Loading Downloads
Category: TV & Film

What started as a graduate school capstone project has now expanded into a blog and a professional development workshop series for Washington State community colleges. Join me, Kaytie (Disney scholar, mom, and college academic adviser), as I talk about Disney princesses, representation in media, my relatability to and love for Disney villains, and more.

April 11, 2021

Disney’s Asian Characters

I'm still here. After the recent events against Asian Americans I decided to take a break from podcasting to reflect on everything that has happened and to research for this episode. I wanted to do something to support Asian Americans and to #StopAsianHate but am also aware this is a Disney podcast. So I decided to record this episode looking back on Asian characters and Asian actors in Disney while also highlighting the history of oppression against the Asian American community.


Here's the breakdown:

00:00 - Intro

2:59 - Washington Post and "A History of Asian, South Asian, and Pacific Islander Characters in Disney Films" by Christian Kim

3:20 - Disney Company beginnings

3:39 - World War II, Japanese Internment camps, and the War Bride Acts of 1945 and 1946

4:58 - Disney's first Asian coded characters in 1955

6:18 - Disney's second Asian character

7:39 - Super racist Siamese cat played by a white man... yeah

10:10 - Vietnamese shrimpers and Vincent Chin

12:02 - Why does everyone count Aladdin as Asian?

14:01 - Did the representation of Aladdin as a Middle Eastern hero help society?

17:31 - L.A. Riots

19:09 - Mini model minority myth lesson / Instagram @zenerations

22:27 - How the director of Mulan chose to cast Eddie Murphy as the Chinese dragon, Mushu ("Asian Representation in Animation" by Veronica Wang)

24:16 - What the movie Mulan did well

28:49 - What the movie Mulan could have done better / Why is sexism such a big story arch centering characters of color?

37:44 - Does anyone remember the TV show Out of the Box?

38:48 - Post-9/11

39:05 - Lilo and Stitch is not an Asian movie, it is a Pacific Islander movie

40:14 - Mulan II. Sidekick turned villain, new songs, and why does it seem like the creators of Mulan II had issues showing Asian couples and PDA?

46:41 - Brenda Song and Vanessa Hudgens DCOM movies

49:50 - Hannah Montana and Camp Rock star Anna Marie Perez de Tagle

51:00 - Pirates of the Caribbean 3

52:20 - Pixar's Up / Who doesn't love Russell?

53:30 - First Marvel movie with an Asian character - Avengers: Age of Ultron / read more about the "expendable" Asian female character in Hollywood here

54:44 - Big Hero 6 and whitewashing ("Asian Representation in Animation" by Veronica Wang)

56:35 - Asians as aliens in the MCU

57:25 - Even though Moana is Pacific Islander and one of the most recent Disney films to be released, the creators create a world of Pacific Islander "sameness" just like they did with Mulan, Aladdin, etc.

58:15 - Doctor Strange whitewashing (and Hollywood's history of whitewashing) 

1:00:48 - Doctor Strange's Wong is the first Asian character to appear on an Avengers movie poster

1:01:33 - DCOM's Descendants series / Disney channel and Disney on Broadway casting whoever can pass as the race and ethnicity instead of intentionally casting someone of the same race and ethnicity as the character (i.e. High School Musical)

1:03:14 - MCU's Spider-Man movies / reverse whitewashing

1:04:03 - Live-action Jungle Book movie

1:04:25 - Star Wars... it only took 40 years to have an Asian character AND to have a woman of color on screen. Why did Kelly Marie Tran face so much racial harassment for making history?

1:05:48 - Live-action Aladdin. Authentic casting, "brown-face"-ing extras on set, and sexism playing a major story arch in a movie about/with a woman of color ("Disney admits to "browning up" white extras for live action Aladdin film" by Ben Kaye)

1:09:48 - Live-action Mulan. Chinese vs Chinese American experiences, the portrayal of Western patriarchy NOT Chinese patriarchy, the original concept of this movie was going to be about a WHITE MAN saving China, the erasure of bisexual icon Captain Li Shang, and more. ("'Mulan' Challenges Asian Americans in Hollywood to Overcome 'Impossible Duality' Between China, U.S." by Rebecca Davis) / ("Disney's Attempts at Asian Representation" by Linda Chong)

1:17:03 - Raya and the Last Dragon - I admit, I haven't seen this movie yet.

1:17:38 - Additional representation in Disney media I may not have already mentioned

1:19:06 - Non-Disney Asian American films and representation

1:19:42 - Asian American actors

1:20:13 - Conclusion. We need more representation of all identities behind the screen, at Disney theme parks, on screen, everywhere. Where are the spaces for characters of color around the Disney theme park? Where are all the toys of characters of color in Disney theme parks? How are children internalizing representation? What conversations should we have with them about representation?

(Try Pod - Eugene Lee Yang talking about seeing a non-Asian Mulan at Epcot @19:09 - 21:41)

1:24:08 - #StopAsianHate: message to my fellow brothers and sisters and message to our allies. #StopAsianHate resources


I have been guest co-hosting the Black and Yellow podcast. We did a deep dive episode into the history of anti-Asian hate and how to combat the anti-Asian hate crimes. You can find the podcast on Apple podcast and Spotify.


Additional Instagram accounts to follow:









Follow the podcast on Instagram @wwofdisvillains

Follow me, Kaytie, on Instagram @disvillainsscholar


You can find the podcast online at www.wonderfulworldofdisneyvillains.com

March 5, 2021

Female Representation in Disney Princess Films

This episode we are talking about female character representation in Disney princess films.

You can follow Caitlin on Instagram @caitlindurante

Follow The Bechdel Cast wherever you get your podcast!


I did show notes! Enjoy!

00:51 Caitlin’s introduction

01:38 The Bechdel test and troubling Disney princess tropes

05:18 Team Starkid’s "Twisted: The Untold Story of a Royal Vizier" parody musical and troubling Disney villain tropes

07:09 Tiny child sponge brains

09:00 My baby consuming media

10:13 Younger parents having more access to tools to have meaningful conversations about representation in film

11:36 Our issues with live-action Disney remakes

12:40 How many Cinderella movies does society REALLY need?

16:35 The hero’s journey… for Moana

17:33 Why Maui is the actual villain of Moana

21:04 Female vs male villains paired with female vs male protagonists

23:06 Are female villains not enough of a threat to go up against male protagonists? Emperor’s New Groove doesn’t count.

26:20 Lion King 2 - Simba processing internal trauma from the first Lion King movie

28:15 Disney female character development THEN vs NOW

30:35 Where’s the movie about characters processing the trauma they experience?

31:50 Brave is really a movie about bears (visit the TryPod Episode 9 from 22:02 - 23:02 for my reference)

33:07 My rant about Sleeping Beauty

34:44 Non-consensual kisses

36:58 Disney on Broadway creating horny Disney characters (Frozen on Broadway "Love is an Open Door" reference - 2:36 - 3:00)

38:52 Disney on Broadway covering heavy topics and diverse character representation (Frozen on Broadway "Monster" reference)

41:08 Brandy’s Cinderella diverse character portrayals… why did we go back from that?

43:03 The Little Mermaid live-action movie casting

44:17 Ursula, contracts, and our issues with The Little Mermaid 

47:21 Disney princesses and villains are all LONERS

48:23 Caitlin’s explanation for the lack of human friends

49:22 Older generation Disney princesses are not… really… in the movie...? How did they get to be the main character?

51:18 Physical appearances and Western beauty standards

53:04 Once Upon a Time TV show

55:50 Check out the Bechdel Cast!


If you like what you hear please leave a review! You can find the podcast on Instagram @wwofdisvillains or at www.wonderfulworldofdisneyvillains.com. I'd love to hear from you and any recommendations you have for future episodes!


If you'd like to support the podcast visit Buy Me a Coffee (https://www.buymeacoffee.com/wwofdisvillains) and buy me a coffee :)

February 19, 2021

Inside Out: Talking Emotions, Moving States, and No Villain?

Welcome Back!


This episode we are joined by guest Ryan Pak, host of the Soundtrack Your Life podcast, to talk about the Pixar movie Inside Out. Join us as we talk about why this movie resonates with Ryan, the concept of moving from one state to another, the process and expression of emotions in this film, and so much more.


You can find Ryan's podcast, Soundtrack Your Life, on all major podcast platforms. 

Soundtrack Your Life podcast IG: @soundtrackcast

Check out the most recent episode guest starring me as Ryan and I talk about the Aladdin Broadway soundtrack (https://open.spotify.com/episode/0c7A2gMYya1G3rP78vaP7t?si=9NAq-B50SbWH_UBeoVhewQ). 


Article reference: "Why the Key Character In 'Inside Out' Is The One Who Isn't There" by Linda Holmes (https://www.npr.org/2015/06/19/414702149/why-the-key-character-in-inside-out-is-the-one-who-isnt-there). 


If you like what you hear please leave a review! You can find the podcast on IG @wwofdisvillains or at www.wonderfulworldofdisneyvillains.com. I'd love to hear from you and any recommendations you have for future episodes!


If you'd like to support the podcast visit Buy Me a Coffee (https://www.buymeacoffee.com/wwofdisvillains) and buy me a coffee :)

February 4, 2021

Dating Culture in Disney Princess Films

Welcome back!


In this episode, we are talking about Disney princess dating culture with special guests Chloe and Lauren from the Damsels in the DM podcast! The Damsels in the DM podcast is your go-to for everything dating culture (i.e. long distance relationships, being ghosted, one night stands, female stereotypes in dating, and more). You can find their podcast on all major podcast platforms.


Take a listen as we talk about growing up with Disney princess films, how that's impacted our beliefs about romantic relationships, ideas of marriage and divorce, and more. I also had Chloe and Lauren play a fun game at the end, you won't want to miss it!


If you want to see more content follow the blog at www.wonderfulworldofdisneyvillains.com or follow on Instagram @wwofdisvillains !


Thank you for listening! If you have any ideas for future episodes feel free to contact me via the blog and let me know!

January 20, 2021

Aladdin’s Rogues Gallery

Welcome back!

Today I’m talking about Aladdin’s Rogues Gallery aka the villains from the Aladdin TV Show. That’s right, there was an Aladdin TV Show.

No academic research or jargon in this episode. This is purely a fun episode reminiscing a show I was overly fond of as a child.

Take a listen as I explain why I believe Iago is an under-appreciated villain sidekick turned anti-hero and hear my rank of some of the memorable villains throughout the TV Show.

Follow the podcast on Instagram @wwofdisvillains and follow the blog at www.wonderfulworldofdisneyvillains.com.

January 2, 2021

Disney Villains are Relatable

Welcome to Episode 2 of The Wonderful World of Disney Villains podcast! Today I'm talking about why I believe Disney villains are relatable and, as you can tell by the length of the episode, I have a lot to say.


Below is a list of all the sources I refer to throughout the episode.

Book, articles, and essay sources:

  • “Read This: How Divine inspired Ursula The Sea Witch” by Chris Dart (news.avclub.com/read-this-how-divine-inspired-ursula-the-sea-witch-1798243255)
  • Handsome Heroes and Vile Villains: Masculinity in Disney’s Feature Films book by Amy Davis

  • “Winnie the Pooh” FanTheories Wiki (fantheories.wikia.com/wiki/Winnie_the_Pooh)
  • “Why Do Cartoon Villains Speak in Foreign Accents?” by Isabel Fattal (www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2018/01/why-do-cartoon-villains-speak-in-foreign-accents/549527/)
  • “Children’s Culture and Disney’s Animated Films” chapter from the book The Mouse That Roared by Henry Giroux and Grace Pollock.

  • “‘This is No Ordinary Apple’: Learning to Fail Spectacularly from the Queer Pedagogy of Disney’s Diva Villains” essay by Mark Helmsing in the book Disney, Culture and Curriculum, edited by Jennifer Sandlin and Julie Garlen.

  • “Chapter Fifteen: Learning to Live as a Disney Villain” by Jessica Kirker in the book Teaching with Disneyedited by Julie Garlen and Jennifer Sandlin.

  • “13 Inscrutable Requirements to Be A Princess In Disney Parks” (www.disneyfanatic.com/13-inscrutable-requirements-to-be-a-princesses-in-disney-parks/#)


Videos, audios, and movie sources:

December 16, 2020

The Wonderful World of Disney Villains

Welcome to the first episode of the Wonderful World of Disney Villains podcast!

*I discovered I make mouth noises occasionally so if you’re not into ASMR you may want to listen without headphones/earbuds.*

I thought I would start with my professional development workshop that kickstarted my blog and podcast. I present this workshop 2-3 times a year for students, faculty, staff and administrators at the college I work for.

I’ll be talking about: • Disney villains - what defines a villain as a Disney villain? • Representation - Stuart Hall’s binary form of representation • Binary representation in gender and other social identities • One sided story - where are the villains stories? • Perspective - flipping roles (heroes as villains and villains as heroes) • Everyone needs diverse representation even those who often see themselves represented in media

I mention the following media’s throughout: • Once Upon a Time (the TV show) • Twisted: The Untold Story of a Royal Vizier by Team Starkid (on YouTube) • Ted Talk: “The Danger of a Single Story” by Chimamanda Adichie • Essay: “This is No Ordinary Apple”: Learning to Fail Spectacularly from the Queer Pedagogy of Disney’s Diva Villains by Mark Helmsing • “In Defense of Villainesses” by Sarah Gailey on www.tor.com • Social media account: @theconsciouskid

November 18, 2020

Trailer: Wonderful World of Disney Villains

Welcome! Join me (Kaytie) as I talk about everything from my love for Disney villains to the visibility (or rather invisibility) of social oppressions in animated media.