Beauty and the Beast : PSA about Beauty and the Beast

PSA about Beauty and the Beast

PSA about Beauty and the Beast:

Recently I have seen some strange posts along the lines of “Why can’t they follow the original dark ending? Why does Disney have to give it a Happy ending?” in regard to Beauty and the Beast.

I decided to get to the bottom of this and found there is an old Internet rumor that the original Beauty and the Beast ended with either the death of The Beast or The Beast eating Belle. Whoever started this rumor is confusing Beauty and the Beast for the oldest version of Little Red Riding Hood also known as Little Red Riding Cap (from 1693).

The version of Beauty and the Beast that is the popular fairy tale is an abridged and revised version of the surprisingly feminist 1740 French novel La belle et la bête by Madame Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve. (It talks about a woman’s right to choose a husband, and The Prince’s mother was a Queen who lead an army to defend her kingdom).

No version of Beauty and the Beast exists in which The Beast eats Belle (Beauty) or where The Beast dies and stays dead. There are versions where the evil faery haunts Belle with dreams that The Beast will bring her ruin if not kill her and there are versions where Belle’s sisters conspire to try to get the Beast to eat her but it never happens. The Beast comes close to death or briefly dies but he never once stays dead. That version simply does not exist. This Internet rumor needs to stop.

If you doubt me you can buy the original novel on Amazon translated by Rachel Louise Lawrence, completely unabridged or you can check out the book The Classic Fairy Tales by Iona and Peter Opie which gives the full history of many of the classic fairy tales and their various alternate versions.

The darkest thing about the original Beauty and the Beast novel is that the faery who raised The Prince (because his mother was off fighting a war) tried to seduce him as soon as he was of age and Belle (who discovers her mother was actually a faery and father was actually a king, she had only believed the merchant to be her father) and the Beast turned out to be cousins. And yes, they marry.

The faery tale that originally ended in the death of the protagonist was Little Red Riding Cap. The Little mermaid ended in death too but that was Hans Christian Anderson, not Madame de Villeneuve.


Also just because we are used to things ending tragically doesn’t mean it should. Think how cynical the world has become where enchanted castles and faeries aren’t what we consider far fetched but simply the idea of things ending well and yet things sometimes do end well in the real world. It’s not actually realistic to expect everything to always end poorly. Sometimes things really do end happily.


Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast

I've never heard of this supposed bad ending of Beauty and the Beast. It's ridiculous. But yeah, I agree, even if there was a version with such an ending, why the need to have a children's movie end that way.

Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast

I suspect the rumor started on Tumblr. People have a bad habit of believing what they read on that site if it comes with a picture / meme and don't bother to actually check if it's true. Someone brought this up on the board of the 2017 movie and actually said we should respect the original author. And I was like "...The original author didn't give it a bad ending..."

Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast

Ah yes, Dumblr, where stupidity reins.

Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast

Not sure when Tumblr was started, but I do know that Disney War made the exact same mistake of claiming that Beauty and the Beast originally had an unhappy ending, and that was made back in 2006, around the time Bob Iger was about to take over from the then-recently ousted Michael Eisner.

Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast


Not sure when Tumblr was started, but I do know that Disney War made the exact same mistake of claiming that Beauty and the Beast originally had the Beast eating Belle thanks to her sisters, and that was made back in 2006, around the time Bob Iger was about to take over from the then-recently ousted Michael Eisner.


The sisters wanted to get the Beast to eat her but their plan only brought the Beast close to death via depression / broken heart. There's no published edition in which he actually eats her.

It's always discouraging when a published book gets important details wrong. It's like when I read Man made Monsters by Dr. Robert Curren and his section on Frankenstein claimed the literary version of The Creature learned a "rudimentary form of language" even though in the actual novel The Creature was very intelligent and articulate and could speak three languages after he taught himself to speak. The Creature even often liked to quote Paradise Lost. Or David J. Skall's A to Z guide to vampires on it's entry about The Hunger starring David Bowie it gets one of the vampires names very wrong.


Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast


Also just because we are used to things ending tragically doesn’t mean it should. Think how cynical the world has become where enchanted castles and faeries aren’t what we consider far fetched but simply the idea of things ending well and yet things sometimes do end well in the real world. It’s not actually realistic to expect everything to always end poorly. Sometimes things really do end happily.

This is almost off topic for this thread, but thank you! I get so tired of people, who believe that a story has to be dark and gruesome to be realistic. Yeah yeah, there will be bad times in your life. But there will also be good times.


Intelligence and purity.

Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast

Fully agreed there as well, and besides, not all stories that have a sad ending are actually believable. Just look at The Matrix Revolutions or, heck, even Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. The conclusions, while sad, made absolutely no sense whatsoever and arguably didn't make any real change.

Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast

Bump.

Re: PSA about Beauty and the Beast

Various version of the Hunchback of Notre Dame have a happy ending as opposed to just the Disney version. The 1939 version of Hunchback starring Charles Laughton as Quasimodo also has a happy ending.

Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler of Black Sabbath watch My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
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