EDITOR’S NOTE: The following piece is offered by the author as a review and personal opinion.

Disney’s newest version of ‘The Little Mermaid,’ is out in theatres now. It features Halley Bailey, alongside castmates including Jonah Hauer-King, Javier Bardem and Melissa McCarthy.

Bailey is mostly known for her artistry in the R&B duo, Chloe x Halle. She’s making an even bigger name for herself in the film playing the lead role of Ariel.

Ariel is a mermaid searching to become a part of the human world. When she gets a glimpse of their world, she gets an unexpected chance to experience it after being put under a spell by Ursula, the half-octopus sea witch. Will she take her chances?

The first few minutes of the film might have been a tear-jerker, especially for young Black girls who were able to see themselves on screen as a Disney princess — for some, for the very first time. A diverse group of mermaids popped up on screen in what was a pleasant surprise.

The film sparked a lot of debate when it was first announced that the new character would be played by a Black woman, considering the original character was white.

However, experts say the move is a step forward in an effort for Disney to increase its representation of its princesses.

The film’s diverse cast brings back memories of when I watched the 1997 version of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, played by Brandy.

The significance of that role during the time was as monumental then, as it is today. Brandy’s choice to keep her braids in the film, was a plus, showcasing the culture of Black women.

In ‘The Little Mermaid,’ Halle Bailey — who has locs in her hair — keeps them in the film, but simply colors it to match Ariel’s look.

The end of the movie gets even better when all of the “MerPeople” are exposed showing an even more diverse cast and conveying Disney’s commitment to representation on screen.

For that, it deserves an A.

The film is expected to stream on Disney Plus on August 30th, 2023.