In The Little Mermaid, Ursula wasn't evil at all. The contract was legal and fair...

What do you think?

  • Ariel was dumb. Ursula did nothing wrong.

    Votes: 146 19.3%
  • Ursula is pure evil. The contract wasn't legal.

    Votes: 185 24.4%
  • Ursula is pure evil, but the contract is legal.

    Votes: 426 56.3%

  • Total voters
    757

pigeon

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,514
I can’t remember the whole movie but I thought Ursula’s home was still in Atlantica. So wouldn’t international arbitration and other dispute resolution methods regarding investor-states not be applicable? I have only done a very broad and rough course on globalised law on account of still being partially through my first year, so I legit don’t know if there’s something you could do through investor state dispute resolution.
That's a good point, but since Ursula can change herself into a human she can simply emigrate to Eric's kingdom and file from there.
 

Bio

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
2,570
Denver, Colorado
Ursula prizes Ariel’s voice. Ursula knows that the freedom of expression, the right to have one’s opinion heard, and the power of communication are valuable things. On the other hand, Ariel is willing to be silenced in exchange for physical alteration,.

Ursula obtains her power legally. Unlike Disney’s other villains whose plans involved illegitimate means, Ursula received the Trident as consideration pursuant to a contract. She had played by the rules, and in return, she was impaled in her Cecaelian gut by an emasculated and character-less prince!
When only the hottest of takes will suffice.
 

meow

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
938
NYC
Why did I think Ursula turned people into dish rags? google tells me this isn't the case, so what am I thinking of?
 

Version 3.0

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,586
It's very clearly established in the story itself that the contract is valid. Triton tries to destroy it, and when it holds up, Ursula gloats about it.

"You see? The contract's legal, binding, and completely unbreakable - even for you!"

That said, Ursula is blatantly evil. So that makes poll option 3 correct.

Also, Triton is even dumber than Ariel. He gives himself up with no guarantees whatsoever. Ursula gets his trident, and the very first thing she does is try to murder Ariel anyway. Triton's trident should've gone to his eldest child, and Ursula should've had to guarantee Ariel's safety (Ariel at the very least).
 

Gaia Lanzer

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,009
That poll is loaded, something can be 100% legal and still evil.
I mean, we are basically where we are here in America because of a legal and evil system.

Legal =/= morally correct.

Boomer mentality on display.
Ursula's the Boomer trying to sell younger gen Ariel that she can do ANYTHING if she puts her mind to it, just sign on the dotted line. Ursula is the rich and powerful person selling the American Dream to the hopefully naive Ariel, just sign on the dotted line.

In both cases, Ursula claims it's fair, only to rig the game in her favor by fucking things up for Ariel.
 
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mrmoose

Member
Nov 13, 2017
8,017
Disney clearly changed the character to be explicitly evil as compared to the original story.
In the original story, the princess the prince wants to marry is a completely separate person (and the whole story is a lot sadder and completely unsuitable for a children's animated movie). So of course Ursula had to be a mustache-twirling kind of bad guy.

Now Black Panther, there's a movie where the bad guy followed all the rules, then the good guys basically rigged the judge AND they didn't want to honor the contract anyway.
 

EloquentM

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,216
I think it’s an element of tortious interference that the contract be between the plaintiff and a third party or parties. If it’s a party to the contract who is interfering, then the cause of action would likely require a contractual theory instead of a tort. Breach of an implied covenant, for example.
Ursula breached Good faith and fair dealing?
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,053
Ursula breached Good faith and fair dealing?
I believe the evidence will show that she did. My client was ready, willing, and able to perform all obligations required of her under the agreement, and was in fact in the process of doing so, when deliberate actions taken by Ursula, and creatures acting on her behalf, prevented my client from completing her side of the bargain. Nothing can constitute a clearer breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing, implied in every contract, than intentionally frustrating the performance by a party thereto. Therefore, Ursula must be held to be in breach of the contract, and my client must be made whole.

Thank you.
 
OP
OP
FernandoRocker

FernandoRocker

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
4,538
México
One question.

If Ariel had kissed Erick, she would have stayed human, that's clear. But her voice was the payment, right? She wouldn't be able to talk even if she married Erick?
 

EloquentM

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,216
I believe the evidence will show that she did. My client was ready, willing, and able to perform all obligations required of her under the agreement, and was in fact in the process of doing so, when deliberate actions taken by Ursula, and creatures acting on her behalf, prevented my client from completing her side of the bargain. Nothing can constitute a clearer breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing, implied in every contract, than intentionally frustrating the performance by a party thereto. Therefore, Ursula must be held to be in breach of the contract, and my client must be made whole.

Thank you.
Would estoppel not be available under this contract as a defense for bad faith breaches? I mean, Ursula was a known double crosser, and Ariel had ignored that, even at the formation of the contract. Ursula relied on ariels knowledge of this fact, thereby waiving Ariels right to bring forth any cause of action based on a breach of implied covenant of good faith. The court should consider that Ariel is estopped from pursuing litigation over this contract and dismiss the case.
 

Dyle

The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
9,471
Wisconsin
She's evil but the contract is legally valid because the undersea kingdom of the mermaids does not have substantial consumer protection laws to ensure that mermaids cannot enter into unreasonable contracts.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,053
Would estoppel not be available under this contract as a defense for bad faith breaches? I mean, Ursula was a known double crosser, and Ariel had ignored that, even at the formation of the contract. Ursula relied on ariels knowledge of this fact, thereby waiving Ariels right to bring forth any cause of action based on a breach of implied covenant of good faith. The court should consider that Ariel is estopped from pursuing litigation over this contract and dismiss the case.
That would be a bold argument. You’re basically saying Ursula can never be trusted to actually carry out a contract in good faith, so she shouldn’t be bound to do so. I’d argue you have created an issue where Ursula has a permanent illusory promise (or something similar) status. Basically, how could there ever be valid consideration if Ursula could escape liability on the contract by saying no one should take her promises seriously. I think your argument might prevent any kind of fraudulent misrepresentation claim against her in general, since it’s clear Ariel has no right to rely on Ursula, but I think it would be really bad policy to apply that to contract.
 

EloquentM

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,216
That would be a bold argument. You’re basically saying Ursula can never be trusted to actually carry out a contract in good faith, so she shouldn’t be bound to do so. I’d argue you have created an issue where Ursula has a permanent illusory promise (or something similar) status. Basically, how could there ever be valid consideration if Ursula could escape liability on the contract by saying no one should take her promises seriously. I think your argument might prevent any kind of fraudulent misrepresentation claim against her in general, since it’s clear Ariel has no right to rely on Ursula, but I think it would be really bad policy to apply that to contract.
you're right, its an illusory promise argument thus voiding the entire contract specifically because of Ursula lack of good faith, and the policy is clear not to allow contracts like that. It’s not even a lack of good faith, it’s literally an exercise of bad faith as she’s actively trying not to let Ariel perform the contract. I mean look what I have go work with here, even the language of the contract is trollsy:

“I hereby grant unto Ursula, the witch of the sea… , one voice, in exchange for byon once high, Dinu*gihn thon Mueo serr on Puur-qurr I rehd moisn petn r m uenre urpti m srerp monk guaki ,Ch rich noy ri imm ro mund for all eternity. signed.”​

Ariel loses her voice in an exchange for “byon...” and if she doesn’t perform she “...[gibberish] for all eternity.” Honestly I think I made a really bad bet with a sea witch.
 

Sephzilla

Herald of Stoptimus Crime
Member
Oct 25, 2017
14,269
All of the main characters in Little Mermaid are problematic and kind of suck.

Ariel is a rebellious hoarder who willingly throws her life away for the first attractive man she meets.
King Triton is a hover parent who seems to be emotionally abusive.
Ursula manipulates minors.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,485
We've not even established under what laws we are assessing the terms of this agreement I take it?

People acting like this contract was agreed in US waters or some shit.

Until we sort that out we don't know what the legislation or the courts might imply into a primarily verbal contract that is extremely scant on detail.
 
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ZealousD

Community Resettler
Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,170
King Triton is a hover parent who seems to be emotionally abusive.
We enter the movie at a stage where King Triton has already (quite reasonably) repeatedly said to Ariel that she shouldn't interact with humans. We haven't seen what other steps he might have already taken that could have been softer. While he obviously goes too far with her by wrecking all the human stuff she found and gets a little too "my house my rules" with her, he recognizes he screwed up almost immediately.

I would say that King Triton made some mistakes but I don't know if I would call him abusive.

Edit: If anything he doesn't hover enough when she decides to marry a guy she only knew for three days.
 
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Sephzilla

Herald of Stoptimus Crime
Member
Oct 25, 2017
14,269
We enter the movie at a stage where King Triton has already (quite reasonably) repeatedly said to Ariel that she shouldn't interact with humans. We haven't seen what other steps he might have already taken that could have been softer. While he obviously goes too far with her by wrecking all the human stuff she found and gets a little too "my house my rules" with her, he recognizes he screwed up almost immediately.

I would say that King Triton made some mistakes but I don't know if I would call him abusive.
Going into her room and making her watch him destroy all of her possessions just to prove a point seems like a pretty big red flag
 

pigeon

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,514
We've not even established under what laws we are assessing the terms of this agreement I take it?

People acting like this contract was agreed in US waters or some shit.

Until we sort that out we don't know what the legislation or the courts might imply into a primarily verbal contract that is extremely scant on detail.
We do know! Triton is some sort of despotic monarch and Eric is much the same! There are no laws that bind kings and princes nor any bodies capable of constraining them except possibly for the sentiment of the other nobles, who don't appear in the piece! No burghers or lord mayors are present, suggesting a period closer to the Dark Ages in which merchant power has yet to develop and serfdom is still the order of the day! This is PRE-ENLIGHTENMENT TIMES PEOPLE!
 

Cheerilee

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,875
This movie did not age well.
The animation is absolutely gorgeous in a way that doesn't get made anymore, and the songs are absolutely peak-Disney. And some people might say that the story is more relevant now than it ever was.

- Overbearing parent is crushing a teenager's spirit, thinking they're doing a good and righteous thing, because the teenager is allowed to be anything that they want, except for the one thing that they actually want.

- Teenager operating under some severe delusions about the outside world feels they have no choice but to run away to the big city and live a utopian life with that guy they met once.

- Vulnerable teenager is manipulated into buying an overpriced bus ticket, but it's actually a front for human trafficking and extortion.

- Desperate dad comes running along to try and fix his mistake, and is easily extorted into losing his house and bank account, and that's still not enough for the extortionist.

- City-boyfriend points out that sometimes you just gotta stab people to get things done, and murders the extortionist. A number of other trafficking/extortion victims are released. Neither the boyfriend or the family face any charges for their actions in this affair, as they acted in self-defense against an obvious criminal.

- Overbearing Dad is now significantly more chill, and he allows his teenage daughter to live her life the way she wants in the city with now-approved boyfriend, *with* family support instead of without it, because cutting people out of each other's lives is reckless and dangerous.


It has often been suggested that Ariel is an LGBT icon. But Ariel is easier to dismiss when you just say "hoarder" or "weeb" or "stupid" or "horny" or say "she's rich so I don't care what happens to her" and don't consider her a person or consider that her feelings are valid. (Note: Saying that Ariel is positive or that she is a good character does not mean that Ariel did nothing wrong and that she did not make any mistakes.)

That guy's a narc. The entire conflict of the movie could've been avoided if he hadn't outed Ariel to her father, in an attempt to suck up to said father.
 

Xpike

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,334
think the contract is fine but ursula did go to sabotage ariel and eric's relationship just to fuck over ariel and thats some shit
 

Bumrush

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,377
I didn't read the goddamn contract but Ursula repeatedly tried to sabotage the love which makes me feel that even though the paperwork might have been legal she would have gotten eviscerated by a court of law.