Great female characters in Hollywood’s current animated blockbusters for kids: where are they???

Taken individually, most of Hollywood’s recent offerings for kids have been reasonable quality entertainment. But taken as a group (I’ve been watching them alongside my kids), I’m struck by the lack of female characters in these films. For a while I was thinking “Well, I have only boys, so of course I haven’t been following […]

Jungle Book II: the story of how a female character is softened

from the “deleted scenes” bonus material of Jungle Book II, with Sharon Morrill, Executive Vice President, and Matt Walker, Senior Vice President of Music. Matt: What you’re hearing fading out is the song “I’ve Got You Beat,” which was written for the movie Jungle Book II. Sharon: But this song never made it into the […]

Girls Will Be Girls

As a kid, I absolutely hated the “Dennis the Menace” portrait of childhood. I’m sorry to single out Dennis here since he’s not the only one, but that comic symbolized for me the story of childhood that didn’t reflect my experience and that I didn’t want to have imposed on me: the boy is fun […]

The Tale of Mr. Morton

This is the tale of Mr. Morton. Mr. Morton is who? He’s the subject of our tale, and the predicate tells what Mr. Morton must do… Okay, maybe I’m being a little unfair to complain that when it comes time to teach kids the subject and the predicate of a sentence, the subject is male. […]

The Knights of Disney

Here’s an update on my little boys and their reactions to female characters: Nicolas has decided that he’s “Henry the brave knight” (a character of his own invention), so since we’re all about knights at our house these days, my husband got the kids a DVD of The Sword in the Stone, which is the […]

Do boys like stories about girls?

When I was younger, I planned to have only girls. I had all these great theories about raising girls. Plus, since childhood so often means boyhood in stories, boyhood seems somehow less interesting. Like it’s already been done. So karma (or something) ensured that I would have only boys to raise. This has turned out […]