The Secret of the Wings, Disney’s fourth Fairies movie, will be released today on DVD and Blu-ray. Cue little girls across the country begging for the latest tale featuring Tinker Bell and the other fairies at Pixie Hollow.
Capitalizing on the tremendous success of the Disney Princess franchise, the entertainment company decided to launch Disney Fairies in 2005. Since then, more than 1,400 Disney Fairies and Tinker Bell books have been published in 57 countries and 33 languages and over 1.6 million copies of Disney Fairies magazines have been sold.
Side note: There’s a magazine? I must look into that.
Having two young daughters at home, I am well acquainted with Tink and her fairy friends. Several new characters join the fun in The Secret of the Wings, including Periwinkle, a winter fairy that happens to be Tinker Bell’s sister. There’s also a dazzling new fairy world to explore in the Winter Woods, where Periwinkle resides.
I already ordered it for my girls. I couldn’t help it. I love those fairies. When the first movie came out, I was reluctant to like it. Tinker Bell belongs in Neverland, with Peter Pan and the lost boys. Duh. Also I think I’m supposed to be worried about Cinderella eating my daughter or something about defining gender roles in childhood.
I ended up loving the sweet message of the first movie, which depicted the birth of Bell upon a child’s first laugh, and her struggle to find contentment in her life as a tinker. Sometimes we can’t choose our circumstances, but we can always choose to bloom where we’re planted.
That’s the kind of thing I want my children to see -- in real life and in the things they see on the screen. Even if it comes from a pretty fairy that lives in a pink flower.
What do you think? Do Disney Fairy movies promote gender stereotypes, or are they just good fun?