In her book The Witches Are Coming, Lindy West sums up an entire four hundred years worth of history with the spot-fucking-on statement, “Americans are addicted to plausible deniability.” When I read that (in the midst of procrastinating from writing this article), it hit me: that’s what fairytales are. Fairytales provide answers to questions we don’t want to dwell on for too long. Fairytales have no nuance, no grey area, no maybes. I’m not just talking about the versions that Disney fed to us with a spoonful of sugar, either. Fairytales are, inclusively, drawn with clear borders and clear answers. There are the good guys and the bad guys, a battle between the two, and a neat resolution without fail…and within that resolution, a lesson, of course.
All this to say, I walked into Gretel & Hansel expecting to be entertained but underwhelmed.