As a son to a mother who is in love with fairy tales, I know a little about them. Everyone has heard of the common stories such as Cinderella and Hansel & Gretel. But these are your common bedtime stories. There’s other versions of these stories known as, Grimm’s Fairy Tales. They’re far more interesting and less childish in my opinion. They also have a very interesting background and development story behind them.
The reason why I’m writing this is because as humans we love to tell stories. Fairy Tales are among the top told stories of them all. They are happy stories that we as humans and/or children have fed off of for years. Without these stories we wouldn’t have many of the TV shows, movies and even music that we love today!
When I search up something, unless it tells me in bold print, word for word, I have much difficulty finding information. It’s not that I don’t know how to search for information, it’s just the way they word it, it looks like Chinese to me. Also, just finding a website that offers information that I need seems impossible. When filling out the chart for fairy tales, I went to the website, Britannica Online Resource and also Gale and tried to an article in which had background info on fairy tales, but it gave me barely any info! I had to search other websites to find another website. It was almost the equivalent feeling of pulling teeth. While reading my story and attempting to find the elements, I searched and searched the page for info. I looked for info such as archetypal elements, and I had no idea where to find those in the story. So I had to look up the definition of archetypes and how to find them to then try to find them in the essay. I came across the same difficulty for just about all the elements of the story.
After exploring fairy tales, there are many things that I learned on the way. For example, did you know that fairy tales were originally called Grimm’s fairy tales, created by the brothers; Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm. They were intended to entertain children to do well. In the story Red Riding Hood, we all know about how Riding Hood was saved by the Woodsman. However in the original Grimm tale, she asks the wolf for directions to her grandmother’s house. She is falsely informed and shortly after eaten by the fox. The moral of the story is supposed to teach children not to take advice from strangers. Most of the time the stories that the brothers wrote were scary but they taught us to work through our fears. Also the stories that the Grimm brothers wrote weren’t initially intended to be for children. They started it as part of a scholarly project to identify and preserve the Germanic people’s spirit. It then began to become popular among children and families so the brothers made them suitable for a respectable middle class audience.
The movie, Edward Scissorhands, is written in fairy tale format. The movie has a hero, Edward, who remains unnoticed, reduced in stature by an unknown misfortune, (having scissors for hands). Later down the road, Edward tries to gain favor with the Heroine of the story, (Kim) by taking the fall for her breaking into her boyfriend’s house. The evil man of power in the story is Kim’s boyfriend. Edward overcomes him at the end and the story ends, happily ever after. Edward Scissorhands is a modern fairy tale. The purpose of fairy tales is to prove to the reader or listener, usually children, that small, seemingly powerless people can, through courage, wit or good-heartedness, triumph over stronger, dark and frightening powers. The stories allow children to experience a journey from outsider to conquering hero, which can in turn be seen to represent the journey from child to adult. Edward Scissorhands best fits the Beauty and the Beast model, where the heroine must come to see the inner beauty of the lonely, outcast Beast before he can be redeemed and return to normal society. But Edward scissorhands, is a modern fairy tale, and these days we like to see a twist to the tale. In the movie Shrek, rather than the ugly ogre becoming a beautiful woman and living happily ever after, the beautiful woman becomes an ugly ogre, and lives even more happily. In Edward Scissorhands, however, there can be no acceptance into society for the misfit hero. Brought up alone, abandoned and unfinished, Edward is never going to fit into ‘normal’ society. Instead, his triumph is in his power to stay himself, and to survive, and the only way he can do this is to return to his castle and live there alone, creating beautiful ice sculptures. It may bring a tear to the eye, but for Edward, this is a happy ending, and there is the moral of this film, that it’s okay to be different. You don’t have to fit in. Not everybody finds happiness down the same road. And that’s a good enough moral for me. This is exactly what makes fairy tales so beautiful. That the stories themselves are trying to help small children or even adults better themselves, and they do this in most fairy tales such as, Hansel ; Gretel by using common names making it more generic. The protagonists of fairy tales are referred to as ‘girl’ or ‘youngest brother’ to make it stand for anyone. So that the reader, a small child, reading the tory can feel like the hero of the story is them and then in turn they’ll be more likely to strive to do good and listen to the moral of the story.
Overall, the genre of fairy tales is a child’s story told for many generations. It can be happy or sad but they all have moral value. The book and movie versions of stories are different in some ways and similar in others but it mainly comes down to the author has to change them up because one is visual and the other is read. Books and movies call for different story plot formats, visual aids or word changes and etc. What I like about this genre is that it is lighthearted and contains moral value for children. I also like some of the comedy and romance that goes along with most of the stories. I dislike the monotony of fairy tales though because in a way they seem to reuse the same structures and story lines. These fairy tales are important because they teach kids of young age a moral and ethical code to follow such as with Grimm Brothers version of Red Riding Hood, it teaches to not take advice from children. I think that kids need that support because they’re more likely to listen to a story than their parents or teachers.