You may have thought they all lived happily ever after, but a lot of Disney stories have much darker origins than you knew about. Whether it’s The Little Mermaid or Peter Pan, Disney movies are based on some pretty messed up stories.
Some of these fairy tales are definitely not suitable for children, so it’s probably for the best that they revamped it. Brace yourself as you check out the terrifying alternate endings below.
Alice in Wonderland
Everyone thinks that Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was written as a bunch of drug references, but apparently Lewis Carroll actually wrote it as a “trip to hell”. Apparently all of the mathematical references are crucial to the plot, because Carroll believed that mathematicians who believed in abstract numbers were going to hell. That’s a bit more dramatic than everyone thinking it’s a drug reference.
Frozen is based on the story of the Snow Queen, but it doesn’t really resemble it at all. Pretty much the only thing they kept was the snow powers, otherwise the plot was completely different. In the original, The Snow Queen is evil and there is a troll who is known as the devil and together they fight a little girl and boy. Not as cute as the story of two sisters.
This makes me feel a bit gross, in the original story of Cinderella, there was a lot more blood. When the evil step sisters knew the prince was coming around to try the shoe on everyone, one of them cut off their big toe and the other cut off her heel. That is a lot of commitment to a lie. Did they think he wouldn’t notice? There would be a ridiculously large amount of blood, or at the very least a very recent looking wound. Bad choice all around.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Because his life wasn’t sad enough, while the original story still had Esmeralda, her fate was a little bit different. She is hung, so and the hunchback pulls her dead body into the belltower, and holds her until he starves. Their remains were found after 8 months. That is not a happy ending.
So Hercules is based on the Greek story but is a lot different than the Disney version. Zeus is still his father, but his mother was a different woman on Earth. Zeus’ wife gets jealous and tries to kill Hercules in a few different ways. Disney even pays tribute to one of the ways he almost died when they used the snakes to attack him. Hera eventually gives up on killing him and instead kills his wife and kids. That’s some spiteful behavior.
To find out the original ending for Mulan and why Peter Pan is probably the villain, check out the next page!
Snow White has kind of a rough life, but in the original story she gets a little bit of payback. After the prince wakes her up, they are going to get married. The evil queen is planning on attending but she didn’t know who the bride was. When she sees that it’s Snow White, she chokes to death in shock. So, apparently you really can be scared to death.
Poor Mulan. In the original story, Mulan fights for the army for ten years but when she comes home for a bit her family has completely fallen apart. Her dad has died, her mother remarried and left her family behind, and then to top it all off Mulan was ordered to be a concubine. She commits suicide because the thought of being a concubine was too awful. I think I will stick with the Disney version on this one.
The Little Mermaid
The story that originally had a mermaid falling in love with a man did not turn out great. When Ursula gives Ariel “legs” she does it by splitting her tail in half, almost killing Ariel before she could make it to shore. Then the prince isn’t nice to her, he forces her to dance on her injured leg-like things, and then marries someone else. Ursula offers to let Ariel live if she kills him, but she can’t do it so she is just unhappy forever.
Okay, everyone knows this is horribly inaccurate, but in Disney’s defense kids are not going to watch the real story, it’s awful. Matoaka had the nickname Pocahontas which means “spoiled one”. She was actually between 10-13, and was captured and kept as a servant in Jamestown. She was only freed when she agreed to marry John Rolfe, and was renamed Rebecca after she was baptized and stripped of her Native American traditions. They would truck her around and claim she was a “tamed savage” until she died at age 21.
Peter is actually kind of an evil guy in the original. The reason the Lost Boys never grew up had nothing to do with magic, their leader would bring them on dangerous adventures that many of them would die on. If they didn’t die, he would kill them when they got too old. Maybe Captain Hook was really a hero all along?
This one still manages to end happy – if you completely alter what you consider happy. So, the enchantress who is holding her hostage cuts off her braids and uses them to lure the prince up. She attacks him and he falls into the thorns below. He ends up blind and was wandering the forest, but finds Rapunzel in the forest. Her magic tears heals his eyes and they live happily ever after. I mean, to be fair in the Disney version he does full on die, so maybe this time the original isn’t as bad. Disney does a good job at making you forget the original stories, most of the time making it a lot more kid friendly and a lot less gruesome. Do any of these surprise you? Share with your friends and let them know which original story is your favorite.