Top Nine Fairy Tales That are Secretly Badass
4. Jack and the Beanstalk
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Normally a story that involes a teenage boy buying "magic beans" from a mysterious dealer sounds like some kind of morality tale that belongs in a D.A.R.E. lecture. Narcotics, however, are the least threatening part of this awesome tale.
The British tale "Jack the Giant Killer," the basis for the popular fairy tale, takes place during King Arthur's reign and Jack is less of a plucky teen trying to save his family's bankrupt farm and more of a for-hire hitman who specializes in giants. The two-headed giant in this tale falls while chasing Jack across a rickety bridge and Jack dispatches the massive beast by tying ropes around his heads and ripping them clean with a team of wild horses.
3. Little Red Riding Hood
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The basic story of this timeless children's tale is already fairly dark, just on the fact that a rabid wolf eats a poor little girl's grandmother and seems to find morbid fun in dressing up and talking like her. It's one of the few fairy tales where heavy duty drinking or drug abuse wouldn't even alter the story that much.
The original British version, however, sounds like a mix between the "Saw" movies and a South Korean horror flick. An earlier French version of the classic Grimm fairy tale told by peasants in the early 14th century features the wolf killing Red's grandmother and then tricking her granddaughter into drinking her grandmother's blood and eating parts of her, turning her into a unwitting cannibal.
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This classic tale of a poor orphan girl overcoming the wicked oppression of her evil stepfamily sounds as though it would be impossible to corrupt. Get ready to behold the power of self-mutilation.
The earliest known version of this tale was published in the mid-1910s and was called "The Cinder Maid." In the story's climactic scene, the evil stepsisters mercilessly try to fit their big fat feet in the glass slipper that the Prince found at the evening's ball. The stepsisters are so desperate to fit in the slipper that they actually take a large butcher knife and cut off their own toes and heels to fit the slippers on their bleeding stumps.
1. Snow White and the Seven Dwarves
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Perhaps the most evil villain in all of fairy-tale-dom is the evil queen from the original "Snow White." She's the Leona Helmsley of children's literature, if Leona had brains and a personality.
The original version called "Little Snow-White" is actually a much more frightening tale as evidenced by the queen's original request. The queen doesn't just order the woodsman to kill Snow White and bring back her heart. She also asks for her lungs and liver. The woodsman still helps Snow White escape without harm but he kills a bear and brings back its liver and lungs instead, which the queen immediately whips up into a tasty stew and eats, presumably with some fava beans and a nice chianti.