She-Ra and the Power of Diversity

Characters of the DreamWorks Animation series, She-Ra, to show diversity of the cast

She-Ra title card/poster, via DreamWorks Animation Studios.

Sophia Prichard, Editor

She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, a Netflix Original Series from the DreamWorks Animation Studio has been praised for its diversity in cast, gender, sexuality, and race, but why is diversity so powerful? Thinking back to older childhood TV shows, there wasn’t as much diversity, but those shows still had an impact, so why is diversity so important? 

Diversity, or the diverse cast of a show, can provide kids with a way to see themselves portrayed in media, the same way American Girl dolls are diverse so that every girl can find a doll that looks like them. Seeing a strong female character, that is not only like you in appearance, but in romantic orientation, is a great way of including everyone, and She-Ra does this beautifully. They not only have a male main character who is black, a female main character who is Asian, and other characters of color, but the protagonist of the series is a confirmed lesbian by the creator and crew. This being confirmed makes the inclusion that much better, the representation isn’t just a vague speculation, but a confirmed fact.

Having canon representation can validate and destigmatize lesbians and lesbian relationships, making viewers feel seen and proud of their feelings, and the children that watch the show can see normalized lesbian relationships, instead of stigmatized and vague lesbian relationships, that are oversexualized for the male gaze. Seeing lesbian and Sapphic relationships being normalized and help many people feel validated and encouraged to be their authentic selves.

The addition of the character Double-Trouble, a nonbinary gender-nonconforming alien, who’s pronouns are they/them, also create a great introduction of gender nonconforming identities for kids. Even better, their pronouns aren’t treated like a big thing, just as if their pronouns are a normal part of life, a great way of normalizing these pronouns. The diversity in this show provides a great reflection of its audience, anyone can find themselves seen in She-Ra.