Name Meaning: “Full of Grace”
Domain: Arendelle, Norway (1780’s or 1840’s)
Premiered in: Frozen (2013)
Voiced By: Kristen Bell
Though not yet having undergone the official coronation alongside her older sister, there is no doubt in anyone’s mind that Anna is to be the twelfth Disney Princess. In point of fact, I’m fairly certain that the entirety of the world will outright mob whichever location happens to be hosting the coronation itself. In a way, Anna is almost the stereotypical princess insomuch that she is not only unbelievably optimistic in any given situation but she followed the trend of falling in love with someone she had only just met for all of an evening. In point of fact, Anna went so far as to actually get herself engaged to the guy, breaking many other records held by the other princesses. While the Golden Age Princesses almost eloped for their men, those of the Renaissance and afterward at least got to know their respected beaus beyond one song.
Though, if you’ll pardon the soapboxing, I wonder if there was more to Anna’s decision to marry Hans. Aside from the obvious diviation towards the modernized concept of love not occurring in a single instance, one has to remember Anna’s upbringing. Though not in the final cut of the film, there had been a subplot intended for Anna being the “spare heir” as it were, something that is not too entirely unheard of in the time period, particularly considering Elsa’s powers.
Though this didn’t make it to the film proper it’s not impossible to believe that Anna may have been neglected by her parents as they sought both to try and help Elsa’s control over her powers and to train her up to be a proper queen for the kingdom. There’s also the fact that the castle staff had all but been narrowed down to a mere handful and the sisters both were locked away in the castle for years much like Rapunzel had been.
Anna had all but raced out the gates the moment they were opened and upon Elsa’s refusal to allow their marriage, Anna’s chief complaint that truly resonated with me was her words that she “can’t live like this” any longer. When Elsa bid her to leave, Anna assumed this to mean that Elsa meant that she didn’t want her there in their home any longer but in truth, Elsa was likely saving her sister from a life of being a caged bird, a fate that she had resigned entirely to herself.
Stepping down from my soapbox, for now, let’s move on to Anna’s chief companion in her side of the story, the living snowman Olaf. Created by Elsa entirely by accident, Olaf is both amusing and incredibly sad. I’ll get into the sad elements when I speak more of Elsa but as to his more amusing qualities, he is both incredibly naïve, particularly to heat, and surprisingly smart in certain situations. I still laugh myself sick when he makes note of Kristoff’s hesitation when Anna asked him if her changing hair looked bad. Speaking of the ice deliverer…
Kristoff is a boy raised by trolls and is surprisingly well adjusted by it. Sure, there are moments where one must question his sanity but he’s otherwise a decent sort. Okay, okay, he actually “talks” for Sven his reindeer buddy who grew up alongside him but given how eccentric the trolls were for the brief moment where they presumed he and Anna were in love, I’m sure that’s more of a coping mechanism than anything. What really surprised me is the fact that though he apparently had begun working with the ice deliverers at an incredibly young age, no one seemed to notice, or care, where he came and went both before and after his adoption. Still, he is the one voice of reason in the cast of characters, particularly with Anna and her own energetic eccentricities. That being her being engaged to someone she had just met. I half wished Sven wasn’t running the sled during that scene, I’m sure the look on his face combined with Kristoff’s would have had me in stitches.
As Anna is only the princess of Arendelle and not its ruler, I shall save talking about it for Elsa but I will say that as far as the castle proper is concerned, I’m half surprised that Anna was still allowed to live there. Not that she’s clumsy or accident prone but it is quite apparent that she’s filled to the brim with energy and can’t seem to sit still for any serious length of time. She went about the walls riding on bikes and talking to paintings and… Oh… Jeez, I had forgotten that she had done that… Anna was so starved for conversation from anyone that would speak to her as Anna and not as a princess that she was having conversations with herself… I’m sorry, I’m sure her parents tried to do right by her and Elsa but I’m actually glad that they couldn’t hurt their children any more even if the cost was their lives.
The road to Hell is paved in good intentions, so I hear.