I've never thought that Disney movies were all that great (I resisted their brainwashing! Pat on the back please). But I'm also not going to ban watching something - if the kids are into it, go for it. We were dealing with Power Rangers from the time my oldest was five. I was broken in good and early.
And this policy hasn't really hurt us - in fact it leads to conversations where we answer a lot of questions, especially after watching, say, Blades of Glory. If something comes up during a movie and the kids ask, we tell. It's easier to talk about when it's right there in the open, and they trust that we'll give them a straight answer.
Sometimes I can't stop giggling myself (my inner child is a 12-year-old boy) but at least I've gotten good at giving honest answers without making it too icky. I keep hoping that if we set the tone now, those conversations will continue as they get older and ever more secretive.
And I have to admit, some of the Disney songs are good, especially from back in the day when they had Phil Harris and Scatman Crothers. You know, real artists.
So having had boys who love Power Rangers and not princesses, I'd never seen "The Little Mermaid." But my day care girls begged me for it the other day and I had a copy in a hand-me-down box, so I popped it on. The artwork was beautiful and I did recognize some of the songs from the Disney culture-saturation effect.
The movie had the usual scary parts that we had to skip over, the always dead, missing, or evil mother effect, and other unique and omnipresent Disney qualities. I had to tend to a baby when they got to the part with the sea witch so I wasn't there to skip over it. But no one was scared or upset so I let it play.
And then I heard the T-bomb. Say whaaat? Did the sea witch just call Ariel a TRAMP?!
That seems like a bit much - even for Disney, no? I can just see the families who brought their young daughters to the theater to see the pretty mermaid. Must have been some interesting explanations after that one.
I'm glad the big boys weren't here to point it out, and I hope it just went over the littles' heads. But in case it didn't - please don't be mad at me, day care parents. Blame it on the magical world of Disney!