Not all fairy tales end happily ever after

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Kaila Young, A&E Editor

Once upon a time, fairy tales were innocent stories to be read to children before bed.  The ones that happened to make it to the big screen were family-friendly and produced by Disney.

Just by glancing through a few of them, the moral significance is obvious: “Cinderella” taught us to make curfew at all costs. “Little Red Riding Hood” taught us not to trust our grandmothers.  “Beauty and the Beast” taught us to embrace Stockholm syndrome.

The list goes on.

“Hansel and Gretel” is another great example.

In the original story, Hansel and Gretel stumble upon a house made of candy that is occupied by an evil, cannibalistic witch. The story ends with the brother-and-sister duo stuffing the witch into the oven and following their bread-crumb trail back home.

The lesson in this story is overwhelmingly important: it’s OK to steal food from your neighbor, but if you get caught, you have to kill him.

But what if your neighbor doesn’t have anything in his fridge to steal?

Thankfully, Hollywood is always one step ahead of us. In January, “Hansel and Gretel” appeared in theaters as “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters.”

In this new version, Hansel and Gretel do not return home after killing the witch. Instead, they decide to pursue their witch-hunting career into adulthood, resulting in a R-rated movie much more violent and bloody than the classic story.

The lesson in this renewed version coincides with modern times wonderfully: it’s OK to steal food from your neighbor, but if you get caught, you have to kill him AND all of his friends.

Senior Katie Dennison grew up reading and watching the original fairy tales, and agrees that the modern, more violent versions are much better than the ancient, fluffy ones made by Disney.

“I like them,” Dennison said. “They’re less kiddish and not so prim and proper.”

Earlier this month, “Jack and the Beanstalk” was made into the action-packed “Jack the Giant Slayer.”

Both of these violent remakes contained valuable, up-to-date morals for the kids.

But are these violent versions ruining classic Disney fairy tales? Of course not!

Junior Sarah Ensley points out that fairy tales did exist before the Disney versions, and that the ones we see in theaters today are good in their own way.

“The original ‘Beauty and the Beast’ probably wasn’t exactly like Disney made it out to be,” Ensley said.

So which fairy tale will Hollywood update next? Senior Megan Williams is anxiously hoping for a horror movie featuring Rapunzel.

“Her hair would be a thousand-foot long serpent that wants to strangle and eat you in the dark,” Williams said.

Besides Rapunzel, there are many other fairy tales and nursery rhymes that have not yet been touched. I can see them now:

Another remake of “Jaws” featuring a vicious red-haired mermaid hungry for the hearts of sailors. Zombie gingerbread men.

The woodland creatures get rabies and turn on Snow White. Chicken Little learns about acid rain.

Prince Philip reaches the forgotten castle to find his sleeping beauty decomposing in her bed.

Any one of these predictions could and should be made into a movie, pronto.

As you read this, children everywhere are suffering because their parents are trying to teach them morals without the assistance of a gory fairy tale.