10 Fairy Tales I Just Can’t Stand and Why

Fairy Tales have been revered and reviled for centuries, even as the tales themselves have changed over  time. Most won’t stand up to adult scrutiny, but some are particularly hard to handle. Here are a few “favorite non-favorites” that you may share with me.

  1. The Princess and the Pea – In this homage to sexual stereotyping, a princess “proves” she is a real princess by showing that she has been so spoiled by comfortable living that she can’t deal with the discomfort and suffering caused by a single pea that is buried under 20 mattresses. Hello? Any self-respecting prince would be long-gone if he found out about this, but Prince Chumply just goes along with the notion that this is what a princess is all about. Wait until he gets the first credit card bills.
  2. Cinderella – I can’t imagine a girl who will willingly suffer (no mention of multiple escape attempts) at the hands of her step-sisters for years, but then doesn’t even seem to notice later when birds peck their eyes out.
  3. Jack and the Beanstalk – Magic bean? I don’t think so. The kid just took some toxic fertilizers and dumped them on a genetically altered pinto bean, and a monstrosity of a plant was the result. It’s a good thing he cut it down before it had a chance to propagate.
  4. Little Red Riding Hood – Okay, hoody sweatshirts are still in, so this tale isn’t a matter for the fashion police, but who in their right mind is going to let their kid go wandering in those spooky old woods alone, anyway?
  5. The Three Pigs – If the brick building pig had been a little bit smarter he would have built a bigger place and rented out rooms to the other two pigs, who would have brought with them bedding (straw) and firewood (sticks). Then they could have teamed up to take down a badly-winded wolf and they’d have had food as well.
  6. Snow White – The Apple Board folks have been trying to change this one (and the Garden of Eden thing, too) for years. They almost succeeded, but the kumquat lobby mounted a furious last-minute campaign to thwart the effort.
  7. Hansel and Gretel – Forget the deadbeat parents for a minute and let’s skip to the house. With all that gingerbread and sugar exposed to the elements that place would have been literally crawling with drunk bugs and hummingbirds. There is no way the kids would want to go in.
  8. Peter Pan – Oh boy, let’s just be kids for the rest of our lives. I’m sure there will be plenty of adults who would be willing to do extra work so that I can just play all day.
  9. Aladdin – Here is another motivational wonder, as in “I wonder what lessons are really being taught here?”. Don’t work for what you want, just get better at wishing for it.
  10. Rapunzel – How did the human race manage to continue if all the eligible women were either under evil spells or locked away in dungeons and towers?

It doesn’t pay to try and figure out these stories. Just grab a coke and plop yourself in front of a Disney version. At least the animation is usually good.

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