Simsala Grimm

Animated German anthology Simsala Grimm retells various fairytales through the eyes of Yoyo and Doc Croc, two anthropomorphic animals who get to dive "into" stories and watch them play out firsthand. From my poking around the internet, it appears that the first two seasons of this TV series were aired in 1999-2000, while the third season was aired in 2010. I don't know what that's about, but the third season has an episode for The Little Mermaid.

This retelling is for the most part straightforward, though the presence of Yoyo and Doc Croc give the little mermaid someone to talk to about her feelings as the story progresses. Yoyo and Doc Croc also add comments as an audience, such as pointing out that the sea witch's deals are pretty harsh. They also mourn for the little mermaid for her sacrifice, when no one else (not her sisters, or the prince) is aware of what she's done.

Overall, the story is quite truncated: the little mermaid arrives on land with legs while the prince is still awaiting rescue on the beach. There, the little mermaid meets and has a single dance with her prince, and literally once they've stopped dancing the king arrives to collect the prince and tell him that he is to be wed with the princess of the land, who looks very similar to the little mremaid and makes the mistaken identity aspect much more understandable. An interesting touch is that the little mermaid acknowledges that her choices are drastic, and she tells Doc Croc and Yoyo that she is drawn to the possibility of love, and the prince represents that hope. When that doesn't pan out, the little mermaid embraces her fate, and finds herself transformed into a spirit of the air, where there are new possibilities awaiting her.

Thanks to Juzzy for letting me know about this version!

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