People are just realizing Flounder in new The Little Mermaid is ‘stuff of nightmares’ – but that’s not the only change



The Little Mermaid live-action was always going to make waves when it came to reimagining the classic Disney movie, but even it didn’t anticipate the backlash when it came to Flounder’s new look.

The new movie is set to break the box office following in the footsteps of Disney’s other live-action remakes, from Beauty and the Beast to Aladdin and The Lion King.

While the trailers, posters and multiple teasers have got fans excited for what’s to come, as always a few changes have people in stitches, mainly the realistic animals.

As fans flock to the cinema, it’s Ariel’s two underwater friends that have people in shock and posting memes.

Ariel and Flounder from Disney's The Little Mermaid


Ariel and Flounder from Disney’s The Little MermaidCredit: Alamy

Ariel’s best friend is known for his bright yellow and blue scales and big eyes in the 1989 animated movie, but now, well, the new Flounder is a much, much, skinnier version.

There’s such a thing as too realistic.

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One fan said: “Why is he so skinny??? The fish looks like Steve Buscemi.”

Another said: “I know the Disney live-action films are supposed to be realistic but they can give us a lil more cartoon in the animals. Flounder looks like we bout to toss him in some Zatarain’s and fry him [cry]”

“They de-yasssified Flounder,” another said.

“Look how they massacred my boy,” said another distressed fan.

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“Wanna see The Little Mermaid…but why is Flounder skinny…he is supposed to be fat!”

“Skinny flounder is the stuff of nightmares,” added another Disney fan.

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Jacob Tremblay, who voices the fish, has already defended the design.

“I was shown the design when I went in for the audition and I saw the movie last night and, I have to say that I think it really, really worked,” he told Variety. “I think that they were geniuses and they knew exactly what they were doing.”

The idea behind the new look was, of course, to match the realistic look of the live-action movie.

The poster first sparked the memes as fans saw Flounder had slimmed down.


The poster first sparked the memes as fans saw Flounder had slimmed down.Credit: Disney

“I think it works out perfectly. I think it matches everything,” Tremblay added. “So if it was different, I don’t think it would really work.”

Flounder isn’t the only character that’s had a makeover. Sebastian, voiced by Daveed Diggs, has switched out the huge eyes and head for a realistic smaller crab.

Cartoonist Rob DenBleyker joked: “Filmgoers waited 34 years but it was worth it: we finally got an anatomicaly accurate Sebastian.”

Tremblay appears alongside Melissa McCarthy as Ursula, Javier Bardem as King Triton, Noma Dumezweni as Queen Selina, a new character, and Awkwafina as Scuttle in the all-star The Little Mermaid cast.

Even with the ‘nightmare-fuel’ the movie has already been met with rave reviews, with critics praising Halle Bailey as Ariel.

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Fans can also look out for three new songs from the minds of Alan Menken and Lin-Manuel Miranda (For the First time, Wild Uncharted Waters and Scuttlebutt), which the duo describes as “accidental art”.

The Little Mermaid Live-action is out in cinemas May 26. The animated movie is streaming on Disney Plus.

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