Snow White's Enchanted Wish

Disneyland has only been open for a week and already the theme park has been the center of a controversy, albeit a strange one. The update to the Snow White dark ride, Snow White's Enchanted Wish, included a number of improvements to the attraction, but one change was seen as unnecessary by at least one writer, who was critical of the inclusion of the "true love's kiss" moment, as it was technically a non-consensual kiss. What followed was a cascade of overreactions. The initial criticism was blown up by some to be bigger than it actually was, resulting in a backlash to the backlash that was already blown out of proportion.

Now, one Walt Disney Imagineer, Jim Shull, has responded to the whole mess on Twitter. While he admits that sometimes cultural norms change and that sometimes that means looking back at stories in a different context, he ultimately points out, as many have, that the ride is based on a movie that is over 80-years-old, and that as an interpretation of that movie, the ride is simply accurate. Also, the new ride is just amazing.

Jim Shull's last point here is really the major takeaway that a lot of those who have ridden Snow White's Enchanted Wish seem to be taking away. For a simple storybook dark ride the attraction is getting strong reviews. The animatronics in use are top of the line, the projection effects are solid. Walt Disney Imagineering has done great work and should be celebrated for it.

As far as the rest of it goes, it seems to be largely much ado about nothing. Some outlets freaked out that people were freaking out over Snow White, when it doesn't actually appear that many people were freaking out in the first place. Even conceding the initial point that Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs contains a kiss that the lead character can't consent to, nobody really seems that bothered by it. The truth is that people love this moment. It's true love's kiss, and so there's an underlying understanding that the kiss is wanted. People seem to understand this overall. While Disney Parks have been making an effort to make sure the attractions convey the appropriate messages, in the hierarchy of issues that Disneyland needs to fix, this is low on the list.

Almost certainly this is an issue that will fade away and while people might still mention it, it will cease to be a major topic of conversation. Considering how well received Snow White's Enchanted Wish is, the ride probably won't be going through any additional changes to fixz this "problem" anytime soon. There certainly have been times that Disney has needed to enact a quick fix when an unexpected problem was discovered, but it does not sound like anything along those lines is even being considered.

Snow White's Enchanted Wish is now open at Disneyland Resort.

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