It’s time for another gender swap! In a previous Little Mermaid swap, I envisioned the gender-swapped Ursula the Sea-Witch as Urkel, but we’ll call him Ulrich to keep the sort of Germic theme of the names. (Also because the part of me that grew up watching TGIF can’t read/type Urkel without giggling). So here he is: Ulrich the Sea-Warlock.
(Note: In the picture I kept Ariel as she is, mostly because I’m lazy but also because there’s something far creepier about this whole deal-with-the-devil scene than in the original. But for the sake of the story, I’m swapping all the genders, just to see what happens.)
So, Ulrich’s story isn’t much different than Ursula’s. He wants to be king of the ocean, hates King Triton (Queen Triton?) and tricks poor Eric (because he’s the mermaid in my version) into selling his voice for some legs to woo Princess Ariel on the surface. Eventually he gets popped by Ariel’s ship and all is well down under the sea.
What is interesting is how different the character’s behavior would be. Rewatch the movie and you’ll see what a diva Ursula is. In fact, it was really hard to get a screenshot of her where she wasn’t doing something that might be considered overly feminized. She does a lot of hip thrusts, arm flails, sly smiles and the like. She’s almost a little drag-queen-ish (no offense to drag queens. Many of them make better women than me.) I feel like Disney probably would have made a male version of her into a smooth talker like Jafar or a fast-talking, double-dealer like Hades. For my purposes, I’ve made him into more of a trucker-looking character, but what kind of personality would fit that? I don’t know.
Bonus: Before and after!
I just want to make some notes on the changes I’ve made. I’ve changed nothing about Ursula’s original weight. Nada. In fact, I actually took off a few of his lower poundage so that I could give the illusion of muffin-topping. I guess black really is slimming. Nonetheless, it makes me a more than a little offended that the “evil” character has become the “fat” character. True, it does make Ursula one of the more recognizable villains solely based on her character silhouette (big ‘ole octopus with a bit of an updo), compared to all of the super-skinny stepmothers, witches, queens, etc. (There are a few exceptions…very few. For a truly awesome critique on Disney character designs, read this.)
Despite this, I decided to keep the flab, going so far as to give Ulrich some moobs. (Yes, now I have “moobs” in my search history when I looked them up for reference.) The fingers got a little wider for the man-hands, he got a five o’clock shadow, and added a bit more mullet, thicker eyebrows, removed the makeup and made him a shell wristband instead of a shell necklace. (I had wanted to make a shell belt buckle but the combination of muffin top and the total lack of pants meant that it wasn’t feasible).
Obligatory Copyright Notice: The original images, characters, etc. are owned by Disney. The altered artwork is mine, and is a work of fan art. No copyright infringement is intended.