No, Mulan's clothes don't irritate me. People's ignorance does. Let me explain:
Ok, recently, I've been obsessed with learning about Asian cultures, especially the ones that desend from China, for example, Japan, Korea, etc and China itself. Being female, I was first interested in female traditional clothing. We all know kimonos, geishas and stuff, thanks to things like anime and stuff from Japan being rather big in Western countries. But what about China? I looked to Mulan. What do you call the clothes she wears? Obviously it's not kimonos, that's A: Japanese and B: China influensed Japanese culture, so China is the Chicken, Japan is the Egg. I googled it and the first thing I saw was a Youtube video called "Mulan turning into a Geisha." of the Honor To Us All scene from the movie. What! I was frustrated! I then saw some Yahoo Answers questions like this and this and many more of which I do not feel like finding the links too. Are people really that dense? Sorry, I just had to say it.
Ok, let me explain why it's different.
Here's Mulan in her MatchMaker outfit. The next picture is of two geishas. Similar outfits and makeup, yes, but the same thing? No! After proper research, Mulan's clothes are called hanfu , or clothes from the Han period in
China's history. Yes, when you think of traditional Chinese clothing for females you think of something like this or this but technically, as wikipedia says, it "is not an example of hanfu since it derives from a Manchu clothing style." Below are lots of examples of hanfu for women, mostly a style called ruqun.
Seriously, just google image search Hanfu. Almost all or most of the styles are like Mulan's outfit and are similar to kimonos and Korea hanbok. Why? Because wikipedia says: "Han Clothing has influenced many of its neighbouring cultural costumes". Now as for Mulan's makeup, pale skin, red lips and pick cheeks have always been a symbol of beauty in Asian cultures, and other cultures too, like in Europe. Here's what is says on this site:
"Facial makeup was an elaborate process for Tang Dynasty women. It began with a foundation of face powder, followed by rouge and a dusting of light yellow powder. Bluish black eyebrows were then painstakingly painted in, lipstick applied, and dimples either added or accentuated. Last was an ornamental design either pasted or painted on the forehead."
If I remember carefully that's what happened during Honor To Us All, when Mulan got her makeup put on. Look at the picture of one of the young women going to meet the matchmaker below. Mulan didn't make a design, probably because she was late, but this girl did. The site I was on also says, "The ornamental designs Tang beauties pasted on their foreheads were often of bird feathers or black paper, and possibly of shell, goldleaf, fishbone or mica. Or they would simply paint on a motif. "
So basically, my long and draw out with lots of unnesseary pictures point is this:
Before someone can say "OMGEE DIZNEY MADE MULAN A GIESHA DONT TEHY KNOW SHES CHINEZE" or "Disney didn't do their research." or something along those lines, they'd be dead wrong because everything is actually correct, and China influenced Japan, and not the other way around, so you can't say that. Right down the the design on the girl's head.
Yeah, I enjoy writing and reseaching meanless, completely random things, so this was not a pain to look up. I just wanted to get the facts out their and hope no one is blinded by ignorance. Tell me what you think below.