In 2012, Disney released a line of villain dolls depicting Ursula, the classically full-figured Sea Witch from The Little Mermaid as a designer, couture, size zero. From one rolling midsection and tameless will to another, my sweet Ursula — I cannot imagine the sick flip of your stomach, to see your image dissected, chins shaved, waist cinched, your silhouette robbed of every ounce of delicious curve. To find after two decades of existence that your evil was more worthy of preservation than the iconic body that held you, you — big lady, were the only Disney character who ever looked like me. And while you may not have had the waistline of a princess I'll be godd.amned if you didn't have the swagger of a Queen. The way you sashayed around your lair in full makeup, black flamenco number cut so low in the back that your every twist and shimmy displayed the gorgeous tuck of your rolls... You made back-fat look f.ucking s.exy. You made living in this body a little less like a curse. I wonder how they told you, did they sit you down over tea, delicately frosted cakes lining your chipped porcelain? Explain it as a marketing technique, a vehicle to make you more palatable to a culture that demands perfection? I hope you crushed the f.ucking teapot in the clench of your fist. I hope you grew a thousand feet tall and drowned them in the whirlpool of your rage. I wish I could have watched you suck the voices from their tiny, breakable throats. But I know you wept, I know you licked the icing from each and every cake, I know you broke, like a slow burn. Wasn't it enough that they made you a witch? That you were already beyond the bounds of their franchise royalty? They expected little girls to recoil from the wicked inside your laugh, when instead, they worshiped your honesty. Ursula, I don't want you cut down into bite-sized pieces. You weren't easy to swallow for a reason. I want you larger than life, flaming red lips, black flamenco dress — I want the thick of your tentacles, your conjurer's hands, the jiggle of your ample bust. I want you dressed to the nines on a runway, I want every little girl to see a heroine in a size 24. Ursula, Queen of the Ocean, you were never just a witch to me. You were perfect — every pound, every inch, every swell, perfect. And I pity the poor, unfortunate soul who would dare paint you as anything less.
—MELISSA MAY-DUNN, DEAR URSULA.