Rethinking Tink

February 5th, 2013

As you may have guessed from recent posts about Miss Mouse’s artwork and my kids’ favorite playthings at the moment, my kids like Tinkerbell.  A lot.  There was a squabble just this morning over who would get to wear the coveted Tinkerbell knit hat to school.  (Buggie won, as Miss Mouse grudgingly conceded it would mash her hair-do, opting instead for the sparkly pink ear muffs.)

It might seem surprising that I’ve allowed my family to embrace the wee green-clad pixie, given how I feel about Disney princesses.  But I’ve actually come to terms with Tinkerbell.  Truthfully, I think she’s got a lot more going for her than the princesses.  Here’s why.

Above all, Tinkerbell has PERSONALITY.  She is feisty and fearless and really really smart.  Some clever chap at Disney took her name and reworked it into her identity for the spin-off fairy world she inhabits.  Tinkerbell is just that: a tinker.  As in, one who tinkers with things — inventing, fixing, and generally figuring out how things work.

All the fairies have talents (garden fairies, light fairies, water fairies, etc.) and Tinkerbell’s is tinkering.  It’s awesome.  She’s particularly intrigued by human objects.  Picture Mr. Weasley of Harry Potter, but wearing a green leafy dress.  No, wait.  Come to think of it, don’t do that.

This recasting of the formerly prissy and easily piqued pixie alone is enough to put her ahead of most of her royal counterparts in my book, but there’s also the general lack of romance in Pixie Hollow.

Tinkerbell isn’t out to land herself a man.  How refreshing.

While there are occasional frissons of flirtation between Tink and a dusty fairy named Terrance, so far, the movies haven’t “gone there” with the two of them and I sincerely hope they don’t.  Tinkerbell has more important things to do than catch the eye of a prince — there are music boxes to fix, baskets to weave, and worlds to save.

The biggest complaint I’ve heard about the fairies (well, other than that they can be nauseatingly warm and fuzzy) is that there’s a streak of cattiness that runs through the ladies of Pixie Hollow.  Fair enough.  Tinkerbell definitely has a “frenemy” in the group, with whom there’s some drama.  But at the end of the day, I wouldn’t call that an inaccurate portrayal of female relationships and it’s a good chance to talk with Miss Mouse about which characteristics we want in friends and which we could do without.

All in all, I’m perfectly content to gently stoke the torches of adoration that both my offspring currently carry for the little lady with the white pom-poms on her toes.

Plus, Tinkerbell can fly.  Can any of the princesses do that?  I thought not.

3 responses to “Rethinking Tink”

  1. Mandi says:

    You are such a clever writer, Kate. I love reading your blog. =)

  2. Papu says:


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