I am a huge of fan of the Disney princesses. I’m 30 years old and I still collect princess stuff. Who doesn’t love Ariel’s curiosity or Jasmine’s independence? But my favorite princess? That has to be Belle. Without discussion, Belle is the very best Disney princess. Belle is also the most unique princess of the Disney princess posse.
I argue that Belle is the most unique among her princess companions. First, Belle is the only brunette. I have argued with others intently on this point. Just for the record, black hair is NOT a darker shade of brown, just like blond is not a lighter shade of brown. Black is black – raven haired. Blond is blond and red is red. Black and Blond have always dominated the hair color of princesses. Only recently, do we have a second red-headed princess (Ariel, The Little Mermaid and Merida, Brave). Belle (Beauty and the Beast) now stands alone in her uniquness. It could be argued, that Rapunzel (Tangled) becomes brunette in the end. But since she is a blond for 90% of the movie, we must deduce that she is a blond princess. There are many princesses with Raven hair (Jasmine, Snow White, Mulan, Tanya, ect) and many princesses with Golden hair (Aurora, Cinderella, Rapunzel, ect), but Belle is the ONLY princess with Brown/Brunette hair. Now why do I spend so much time on this seemingly minor point? Perhaps it is because I myself am a brunette, and I kind of take offense that brown hair seems to be an unsuitable hair color for a princess.
Belle is also a reader. We get the impression that all of the princesses are educated and have their talents: Cinderella is industrious, Jasmine is independent, Ariel is curious, Merida is adventurous, ect. But Belle loves books. The best gift that was given to her was the Beast’s library. She is a nerd. This is a reason to love Belle. This is the reason I love Belle. Again, I relate to Belle: we are both brunettes and big nerds who love our books.
Belle also saves the prince in the end not vice versa. Oh, we can’t forget that he does save her (from the wolves), but in the end it is her love that brings him back to life. Now, this is not totally unique. But, it is fairly unique to her generation of princesses: Snow White, Aurora, Cinderella – all saved by their princes. Belle is part of this masculine dominated 90s generation group of princesses. The 21st generation of princess are a little bit more . . . strong. Rapunzel saves her “prince” with her healing tears. Jasmine is strong, but not really the savior. Belle was a first of her kind. The princess who saves the prince.
All in all Belle is a book-loving beauty who saves her beast. She is the most unique, intelligent, beautiful princess of the Disney princesses. And even though I take some offense that she is the only brunette, it does make me smile that I share physical and intellectual attributes with this particular princess.