Smurfettes, cant smurf with them, cant smurf without them (this essay is about sexism in childrens television, specifically the smurfs)

Essay by dirrjUniversity, Bachelor'sA, February 2004

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The cartoon the "Smurfs" has been around for years, but people hardly ever look close enough to see some of the underlying messages. It has always tried to express strong moral values by depicting acts of kindness and good deeds for one another. These little creatures were cute and loveable. Now that I am more educated and less naive, I look back on that show only to find sexist messages. "The Smurfs'" have only one female character, Smurfette, which creates many subtle problems. Smurfette's stereotypical physical characteristics, personality, and anonymity role in the Smurf community promote inaccurate stereotypes of females.

The very first time you see Smurfette and her physical features, long blond flowing hair, attractive, dainty, and always in a white dress with heels. A person would immediately expect her to be feminine in actions and dialogue. In the cartoon "The Smurfs'", Smurfette always wears her hair down and when danger strikes she is forced to run in heels, as a woman who knows the pain of heels, I must say...

is this fair? Smurfette was originally created by Gargamel, the villain, in order to catch the smurfs. Right away we understand that her sole purpose is, as a female, to entice males. This makes an impression on children.

Smurfette's tendency to worry and be silent, create sexist messages. For example, in one episode, she says to Papa Smurf, "Oh, I don't know how you could sleep alright! I've been worried all night!" she was referring to the younger smurfs spending the night outside alone. Because the writers choose Smurfette alone to have feelings of concern for children's safety, they give her stereotypical female characteristics. In one show she silently stood facing the other smurfs next to Papa Smurf while he praised their group work ethic. Because Smurfette does...