Despite my best efforts the Child is totally obsessed with Disney princesses. At first I railed against it but now I’ve learnt to just go along with it as long (anything for a quiet life). This little obsession has ended up with us watching a lot of Disney films over the last year. Thankfully they’ve not all been of the princess variety but whilst the Child is invariable enamoured with the hero or heroine I’ve found myself, unsurprisingly relating to the mother figures. Never appreciated, often ignored and rarely given their own action figure, these characters are quietly keeping their shit together. So today I’m raising the flag for my ten favourite Disney Mums – I salute you.
Mother Gothel, Tangled
Mother Gothel is one of my all-time favourite Disney characters and the inspiration for this list. She would get on the list solely for this awesome response when asked by Rapunzel how she tracked her down:
“Well, it was easy really. I just listened to the sound of complete and utter betrayal and followed that.”
Ouch – you got burned Rapunzel.
And I know I know it’s a little questionable to keep someone locked up in a tower because their hair has magical healing and time-reversing properties and she did get a little cray cray towards the end. BUT she did care for Rapunzel for 18 years, keep her in a spacious tower and teach her lots of skills to keep her occupied. And what thanks did she get? The ungrateful brat ran off with the first man she met and then didn’t seem that bothered when her de facto mother (spoiler alert) disappeared into a puff of dust. What a bitch.
Mrs Potts, Beauty and the Beast
This woman turns into a teapot and still manages to her get her kid to bed on time. Respect Mamma.
Queen Elinor, Brave
I’m sure we can all relate to this poor woman who just wants her daughter to do as she’s fricking well told. If Merida’s disobedience wasn’t enough she goes and turns her long-suffering mum in a bloody bear.The fact that Elinor didn’t just eat Merida there and then to teach her a lesson makes her more than worthy to sit on this list.
Riley’s Mum, Inside Out
This woman moves across the US just so her husband can set up some wanky new company (which he is a complete arse about fyi) and does she complain? Does she whinge and run away because all her stuff is stuck in a removal van two states away? Does she even get her own name? Damn it Riley, she’s been wearing the same shirt for 5 days now so the least you can do is eat your damn dinner without getting a cob on.
Coral, Funding Nemo
Coral literally died trying to save her children. Harry Potter’s mum did that and no one could stop banging on about it but poor Coral’s sacrifice is used purely as a set-up for some smaltzy father-son movie. I mean wtf is that about?
Mrs Banks, Mary Poppins
Not only does Mrs Banks get extra points for being a suffragette she also puts up with some unbearably smug stranger coming into her house and telling her how to raise her children. Precisely how many children do you have Mary? Well fuck off then.
Andy’s Mum, Toy Story
As far as I can tell she has raised two kids single-handedly which deserves mega kudos. She has also managed not to lose Woody’s hat. She is my hero.
Sarabi, Lion King
Let’s look at this sensibly. Sarabi not only loses her husband and her son on the same day, she then has to shack up with her brother-in-law, which I’m assuming includes bumping uglies, and then her son waltzes back into the kingdom and just assumes his position of head of state. Talk about male privilege.
Lady Tremaine, Cinderella
Now I know on the surface this one seems slightly dubious but bear with me. Lady Tremaine marries some dude and accepts his daughter. Then he dies leaving her with a third child she didn’t even want. Does she throw Cinderella out on the street or cart her off to the nearest orphanage? No, she feeds and clothes the little urchin and all she asks is for a little bit of housework in return. Yet suddenly Cinderella is the victim. Absolutely bloody typical.
Perdita, 101 Dalmatians
She gives birth to 15 children; someone get some ice for that vagina.