When Abby, my oldest, was a toddler, she couldn’t get enough Sleeping Beauty in her life and watched the Disney movie, the way toddlers do, over and over and over again – and over again – slamming her sippy cup on the TV when I failed to rewind the tape in the VHS player with a speed that met her expectations. Oh, Modern Mamas with your instantaneous DVD magic! May you never know the pain of prolonged rewinding.
Now, when Abby was 2, she couldn’t pronounce Sleeping Beauty, and so she called Aurora “Seeping Booty,” instead, which is, of course, a leaking butt and always made me think of the beautiful princess Aurora with a terrible, terrible case of diarrhea. Just horrible. The kind that leaves you chalky and pale and doubled over with pain and sure – sure – that you are about to DIE on the toilet, or, worse, pass out and soil yourself and have to live to face the person who finds you. There’s just… nothing beautiful about that. Nothing.
It changes the movie entirely once you consider it from the Seeping Booty perspective, to think of Aurora laid out on that bed, pale and lifeless from a dreadful case of the runs, the finger pricked on the spinning wheel a mere coincidence on which Maleficent capitalized in order to further her reputation as a wicked practitioner of the most nefarious magicks, instead of the truth, which is this: Maleficent is a just an accomplished food poisoner akin to the witch in Snow White who worked her spell on an apple.
And, really, let’s think of Maleficent for just one minute and how it might shape you to be born into a family of benevolent fairies only to discover your one magical gift is to cause people gastrointestinal discomfort. What would you do? Who would you become? Not so easy to casually dismiss Maleficent now, is it? And what if Maleficent’s gift applies not just to others, but also to herself? Wouldn’t a lifelong case of the craps explain the gauntness? The razor-blade cheekbones (even Angelina had to wear prosthetic cheekbones to play her)? The cruel disposition? The giant, fire-breathing dragon, which is obviously a metaphor for the trots, which drag on and drag on and drag-on… DRAG ON. Dragon. Right?
I don’t know. I don’t mean to be critical here, but I think Disney could’ve done a better historical job of making Maleficent a sympathetic character all along by simply divulging this information about her, rather than waiting for a 2-year-old to ferret it out. Of course, I haven’t seen the new Maleficent movie yet, so they probably corrected this gross oversight and I just spoiled the entire thing.
P.S. This post is utterly pointless, FYI, and it occurs to me now I might’ve warned you of that at the beginning. Sorry about that. It’s just that Abby is recovering from foot surgery, which means she’s hopped up on narcotics, unlimited Disney movies, and a general but determined aura of patheticness, and she fell asleep watching Sleeping Beauty the other day which made me happy and maudlin at the same time to remember our Seeping Booty days, and now you’re stuck with this drivel. You’re welcome. It’s what I do.
P.P.S. Abby used to call Clifford the Big Red Dog, “Bullshit.” I thought you should know.