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Old 01-12-2013, 01:10 AM   #1
Disney_Princess83
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Rapunzel as a Role Model?

I've been quite surprised how many times I see Rapunzel being called a role model for young girls, Not just on the disboards but in general. I recently watched Tangled again to see if I noticed anything different that I might have missed. However viewing it on three occasions, Rapunzel is no different to the Princesses that were made in the 1050's and 1960's.

Rapunzel dreams of getting out of her Tower and seeing the lanterns. In between dreaming, she spends her day filled with countless hobbies, all of which are more traditional "female" interests. Painting (although she's meant to be quite good) baking, pottery and sewing.

She accepts what Mother Gothel says about the outside world and promises she won't leave her tower, even though she clearly feels that something is "off" about what her "mother" is telling her. Rapunzel then, completely relies on Flynn to get her out of her Tower. She assaults Flynn with the frypan and then blackmails him into taking her out of the tower. She had to rely on a man to get her out of the tower. She would have been much more of a role model had she gotten herself out of the Tower and then met Flynn. If Flynn had never come along, she would still be sitting in that Tower and waiting for her life to begin.

Rapunzel insists of Flynn showing her exactly where she lights are (she couldn't try and find them herself?) She also relies on him completely for protection, continuing to blackmail him with the frypan. Flynn drags her into several dangerous situations (the bar and when she and Flynn almost drown in the cavern) In the cavern, it is only Rapunzels hair that helped saved them, rather then Rapunzel actually doing something to save them. She does help "talk" their way out of trouble in the bar. They wouldn't have even been there if Flynn hadn't been trying to scare Rapunzel back to her Tower. It also is quite unrealistic when the patrons of the bar immediately warm to Rapunzel (Yes I realise it's a Disney movie so some unrealistic licence is necessary)

She completely relies on Flynn to see the lanterns and it is Flynn who arranges the boat and takes her out on the lake. Once Rapunzel gives Flynn the satchel, he again starts to look after himself and accidentally brings her into another dangerous situation. All Rapunzel does is run away from the thugs and it is Mother Gothel who "saves" her. I realise that Gothel orchestrated the attack, however Rapunzel didn't. Had Mother Gothel not been there, Rapunzel would have been captured and sold to the highest bidder. Yet again, Rapunzel returns to her Tower with Mother Gothel.

Rapunzel realises that she is the Princess, however Mother Gothel gets the better of her and she ends up tied up and again at the mercy of her kidnapper.

In the end when Flynn has been stabbed by Mother Gothel, Rapunzel agrees to willingly go along with her if she is just allowed to save Flynn. She promises that she won't try and get away from Mother Gother - who is her kidnapper - as long as she can save Flynn.

Again, it is Flynn who "saves" Rapunzel by cutting her hair. Rapunzel couldn't have thought about that herself? Pascal helps "push" Mother Gothel through the window, with a moment of Rapunzel reaching out to "save" her kidnapper.

Technically Rapunzel "saves" Flynn although in reality, it is her magic qualities, rather then Rapunzel actually doing something to save him. All she did was cry and figure that Flynn was dead.

I'm certainly not saying people can't like her as a character, although I'am surprised who many times I've seen her referred to as a role model. I see little different between Rapunzel and Cinderella, Snow White and Aurora, all of whom had to be rescued by a man in their respective stories. For a movie made in 2010, I'm quite surprised how extremely behind the times Tangled seems to be, especially when compared to more recent Princesses. Mulan and Tiana especially come to mind and more recently, Merida (which I'm aware was made after Tangled)
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Last edited by Disney_Princess83; 01-12-2013 at 04:52 PM.
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Old 01-12-2013, 09:10 AM   #2
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I truly don't consider Rapunzel a role model. You are right--there are stronger princesses out there. I think Disney is starting to "label" their characters and maybe this Rapunzel thing was all a "labeling" error.
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Old 01-12-2013, 11:40 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovedisney1982
I truly don't consider Rapunzel a role model. You are right--there are stronger princesses out there. I think Disney is starting to "label" their characters and maybe this Rapunzel thing was all a "labeling" error.
I think the movie Rapunzel's message is to follow your dreams... Rapunzel In all is a pretty good role model!
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Old 01-12-2013, 04:01 PM   #4
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Rapunzel as a Role Model?

I dont think I would consider any character from any Disney movie a role model.I would just consider them what they are Family Movies.I just watched Tageled for the first time last week,when it premiered on Disney channel.The movie itself I loved!!!!!!!
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Old 01-12-2013, 04:49 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by pixiedust1129 View Post
I think the movie Rapunzel's message is to follow your dreams... Rapunzel In all is a pretty good role model!
That is a good message and I can see how it was shown in the movie. However Rapunzel still directly had to rely on someone else to follow her dreams.

I agree that most Disney Princesses are not exactly role models. I was just really surprised how often I've seen her referred so as a role model and a really strong character and I didn't feel that was the case at all.
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Old 01-12-2013, 06:38 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Disney_Princess83

That is a good message and I can see how it was shown in the movie. However Rapunzel still directly had to rely on someone else to follow her dreams.

I agree that most Disney Princesses are not exactly role models. I was just really surprised how often I've seen her referred so as a role model and a really strong character and I didn't feel that was the case at all.
I am a young .. I do agree with you!! It teaches people to follow there dreams.
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Old 01-16-2013, 02:59 PM   #7
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It's just entertainment. I doubt many college English classes are going to be asking students to write a report on Tangled and what they think it all means. It's a family movie meant to just be enjoyed. So just enjoy it. My family certainly did.
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:45 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chill621
It's just entertainment. I doubt many college English classes are going to be asking students to write a report on Tangled and what they think it all means. It's a family movie meant to just be enjoyed. So just enjoy it. My family certainly did.
Thank you.
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Old 01-16-2013, 04:51 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by chill621 View Post
It's just entertainment. I doubt many college English classes are going to be asking students to write a report on Tangled and what they think it all means. It's a family movie meant to just be enjoyed. So just enjoy it. My family certainly did.
I'm not disputing that it's entertainment. My specific point, as clearly mention in the title and throughout the original post, was about my surprise that Rapunzel is considered a role model. Disney and countless other places made Rapunzel sound as though she was revolutionary Princess, which I just can't see how that was shown in the movie.

While people might like the movie and the characters, I see no difference from Rapunzel to Cinderella, Snow White and Aurora/Sleeping Beauty. I love those characters too but I certainly don't see them as role models.
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Old 01-16-2013, 07:02 PM   #10
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I see what you are saying. Disney princesses in general are considered good role models. They are polite, sweet, caring, well mannered, etc.
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