Why didn’t she leave the country?

Mother Gothel never moves the flower. It makes total sense that she would be worried the transport could have killed the life-giving plant. (Not sure how she kept it growing when it was hidden from the sun under a basket…but that is another post.) Then, the flower becomes a little girl and Mother Gothel immediately springs into action kidnapping the young bud and fleeing to a land far, far away where no one would ever be able to find–wait, she didn’t? She decided instead to take the stolen treasure to a tower in the heart of the forest adjacent to the castle where the kidnapping occurred?!? Sure, it is a secluded glen but Rapunzel can see the lanterns that are launched each year for her from her prison window. That is way too close for comfort. I know all evil villains must have a fatal flaw, but this just seems downright senseless while every other action by this woman is crafty and amazingly cunning. Tricking Rapunzel for 18 years. Manipulating the Wonder Twins. Even breaking into the castle by herself to kidnap her prize. And after all that, she chooses to move across the street? Either this is arrogance or pure stupidity. Looks like Mother doesn’t know best…especially when it comes to real estate.

Mother Gothel


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Image Credit: wikia.disney.com


  1. Ha ha ha so obvious….why didn’t I think of that? Maybe she has a boyfriend…that’s all I can think of!

    1. Hmmm. Does make you wonder if she had love in her life, right? She was so worried about being young and beautiful, you would think that would be for more of a reason outside of just vanity.

      1. In addition to that thought, did she work so hard to be young and beautiful only to hang out in isolation? Doesn’t seem like a viable plan either.

    2. ‘Trust me my dear, that’s how fast he’ll leave you, I won’t say I told you so!’
      Did Gothel have a boyfriend? Possibly, up till that point in the movie, she did, and that’s why she never left. And that’s also why she sounds uncannily like she knows what she’s talking about in Mother Knows Best (Reprise.)

  2. Exactly, I mean she really can’t hide forever. Maybe she has a past in other kingdoms, where she was banished, or maybe thought to be dead, or some other reasons. If she went back, it would arouse suspicion, especially with a girl. She could move to a faaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar away forest of course, you have a point there.

    1. Agreed. I was chatting with someone else and came upon an idea that this might have been a short-term place to hideout and then she got complacent when she didn’t get caught!

  3. I have often wondered that, I mean she got the child out of the castle, I am sure she could have gotten out of the country before they notified the border patrol 🙂

    1. I know! And I bet they didn’t have great border security. She could just walk where she wanted. They could have started a life without towers or crazy stories…they could have been happy together…

  4. I think it is cunning…Corona seems to be an Island Kingdom, meaning the king would have an easy time to close the borders (read: controlling every ship which leaves the island). By hiding right under his nose but out of sight Gothel was safe. And she apparently didn’t know about the lights in the first years. Never mind that there certainly aren’t many handy towers in hidden and forgotten locations out there.
    Nope the real headscratcher is why she told Rapunzel the date of her real birthday.

    1. I know! Why would she tell her that? She could have picked any other day. Maybe she never noticed the lanterns early on and told her when she was young. Then when she noticed they were on the same day, she couldn’t untell her about her bday…

  5. Very valid question, which I think everyone must have pondered over some time or another. I think though that most of these sort of questions in regards to Disney comes from the original stories. I remember reading a Rapunzel story once where the old lady was actually the neighbour of a rich couple (not a king and queen) and the tower was hidden in her garden or something, so really it comes down to Disney adapting from old stories, and apparently in the olden days the overall morale came before common sense.

    1. Yeah I’ve read that one too. That is a creepy fairy tale. The Flynn character actually gets his eyes gouged out at one point and lives in the forest only finding Rapunzel by her voice. Yikes.

      1. Oh yeah! I forgot that part (wonder why).

        At least Disney chose to make it a bit more child proof and that just makes other characters’ questionable decisions stand out.

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