Fantasy Sisters: Ursula (Merrin Dungey) on Once Upon a Time (#OUAT)

Remember what I said about Hollywood messing with Black women's appearance on TV?  Urusula's problem lies in the sheer tackiness of her costume (see below), and the God-awful blond weave which poorly contrasts her complexion.

"Ursula" is what I call a "Huh?" Recast; I didn't see why the writers on Once Upon a Time felt it would be awesome to make her Black.  She just didn't jump out at me that way.  But in Season 3, Ursula is described as a mythical sea goddess instead of a witch, and since the words "Black" and "goddess" tend to just naturally flow together, I thought, "Heh.  Maybe this could work."

It didn't.

So far, Ursula has showed up in hideous clothes and done nothing special aside for using her tentacles and be the butt of fish jokes.  This week's episode of OUAT showed her rolling into Storybrooke in a fly ride with Cruella De Vil, looking somewhat tolerable, but still....

Merrin Dungey is clearly a fabulous-looking woman.  She was made to play a fantasy character; that smooth dark skin and those big, beautiful dark eyes pretty much do a stylist's job for them.  Queen, princess, goddess - she could obviously knock any of those out with little more than a bat of those eyelashes and sway of those hips...provided her stylist's done right by her.

Instead, we get this:

Aw, hell no.

*Pause*  Do me a favor right quick: Google the words "African sea goddess" right now and see what humble, unpaid artists dream up in their spare time.  Don't worry.  I'll wait.

Matter of fact, scratch that. Let me help you out:

Would an outfit like this even be expensive?

I doubt a Hollywood designer would have trouble with this one.

Seriously, though.

Granted, not the most family friendly outfit
for American TV, but you get my point.

Same here.

And here.

This could be easily modified to provide
the proper cover.
*blink* So what's the problem?  In traditional art for the last several thousand years, sea goddesses art aren't typically depicted wearing much to begin with, so designing a simple, lovely dress for one on a multi-million-dollar hit TV show should be a no-brainer.

Or did I miss something?


  1. Girl, wtf do they have her wearing? It's like they didn't even try!

    1. I think they just swung by a random hobby shop and raided the clearance rack.

  2. Styling a sea goddess isn't tensor calculus, for Pete's sake.


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