Fixer Upper

OK, so Frozen is a kids’ movie – but it’s not like the messages in such things don’t have an effect that’s important to critique. And if Andrew Bolt can be published in the Herald Sun ranting about The Incredibles or Godzilla, I can damn well write something on a blog about a track I accidentally got stuck in my head.

So, while I sit here recovering from hospital with a cat perched on my shoulders (seriously, Polly, wtf), I’d just like to object to the song “Fixer Upper”.

The trolls meet Anna, and after being told she and Kristoff aren’t together, start interrogating her.

What’s the issue, dear?
Why are you holding back from such a man?

Because of course a woman must be interested in a man by default, and if she isn’t, well it’s something that needs to be “fixed”. Seriously?

But you’ll never meet a fellow who’s as
Sensitive and sweet!
So he’s a bit of a fixer-upper,
So he’s got a few flaws…

And they then proceed to try to argue her into being interested in him, with a list of silly quirks that aren’t so bad.

oh he’s a bit of a fixer-upper,
but this we’re certain of
You can fix this fixer-upper
Up with a little bit of love!


Then there’s a bit of creepy “uh oh maybe he’s one of those isolated, desperate weirdos who think they’re ‘nice guys'” stuff, to follow the “sensitive and sweet” bit earlier:

Or the way he covers
Up that he’s the honest goods?
All Trolls: He’s just a bit of a fixer-upper,
He’s got a couple of bugs
Kristoff: No I don’t!
All Trolls: His isolation is confirmation
Of his desperation for healing hugs

“The honest goods”? Yeah, women, why do you keep falling for those other JERKS!

But don’t worry, it turns out that there IS an argument that sinks in with the trolls: she’s already taken!

Kristoff: ENOUGH! She is engaged
to someone else, okay?!

(blink, blink)

Cliff: So she’s a bit of a fixer-upper

So her choice not to be interested in Kristoff didn’t count; and now her choice to be interested in someone else is up for (fairly insulting) debate:

Male Troll 4: That’s a minor thing.

Male Troll 5: Her quote ‘engagement’ is a flex arrangement.

I beg your pardon?

Male Trolls: So she’s a bit of a fixer-upper,
Her brain’s a bit betwixt
Get the fiancé out of the way and
The whole thing will be fixed.

Because she’ll have to take one of them, right?

Then it turns into some weird homilies about love that really don’t fit the conversation at all:

We’re not sayin’ you can change him,
‘Cause people don’t really change.
We’re only saying that love’s a force
That’s powerful and strange.
People make bad choices if they’re mad,
Or scared, or stressed.
Throw a little love their way.
And you’ll bring out their best.

What bad choices? The trolls don’t know who the fiancé is, let alone that he’s actually evil, so it’s weird if they mean Anna’s. And anyway, if it was Anna’s “bad choices”, the following exhortation to her doesn’t make sense. Who’s to throw “a little love” to these people apparently flat-out entitled to it?

That sounds awfully like making excuses for shit behaviour and telling young people – mainly little girls – that the way to deal with shit behaviour in a relationship is to throw more “love” at the offender and it’ll “fix” them. And if it doesn’t fix them, well it’s your fault because there’s obviously something wrong with your “love”.

Then the trolls try to marry Kristoff and Anna without bothering to ask their consent.

Honestly, trolls.

Still, it’s a very catchy tune.

Tomorrow: an anarcho-syndicalist deconstruction of “Supercalafragilisticexpialodocious”.

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5 responses to “Fixer Upper

  1. Bahahaha! I too watched Frozen with some bemusement but didn’t get the creepy vibes from this song until you just laid them out. Bit disappointed you didn’t get in a jibe about his relationship with the reindeer being ‘a little outside of natures laws…’. Not sure that silly quirk isn’t so bad…

  2. narcoticmusing

    Women being blamed for men’s failure to ‘acquisition’ a partner – what else is knew?

  3. jordanrastrick

    Now I have to ask all my feminists friends who’ve seen the movie, who AFAIK differed widely in their reactions to this movie, about this particular song……

  4. narcoticmusing

    One should note that a single ridiculous song does not make an entire film horrid, but Disney have been pushing the princess/prince charming expectation for some time.

  5. Oh, I definitely think there’s a lot of good in Frozen – the undermining of the “Prince Charming” trope, for one.

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