Welcome to the reality of domestic violence. Unlike most Disney villains, batterers don’t come with their own foreboding soundtrack. They don’t sneer like Scar and Gaston, or twirl their mustaches like Jafar. They’re not openly slimy like Clayton.
They’re charming. They’ve learned how to don that mask, how to flatter and manipulate and say just the right thing. They look completely normal. They deliberately seek out victims they think they can control … and what better target than socially awkward, isolated, hopeful Anna?
It’s no coincidence that “Quick Involvement” is one of the potential characteristics of an abusive relationship. This does not mean everyone who had a whirlwind romance is in an abusive relationship, by the way. Only that this tends to be one aspect of such relationships. It’s one of many tactics and strategies batterers use.
I’ve been talking lately about the power and importance of story. Story is how we relate to and understand the world. Whatever else Disney did or didn’t do in Frozen, they provided a story to help understand how what starts out as a perfect relationship can turn into a nightmare. How someone like Hans can be so cruel behind closed doors, but play the perfect gentleman as soon as he sets foot in public.
Whatever else the movie did or didn’t get right, I’m grateful for that story.Jim C Hines on Frozen (via living400lbs)