“Wanna go see the Cinderella movie?” I ask my husband. He scowls.
Really? Who wouldn’t want to see another version of the most imitated, cross-cultural, universal theme plot in history? The embodiment of unjust oppression; the good protagonist triumphing over the evil antagonist.
Who wouldn’t relate to a sweet-tempered girl with unparalleled goodness, whose attributes are finally recognized after years of obscurity and neglect? (Don’t answer that, because I don’t want to know.)
Maybe the story is a little implausible. I mean, bibbidy bobbidy boo and whoa baby! The coach, the horse, the dress and the shoes! The coach bit is easy to swallow—we’ve all seen magnificently carved golden pumpkins, and giant ones to boot. But slippers made of glass? That leaves one to ponder. There are a lot of what-ifs here.
Like, what if someone else in the kingdom had Cinderella’s same shoe size? That could be problematic.
Or what if Cinderella slipped and shattered the glass? Sounds dangerous. Her feet would be badly cut. If she sliced off a toe or heel, as some of the maidens did to squeeze into the slipper, then her shoe size wouldn’t be the right fit for the definitive “prince scene.”
Some might argue that the slippers were made of diamond, which would account for their durability. Two things. First, the story clearly states they were glass slippers, so they were probably cut-glass. Or maybe zirconia. Secondly, if they were made of precious stones, Cinderella probably would’ve high-tailed it to the village pawn shop and used the cash to buy her own castle, and a more practical pair of shoes.
But that would run counter to the theme of the story—which is that real treasure is found in virtue. And goodness is a priceless asset that will inevitably be rewarded. A fairy godmother couldn’t hurt, either.
I think it would be great fun to perform in Cinderella. Any role, even a wicked one would be a blast. I just wouldn’t want to actually be that character in real life. I’m not really a wicked stepmother, I just play one on TV.
What do you think would happen if all the truly wicked people in the world were forced to watch Cinderella? It could be in any available form of the story—opera, ballet, theatre, film—take your pick. I’m betting there would be more than a few converts to the “evah so kind” way of thinking and they might even live happily ever after
The Cinderella story is universally loved. It’s magical and suspense-filled even if predictable. It’s a story of hope, love, courage and resilience. All worthy qualities. The world is definitely a better place because of Cinderella.
So, I’m going to drag my handsome prince to the theatre to see the Cinderella story once again. And if he refuses, I’ll have my fairy godmother turn him into a toad.