How Ralph Breaks the Internet Flipped The Disney Princesses
From the moment that the trailer for Ralph Breaks The Internet dropped, one scene set the internets ablaze. Before you’ve even finished the first sentence you know what I’m talking about, the now infamous Vanellope meets the Disney Princesses scene. I’ve already written about how Yesss is going to be the breakout star of the sequel, but let’s talk about why the film itself is game changing.
What makes this scene so ground-breaking isn’t the humor and intelligence in the writing, which has become the calling card of Pamela Ribon, the screenwriter on Ralph Breaks the Internet. When Pamela visited the ForAllNerds Show, she spoke about how she felt that she had either written a genius scene or she would be fired for writing it. In retrospect it’s amazing that she would have ever doubted herself. The scene has become an industry unto itself, with demands for the outfits sported by the princesses going through the roof. All of this is before the film has even been released.
Vanellope has always been a unique character in the Disney pantheon, as she is ostensibly the star of her film, yet she gets second billing to Ralph. This is not to take away anything from the character of Ralph, but it’s Vanellope Von Schweetz who steals the show again and again.
When she is confronted by the Princesses about her origins, Vanellope challenges their conventions and their ideals, thus making them re-examine themselves. This in turn calls into question everything that we have been shown about the Princesses, and could be a major turning point for how Disney uses these characters. By taking them out of their high heels and prom queen outfits, Disney has humanized them in a way that perhaps hasn’t been seen before. Not everyone can relate to meeting Prince Charming and being swept off their feet, but everyone can relate to the simple joy of pajamas and tea.
One area of contention was the depiction of the Princess Tiana. Tiana has been portrayed with darker skin and different facial features then was shown in the trailer at first. Her hair in particular drew ire from the internet and it was good to see Disney take notice, and more importantly, take action. The trailer has since been re-edited, and Disney has promised that Tiana will be portrayed as the glorious brown skinned Queen To Be that we know she has always been.
Ralph Breaks the Internet has the potential to open up new worlds in storytelling, and the creatives behind it are ready to take full advantage of the opportunities. Imagine a team up film of Vanellope alongside Tiana and Moana? The possibilities for the princesses are endless, and with the letting down of their proverbial hair, perhaps we could even see characters like Shuri join their ranks? Insert a Take My Money Gif here.
For more of this greatness, Listen To ForAllNerds.