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Like anyone with a kid under the age of 10, I have seen Frozen no fewer than a million times with Frozen II not far behind thanks to the movie being added to Disney+ earlier than expected. Ever since my daughter was around a year old, she has been obsessed, totally, unequivocally obsessed with Anna and Elsa and everything else about the super popular Disney franchise.
If you watch the same movie over and over again, certain things start to stick out, like: Why doesn't Elsa talk about her feelings? What is up with Kristoff? And, why aren't more people willing to accept the fact that Anna is the real hero? Nothing against Elsa or what her character represents, her catchy songs, or anything else about her, but she's not the person we're all rooting for here.
It's Anna, and it's always been Anna. Don't believe me? Fine, just go back and watch Frozen for the millionth time this week and get back with me. Or, you could just hear me out when I say that Anna is the character children should strive more to be like, not Elsa.
Anna Knows That You Can't Carry On Alone
Have you ever noticed that anytime anything happens to Elsa or she feels she needs to do something, she insists on doing it alone? Fine, she's the queen of Arendelle and has the ability to produce ice, but if we've learned anything from both Frozen movies, or any other movie, it's that you can't do things on your own.
Luckily we have Anna to help teach our young children that yes, you can rely on others to help you out in a bind and that you shouldn't burden yourself with the weight of doing everything on your own. We see this multiple times throughout both movies. We first saw this in Frozen when Anna went after Elsa to help her fix the mess the older sister made. They were successful, but it seems like Elsa didn't learn anything from it.
When Elsa is preparing to take off for Ahtohallan in Frozen II, Anna stops her and lets the Queen know that she believed in her, but that they needed to do it together, saying, "Don't do this alone. Let me help you, please." Telling Elsa that they could find the fifth spirit and save the people of Arendelle and Northuldra if they only worked together. But what does Elsa do? Oh, she sends Anna and Olaf off while she goes on to repeat her same mistakes. Elsa eventually comes around, but only after she learns that she could depend on Anna to help, something that Anna had been preaching all along.
Anna Always Acts On The Call To Adventure
Another great quality of a hero is the willingness to act when there's a call to adventure, and Anna does that at multiple times throughout both movies. After Elsa freaks out and turns summer into winter and generally makes a mess of things, Anna is quick to confront her sister, even if she's not properly equipped to do so. She's a "where there's a will, there's a way" type of person, and isn't afraid to put herself in danger (more on that in a bit) if it means she can help out in the situation.
And the same can be said about Anna in Frozen II after Elsa hears the mysterious voice calling her into the wild. Anna, who could have very well stayed back and let her sister take care of things, jumped up and was right by her side, even if she didn't know what to do or how to do it. You could say that Anna could be a little too eager to jump at the first sign of adventure (her quick engagement to Prince Hans comes to mind), but she has all the qualities of a person willing to take of on an adventure, no matter what she stands to lose in the process.
She Actually Talks About Her Feelings
As a parent, I would like for my kids to know that it's okay to talk about your feelings, no matter how hard it is hear what they have to say. I mean, we expect that from everyone, but sometimes you have people, like Elsa, who feel that it's best to simply hide your feelings deep beneath a sheet of ice, run away, and then try to fix things when it's far too late.
Luckily, Anna is the first the share her feelings with just about everyone. Yes, even with that good-for-nothing jerk Prince Hans of the Southern Isles. After Elsa almost killed Anna in the opening minutes of Frozen, the younger sister continued to reach out to her shut-in older sibling and begged for her to play with her. You could hear the pain, hurt, and sorrow in her voice as she pleaded with Elsa to open up. And this continued throughout the rest of the movie and into Frozen II where Anna let just about everyone know how she was feeling at every turn.
Anna Was Willing To Sacrifice Herself To Save Elsa
The biggest thing that Anna has over Elsa, or really any other character in both movies, is the fact that she sacrificed herself to save Elsa from that down and dirty, despicable Prince Hans of the Southern Isles in the final moments of Frozen. By putting herself in danger and stepping between Elsa and Hans' sword, Anna showed Elsa the meaning of true love and taught her how to control her magic.
Now, I don't want one of my kids jumping in front of a bladed weapon anytime soon, but it is nice to see a character show them that sometimes you have to take a stand in order to protect those you love, no matter what you stand to lose in doing so.
She Never Gave Up On Her Sister, Even After Elsa Threw An Ice Dagger At Her Heart
But the most the important act of heroism that Anna showed throughout both movies was her unwillingness to give up on her sister, even after Elsa nearly killed her two times, pushed her aside, and held back her feelings. A less noble character would have given up, but not Anna. The eternal optimist never stopped believing in her older sister, no matter what happened.
And I think that's what's so important about Anna and all that she represents. Sure, you can talk about your feelings, jump at the call to action, make sacrifices, and just about everything else she did, but it's all for naught if you lose faith in someone. Through it all, Anna never gave up and continued fighting for what she believed in, even if Elsa wasn't the best at reciprocating.
Those are just a few examples why Anna is the real hero of the Frozen movies. Sure, Anna can be difficult at times, but her heart and head and in the right place, and she's gonna fight like hell to stand up for those she holds close to her heart. Let's just hope she continues to be heroic now that she's the new queen of Arendelle.