Fans of Disney’s Frozen have been petitioning online for Elsa, the deuteragonist of the film, to finally find love in the sequel-only not with a man. Those among the LGBT community and beyond have been pushing for films to be more “inclusive” and have been pushing for homosexual romances to be seen as “equal” to heterosexual ones. They especially feel children’s shows should embrace the message. By allowing children’s programs and movies to openly represent homosexual relationships, the target generation may start to see it as beautiful and pure rather than taboo.
Many have zeroed in on Elsa. Elsa has come to represent alternative lifestyles. She seems to be a role model for those who don’t fit the “norm”. She steps out of society’s rules in several ways. For one, she’s one of the few Disney heroines without a love interest. Elsa also represents ‘freedom and tolerance’. When Elsa “let it go” in the film, it seemed to send the message that told kids, “It’s okay to be yourself. Don’t conceal what’s inside”. This especially relates to the LGBT because most of them often feel they have to “conceal” or hide who they are to feel more “normal”. So for them, if anyone is to represent LGBT, it should be her. There is plenty of art online that expresses this.
There are many who are for the push and many who are against it. The conservative, religious folk just feel it isn’t right for their kids. There are also those fans that already shipped her with Jack Frost.
Where do I stand?
I’ll be clear. I’m against it.
I’m not against it because I hate homosexuality. I’m not a homophobe. In fact, a homosexual character in a Disney movie in the near future would be fantastically progressive and is sure to send a statement worldwide.
However, I don’t think Elsa should be that character.
First, I’m sick of Frozen. Disney milks that movie a little too much. It was a “plot-hole” of a story and never really deserved the praise it received. I have more to say on this at the Frozen Review and Frozen-A Feminist movie or a Sexist One? And if I’m sick of the movie, I’m sure others are. It wouldn’t do a homosexual relationship justice. It would be stuck to a sequel, second base to most heterosexual relationships.
Second, Disney’s sequels aren’t usually too good. Do I have to remind you of Tarzan 2? Have you seen the Little Mermaid 2? Nah, Disney should stick to originals. Why place a homosexual relationship in a movie that may not even have a well-developed story? It’s cheap to stick it in a sequel. It makes it feel insignificant and takes away the message that homosexual relationships should be treated equally to heterosexual ones. And if the movie flops, that will kill the cause.
Third, what’s wrong with a character being single? It’s bad enough for women to be damsels in distress, but let’s not forget that women are also often stereotypically clumped with the romance genre. It was refreshing to see a female character that showed no interest in romance and had no issues with betrothal or anything marriage-related (like Merida). Just a refreshing story about a woman who wanted to break free and show her strengths. Anna’s relationship was so distracting and pointless, I almost wish SHE had also been single!
I side with those who want Elsa to remain single.
Some excellent arguments were best summed up by commenter Raygirl from the comments section of the article ‘Why it Doesn’t Matter if Elsa or Any Movie Character is Gay’:
If she becomes gay, the movie will only sell in America…but the movie will be banned in other religious countries. So how is this going to be another billion dollar movie? If we’re thinking from a business perspective making Elsa gay can break the movie’s reputation and interfere with revenue. And its not because of what I believe [is] right and wrong. But rather most of the world is not as progressive or tolerant of gay people like Americans. Elsa would do better being single, for the sake of making worldwide success. If they make her gay, this movie will be a financial flop worldwide and will be filled with criticism.
Why must Elsa find love? Part of her appeal was being a single independent woman. She had different interests other than romance and proves that love does not always have to be romantic. The first movie proved that. By giving her a romantic love interest it will deviate from that message: that love does not always have to be romantic to save the day. The bond between sisters saved the day. I think they should focus on that.
…Why must we change [her from being single and independent to suddenly being a romantic] to fit an agenda? Why don’t they ask for a brand new character that is gay? Elsa was inspirational because she was single… By saying she should be gay or straight, people are insinuating that a person should never be without a romantic partner and that being single is somehow “sad”. Why is her being alone such a bad thing? Why is being single not good enough for people? It’s like the world suspects if you’re not straight, you’re gay and there is no room to be single or even in-between! I’m tired of people assuming a single woman or a man who refuses to marry or date is classified as “gay”. This just reinforces such stereotypes and doesn’t leave room for the imagination nor does it leave room for people to be okay living a single life regardless of their sexual orientation.
She was a loner and wanted to do her own thing. If this were to change, people like me would no longer relate to what made her character so great in the first place. She wasn’t focused on love, she focused on the powers inside of her.
In response to those who feel Merida, Disney’s and Pixar’s Brave heroine, already represents the single ladies and gents:
Why should I have to choose between Merida and Elsa? I like that both of them are single independent women with different personalities. It gives us single people variety to have two different types of women portrayed as single in Disney movies. We’re not all tomboys like Merida, y’know. Some women like wearing sparkly dresses and love our sisters. Are more feminine women like Elsa destined to just be in a relationship? Or can’t any of these women choose to be single? My question for you is why don’t you and many others ask Disney to make a brand NEW Disney princess who is lesbian? Does it have to be one that was already established as a single independent woman in their original form?
Now that she has come to terms with her powers I don’t feel it is necessary to make her a romantic necessarily. In fact, there is so much we have not learned about her powers! I want to see that part of her evolve rather than some offsetting romance. It was bad enough with Anna’s romance. Anna’s romance, in my opinion, interfered with the developing sister relationship in the first Frozen. I don’t want the same thing to happen to my favorite character Elsa.
…I have never had a romantic relationship. And I’m in my 20s. And I plan to keep it that way. My best friend is Asexual and my other best friend is handicapped. They also have never had relationships. My handicapped friend used to cry because she knew she could never date and get married. When she saw Frozen‘s Elsa she was so happy to see a story like Elsa’s and was relieved that Elsa was single. If Elsa had a romantic partner, this would make people like my friend feel bad. So you see, there are people that relate to Elsa in more ways than you realize, that are hoping romance won’t be shoved in their faces. To me relationships don’t mean “Happily Ever After”. My “Happily Ever After” and many others come from being with my friends and family more than some romantic partner. Friends and family will be in your corner no matter how you look or no matter your “sex appeal”. This is why I have chosen to be single. And many others feel the way I do.
In response to someone who related “sexuality” to skin color and gender:
…In Disney movies, the romances technically do advance or interfere with story plots. In fact, most times in Disney’s case the romance tends to be one of the focuses of the story. In the original Frozen, I would have never thought it was a sister story because they focused more on Kristoff and Anna’s growing love life.
A black person is only black by skin. But being black does not reflect a way of life nor a person’s behavior. A woman is only a woman by body, but this also does not reflect her behavior or way of life.
When it comes to homosexuality, it is very different. This reflects not only a feeling and a behavior, but it also reflects a way of life. Therefore, it will alter the story in more ways than being a woman or being black. Including a subtle sexual/romantic theme is the same as including a religion. If people asked for more Jews in Disney movies, this would change the behavior and feeling of the character.
Ari Moore from that same website’s comments section made this interesting note as to why she thinks Elsa should be single:
Loving [oneself] is different from loving someone else for me because my love for myself is unconditional. The love for people however is very conditional.
…The princesses don’t find love, they kind of just meet some random person and do a lot to have that man. Recently it has not been that way but it was like that for a time. To be honest, I do not believe in love and I think stories where there is a love interest is silly and [it is] why women are so ridiculous when it comes to love. To be even more honest, women don’t love, they love the idea of love and men just lust. You can really like someone but I do not think it is love. I think stories about love are setting people up for failure in that aspect because no one really knows what love is. Yes, love stories sell but they should not. It is like false advertisement for the real world because the world is much colder than these fairy tales that disney recreates.
I really just had to put some shine on these words. They really put something on my mind and shaped my view of the whole situation.
While many people may argue that romance and romantic relationships are universal and relate easily to others, nothing is more universal than being single. We are ALL born single; we have all been single at one time. Everyone will not experience relationships or romance. We are only in control of ourselves and the love we have for ourselves. It is the most powerful message for both heterosexuals, homosexuals, bi-sexuals, and asexuals. Heterosexual people don’t often relate to homosexual people and homosexuals don’t often relate to heterosexual lifestyles. But they BOTH can relate to being single. Single people come from all backgrounds.
I think an even better idea would be to give Elsa another female friend in the film but leave their relationship ambiguous. This will allow viewers to see what they want to see and it will satisfy everybody.
So readers, what do you think? Do you think Elsa should remain single or get a female love interest? Or perhaps you’re more conservative and would like Elsa to suddenly follow a traditional route?
It all depends on how you feel the character should evolve. At the end of the day, Disney is going to go with what sales anyhow.
It’s interesting how a children’s film can spark so much debate… Why not let the kids decide? Throughout all of this, no one asked what the kids wanted. These movies are for children who haven’t yet developed an interest in romance.
If you believe that Elsa should stay single, too, sign this petition: #SingleForElsa
Another great article on this topic: Why I’m All for Disney Keeping Elsa Single in Frozen 2
Leave me a comment and let me know what you think.