WonderWoman the movie is coming out this weekend and I am super hyped. For so many reasons I have been waiting for this movie. First, I am so excited about seeing Robin Wright. She is aging wonderfully and showing a full range of talent in her work. Loved her 20 years ago in Princess Bride and loving her now—beauty has aged, not faded. Also, the introduction of WonderWoman in Batman v. Superman made this rendering of WonderWoman something to look forward to. As she came on the screen in the last fight scene, the movie changed. Her theme music played and the doom and gloom that was that entire movie transformed into excitement. I moved to the edge of my seat. Plus, what feminist doesn’t like WonderWoman!
Well, there is some debate. Is WonderWoman a feminist icon? Should she be? Now, I don’t pretend to view her as a feminist icon. My feminism is fully clothed. But, I see value in her. The value of rephrasing and de-centering the norm. Women aren’t the norm, so their contribution and their methods aren’t valued.
Once upon a plane ride, an older and smaller gentleman said to me “if you’re in a burning building would you rather have a male fireman or female fireman drag you out.” This type of conversation is way too common in my travels. The covers of my books seem to say, “challenge me” or “change my mind” to people who aren’t yet woke. I could only reply to him, “Well, Sir, if this plane crashes I imagine that most of the passengers would choose me to get them to safety over you.” The problem is not that he chose to make that argument with a woman who was younger and stronger than him. The problem is that he can only see one version of strong. If I have to be dragged out of a burning building, yes I will probably choose a male. But, I believe there are multiple ways to save me. I believe that women bring versions of strong that don’t leave me being dragged.
When the outcome is learning true information. Batman will beat it out of the informant. WonderWoman will use her lasso of truth. If I have to clean up the mess, I choose the lasso. But, I can imagine that in super villain world both could come in handy. Superman walks straight into gunfire, but WonderWoman artfully and athletically dodges them and bounces them off her bracelets. Same outcome, different methods. There can be multiple ways of being a superhero, multiple ways of working in a male dominated professional field. WonderWoman is an example of rephrasing feminine qualities and centering them as equally meaningful to get to the desired outcome.