i was watching Mary Poppins for the tenth time (i love everything about the movie, especially "Feed the Birds!") and seriously they could never remake it with the same George Banks. And Mrs Banks. i googled "Mary Poppins sexist" because i thought i would have a good laugh at how these old fashioned characters offend people and my how it's good things have changed. Here's what i got,
"How she destroys the self-esteem of little girls everywhere: "Surely, not Mrs. Banks!" you're thinking. "She was a suffragette. She belongs on the list of The 7 Least Sexist Disney Characters!" And you'd be right about the suffragette bit. In Britain, women with a hankering to vote went to lengths just short of terrorism for that right. Mrs. Banks come home filled with joy and excitement about women chaining themselves to the Prime Minister's carriage, and then leads the household staff in a chorus of Sister Suffragettes, including the unforgettable line, "Though we adore men individually, we agree that as a group they're rather stupid."
Unfortunately, as soon as the song ends, her husband comes home, and all that "no longer meek and mild subservients" stuff goes right out the window. She shoves away all the sashes (because she knows "how the cause infuriates Mr. Banks") before the husband waltzes in the door, oblivious to everything except the way she looks.
MRS. BANKS: Dear, it's about the children -!
MR. BANKS: Yes, yes, yes. [Turns around and walks away]
MRS. BANKS: They're missing, George!
MR. BANKS: Splendid, splendid.
He goes on to sing that he treats his "subjects ... servants ... children, wife, with a firm but gentle hand. Noblesse oblige." Meanwhile, his wife looks like she is about to cry. Maybe Mrs. Banks isn't the sexist character here. Maybe it's Mr. Banks. At least she attempts to make him acknowledge the sentience of his children. But she's still way too complicit in this thing. Mr. Banks lays heaps of blame on her, and she accepts that everything is her fault and all but apologizes for being a terrible, incompetent person. If her husband straight-up slapped her, she'd probably thank him for teaching her a lesson.
Unfortunate moral: Everything that goes wrong in your marriage is the woman's fault.
What would have made it better: If Winifred Banks stopped being a simpering ninny and told her husband to suck her left one once in a while.
MRS. BANKS: It's about the children, George - !
MR. BANKS: Yes, yes, yes.
MRS. BANKS: DID YOU HEAR WHAT I JUST FUCKING SAID?"
Yes i think swearing is an oh so empowering way to make your point to the man who at that time, let's face it, basically is responsible for the roof over your head.
The link above has more sexist Disney characters including the favourites Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Little Mermaid. Snow White being a good cook destroys "the self esteem of little girls everywhere" (i would have thought peer pressure, dictating and bitchiness does that), Sleeping Beauty is passive, Little Mermaid puts her man before her family.
i understand and completely support and believe in a woman's choice which means i also support that some women's choice is her home, looks and love. Women have more choices now and yet they also have to deal with the tut tuts..did she really give up her her job for him? i know women have fought and fought and fought and will still fight for their rights but for me these rights also include freedom and that means actual freedom not just the freedom granted by A section of society, be it men or be it other women. And with regards to men, it shouldn't come as a shock that not all women are forced to stay at home, they may actually want to and they may actually be doing it for a man. Now acknowledging the truth, THAT is empowering to me.
"If her husband straight-up slapped her, she'd probably thank him for teaching her a lesson." Learning fast *laughs*