For a character that is in so little of the actual movie, Elsa’s father in Frozen has gotten raked across the coals by numerous movie reviewers for many of his parenting decisions. His daughter doesn’t hold back either. ‘Conceal, don’t feel‘ and ‘Be the Good Girl‘ are shouted by Elsa during the song Let it Go as she is finally able to be who she truly is now that her dad is gone. This becomes the anthem of the movie promoting not being afraid to be different and never having to hide who you are. As a dad, I get the outrage against his actions, but what if Elsa’s father was thinking less like a dad here and more like a King?
When The King & Queen take Elsa & Anna to see the rock trolls, the Troll King lays it out pretty well for the family. Elsa’s got lots of power and it will be bad if she is controlled by fear. However, it seems like Elsa’s dad puts on earmuffs during this conversation as all of his guidelines and advice from that point forward only help to create fear in his daughter ultimately contributing to the craziness later in the film. But isn’t what happens at her coronation most likely what her Dad was afraid of? Not the revealing her powers part but the creating fear in others part. Because Elsa showing the world her powers doesn’t just put her at risk but the entire kingdom of Arendelle! (stick with me, I’ll explain why) I propose The King may have been putting his family’s legacy above his family, and isn’t that what Kings are supposed to do?
Let’s look at the coronation. When everything goes south and she freezes Arendelle, the first reaction of all the guests is fear. You can attribute this to the scale of the Elsa’s actions or just the simple fact that she can do it at all. In general, people fear what they do not understand and it’s not a stretch to think everyone wouldn’t understand this situation. Even if she had control of her powers and made everyone snow cones at the coronation ball, I bet that more than one person would still have been terrified because of the sheer implications of this skill. News would spread like wildfire across the neighboring regions: Did you hear that Queen Elsa of Arendelle can make snow cones from her hands? What else could she do? Could she freeze a lake? What about our ships? Could she create snow monsters? Could this be used to hurt us? Are there other people in Arendelle that have ice powers? What about Anna? Something has to be done about this right away! Uncertainty would lead to fear and fear would lead to a cold war. Attempts would be made on Elsa’s life and maybe even an all out war on the Kingdom just so everyone could feel safe again. Think of it like one country having nukes and every other country just being ok with not having them…it wouldn’t happen. The King had to have thought about that possibility. No doubt, he definitely could have made some better choices as a father so his daughters wouldn’t have so many daddy issues, but as a King, I think he may have gotten it right.
Do you think we should cut the belated King some slack here? Or was he cold as ice, willing to sacrifice…his daughter?
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Image Credits: disney.wikia.com
Related: Maybe that’s why Eugene & Rapunzel didn’t want to get involved.