No prince's heart to win? No sea witch to battle? Just what kind of
(mermaid's) tail is this? A fine one at that. In The Little Mermaid, Ariel's
Beginning Ariel, Sebastian, Flounder and the gang are back with a new
adventure, and maybe this adventure's status as a prequel has saved it from the
lackluster status of many of Disney's recent cartoon sequels.
The story begins with the background on whatever happened to Ariel's mom (I
wondered about this when watching the original Little Mermaid). An unfortunate
fate is bestowed on Ariel's mom, leaving King Triton with nothing to blame
except music, which he rashly banishes from the kingdom of Atlantica (can anyone
Several years removed from this terrible day, Ariel is simply bored with life
in the stoic kingdom, and misses her mom's joie de vie, and particularly her
love of music. Ariel soon meets and befriends Flounder, and while following him
into a forbidden area of the ocean, discovers a sea creature music speakeasy
showcasing none other than King Triton's right hand crab Sebastian. This gives
Ariel's dastardly governess Marina Del Rey (who is no Maria von Trapp) the break
she has been looking for to supplant Sebastian as the King's chief charge.
Sebastian leads Ariel, flounder, and a group of other musical outlaws on a
journey which helps Ariel discover a way to break the musical chains that bind
her father's heart.
If you are looking for a great Disney movie that has the robustness of a new
franchise but with characters you already love, Ariel's Beginning does not
disappoint. Disney put forward their A-team for the writing, music and
animation. This is definitely a must have addition to any family's treasured
Disney DVD collection.