Fox News Channel “The Five” co-host Bob Beckel has a beef with Walt Disney’s animal-killing fairy tales.
“Now right back to Walt Disney, now you guys are not old enough to remember Old Yeller but he killed off Old Yeller. They keep killing off these animals and stuff. Bambi! I mean, it’s ridiculous and kids have to watch this. Why don’t you put something positive on?” Beckel said of Disney films.
The panel had been discussing a British Medical Journal study on death in children’s stories.
Beckel pointed to the sad “Lion King” scene when the lion cub’s father dies: “Look at that poor little lion having to see if his daddy was awake or not. What a jerk who put something like that together even though he made a billion dollars?”
Kimberly Guilfoyle jumped in to explain to Beckel on-air about what was the point of the television segment.
“The purpose of this segment is a study done out of Britain and Canada: Fairy tales are too bleak for kids, but is it a good learning tool?”
Beckel thanked Kimberly for explaining the segment and asked co-host Dana Perino whether grim fairy tales were a “good learning tool?”
“Of course,” Perino told Beckel.
He was surprised by her answer. “Really?”
She continued: “Cautionary tales are good ones, right? It teaches kids that there is going to be times in your life where you will experience someone that dies or that you will be lonely. There will be bullies. There is sadness and it’s the myth and the fantasy that helps you deal with it in life in reality later on.”
Guilfoyle expressed concern over some fairy tales being “very traumatic.”
“When you sit there with a child and they see the parents die. It makes you feel a sense of anxiety about worrying about being abandoned. I’m all for a little bit of happy ending fairy tales,” she said.
The New York Post explained the fairy tale study:
As a recent study in the British Medical Journal concluded, “risk of parental death was five times higher in children’s animated films compared with dramatic films for adults.”
In fact, the BMJ found that on-screen deaths were generally more likely to occur in children’s movies than in grown-up ones.
Using regression analysis, the article’s British and Canadian researchers note:
“Common causes of death in children’s animated films included animal attacks and falls (intentional or not), while in comparison films common causes of death were gunshots, motor-vehicle crashes and illnesses. Notable early on-screen deaths included Nemo’s mother being eaten by a barracuda four minutes and three seconds into ‘Finding Nemo,’ [and] Tarzan’s parents being killed by a leopard four minutes and eight seconds into ‘Tarzan.'” “The Lion King” and “Bambi” give those a run for their money.