Netflix criticised for whitewashing two characters in Winx Club adaptation: ‘They just killed my favourite childhood’

Fans of the original series are disappointed new show has reduced its diversity

Annabel Nugent
Friday 11 December 2020 16:51 GMT
Netflix's Fate: The Winx Saga first trailer

Netflix has found itself at the centre of a new whitewashing controversy over its forthcoming series Fate: The Winx Saga.

Ahead of the show’s release on 22 January, the streaming platform released a trailer for the young adult drama series.

The series – created by The Vampire Diaries creator Brian Young – is a live-action adaptation of the Nickelodeon cartoon tilted The Winx Club, which ran on the kid’s network between 2004 and 2009 before it was revived in 2011.

Despite initial excitement at news of the adaptation, fans of the original series were quick to notice that the show’s main cast lacks the diversity included in the original cartoon. As a result, many viewers have accused the streaming giant of whitewashing – a common practice in Hollywood by which white actors are chosen to play characters who are people of colour.

The original show’s main characters consists of six fairies who attend Alfea, a magical boarding school in the Otherworld. 

However, its new adaptation only features five fairies with many fans noticing that its casting choices have reduced the original show’s diversity.

Fate: The Winx Club

One Twitter user wrote: “Honestly they just killed my entire childhood by releasing this. Who the hell was in charge of casting because wow this is all wrong.

“Where is the Latina Flora, the Asian Musa and why is Tecna missing?”

Another said: “Hilarious [that] people will defend Winx by saying its breaking standards but see how the main girl is still white, pretty and the helper roles are either PoC [people of colour] or different than standards.  If it’s okay to whitewash Musa and Flora they could’ve made Bloom a black or asian girl.”

“Can Netflix explain wtf this is supposed to be? One of the reasons I loved Winx because it represented my coloured sisters. Wtf did y’all do to my childhood?!” wrote a third user, who accompanied their post with a photo comparing the cartoon characters to their real-life counterparts.

“Flora is white now? Musa isn’t Asian anymore??????? Also can someone explain what the hell happened to Tecna? You’re telling me that I waited all that time to have this?” said one user.

The Independent has contacted Netflix for comment.

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