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Brother Grim Taking the Merry Out of Fairy Tales

After reading the Brothers Grim version of Cinderella and viewing the film version of Cinderella, Everafter, one can distinguish precise differences between the these two similar stories. Both versions tell of a young maiden whose mother died when she was young and is then tormented by her stepmother and her two stepsisters who enslave her in her own home and force her to sleep among the ashes of the fireplace. Yet, both stories vary greatly when it comes to the content of the tales.

The Brothers Grim version portrays Cinderella as a young, defenseless woman who submits to her stepmothers every wish and endears harsh punishment for any insolence she may show towards her. Another difference in the Brothers story is that Cinderellas father is still living and does nothing to protect his daughter from the brutal treatment inflicted upon her by her stepfamily. Cinderellas only comfort is the friendship she has developed between the wild animals that live outside her home.

Unlike, the Brothers Grim version Everafter portrays Cinderella as a headstrong orphan who becomes a heroine by standing up for herself even though it may result in punishment. Like the Cinderella in the Brothers story she is tormented by her stepfamily, but in Everafter the youngest stepsister does show her some compassion and she has human friends, not wild animals, who live in the home and assist her with chores. The Everafter version takes on a more realistic approach when portraying this universal tale of a young servant who becomes a princess.

The Brothers Grim tale is more of the fairy tale we have come to expect, but without the fairy godmother and a lot more bloody gore. In Everafter, like the Brothers version the prince holds a ball in order to find a potential bride. The stepmother tells Cinderella she can attend, but changes her mind at the last minute, devastating Cinderella. But in both versions Cinderella does make it to the ball, wearing her mothers wedding gown in the Everafter version and three different dresses in the Brothers version, which she finds falling from the sky.

She attends the ball and loses her shoe in both tales, but in Everafter the prince knows whom the lost slipper belongs, due to his already meeting and falling in love with her before the ball. In the Brothers version, the prince falls for the maiden whose slipper was left behind and vows to marry the woman whose foot fits the slipper. He takes it to Cinderellas house and her stepsisters try it on but it doesnt fit correctly, so they amputate their limbs, in order to get a good fit, but the birds call their bluff. Cinderella is finally allowed an attempt to fit into the slipper and of course it fits perfectly and the prince marries her.

At the wedding the birds come and pluck the stepsisters eyes out, leaving them blind. In the Everafter version, the stepfamily is not present at the wedding. When they do show up the stepmother and older stepsister are punished by having to work in the castle. The younger of the two stepsisters is granted permission to live in the castle and is not punished. The Everafter version of Cinderella compromises the integrity of the Brothers Grim version. The Brothers version is a horrid version of the classic tale and takes the merry out of the classic, childrens fairy tale.

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