On Wednesday, Disney released a trailer for its new adaptation of Scottish author J.M. Barrie's beloved children's classic, Peter Pan, which featured several changes to the characters and story from the book, first published in 1911, including the Lost Boys now including girls.
In the trailer, the character of Wendy lands in Neverland and is greeted by a group of children who self-identify as "Losty Boys." "Every last one of us," a young girl tells Wendy, to which she replies, "but you're not all boys." Another girl then says, "So?"
In the classic novel, Peter reveals to Wendy that he lives with the lost Lost Boys and when Wendy asks, "Who are they?" Peter replies, "They are the children who fall out of their perambulators when the nurse is looking the other way."
Perambulators were baby carriages of the time.
A little later Peter tells Wendy, "we are rather lonely. You see we have no female companionship" and when she asks why there are no girls amongst the lost boys, Peter tells her "girls, you know, are much too clever to fall out of their prams."
Jack Posobiec noted on Twitter, "Disney is now adding girls of color to the Lost Boys in Peter Pan."
In addition to many of the lost boys including a multiethnic collection of both boys and girls, the roles of both Peter Pan and Tinkerbell have been race-swapped as well with black actress Yara Shahidi playing the diminutive fairy and mixed-race UK actor Alexander Molony taking on the role of Peter Pan.
One Twitter user responded and wrote, "The diversity nonsense at Disney continues. Peter Pan is now Indian Tinkerbell is black The Lost Boys now have girls among them Truly a reflection of the UK in 1911, exactly as JM Barrie envisioned."
In 1953, Disney released an iconic interpretation of the novel in an animated adaptation. In 2021, Disney made that animated feature unavailable to viewers under 7 years old, along with several other children's classics such as Dumbo and Swiss Family Robinson. The restriction followed the company labeling the film with a warning that read, "negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures. These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now. Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together."
On YouTube, many commenters have started a trend where they write "I love the part" and joke about the new film's new interpretation.
"I love the part where Peter Pan is teaching the children to fly, and Wendy says 'He can fly!', then John says 'He can fly!', and finally Michael, the youngest, says 'Our society is based on systemic racism!' Brought a tear to my eye," wrote user lookonthebrightside.
The trend continued with Tim Kramer writing "I love the part where… Wendy tells the audience they're racist and misogynist."
Another wrote, "I love the part at the end (when) Wendy… turns to Captain Hook and says that 'you need to do better, captain.'"
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