Why do so many animated movies star motherless kids? Sarah Boxer, a graphic novelist, cartoon-lover and mother, talks to NPR’s Kelly McEvers about the phenomenon and the message it sends to children.
It is not often that I flat-out hate an NPR article, but this is one of those times.
Dear author: you find it offensive that a fantasy world is created without you? I find it incredibly annoying that you don’t consider that those making these stories are taking the real-life situation of motherlessness and putting it into a narrative.
"In reality, most families have two parents, and there are far more single mothers heading up families than single dads. "So in a way it’s just pure fantasy. But I do think that there’s an underlying message," Boxer says. "That we don’t really need mothers; in fact, life might be more fun without them … That it could be a life of pure adventure."
What kind of crack are you guys smoking over there? You are suggesting it is more fun to not have a mother? Are you also not considering that quite a lot of children are raised by one parent?
"I think these movies are very formative, and sort of create the background plots that we relate our lives to," she says. "And I don’t think I saw them that way before I had a kid, but I see it now, especially raising a son."
Yes, smartypants McGee, these stories are formative. They teach children that even through adversity, you can prevail. Even with the loss of a parent, you will be okay. Also, BREAKING NEWS IN GENERAL: stories are formative. Amazing realization.