Does This 'Little Mermaid' Plot Hole Ruin the Movie for You?

by John Boone 4:33 PM PDT, March 23, 2015
Photo: Disney

This should test your suspension of disbelief watching The Little Mermaid.

(And no, we’re not just talking about the mermaids and talking fish of it all.)

“After 26 years, today I stumbled on a plot hole...that will haunt me for the rest of my days,” Mary Falls of Washington D.C. posted on Facebook. “This changes everything. And it's not the plausibility of human-merperson relations. Though yet to be proven by science, everyone knows those are the best kind of relationships.”

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Basically, Mary argues the movie should have been over in five seconds:

“Ariel could have saved herself a lot of trouble if she had just learned to read and write,” Mary says. “She could just scrawl an explanation of her situation for Prince Eric like, ‘Hey Blue Eyes, I saved your life and then you fell in love with my voice, which I could probably get back if you just used your love to try to suck it out of my throat through my mouth here.’”

“But like nicer and in princess language,” she continues.

Mary reasons that, because Ariel was a princess, she surely had to learn to be literate at some point in her life. In which case, the problem must be that Ariel doesn’t understand how dingle-whozits (translation: pens) work.

“Then it occurred to me, duh -- they can't write underwater without special pens, and they'd have to be able to walk to The Sharper Image to get those,” she explains. “But I'll be damned, she signed that contract with Ursula. So, Ariel is completely flipping literate and, in point of fact, has excellent penmanship!”

So why does Ariel waste all her time playing charades with Prince Eric, instead of slipping him a post-it note with “MERMAID. CAN’T CHAT. KISS ME PLZ.”? We may never know.

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The Huffington Post originally shared the post from Mary’s Facebook, and Buzzfeed picked it up from there. In the comments of both, fans have tried to justify Ariel’s behavior, saying that not revealing the bargain with Ursula may have been a clause in the contract, or Ariel knew saying a sea witch stole her voice would make her look completely insane.

Or maybe it’s not worth fretting over and we should just enjoy the movie?

Now, check out seven things you didn’t know about The Little Mermaid: