Like a lot of little girls, I grew up with a borderline-unhealthy obsession with Cinderella. Of all the twinkling fairy-tale princesses she was by far the most appealing. The Little Mermaid was half-fish, which severely hampered her fashion options, Sleeping Beauty was too unconscious (see also Snow White) and Thumbelina was quite simply much too small.

Yet Cinderella was just right — downtrodden but beautiful, tormented but unfailingly kind, and with a sensational makeover opportunity for those of us who were only really in it for the clothes and accessories. Our Cinderella VHS was worn out with use, her pages in the book of fairy tales were falling out, and there wasn’t a piece of her merch too flammable, too toxic or too age-inappropriate that it didn’t live on the floor of my sister’s and my bedroom permanently.

Start your free trial to read the full story

Subscribe to Air Mail to access every article
and search our entire Arts Intel Report.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here.