'Girls' Star Allison Williams Playing Peter Pan Will Reveal Just How Much Disney Lied To Us
Just in case you needed another reason to get excited for Peter Pan Live, let's add another one. Allison Williams of Girls will be playing Peter Pan. I repeat: Marnie Michaels is going to be playing Peter Pan. All right, so that comparison might excite almost no one since Marnie Michaels isn't exactly the most well-liked character on the show, but Peter Pan is far from the most likable character. I mean, Disney is known for softening horrific fairy tales and Peter Pan was no different. He might have seemed like a charming though immature young prankster in Disney's Peter Pan, but the Peter Pan of the book and play was a complete monster. Disney lied to us again.
The whole point of Peter Pan is that he's permanently stuck in childhood, for better and for worse. After all, Peter Pan never matured to the point of knowing right from wrong. In fact, he's still got all of his baby teeth, which basically means he's immortally stuck in that period in his life where everything belongs to him, he doesn't know how to share, and he has no real concept of consequences. That's why he commits some pretty horrific acts that would make any parent determined to grow him out of it.
For example, not only is Peter pretty bad about keeping track of the Lost Boys, he tends to forget them as soon as they're gone. Worse, in the climatic battle between the Lost Boys and Captain Hook's pirate crew, Peter notices that the pirates are at a disadvantage and promptly switches sides, killing off Lost Boys to keep the fight interesting. In fact, endangering his friends for free entertainment is kind of his entire M.O. Hanging out with Peter Pan doesn't really come with a long life expectancy.
Besides, it's easy to forget considering how it's played for wonder and magic, but Peter Pan kidnaps children from England and then gets angry when they want to leave Neverland and go home. In stark contrast, Williams' role as Marnie Michaels is the lesser of two evils. Marnie might be whiny, haughty, indecisive, and hard to understand, but she's not a sociopath. At worst, she's a smug hypocrite who will dump her boyfriend, reunite with him, and then dump him again in the middle of the makeup sex. You either connect with her on nearly every level or you consider her the absolute worst. There doesn't seem to be very much middle ground on that.
Despite capturing the hearts and imaginations of children and children at heart for years, Peter Pan was originally conceived as the villain of his own story. If that sounds surprising to you, please remember again that it's essentially a story about child kidnapping. If there's anything that Allison Williams can bring to her role as Peter Pan, it's that certain stuck-in-her-ways, pseudo-mature, do-the-wrong-thing-with-complete-earnestness-and-then-backtrack-just-as-quickly flair we've come to expect from seeing her on Girls.
Marnie Michaels and Peter Pan are basically the antithesis of each other on the outside — Peter Pan being free in all the ways that Marnie is fussy — but seeing Allison Williams' transformation from one to the other alongside Christopher Walken's Captain Hook will be the show of a lifetime. Besides, once she's done giving her performance, then maybe fans of Girls will appreciate Marnie Michaels more just for the sheer fact that she's not Peter Pan, who is not nearly so charming on stage as he is in the Disney movie.