When anyone asks who the villain of Beauty and the Beast is, the first and most obvious answer is Gaston. But is it really him? Certainly he is a self-absorbed, chauvinist pig who uses the loose legal standards of his time to his own advantages, but I just don’t think he is the main bad guy. Who is? The beautiful Enchantress of course. Now, this character is not technically in the movie save for a few stained glass images of her featured at the opening of the movie. How could she be the villain if she isn’t even in the story? Well let’s take a look.
There is a lot of this story that is told during the voice-over prologue. The Pre-Beast Prince is cursed because he refuses to board a beautiful Enchantress who is disguised as a homeless beggar trying to pay her way with a rose. Looking at just that from the outside, I think the he made a sound decision from the facts presented to him. To me she sounds crazy and does not have the makings of a good house guest.
But it’s when you understand the timeline of the story and see that the Prince was only roughly 11 years old when this went down that you really start to see the Enchantress for who she is. (Ref: The rose he received post-curse would bloom till his 21st year & per Lumiere they had been ‘rusting’ for 10 years when Belle first arrives.) Now I don’t know why the 11 year old prince is answering the door for strangers, but I do know boys that age do not always make the soundest of decisions. It seems like a potential lifetime curse for him and hundreds of servants may not be the proper punishment for this crime. Who made this Enchantress judge & jury anyway? And the whole set up seems to be weighted against the Prince…almost like she wanted him to fail so she could show how powerful she was. If she cared so much about the Prince’s heart, where was she when the curse was broken. Shouldn’t she have been there congratulating him at the ball?
So I ask you, who is the true villain? Gaston, who takes his crush a little too far or the
beautiful terrible Enchantress who curses hundreds of people because a prepubescent child makes a poor decision. I say the latter. What do you say?
More to come… @dadsquestions
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