5 Disney Movies You Didn’t Realize Were Secretly Horrifying
By Darrin Jones / December 31

5. Beauty and the Beast 

Well finally we’ve come to it, the most horrifying of horrifying: Beauty and the Beast. A young prince is transformed by magic into a horrible beast because of his jerk-ish ways and his castle and all in it are cursed along with him--yeah because the servants totally deserved that I guess. It’s never been clear to me why the whole castle had to suffer just because of one prince’s bad attitude but lets move on. The curse will only be lifted when he “loves and is loved in return.”

Cut to years later, Belle, a beautiful free spirited bookworm in a nearby unnamed French village has to find her father lost in the nearby woods. Of course she finds her sick father in the Beast’s castle dungeon and offers to take her father’s place. Through the course of the film, Belle slowly starts to fall in love with the Beast as he starts to feel for her. A romance blooms but is challenged when Belle’s village finds out about the Beast’s whereabouts and storms the castle. The Beast is nearly killed but instead, Belle confesses her love for the Beast and he is turned back into a human prince to live happily ever after with his true love, Belle. Even the new Not-Beast’s cursed servants become human again. Truly it is a great magical story.

Whoa! Maybe he was better off looking like a Beast.

Now let’s go ahead and drain all that magical good feeling and replace it with the horrible realization that Belle has a classic case of Stockholm Syndrome. Basically, a sufferer of Stockholm Syndrome will develop positive feelings for their captures, often to the point of empathizing with them and, on some occasions, even loving them. And yes the Beast does let her roam around the castle giving her gifts and throwing romantic balls but before all that, he kept her in the drafty tower as a prisoner.

“This is the cold dark room I’ll keep you for a while. The Ball’s at 6 o’clock tomorrow. See ya!”

You also have to consider that the Beast was completely ostracized from the world except for one, and absolutely one, woman crossing his path. Granted Belle is a beautiful wonderful person but we know that as the audience because we spent time following Belle through her life at home. But the Beast has had much less time actually being around Belle as they tended to stay in opposite sides of the castle and he has never seen her when she wasn’t a kidnap victim. So even though these two are “in love” they actually know nothing about each other. And! The Beast has transformed right in front of her. She fell in love with the misunderstood brute that was warm and furry ruling over a magical castle, not some decent looking royalty in a boring stuffy kingdom.

I mean look at this! It’s singing dancing cutlery, what girl wouldn’t fall in love with that?

Belle can’t trust whether she truly loves the Beast or is just suffering from a mental condition. The Beast has never met the real Belle, only the captive he’s kept in his castle. But the problems with the Beauty and the Beast go way beyond just the relationship between Belle and Beast. Imagine you were turned into an immortal piece of furniture, separated from the world and your family, living only to serve an ill-tempered prince and clean a dusty castle for all eternity. And now imagine one day that suddenly just stops. You’re human, you’re mortal, and you’re thrust back into the world after being absent for years. Think you’d be a little annoyed? Well now that’s a whole castle right along with you.

“And we’re going to have a hell of a lot of back pay after this, I can tell you.”

No matter how to slice it, the servants in the Beauty and the Beast got the short-end of the stick with the whole ‘curse’ situation. Not to mention they are expected to still stay working for the prince. Yeah, they probably have a mean case of Stockholm Syndrome themselves by this point.

Jump to: Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5

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