Cartoon by Maria Scrivan, found at http://open.salon.com/blog/maria_scrivan/2012/03/05/rapunzel_rapunzel
The Grimm Brothers’ Rapunzel tale is extremely famous. Everyone knows the story of the girl that is locked in a tower by a witch. The only way in or out of the tower is by climbing Rapunzel’s long hair. The witch visits frequently and calls “Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair”. One day a prince comes, and calls up the same thing. He climbs up and the two fall in love. The Grimm version goes a bit farther, and later Rapunzel accidentally slips up and tells the witch that she is much heavier than the prince. The witch cuts her hair and sends her away. She then waits for the prince to come back and lures him up, letting him think that Rapunzel is still there. When he finds the witch and learns that Rapunzel is not there, he throws himself off the tower. He is blinded by thorns at the bottom, and starts to wander around aimlessly. He eventually finds Rapunzel by accident, and the two live happily ever after with their two children. The Grimm ending is generally not as well known, although the tale itself is very famous.
This cartoon is a spoof on how unrealistic the tale is. Although fairy tales are not meant to be taken literally, the cartoon brings out the absurdity in the situation. It would be impossible to grow your hair out long enough to fall from a tower. Likewise, it would be extraordinarily painful to allow someone to climb up your hair. The idea of hair extensions is funny in regards to this fairy tale, because obviously the extensions would not be able to hold someone. The cartoon is also poking fun at the idea of beauty. Rapunzel appears to be naturally beautiful with her long hair, but once her beauty is tested, it does not hold up. One can try to make oneself beautiful by putting using fake things, like hair extensions. But, at the end of the day, natural beauty is more valuable. The prince can be attracted to her long hair, but her extensions ruin their possible relationship because they are not the same as actual hair.