Disney Movies: Experts at Scarring Children for Life

Someone asked me if I was excited about the new Dumbo movie.  I had to restrain myself from responding with one or more of the following:

“I would rather replace every strip of bacon I eat with a similarly sized strip of duct tape that was used to pick hairs up from a crime scene that occurred on a bus station bathroom floor.”

“I would rather be locked in a room with Adam Levine (who I prefer to refer to as “Gonorrhea Jesse Pinkman”) and forced to listen to him wax philosophical about his ab routine for three days straight.”

“I would rather go back in time and replace every Love Boat cast member with a Kardashian/Jenner.  Kylie is the new Gopher!”

But, oh no!  You can’t be honest in those situations!  People get all, “Geez!  Sorry I asked!”

You know, people claim to want honesty above all else, but I can tell you from experience, the last thing most people want from you is honesty.  What people really want is for you to agree with them.

And you know what I don’t agree with?

Subjecting myself to Dumbo for a second time in my life.

Yeah, I saw it when I was five years old, and that was frankly more than enough to emotionally scar me for life.  The only way you could make me watch the re-make is if you were to put me in a straitjacket and hold my eyes open a la A Clockwork Orange.  Even then, I would just try to use The Force to choke myself unconscious.

Don’t act like I’m the only adult who still tries to use The Force.  I attempt it at least a few times a week when presented with “unpleasant situations” in public.  It hasn’t worked yet, but I swear last week a guy in front of me in the Walgreens line started to loosen his top collar button to get some air when he asked for a raincheck on a sale item during rush hour.  Had he turned around at that moment, he would have seen me doing this:


He continued breathing air despite my righteous efforts of justice, happy as a raincheck-clam to torture all of the people he was holding up in line.  I could deal with it if it were some poor little old lady in a muu-muu and knee-highs, but this guy walked outside in his fancy golf outfit and suede driving moccasins and climbed into his S-Class Mercedes, raincheck in-hand for two canisters of almonds.

I pictured him sitting at a table later that night at Long John Silver’s, complaining that the seafood “just simply wasn’t up to snuff”.  THEN GO TO A REAL SEAFOOD RESTAURANT, JOHN “BUDDY” REGINALD RUTHERFORD-WINCHESTER III.  You clearly have the money and are just playing mind games with the rest of us!  You can pay full price for almonds, you rich prick!

In case you’re wondering, The Force also doesn’t work on making the tires of an S-Class Mercedes explode and rain down from the sky in hot tar ashes onto the tops of someone’s suede driving moccasins.  I place equal blame for that one on: (a) my rejection letter from Jedi school, and (b) quality German engineering.

Back to the Dumbo thing.

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, then first of all, sorry, and second, you know I was an anxious worry-wort of a child.  A nervous wreck.  A real Sensitive Sally.  I didn’t really require supplemental things to worry about.

So imagine my surprise, sitting in front of a television screen, kindergarten-dangly-legs-happy to see “the cute elephant movie”, when Dumbo appears on the screen, gets mercilessly tormented by all the other circus animals, his mother defends him, and then she gets taken away from him and locked up in a cage, leaving Dumbo to fend for himself in a harsh, cruel world.

Hey you know what I shouldn’t have had to worry about when I was a kid?  My mother being taken away from me and locked up, leaving me alone to traverse a cruel world.  I don’t care if it works out in the end – little kids shouldn’t have to worry about those things.  Yes, sometimes it happens, mothers get locked up, kids get taken away, but worrying about it in advance will do absolutely nothing beneficial for you as a kid.

Same with Bambi.  Kids shouldn’t have to worry about their mothers getting shot by hunters.  How about we just let them cross that bridge when it happens and address it at that time, because odds are pretty damn good that it’s not going to happen in the first place?  In the meantime you’re just terrifying children for no good reason.

If you want to teach kids about things like life and death, forego the Disney films and get them a hamster, and then never, ever, ever, ever, ever let them actually hold the hamster, because having to watch a child hold a hamster is the most nerve-wracking thing I’ve ever experienced.

You know what?  No hamsters.  Get them a fish with a locking lid on the tank, put barbed wire around the outside of the tank, and keep the tank in a locked room that the kid can never get into.

Children around small pets is just too much for me.  I can’t take it.

“Look how cute Bryson/Greyson/Flotsam is holding the baby chick!”


So, no.  I’m not seeing the new Dumbo movie.

41 thoughts on “Disney Movies: Experts at Scarring Children for Life

  1. It is difficult to make a child more sad and traumatized than making it sit through one of those films. My mother died about the time I turned three and I think those movies caused my episodes of depression to be even more acute. I am reminded of tRump’s policies separating children from their families at the border. So, yeah, fuck tRump and fuck Disney and his twisted psyche. I’ll keep practicing the force and also Voodoo until one of them works.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so sorry to hear about your mother. No child should have to go through that. I can imagine having to sit through those movies only added salt to the wound.

      Maybe if we all use The Force at a coordinated time, we can change the world for the better. How’s noon, Eastern Standard Time? That work for everyone?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I see someone else beat me to the “Disney hates Moms’ punch. I was in a theatre waiting to see The Nutcracker (yup, Mom’s dead) and there were trailers for Mary Poppins (Mom’s dead AGAIN) and Dumbo (Mom gets attacked). WTF, Disney? Also, I can’t believe you got rejected from Jedi school–I’d love to go there just so I could say “Is that a light-sabre in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s insanity. 80s sitcoms had a similar pattern. Full House, My Two Dads, Diff’rent Strokes, The Hogan Family, Punky Brewster, Gimme a Break, Who’s The Boss. It’s like there was a pop culture war on mothers!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree as well, I mean I saw Dumbo around the time I was four or five and I left the theater almost in tears. I didn’t understand that my mom wouldn’t be taken away from me, but if I knew then what I know now that might have been a good thing, lol. What is it with Disney and these films? I mean look at all the Princess films, Snow White, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty they are portrayed as the help, the unwanted, the step-children no one except some far away prince wants. What types of role models are these for girls? And you already know what I think about the Prince Charming “effect.” Its’s bullshit, the only Disney film princess I truly admire is Merida from Brave, she’s a kick-ass, don’t mess with me, I’ll cut your balls off type of Princess and that is what I love about her character.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The last Disney movie I sat through was in high school. when they showed The Lion King on a bus to Grad Night. As soon as they killed off the father, I was like “DONE!” Never watching another Disney movie ever again! I’ve managed to stick with it all these years.

      I’ve heard the newer movies are better at all this stuff in general, but I’m not willing to take my chances. 😉

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Preach! All those sweet little animal movies had abuse, torture or death themes.
    I cried for days after seeing Bambi as a child.
    I ran screaming from the room during Old Yeller.
    Now a whole new generation of children will be weeping for that poor little elephant.
    Way to go Walt…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I took you to see Bambi with your sisters. When the forest fire scene started, you stood up in your seat and screamed at the top of your lungs: “Run Bambi run!!” It is that seminal point in your life when the Disney scarring began. Let’s not even talk about Bambi’s mom.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bambi is so horrifying, I think I’d rather watch The Shining in a dark cabin alone in the woods than sit through it again!

      I think if 2 Live Crew albums have to come with a warning, so should Disney movies!


  6. First of all- I love the way you wrote this!
    Secondly- I will be avoiding Dumbo like the absolute plague, my 7yo expressed an interest, but he found the beginning of Elf devastating so I don’t want to even think about the damage Dumbo would cause!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks!! Good call on the 7yo skipping out on Dumbo. I just saw Elf for the first time this year and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked it! Of course I’m in my 40s now so the beginning didn’t bother me as much as it would have when I was 7!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Fun fact (or twisted, weird, creepy fact, depending) the cemetery where my late husband is buried has a “Disney” section – where a whole family whose surname was Disney is buried. No idea if there is any relation, but we are in the greater Chicago area (Walt was born in Chicago but moved away when he was three or four, I think. To Missouri).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When I first read “Disney section”, I pictured something entirely different. Something in the way of Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck statues. 😉

      It’s such an uncommon name, and especially given that Walt was from the area, I bet they probably are related!


  8. DISNEY IS THE WORST. Statutory rape (ARIEL), necrophilia (Snow White, Sleeping Beauty), indentured servitude and bullying (Cinderella, DUMBO)…

    And to all the mothers who hate on Harry Potter for “witchcraft, wizardry, and evil,” let me just say
    WICKED QUEEN GRIMHILDE (from Snow White)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Disney was the master of horror stories for children. I refuse to watch Dumbo or Bambi, and will never allow that shit in my home. My favorite Disney movies are the Incredibles and the sequel…BECAUSE THERE IS NO DEAD MOTHER. So I am right there with you, sista, when it comes to that elephant bullshit.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I don’t know if this counts because it’s not a Disney movie but OMG small me cried a river watching Land Before Time when the Mom dies. Every time! It just gutted me. I still cry every time I see a dinosaur die. Just takes me right back.

    Awesome post, love your style!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I never saw it after I heard about the mother dying. I’m so glad I knew in advance or I would be so upset when it happened!

      Same thing with any movie where a dog dies. Nope! Not watching! Life is hard enough!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m with you! Although, as a glutton for punishment I’ll most likely see dumbo. And yes, I practice using the force at least once a week. I’m 62 and unapologetic.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re a much braver soul than me. Bring a box of tissues and a therapist to the theater with you. 🙂

      I’m so glad to hear you use The Force. Just like Obi Wan Kenobe, it’s our only hope!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. So true. If the damn theme park was not one of my favorite places I would be totally anti- Disney. How can you create movies that lead moms to untimely demises and have such a rockin theme park?

    I had to watch Clockwork Orange for a college phillosophy class and was home over break. My dad walked in the room and about flipped his lid. He could not figure out how a conservative Catholic college required me to watch such a weird, disturbing film. #theworst

    Liked by 1 person

  13. So that is my comment but I cannot figure out why it does not show a link to my blog. I am clueless when it comes to the internet and the web, but I make a damn fine batch of cookies and I write a funny blog, so there’s that. Trying again and hoping this time you see my blog’s name (nosmallfeetblog) in case you Game of Thrones gets boring and you want to visit.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I am 100% positive that I commented on this a few days ago, but I’m not seeing it. It was something about how Disney hates Moms and a few examples. Regardless, I’m with you about Dumbo:-)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s weird – I can see it on my side. This one, right?:

      I see someone else beat me to the “Disney hates Moms’ punch. I was in a theatre waiting to see The Nutcracker (yup, Mom’s dead) and there were trailers for Mary Poppins (Mom’s dead AGAIN) and Dumbo (Mom gets attacked). WTF, Disney? Also, I can’t believe you got rejected from Jedi school–I’d love to go there just so I could say “Is that a light-sabre in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?”

      Liked by 1 person

  15. The movie I hated the most as a child was Toy Story.


    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.