I’d decided not to write a post on the movie. Everybody else in the world was doing it, and I thought my contribution would just be another drop in the ocean. What changed my mind was the fact that I was getting goosebumps whenever I talked about the movie, even three weeks after I watched it.
The movie, in itself, is great. DC have finally managed to get humour in a superhero movie right, and the visuals are fantastic. One scene, especially, where she steps out into No Man’s Land, is reminiscent of Jon Snow riding out in the Battle of the Bastards, which means it’s very, very cool. I was so glad they got this movie right, because if they hadn’t, Hollywood would have used it as an excuse to not give women superhero roles or women directors big budget movies for the next 20 years. Now, they really have no excuse.
I had never given any thought to the lack of proper women superheroes in movies. I knew underrepresentation was and is an issue, but I relegated it to being a #firstworldproblem. I underestimated the impact a female superhero would make on me.
The male gaze in Wonder Woman was jarring by its absence. Simply the lack of shots panning from Diana’s legs to her breasts meant that I could look at her as a person, not as a body. I was more interested in her motives and her strength because the director looked at her outfit and saw armour, not a skin show. The woman in the film was unapologetically powerful, much more than the men surrounding her. She did not try to hide the fact that she was better. She did not try to make the men like her. She took charge, and used her entire potential, without fitting into a mould. And yet, she liked ice-cream and snow and dancing. She cared about the villagers she had saved and loved Steve Trevor, with all his faults. She was a woman. Every aspect of a woman.
I came out of the theatre crying. No wonder boys and men are so self-confident everyday. They watch superhero versions of themselves all the time. I came out of the movie theatre READY TO TAKE ON ANYTHING. I laughed at the paltry rain holding me back from travelling home. Diana wouldn’t stop at rain. Diana wouldn’t stop at traffic.
Three weeks later, I’ve found myself changed. Whenever I’m interrupted by a man trying to explain to me what I’m saying, I see Antiope shaking her head at me. Whenever I feel tired and unable to go on, I see Diana, smiling, confident, ready to take on the world. I have found Antiope in me. I’ve found Diana in me.