Claire loves fish. I mean, girlfriend has to point out every single one whenever she comes across an aquarium. As such, it came as no surprise that Finding Nemo quickly became one of her favorite movies.
But as much as I love the adventurous tale of Marlin and Dory on a journey to find Nemo, I can only watch it so many times.
So one day, I decided to pop in Disney’s The Little Mermaid to see if this classic could serve as a substitute.
At first, Claire seemed a bit bored. Then, as the songs began and I began to sing along and do interpretive dances for her, she got really into the movie and it soon became clear that she was totally digging it!
(As for me, I was very, very proud of myself for remembering all the lyrics to the songs after all these years. )
Needless to say, The Little Mermaid has since been on regular rotation at our household, and despite the fact that Claire gets a bit upset when Ursula first makes an appearance (she also becomes visibly shaken during the scene when Nemo’s mother dies), she always watches the movie intently, cupping both hands over her cheeks with an “Oh no!” whenever something goes wrong, and yelling, “Umma…umma…UMMA!!!” during pivotal scenes to make sure that I, too, am paying attention.
I’m pretty sure that if you ask any fan of The Little Mermaid what their favorite song from the movie is, the majority of them would answer, “Part of Your World.” What girl of my generation hasn’t belted out this emotive number while dreaming of being a mermaid? What girl hasn’t said to herself at one point, “Yes! I’m not a mermaid, but I know exactly how Ariel feels!”
I believe that this is the reason the song remains so popular among little girls, some 23 years after its release. (Dang, I feel old typing that!)
Now, I know that there must exist a large fanbase of The Little Mermaid among my readers. And I know that watching the video below of dads all over the U.S. — including firefighters, cops, Marines, doctors, barbers, and construction workers — singing “Part of the World” will tug at your heartstrings, just as it did mine.
Because, as the video states in the beginning, “No matter who you are… Becoming a dad changes everything.”
P.S. — Not having grown up in the U.S., J never experienced some of the most memorable facets of childhood other Americans of our generation share and hold so dear. However, I couldn’t believe that he had never watched The Little Mermaid until we started showing the movie to Claire! The funniest part had to be when he watched the “Kiss the Girl” scene for the first time. “Damn, those are some manipulative animals!” he exclaimed.
P.P.S. — Speaking of mermaids, whenever the subject of Joss Whedon’s horror flick The Cabin in the Woods comes up, I always tell people that I can never view mermaids the same way again. If you’ve seen the movie, you would understand. And if you haven’t, GO WATCH IT NOW! It is the most memorable movie I’ve seen last year, and definitely one of my favorite scary movies of all-time.