When it comes to creating original songs that are catchy and downright unforgettable, Disney’s track record is unparalleled. But I don’t need to tell you that. You likely grew up with these songs. Either that, or you learned to love them when Disney Channel stars like Ashley Tisdale did ear-splitting pop-rock covers of them in the early 2000s, wearing the worst outfit you’ve ever seen, for some compilation CD collecting dust in your parents’ basement.
However you first came to hear them, Disney has the hits. It’s impossible to deny—even for those like myself, who have mostly scrubbed their childhood affinity for the House of Mouse. I do, however, fall prey to the tunes from The Little Mermaid, because, before I am human, I am gay. In my humble, queer opinion, The Little Mermaid has Disney’s best collection of original songs, which perfectly stroll along the intersection between magical and theatrical.
Naturally, I was anticipating hearing these old favorites with new arrangements in the live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid. After all, the film stars the uber-talented Halle Bailey as Ariel; the only way Disney could make Ariel’s songs better would be to put one-half of the women behind “Ungodly Hour” behind the mic. It turns out, I was correct: All of the original songs in the live-action Little Mermaid are either equally as good or better than the versions on the 1989 soundtrack.