New Song in ‘The Little Mermaid’ Divides the Internet

Credit: Disney

There’s a new song sweeping across the Internet – but not in a good way.

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A New Controversy

As Disney’s live-action The Little Mermaid (2023) kicks off in theaters this upcoming weekend, one of its new songs is creating an online controversy. However, rather than being controversial over politics, race, or cultural issues, it’s causing a stir because people just don’t seem to like it.

Live Action Little Mermaid

Credit: Disney

Although it had been reported earlier that Lin Manuel-Miranda was working to change some lyrics in a few of the classic songs, it seems everyone was expecting something else.

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The Scuttlebutt

Released the other day was a new song sung by Scuttle (Awkwafina) called “The Scuttlebutt.”


Many people are criticizing the song’s tone, lyrics, and rhythm (rapped by Scuttle the seagull) as sounding like a rip-off of Hamilton (Lin Manuel-Miranda’s most famous work).

This is not the first controversy over the new film; it will probably not be the last. Aside from debates over casting, lighting, animation, song lyric changes, and other issues, The Little Mermaid (2023) has another controversy to add to its list.

Although some people consider it catchy, they still feel it doesn’t belong in the film. With lyrics like:

Remember the swamp?
Remember my song in the swamp?
When I was like
Womp chicka womp womp chicka womp whoomp

And verses such as:

Yeah, the prince has been dropping hints
He wants to
You know when humans dress
All nice, like they’re penguins
Throw rice for the pigeons
They’re tryin’ to blow up the pigeons
But those are just urban legends
I know a lot of really fat pigeons

The news of this new song also comes on the heels of another controversy: Disney Plus has removing a documentary on the late Howard Ashman, who worked with Alan Menken on songs for The Little Mermaid (1989) among others films.

Halle Bailey as The Little Mermaid

Credit: Disney

The Little Mermaid (2023) releases on May 26, 2023, starring Halle Bailey as Ariel, Melissa McCarthy as Ursula, Jonah Hauer King as Prince Eric, and Javier Bardem as King Triton.

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About Steven Wilk

Steven has a complicated relationship with Disney. As a child, he visited Walt Disney World every few years with his family. But he never understood why kids his age (and older) were so scared of Snow White or Alien Encounter. He is a former participant of the Disney College Program (left early…long story), and he also previously worked in Children’s publishing, where he adapted multiple Disney movies and TV shows. He has many controversial opinions about Disney…like having a positive view of Michael Eisner, believing Return of the Jedi is superior to The Empire Strikes Back, and that Toy Story Land and Galaxy’s Edge should have never been built (at least not at Hollywood Studios). Every year for the past two decades, Steven has visited either Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Aulani or went on a Disney Cruise. He’s happy to share any and all knowledge of the Disney destinations (and he likes using parenthesis a lot…as well as ellipses…)