This is not the first time, I have had my Disney Princess dream shattered (and don't even think about commenting and saying Shrek isn't Disney, for all intents and purposes of this post please just go with me.) The dream of being Ariel, Snow White, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Belle were all dashed from a young age, not because they were skinny and I was chubs...but because they were white. But then PC order came into reign and the likes of Pocahontas and Jasmine were adorned on my screen and I thought - YES! I can be a princess too! I was all too quickly reminded - no, no you can't.
Disney has always been a huge part of my childhood, like most kids as I imagine (although less so the kids of today, my four year old cousin has an ipad and his favourite film is the Dark Knight). And as a family it was always a game to liken the characters of the film to members of the family. So here is how I was cast:
101 Dalmations - I was Rolly...the fat dalmation.
Cinderella - GusGus...the fat mouse (you know the one thats tries to stack up all the corn)
Sleeping Beauty - the fat fairy...that makes cake.
The Jungle Book - the little fat elephant. (Inevitably BBB was Baloo and Annie of course was Mogli)
Tarzan - the little fat elephant, that turned into the big fat elephant.
The Little Mermaid - Flounder, the fat sidekick fish.
Are you seeing the trend? No princess in sight. Just the little fat character in every bloody film! I was young and hideously naive to the fact I was being bullied by my family, I was simply grateful just to get a part. Of course Annie was Belle, the little annoying organised mouse in Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Jane. (The issue of brown never seemed to crop up for Annie).
Pocahontas was my first chance of being a Princess. She was brown! (Despite the rest of the Red Indians being well...red. Pocahontas managed that much desired caramel complexion). This was my moment to step out of the 'little fat' rut and find my inner princess. My dreams were quickly dashed. I was labelled Niko...the fat racoon, that steals biscuits. No guesses as to who was Pocahontas. I'm not going to lie, when a gust of wind catches my hair and it gets all swept up, for a nano second I feel like Pocahontas.
Then I realise she has cheek bones, she sprints through the woods, she has a hotty like John Smith who totes adores her, and my hair is not quite as sleek as hers. The reality: when it does get caught up in a gust of wind it normally ends in me having to brush out my hair resembling now a fro and leaving me with severe arm cramp. Oh when will my life become glamorous.
Jasmine was just as quickly out the window, she constantly had her toned abs on show. Even at the age of 8 a bikini gave me an anxiety attack. I much preferred my crochet yellow one piece, whilst Annie tottered around in her polka dot bikini. It's fine though, she can't swim for shit, I felt better about that.
Then along came Hercules. Probably my favourite Disney film, so much so it inspired my degree - although I learnt nothing about Zeus in my degree...what a load of shit that was. The songs, the pecs, the witty one liners - the film had it all. It also had an array of beautiful (dark sinned!!) muses who sang all the great songs (which of course I still know all the words to), but alas there had to be one fatty in the film, who of course in the game of who's who...was me.
Undoubtedly she had the best voice, and the best personality but she also had thunder thighs and a jelly belly. My thinspiration is the middle Muse. She has no waist and seemingly no knees. All my other friends were the sexier Muses and of course Meg was off limits - too white, way too skinny (she was deffs ano), so like or not if I wanted a part... I was the chunkier Muse.
Although Disney has been a source of much happiness in my life, it has also perhaps without ever realising until it has been written down...scarred me for life. The next Disney film, better be about an Indian princess (who looks like Adriana Lima) who marries Jonny Wilkinson (or now Michael Phelps), has four Ralph Lauren looking children, has a holiday home in Malibu and of course....lives happily ever after.
Until then I fear I will be forever cast as the little fat one.
Fatty BB xxx