Pixar fans, you’ve got to check this out. Disney-Pixar just released “Purl,” and while it’s just as adorable as it sounds, the content of this new animated short is more meaningful than we anticipated.
With Disney’s recent move toward more diversity and representation in their films and shows, we weren’t surprised when they released “Purl” as part of their new SparkShorts series. Pixar announced earlier this year that the shorts films in the new SparkShorts series would differ from other Pixar animated shorts in their experimental storytelling. And by the looks of “Purl,” they’re right. The new short film follows a lovable, earnest ball of yarn named Purl as she starts her new job at a “bro-tastic” startup and learns to navigate her experience as the only female in the workplace. Sounds relatable, right? We think so too.
Right off the bat, the animated short shows the harsh realities of being a woman or minority in the workplace. Purl is an eager new employee who quickly discovers that she is the only colorful ball of yarn (and the only female) in a company whose only other employees are white men. The animated short does a great job of portraying Purl’s experience in a relatable way, showing how she is treated differently because of who she is. We won’t spoil the rest of the short for you (you’ll have to watch it yourself), but we were very pleased with the way the short film progresses.
While we can’t ignore the clear adult humor included throughout the short film, we also understand that it is meant to illustrate the “bro-tastic” environment of Purl’s new workplace. The inclusion of more adult-esque jokes serves to showcase the masculinity of this startup, and while it may not be essential to the film, it is an intentional and conscious choice of the writer and director, Kristen Lester. Several comments on the YouTube video mention that it doesn’t seem like a kids’ short film, but that doesn’t seem to detract from the viewers’ ability to enjoy the film for what it is: commentary on diversity in the workplace (or rather, lack thereof).
“Purl” is experimental storytelling in its inclusion of social commentary and adult humor. While it isn’t exactly the perfect kid-friendly animated short that we’re accustomed to from Disney-Pixar, it does share a lesson that kids and adults can relate to and learn from. We hope this isn’t the last Disney-Pixar animated short if its kind.
You can watch Disney-Pixar’s new animated short “Purl” below: