I’m not going to lie, I’m really looking forward to ‘Wonder Woman’. I Actually have yet to see a DC movie in a cinema, and other than ‘Suicide Squad’, which was pretty good but overall not my cup of tea, I haven’t seen any.
But, I have seen all worthy Marvel Universe films. Unlike many die hard fans, I actually did not grow up with heroes. I was introduced at around 18 by my boyfriend who is now my partner. So while I jumped into a bit late I did get some perspective on a few things, one important aspect of the universe being its women. How are they treated? Are they empowered? Are they oppressed? Are they under the thumb of patriarchal society even in this fictitious universe?
What I have noticed particularly is that while there are bad ass female superheroes they rarely, if ever, get the limelight. They get minimal dialogue, save for love interest storylines. When they do get to be a part of an ensemble of heroes, they are almost overshadowed by the male egos. Female superheroes are far and few between as is but surely they should get equal representation seeing as though the fanbase for them is just as massive as for male heroes. I’m not even going to get into how Thor is now a woman, how there’s a She hulk, and apparently female Iron Man (Ironheart). Yes they exist but rehashing existing male heroes and churning them into female ones to appeal to female fans isn’t exactly progressive, it’s kind of the opposite. It’s a bit like the creators just weren’t that bothered with actually creating worthwhile female heroes so figured they would reboot some male fan favourites and just turn them into women.
So that’s why I’m excited for Wonder Woman. A female lead, holding her own, in a full movie directed by a woman in a genre that is wholly male oriented.
Finding this news was enough to curb my enthusiasm, however this was upped when I heard that a cinema, Alamo Drafthouse, in America was having a female only showing of the film. Fuck yeah that sounds awesome.
And you know what made this even better?
The cherry on top?
That men are upset.
I know that makes me sound like a heartless feminist bitch, but please hear me out.
(Although to be honest this wouldn’t be such sweet news if we (the world) didn’t have to put up with some men complaining about the revamp of ‘Ghostbusters’ and them being turned into women (truth time: I haven’t seen the movie Because I wasn’t a fan of the first but it is on my ‘must watch’ list). I mean literally droves of men upset at the fact that their heroes were turned into women. And this I might add after the outcry and boycotting of ‘Mad Max’ because of it being a feminist film under the guise of an action movie (can’t it be both?). So basically the last few years of film has just been men complaining about the use of women and women’s issues on screen.)
To hear it was no different with this one showing of ‘Wonder Woman’ did not surprise me. The cries of reverse sexism can indeed be heard like a ringing in my ears, constant and annoying. Although comical too.
I was even more impressed with the cinemas response of forgetting PC culture and just saying You know what, lets add another female only showing, this character means a lot to women and it needs to be celebrated by women was the best gift the internet has given us all year. To be fair this comes at a time where women’s bodies are still being governed by men. When women still earn less. When a woman looses out on the presidency to an open misogynist. When women are catcalled walking to work. Or worse, assaulted, only to have the attacker get away Scott free because of, well, patriarchy.
So yeah, not shedding a tear for the men who won’t get to see this very particular showing of one movie in one cinema. Let me be clear: ONE MOVIE, ONE TIME, ONE CINEMA. LET US HAVE THIS!!
But, and its a big one, theres something that men can take away from this, something that should be eye opening. Instead of getting on to the internet to tell the world how upset you are at how utterly and absurdly unfair the situation is, because yeah lasso of truth time: it kind of is. Instead of blaming women for wanting safe places and more female heroes. Instead of steeping so low as to suggest it’s sexist while ignoring the blatant irony of that statement. Maybe take a minute to really understand what it’s like to be kept out of something, to be institutionally locked out of something purely because you identify as male.
Isn’t it frustrating?
Being told you can’t do something you know damn well you can do?
Being told this really amazing event is blocking you out because you’re a man?
Being told your not welcome?
And not being given an apology?
The disrespect of segregation?
The triviality of the reason this is happening?
Isn’t that just wholly, utterly frustrating to the core?
The shrugging response when you complain?
The acknowledgement of unfair treatment but with no action to stop it?
Or even to justify it?
It just is. Unfair.
And that’s for a fucking movie.
A movie that can actually be seen in any other cinema at any other time. Nothing is being missed out on. This doesn’t affect personal life, income, bodily autonomy, education, career, health…none of it. It’s a movie.
But for a lot of society, that’s life.
Take that feeling of anger and frustration and put it in context, because it’s only a fraction of what a lot of people deal with every day. Women worldwide are treated badly purely due to their gender, some need men with them at all times outside of the home, some are beaten and charged for being assaulted, some are forced into marriages they have no interest in, some are beaten and raped by their husbands and have no power to stop it. Some girls get no education. In some countries women are not allowed to drive. Some women can’t show their faces, necks, or insert any female body part that’s is offensive somehow. Female genital mutilation still exists. For many people who identify as female, every day is terrifying.
The angry comments about how if this were happening to women that there would be uproar are obvious, of course women would cause chaos, we do, regularly, when such public displays of sexism and misogyny take place. And when that happens women are ignored, trivialized, and trolled. Women are given ridiculous excuses and reasoning behind such behaviour (locker room talk that is happening outside of locker rooms but still somehow referred to as locker room talk as just one example. Another is the good ole religious intervention, God said so. Even if you don’t believe in this God, he still governs your body).
What men are experiencing with the Wonder Woman screening is trivial at best and has no effect on their lives whatsoever.
Unless they use it to enhance their knowledge of women’s issues worldwide and maybe get some clarity on the subject of sexism. Then it might just change a few things.
Finally, if you still refuse to acknowledge the privilege of being born male, ad think that there is simply no good reason for a female only screening of this Film, I guess I only have one response: