, I will give you that. But that’s 1 PRINCESS out of 11. 1 out of 11. Just 1.

    And do they all end up married in the end, yes (minus Merida and Pocahontas until a sequel later). But this was hardly their only goal, this was hardly the entire point of the film , as pointed out above. That these men happened to show up during the process of life in these movies is not actually too dissimilar from what usually ends up happening in real life. Do you mothers remember when you met your husbands? Was that your only goal in life or were you doing other things and your husband happened to stumble along in the process of you doing life? The point of them getting married is not to tell your daughter that’s all she should aspire for it’s to show her that true love DOES exist, it can come along, and when it does, it CAN be a lovely thing. And why are we so against teaching our daughters about love? Why are we so against letting them see a prince and a princess get married? I’m not seeing the negative of this. And for those of you that question “Why they never have them do anything else besides get married?” again, watch the movie. Shit is definitely happening, you just don’t want to see it.

    And as far as the beauty is concerned….this is an ANIMATED FEATURE FILM. IT IS NOT REAL, IT HAS NEVER BEEN REAL, THIS IS NOT A STANDARD OF BEAUTY IT IS A CHILDREN’S CARTOON MADE FOR ENJOYMENT. Yes, the princesses are skinny, yes they have pretty hair, yes they have nice faces, they are all of the above and nobody contests that. But, again, why is it wrong to want to portray a pretty princess? Cartoons are not a reflection of reality, that’s why they’re cartoons. That’s why people drop pianos and anvils and God knows what else on peoples heads and walk off the side of buildings and sustain themselves in mid air. Cartoons have never been a standard for reality, until now when a bunch parents want to MAKE IT THAT WAY. Cartoons are make believe and at one point people respected that and knew that and this was not a problem as it is today, where every single fucking thing has to , for some reason, be relevant to the real world. Why is that? Why does everything have to be so real? Why does everything have to have REAL implications? Why can your kid not just sit there and enjoy the film and the pretty princess? Because, really, that’s all it is to your five year old. The pretty princess movie. That “subconscious messaging” thing….that is bullshit. Bullshit. Your kid is not getting this impression alone, YOU are the one putting it there. YOU are the one making this a big deal, YOU are the one who is making this princess that was never intended to be seen as more then a simple princess into the “beauty queen”.

    Princesses have always had dreams and aspirations and have gone on adventures ever since this started with Snow White. Now do they probably need to make a film where the princess goes on a sort of quest for something in particular? Yes, that’d be great. However, princesses that are sparkly are not bad. So they’re pretty, big deal. So their girly, BIG DEAL. They embody so many other qualities that the fact that they sparkle and wear dresses shouldn’t even be an issue. As I stated earlier, for me, princesses always meant happiness and magic. So what if Merida has a new look, it doesn’t change her movie? In fact, I think this a positive. It shows Merida can be both brave and courageous AND sparkly. What’s wrong with being both? What’s wrong with being a princess? And if you STILL find something wrong with this, maybe you’re the shallow one, since you can’t seem to look at the good qualities princesses give us and only focuse on the fact that her waist is small and she wears a sparkly dress,

    • Alyssamz

      Thank god someone has a brain. You made me feel better after reading all these silly comments.

    • Charlie

      There’s nothing wrong with sparkly dresses, and I agree that most kids aren’t going to blindly imitate something because they saw it in a cartoon or on the packaging of a toy. And I admit that I think that people sometimes overeact to the Disney Princess range in the first place.

      BUT the problem here is that:

      a) The design that’s going to end up on various Disney products for the next few years consciously goes against the design choices of the original filmakers, to the extent that the character’s creator is unhappy with the way the character is being sold.
      b) Some of the other princesses are already brave women who wear sparkly dresses. Belle, for example. So there’s strictly no need for Merida’s design to be changed to ‘prove’ that you can be brave and wear sparkly clothes. She already wears a slightly fancier dress at the end of the movie anyway- why not go with that? They just seem to throw characterisation out the window in favour of making generic dolls that have a profitable brand name attatched to them.

      I agree that lots of people over-simplify Disney movies in favour of pushing an agenda. But this isn’t about the movies. This is about the merchandise.* Lots of kids toys are already pretty limited in terms of gender roles, and its frustrating when a company like Disney instead opts to market their characters within those roles. It seems hypocritical that they advertised the movie as ‘look at this cool girl doing cool actiony stuff’, but are now marketing her as ‘look at her awesome dress’.

      They’ve done worse to other characters though. I mean, the Tinkerbell movies do a complete 180 on her personality shown in Peter Pan. Even if you accept that people change over time, its kind of depressing that she apparently goes from being nice and friendly into spiteful and jealous.

      *though to be fair, lots of animated characters get the short end of the stick when it comes to merchandise. Betty Boop stuff doesn’t capture how goddamn weird those cartoons were.

      • PotionWillow207

        To your A comment, it really doesn’t matter what the character’s creator thinks about the redesign. She sold the rights to her idea to Disney, and Merida is now their character to do with as they please. Whatever your opinion on that, it’s just the way the cookie crumbles. I’ve read some of Brenda Chapman’s comments on how this happened, and she admits that she was very naive to think she could go into this and do whatever she wanted with her idea…and she’s 100% correct on that. Making a movie (or anything in the entertainment industry) a collaboration between a group of people: director, producers, actors, designers. Even if the idea was originally hers, when the process begins NO ONE PERSON has complete control over the project. When she left, whatever the reason behind that was, she gave up her right to have any say in what happened.

        As for B, it’s true that the other princesses are in sparkly dresses. That’s exactly WHY they put Merida in something similar. The Disney Princesses are a marketing strategy. They go together as a group. To add Merida but leave her in the original teal dress from the movie would be the most ridiculous idea from a design standpoint. Changing her dress is in keeping with the continuity of the design.

        • Charlie

          I believe she was taken off of the film, but I guess you’re right about her being naive. But I do find it kind of disappointing that a design that was refined over a couple of years was effectively thrown out for a toy line. (Also when I said ‘filmmakers’ I was including the numerous people who designed Merida’s appearance for the movie, but I worded my sentence poorly and made it sound like I was referring specifically to Brenda Chapman)

          And I don’t really think they should have made Merida part of the Disney Princess line to begin with, but the movie made a lot of money so I guess it was inevitable. I’d argue Pocahontas doesn’t really match the others, even with her ridiculous earrings, but eehhhh….

          (Side-note: I’ve just been flipping through the movie’s artbook and it looks like the idea was pitched in 2005…. before Disney acquired Pixar, during the period when they were certain they were going to stop working together. I wonder if Chapman would have pitched a princess movie if she’d known it was going to end up a Disney property?)

  • http://www.facebook.com/stephieotto Stephanie Otto

    Agree with Chapman, and yes sometimes I do get the feeling that Disney just wants to profit! Sad!

  • Mrs_Badcrumble

    The “new Merida” looks like some other character with red hair. Honestly she doesn’t look like the awesome Merida that we loved to watch… Come on, visually change the look to fit a line, that’s fine to maintain some sort of visual coherence, but don’t change the character’s (and the story’s) essence!

  • http://twitter.com/eiVega eiVega

    I said it before on Hypable when they announced that Merida was going to be inducted and I’ll say it again: I absolutely hate the Disney Princess Collection. They take wonderful, strong dynamic heroines and reduce them to pathetic, flat, simple glittery girls who only care for tea parties and jewelry. It’s been a travesty since they launched this line. What they are doing to Merida comes at no surprise if you’ve followed how they’ve treated their other characters. (LOOK AT THESE DOLLS FOR POCAHONTAS & MULAN: http://www.amazon.com/Disney-Princess-Designer-Collection-Pocahontas/dp/B005WJI84Y and http://www.amazon.com/Princess-Designer-Collection-Limited-Exclusive/dp/B005NXHQE2 ) I have always vented about this whenever I’ve had the chance. I’m just glad that now finally someone with a voice can call Disney out on this. Thank you Brenda Chapman for speaking out.

    • http://twitter.com/Tygridia Tygridia

      OMFG!!! I just saw the links!!! I am even more angry about Mulan than about Pocahontas!!! I mean, WTF!?

  • stargazer

    I saw some of the redesigned dolls at the store before they officially made her a Disney Princess (thus the picture on the box was the original Merida). They look awful and weird. Then I looked at all the other princess dolls. With the exception of Ariel, they ALL look awful and weird. (And Eric DID look really weird)

  • http://twitter.com/ThingyMaWhatsit Laura Palmer ≈

    Merida looks completely different. I especially dislike Cinderella, is it no me who thinks that she looks like a model? It’s not giving younger, more impressionable girls the right ideas!

  • Kiana

    So disappointed by this. Feminspire did a lovely article on this, too.

  • http://dft.ba/-alex-ander Alex Ander

    I think this is pretty offensive because Merida was made to be such a non-stereotypical girl and this seems like an attempt to flatten (pun intended) her character to fit the mold of the others.

    That being said, nothing could be as terrible and outright distasteful as Pocahontas’s redesign. I mean, wow, that’s just awful.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=636033419 Maritere Domínguez

    All the princesses look wierd, they don´t look at all as the heroines we fell in love with when we were young (and still). Merida looks aweful with her makeover

  • Megan

    It’s sad how much energy people put into worrying about an animated character…

  • Ellie

    Something else that makes me want to rage-quit everything: the fact that they sell the Suitor Dress to little girls! It’s so horrible! I don’t really see how that dress is any prettier than the other one, and it represents such an oppressive thing. Luckily I don’t think the girls notice, I’ve talked to a few that have worn it and they all just seem excited to be Super-Cool Merida, but it makes me so mad.

    • Ellie

      Some credit where credit is due: at least it’s in the ripped up sleeves because she was rebelling state.

    • http://twitter.com/inkasrain Michal

      YES! This exactly. “Hey little girls! Look as pretty as Merida did when she was forced into an uncomfortable dress that restricted her movement and her breathing for the sake of external beauty! You’ll shine like a princess!”

      I try DESPERATELY hard not to hate and resent Disney, but at a certain point, they ask for it.

      • PotionWillow207

        What is wrong with wanting to look good? With a lot of these comments it sounds like just because a girl wants to look pretty means she must be ditzy or there must be something wrong with her. Don’t get me wrong, I think that there is too much emphasis on the way a person looks but the backlash this is getting makes it look like wanting to look good means there’s something wrong with you. It’s okay to want to look pretty.

        • http://twitter.com/inkasrain Michal

          There is absolutely nothing wrong with looking pretty – if it’s what YOU want. But in BRAVE, Merida resents the “pretty” dress her mother makes her wear. It is uncomfortable, requires a corset, restricts her breathing, and is so cumbersome to her mobility that she has to tear it to accomplish any meaningful physical movement. It’s not hard to see that that dress is emblematic of society restricting Merida’s freedom as a person and as a girl; Movie-Merida would never choose to wear it, and yet Disney executives frequently chose to market her to young girls in that very outfit. That’s the problem, not “pretty.”

    • PotionWillow207

      A perfect example of adults projecting their own ideas and prejudices onto something even though it has no meaning to the children.

      • Ellie

        The problem is that this isn’t just this- it’s a symptom of a society that tells women and girls that they need to be pretty at the expense of who they are, what they like, and what is practical and comfortable to them. I’m very, very glad that the girls who are young enough to wear Merida dresses are also young enough not to notice this sort of thing. But they’re not going to always be that young, and this problem isn’t going to go away as they age, and I think positive messages when kids are young and things can be easily accepted and internalized are important.
        Note: positive messages don’t just come in dressing your kid up. Kids are smarter than you think. You can, like, talk to them.

        • PotionWillow207

          No one is saying that. But sometimes, even if it’s not comfortable or particularly practical, it is necessary to be pretty or wear something that you wouldn’t normally wear. And maybe Merida wouldn’t be all that thrilled with the costume, but I think she would be honored to stand with the likes of Mulan, Belle, Jasmine and Pocahontas. They are all girls who fought the system in their own way and made a difference in their world. How about we focus on that and not on what they’re wearing.

          I get your point, but don’t agree mostly because by making such a fuss you are contributing to the idea that it does, in fact, matter how you look. You are just making it from the other extreme. Just as you accuse Disney marketing of promoting the idea that physical beauty takes priority (which they aren’t) by making it an issue you are promoting the idea that it means physical beauty means you are lacking, whether you intend to or not. Most people commenting on this article are acting like what Merida is wearing belittles her character. What you should instead be emphasizing is that what she wears doesn’t change who she is. The size of her waist and how sparkly her dress is are irrelevant.

  • http://www.facebook.com/richard.a.tucker1 Richard A. Tucker

    It’s odd that they market the film like they’ve finally opened their eyes only to wreck that perception at the first opportunity. I guess after their screwing over John Carter there’s no low they won’t indulge.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cynthia.k.page Cynthia K Page

    I noticed the bow, quiver and arrows are gone. I guess physical skill is beneath her now. So sad that one role model after another gets changed into fashion industry runway fodder. The key word is industry, and profits drive the trend. When it comes to our children’s self-image, there should be no compromise on integrity.

  • http://twitter.com/elizabr0 Elizabeth Mazorra

    Jeez, the dress is even a bit lower, as opposed to the version Merida normally wears. The face is slimmer, she’s wearing make-up, and she totally has the “come hither” look. It’s not Merida at all.

  • curiouswanderingfeather

    i think it’s fine to give her a sparkly dress, but to completely change her figure is just… no. she looks more realistic and nicer in the original. definitely against this redesign. disney, are you even listening?

    • PotionWillow207

      Of course they’re not listening. Regardless of whether anyone agrees with this or not, the public will still throw billions of dollars at them this year. So to them, this is all meaningless drivel.

  • http://www.facebook.com/hanna.schreiber Johanna Esther Schreiber

    I was just looking at all the other Disney princesses and was shocked! What happend to Mulan? The girl who became a tough fighter and saved China? When I was a small girl it was actually the only disney “princess” that I liked and now she looks just like the others. It is tragic that the same thing happend to Merida. It seems that tomboys simply aren’t welcome at Disney

  • Sarah Richards

    I was upset when I noticed Cinderella’s new look popping up on merchandise. I almost cried when I saw what they had done to Belle, my favorite, and the rest of them. I suppose its ok to add some more sparkles (though not on Merida; the only way she’d be caught dead in the new dress is if her mother drugged her :P) but don’t completely change their dresses and hair and make them skinnier! Poccahontas had natural beauty; now she has all this jewelry and is wearing makeup? And for goodness sakes Ariel is sixteen now she looks much older as does Merida. I know some people are saying big whoop girls won’t be affected by this parents need to parent better but I think it does. They may only notice the pretty dresses but the wrong message such as female stereotypes will get soaked in. Especially the new Merida look. I think it’s sending mixed signals. I grew up with these characters and they taught me important lessons and I think the makeover conflicts them. And did I mention this crossed over to the parks and the cast members now match the picture? They look horrible.

    I wish we could make a petition so Disney would stop and change them back but it wouldn’t help becuase Disney only cares about money. They don’t care about how much damage they’re doing as long as it sells they’re happy as a clam.

  • Glaciusx

    These designs truly make me sick. It’s so vain and narcissistic. Merida did not need to become like the other princess. She was beautiful just the way she was. I see some people saying it’s not a big deal but this is. Disney has to stop doing these things…..this makeover just undermined what Brave was about. I’m glad Brenda isn’t condoning what Disney did. It’s about time someone called them out.

  • http://twitter.com/TrueKlainer21 Klaine Is On Fire ♥

    This is outrageous! Disney should wake up and realize that girl’s need a role model that isn’t just about being the skinniest or prettiest. They also need to realize those two things don’t go hand in hand with each other. Chapman, you have every right to be this angry and I’m right alongside of you! I’m so glad you spoke your mind about this. Now let’s see if Disney changes Merida back to the way she was before.

    • PotionWillow207

      Why is it Disney’s responsibility to give your child (maybe not yours specifically, but just a general “you”) a role model? What’s wrong with the mom, or a grandmother or friend of the family being a role model? Chapman has no right to be angry. She gave up those rights when she left the project, however it happened.

      And of course they’re not going to change Merida back. That would be ridiculous. They would have to take her out of the Disney princess line up, and that’s not going to happen after they went through all the trouble of inducting her.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Stephanie-Warren/100001648091118 Stephanie Warren

    yuck

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=515348470 Stephanie Godfrey

    I don’t have a problem with her makeover. I think she looks fine, and I’m not saying that because I’m a Disney fanatic. They only did it so she’d fit in with the other princesses and personally I don’t see any problem with that. It doesn’t change who she is or what she stands for. Plus it had to be difficult to convert her from 3D to 2D. Its obvious the animators had a little issue with Rapunzel, not that they would have been able to get her face right because of the 3D but still…

    Now my problem isn’t even with Merida but Mulan. Why on earth is she classified as a princess? She’s a heroin yes, but was not royalty and didn’t marry into royalty. It doesn’t make an sense to me. Sorry wasn’t even on topic but its always annoyed me.

  • http://twitter.com/swordwhale1 Teanna Byerts

    Brenda Chapman, I wish you had been around designing things when I was a kid!!! Merida, and Brave, were awesome! Phooey on you Disney. The last thing girls need is more sparkly @#&#@#@**%^$&!!!!???#$%$#E#@facebook-100000352772799:disqus

    • PotionWillow207

      Then give them one. A real one, not a cartoon. Why is it Disney’s job? And what does Merida wearing a sparkly dress have to do with her suitability as a role model? What she wears doesn’t make her any less brave or confident.

  • rnNM

    Merida is a cartoon and is therefore exagerated from real-life as all cartoon charcters should be. However the orgirginal movie design for her character fits perfectly for her personality and also fits her heritage! If you ask me who the top four most beautiful and sexy women in the world are, I’ll tell you they are the prodigeous genius alterntive music star Tori Amos, and thefollowing actresses Emily Browning, Elisha Cuthbert, and Karen Gillan of Dr. Who fame! I don’t know about the actress Elisha but the other three are Scottish or mixed Scottish, Karen Gillan being a full bonifide bonny Highlander who grew up near Loch Ness! All these women have a few incredible traits in common- they alll have beautiful broad and robust, yet soft cheekbones and check muscles, broad yet soft jawline, a very petite chin contrasting increible soft protruding lips, last but not least they all especially so for Tori Amos have big beautiful Elvish ears! All of these incredible traits are common to the Ancient Celtic “Brunn” type of women! Oh yeh and I’m not thrilled by flat tummies, what I find hot is a nice mild curve cylindrical stomach! Merida is a cartoon character not a real-life human, but key Highlander traits are found in her ORIGINAL design! She has a strong yet beautiful frame that should be celebrated for fitting her adventruous spirit! Lets not forget that she grew up pulling the string of a bow, increasing in poundage as she grew up, so ladies and gents we all admire the fact that she as powerful back muscles!

  • swanpride

    This irks me…I actually hate the redesigns and I had always issues with the way the franchise treats the Princesses like Barbie dolls instead of the awesome female characters they are. But what the hell makes Merida so special? What did anyone expect? Break the mold? What mold? ALL Disney Princesses are more than what is shown in the franchise, and I get really tired of everyone slamming them, pretending that Merida is somehow better…Newsflash, Merida is neither the first Princess who can use a bow, nor the first who doesn’t marry at the end of her movie. And when it comes to feminism, Rapunzel and Mulan are miles ahead of her. She is simply a throwback to the “I want” Princesses of the 90th….another version of Ariel, Belle, Jasmine and Pocahontas. So stop acting as if Merida is something special. She is actually one of the worst role models in the line-up.

  • PotionWillow207

    I would like to point out that everyone is making a ruckus over Merida’s new sparkly dress, but no one said a word about legitimate problems with the other princesses. How about the fact that Ariel and Jasmine are both either engaged or outright married by the time they’re 16? So is Aurora, for that matter, and Snow White. Sparkly dresses create a virtual riot because Disney is supposedly sending subliminal messages to our kids that you’re only important if you’re pretty. Well, how about the message that it’s okay to get married before you even get out of high school? No one complains about that one. It’s laughable.

  • Audrey

    Seriously, this is ridiculous. They’ve made her UGLY in an attempt to make her more appetizing…nice job. On top of that, they’ve taken my childhood and made a brothel of it. I don’t know about you, but all I see is a line of prostitutes. But that’s all they really are to Disney, now aren’t they? Cheap sluts to attract customers. Shame on them. I am really disappointed and sickened that future generations may suffer from this insolence.

  • CEC

    They need to leave the original character alone. She’s perfectly fine the way she is. Unfortunately, they turned her from an assertive, strong young woman into a seductress. That new character look is certainly NOT Merida to me.

  • cage sally willson

    why cant they just accept her?

  • Charlee

    I think Disney could have made her “more sparkly” without changing her physical appearance. They didn’t need to make her skinnier, seriously. I agree with Chapman, they should have left Merida alone.

  • Penthepoet

    They literally RUINED Merida. She was the ONLY Disney princess that wasn’t all sparkly and girly, and they f***ing RUINED her with this new design.

  • Nicole

    I actually don’t mind this look for Merida. If they needed to slightly change her appearance to conform to their “Disney Princess” franchise, so be it. I can still recognize the character. All of the princesses look different in this image (compared to their appearance in films), and I do not feel Merida should be centred out. She’s not as “flashy” as the other princesses still, so I feel this alteration is just fine. I actually like this design.

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