Disability in Warriors and Why it Matters by Jayquill

Jayquill takes a moment to talk about disability in Warriors.

Official art by Wayne McLoughlin

Hey, Y’all! Jayquill here! This is my first article that I’m posting on Blogclan and I’m going to talk about Disability in Warriors and what it has done for me. I’ve wanted to write an article on Warriors for a while but, I couldn’t decide what to write on until I finished Tigerheart’s Shadow. So here it is!

I will be discussing multiple characters from the series, so minor spoilers ahead.
The first thing I want to address is how disabled cats are treated in the first series. Starting with Bluestar. I really liked Bluestar in the first few books. But the one problem I have with her is how she treats her clanmates when they are disfigured and disabled. How does she comfort them after their injuries? By changing their names to match their disformities. Cloudtail even points out that other cats don’t want to talk to a cat named Lostface while having to look at her in the eye. Firestar even changes her name. He may blame it on Bluestar’s grief and feelings of betrayal, but that does not excuse her cruel behavior. This is similar to the treatment Crookedstar receives in Crookedstars Promise. He is injured as a kit and his own MOTHER changes his name to Crookedkit after his broken jaw. Why Hailstar decided this was a good idea and went through with it I’ll never know. That’s not even the WORST part either. She refuses to speak to or acknowledge his existence afterwards. It even leads to what’s basically the equivalent to cat divorce in Warriors. Luckily Crookedstar endures his trials and becomes one of the best clan leaders the clans have ever seen. He even finds a mate who loves him for who he is. The third cat I would like to discuss is YOU GUESSED IT. CINDERPELT. Everybody loves Cinderpelt. She has an attitude. She doesn’t mope for long before she is already performing medicine duties to serve her clan. She is also very independent. Even after shes told not to help the sick Shadowclan cats she does it anyway. We’re constantly told how much respect the other clans have for her. Briarlight is very similar in this respect and she is also a great character. Next is everybody’s favorite bae. Jayfeather. Jayfeather for me is the most relatable. I’m not blind, but a lot of the struggles he faces I face too. He is constantly trying to prove himself while being pitied and patronized by his clanmates. The most relatable struggle he has to face is being forced to be a medicine cat. He wanted to be a warrior, but his blindness and Starclan force him to become a medicine cat. It reminds me of myself and how there are a lot of things I would love to do, but I am not able to because of my disability. The last cat I would like to discuss very quickly is Fierce. As I stated before it was really Tigerheart’s Shadow that inspired me to write on this topic.Not because it really does a great job of portraying a disabled character but because of what her disability is. I was reading Tigerheart’s Shadow where Tigerheart is coming up with a strategy to chase away foxes when Fierce replies ” I may run wonkily because of my short leg, but I run fast.” I had to stop and I was like WHAT?! cause it’s almost just like my disability. I was born with an interuteran stroke that made my left side a lot shorter than my right and a lot weaker. Unlike Cinderpelt who wasn’t born disabled. Still a great character though. I wanted to mention that this happens halfway through the book and this detail had never once been mentioned. Not to mention she’s basically the leader of the group. Honestly, Erin Hunter does a fantastic job writing relatable characters. I just wish there were a few more cats born with disabilities. I was even thinking of writing a Fanfiction with a deaf main character. That’s all for now, Bye!

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  • Nice article, Jayquill! I’m disabled as well (although mine isn’t physical), so I always love seeing people’s take on topics such as this.

  • Great article Jayquill! All the cats w/ disabilities are always the best characters! I love all these characters (except Fierce cause I haven’t read Tigerheart’s Shadow yet)🙌🏻👏🏻Briarlight is another awesome character & I love reading about these strong 💪 enduring characters that inspire you!🤗💗💝
    Great job & I can’t wait for your next article!!👍🏻👌🏻

  • Wow great article! I love all the points you made! Somehow Warriors can make every fan be able to relate to somethin, right? 🙂

  • Well I feel like you’re treating Bluestar unfairly, she was in a state of depression and was mentally unwell when she changed Brightpaw’s name.

  • Nice article 😆! I love all the disabled characters😸! They always inspire me 😺. But as a Bluestar lover, I’m going to defend her 😉. When she named Brightpaw Lostface, she was suffering from dementia, an mental illness. And from my observation, she might had depression at that time too. She hardly realise them (this is one of the symptoms) and continue her work with the illnesses obstructing her, which made her feel Starclan had betrayed and left her. Bluestar did choose a horrible name for Brightpaw, but we can’t totally blame on her, considering her mental state 😉.

  • Nice article, Jayquill! 😀
    Why are all the disabled cats the best? 😛 Like Cinderpelt, Jayfeather, and Briarlight are all in my top 5 favorite characters 😛

  • Great article! I agree, except Bluestar was not herself when she named Brightheart Lostface, but Rainflower was perfectly aware of her own actions.