Yellow Snow: "Frozen" and the Cult of Elsanna

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Anybody who's read my top picks for the best movies of last year knows that I have very strong feelings about Frozen, a frankly epic masterpiece of animated cinema, if not cinema in general. It rights a lot of wrongs that Disney films have historically perpetrated, from featuring two female characters that aren't defined by men, to sending an ultimately positive message to both children and adults. If you haven't seen it, I encourage you to stop reading this and go shell out your money for a ticket. Hell, maybe even two, as I've already seen the damn thing three times, and will probably see it once or twice more for the fuck of it. It's okay, I can wait.

But on a serious note, a disturbing trend has been occurring, as brought to my attention by a wonderful yet disheartening news post on Nerve. It's become quite popular, it seems, to pair up the two main sisters, two of the strongest female protagonists in recent films, and put them together in an incestuous lesbian relationship. Now, this is not uncommon, but the scale on which it's happening is, given that there's already a fervent "Elsanna Fandom" that produces steamy fanart, elaborate fan-fiction, playlists, RPs... you name it, they've got it. They'll make adamant, lengthy defenses of their "ship," talking at great length about how Elsa is "such a lesbian" and other things of that sort.

Yeah, no, it's just as terrible as it sounds. Beware the frozen heart, and prepare for minor spoilers, because I'm going to take a look at these... unique... individuals.
Let's be perfectly clear. Porn of cartoon characters on the web is nothing new, really, as anybody who knows the timeless thirty-fourth rule of the internet will tell you. People like watching attractive animated people fucking, it's as simple as that; bonus points if they're a revered childhood icon that gave you weird feelings every Saturday morning. Simply put, it shouldn't be that shocking that porn of Elsa and Anna exists, nor should it be shocking that it's of an incestuous lesbian nature. There's nothing wrong with lesbian relationships, after all, and they're often sexualized to the umpteenth degree for the titillation of men and women the world over. And while incest is generally acknowledged to be fucked-up to high hell by most states in the US, it, too, is common porno fodder. Hey, the "forbidden fruit" angle is pretty savvy marketing, no? Anyone? Anyone? Okay, moving on.

So why, then, am I picking on the Elsanna fandom? Well, aside from the fact that they missed the whole point of the fucking movie, are making the problematic assumption that independent single women are probably lesbians, and that they're implying that the phrase "I love you" must belay some innate sexual desire to fuck your sibling's brains out? Putting all that to the side, damning as it may be, there's one little annoying trait that these people have that really earns them a special slot in the Ninth Circle of Alighieri's Hell, ironically the coldest section. That trait, ladies and genteel men, is their self-righteous attitude. Click through that Tumblr blog, or any of the others linked from it. Go through the comments section of that Nerve article. Ignorant privilege and smug self-satisfaction aplenty, there, and the deeper you go, the worse it gets. Plumb the depths of DeviantArt, or dig into the prostate of Fan-Fiction.net if you don't believe me. Oh, yeah, I dare you.

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The problem here, really, is that the Elsanna fandom is like a lot of people on Tumblr (I should know; I've run a blog on there for over two years now): they think they're special little snowflakes, and that because they have the oh-so-difficult "talent" to imagine two imaginary characters in an imaginary relationship with their imaginations, that they are some sort of heaven-sent deities, tasked with the burden of enlightening the unwashed masses with their made-up pairing. Reading over these hundreds of comments, that's the impression I get, anyways. Not only that, but they demand recognition as a legitimate fandom, instead of just being mere Frozen fans, because everybody knows that those people are obviously filthy peasants who don't understand the true depth of Elsa and Anna's lesbian romance. When pushed, they act like an oppressed demographic, which is incredibly insensitive to, you know, actual oppressed demographic. Like African-Americans, Asians, Hispanics, and, oh yes, women.

Women, who Frozen is sending an incredibly positive message to. In movies of Disney past, even the stronger female characters have had to go through some sort of narrative validation by the male characters, whether it be through marriage, having their life saved, or being woken up by a non-consensual kiss. This film, on the other hand, features a queen without a king, who learns to express her emotions instead of burying them, and by consequence, saving the lives of thousands after she almost froze them all to death. Not only that, but sisterly love as opposed to romantic love saves the day, breaking the age-old cliche that Disney has perpetuated for decades. It's a wonderful message to send to younger girls, really: don't let society push you into burying who you are, and don't feel like you need a man, or any romantic love for that matter, to validate your existence. It's poignant and powerful, and left me speechless all three times I saw it.

But the Elsanna "fandom" doesn't seem to be getting this message. Instead, these people find the need to force a relationship that isn't there by turning positive male character Kristoph into a means through which Anna can get pregnant for Elsa (because everybody knows women have to be mothers, right?), by turning Elsa into a lesbian who needs Anna's physical comfort instead of sisterly affection, and about a million other revolting tropes that serve no purpose other than to turn these positive female characters into babymaking, objectified caregivers. Now, this may come across as sexist, and I do apologize if that's the case, but as a dude, this is the type of behavior I'd expect from horned-up male fans of the movie, not a large collection of younger women. I mean, one of the major points of this movie is that you can be whoever you want to be, regardless of your gender, and yet the takeaway for a lot of girls is that... Anna and Elsa should totally hook up? Are you fucking kidding me? No, really, are you fucking kidding me?

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This, to me, is no different than certain fans of the My Little Pony community who feel like rape is a necessary plot device to "strengthen" the characters (not a shot at the fandom itself, as I'm obsessed with the series), only with less neckbeards and fedoras, and more self-righteous temper tantrums about how people obviously don't "understand" the source material. Now, given that when held in comparison to the rest of the internet, this is a very vocal minority that revels in negative attention, don't get out your pitchforks and torches quite yet. In all likelihood, this flimsy "fandom" will probably go the way of many pop-up fandoms and fuck off. Frankly, it's a limited and one-track little diversion that doesn't seem to have much room to grow.

Why, then, bring attention to it? Well, simply put, it's good to be aware that it's not only misogynistic pricks out there perpetuating negative stereotypes and portrayals of women. Partriarchal ideals of womanhood and the fetishization of incest and LGBTQ people are commonplace among both genders, and should be called the fuck out for all to see, especially when they're inadvertently attempting to undo positive portrayals of women.




Comments

  1. Wow the internet is a weird place to be. I never know what to think of the World Wide Web except just that. Its weird.

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  2. Hey, thanks for those three pictures. I hadn't found them yet. Definitely gonna save them.

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    1. This guy knows what's up.

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  3. I'd like to quote Taylor Swift here: "Haters gonna hate hate hate hate hate."
    TBH, I never thought a person would do so much research on a subject they frown upon.

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  4. Doesn't mean somebody ships elsanna doesn't mean he/she doesn't know the real message the film brings ya'know? plus shipping elsanna does not mean fucking your own sibling!!

    Incest sucks yeah, I know, in real life yeah... but when it comes to elsanna, it doesn't matter at all cuz they are not even real, they're fictional characters grow up! Its not like you're the ones being shipped.

    I don't understand why you have to hate it though, its not like somebody got hurt or something, you could still cosplay or play as Anna or Elsa, right? :3

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  5. Don't stereotype. I'm a normal person, do normal things, have normal friends. I also happen to think Elsa and Anna are an interesting pairing.

    You seem to be angry about certain behaviors and tropes in the fandom that are common amongst all fandoms in one form or another, or that have tropes who's effects are analogous to those in the Elsanna fandom. You also seem to ignore the fact that a lot of people don't agree with those behaviors and tropes, that aren't actively looking for materialor like that, who are looking for normal content based on a pairing they enjoy.

    I guess what I'm saying is, just because some people and content in the fandom are stupid, doesn't mean the whole fandom is, or that people can't ship them.

    And so what if people want to see/read about them in erotic situations? They're characters.

    The whole fandom doesn't revolve around the line "I love you", more the characters' personalities, actions and the events before and throughout the film (depending on whether the content is STP, AU or mAU).

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