Some aspects of the Snow White story aren’t sitting well with modern critics.
Disneyland in California recently revamped its “Snow White” ride, inspired by the classic 1938 film, removing some of the scarier elements, and focusing more on magic and the seven dwarves.
But in an article about the ride at SFGate, writers Katie Dowd and Julie Tremaine express their concern with the ride, including the Prince giving Snow White “true love’s kiss” to wake her up from the Evil Queen’s spell.
“The new grand finale of Snow White’s Enchanted Wish is the moment when the Prince finds Snow White asleep under the Evil Queen’s spell and gives her ‘true love’s kiss’ to release her from the enchantment,” the article says. “A kiss he gives to her without her consent, while she’s asleep, which ‘cannot possibly’ be true love if only one person knows it’s happening.”
The article continues, “Haven’t we already agreed that consent in early Disney movies is a major issue? That teaching kids that kissing, when it hasn’t been established if both parties are willing to engage, is not okay? It’s hard to understand why the Disneyland of 2021 would choose to add a scene with such old fashioned ideas of what a man is allowed to do to a woman, especially given the company’s current emphasis on removing problematic scenes from rides like Jungle Cruise and Splash Mountain. Why not re-imagine an ending in keeping with the spirit of the movie and Snow White’s place in the Disney canon, but that avoids this problem?”
Disney Imagineer Jim Shull took to Twitter this week to share his views on the controversy.
Allowing for the fact that cultural changes occur over decades it must be acknowledged that in the context of the tale on which the film is based that the ride is accurate. People are of course allowed to dislike the story but the Imagineering team did a spectacular job! #Disney pic.twitter.com/3aXFkNvHv4
— Jim Shull (@JimShull) May 5, 2021
“Allowing for the fact that cultural changes occur over decades it must be acknowledged that in the context of the tale on which the film is based that the ride is accurate,” wrote Shull, who has worked for Disney for over three decades.
“People are of course allowed to dislike the story but the Imagineering team did a spectacular job!“, he added.