I was listening to some This American Life on my iPod today while driving and came across Living the Dream. This American Life is no stranger of stories about trans people, and the first act in Living the Dream is about trans girls in LA. (Another interesting episode, though not without its detractors, is Testosterone, which is about said hormone and has one act about a trans man and his experiences.) One of the girls in Living the Dream mentions Ariel, from The Little Mermaid, and how Ariel meant a lot to her (and other trans girls) as a metaphor for transitioning. And that got me thinking…
Does Ariel worry about passing?
Does she worry about putting on makeup and having it look good? Even if she had makeup as a mermaid, the application of makeup in and out of the water must be different. I’d imagine the limited selection of outfits she had as a mermaid didn’t really carry over into fashion sense as a human – how could she understand color matching and outfit selection when she’s only worn a seashell bikini her whole life?
Does Prince Eric worry about his friends and family reading Ariel as a post-op mermaid? Do his parents know he’s married to someone who isn’t a woman-born-woman? (And are they accepting if they do know?)
Likewise, would the prince from Beauty and the Beast (does he even have a name?) qualify as a part of the ex-beast movement? (The cure of which was just finding the right girl?) Is he just with Belle to please the neighbors? Is she forgiving of his inevitable indiscretions with the monsters who dwell in the forest?
I’m really enjoying this warped view of things, and need to write more on this later… Any other movies or pop culture that would work well?