Princess Merida probably isn’t gay… but that’s not the point.
Who knows if she is or isn’t? She didn’t come out or anything, if that’s what you are thinking. I didn’t get that feeling from her since she kept saying she just wasn’t ready for marriage, and she did practically ogle one of the tribe’s warriors (you’ve probably seen that on a commercial). But that’s not even the point here. The point is that our society just can’t handle having a female character be free and not get married by the end of the movie, so if there’s no romance involved, she must just be gay!
I can’t even begin to express my rage with this—not just with the obsession with a girl’s sexuality (please!) but also with the expectation that because of her gender, she must get married before the credits roll (hello, did Woody or the small mailman from Up or Nemo or dozens of other Pixar characters get married?) and if she doesn’t, she is therefore a lesbian. Come on, people. Would it be awesome to have cartoons about gay and lesbian characters? Absolutely! Is it cool to make sweeping generalizations about a girl’s sexuality just because she doesn’t want to get married? NO. So get over it.
Could you ever imagine someone writing an editorial about how any of the Pixar males I mentioned above are gay? I’m not saying that we can’t have a wedding in a movie where the main character is an independent and strong female, with a male sidekick buddy at her side (like the reversal of what we normally get), but it’s really, really nice to just have this situation where our daughters can see someone like them be brave and worry more about freedom and being active and strong rather than being a wife, end of story.
Now that my rant is out of my system, I must reiterate what an absolutely brilliant film this is, and that you’ve got to go see it. I hear it’s making big bucks already, so I don’t think I have to ask—but if we can all go out and support the movie to show that we really do enjoy films starring girls and mothers (and roles other than the princess needing to be saved or married or both) and that we will pay to see them, we will get more of them. After all, the industry speaks in dollar signs.