My first thought upon watching the Wonder Woman trailer:
Trying too hard.
Wonder Woman is trying to be empowering.
One way is with dialogue like this:
“I can’t let you do this.”
“What I do is not up to you.”
“What is a ‘secretary’?”
“I go where he tells me to go and do what he tells me to do.”
“Well where I’m from that’s called ‘slavery.'”
“I really like her.”
And I thought God’s Not Dead was preachy…
I think Woman Woman is trying too hard to be empowering, for two reasons:
I have nothing against empowered women, in fiction or in real life.
When the empowerment message is so in-my-face I feel insulted, because it’s like the filmmakers are treating me like a baby who can’t understand anything unless it’s spoon-fed to me.
If this trailer is anything to judge by, being an empowered woman means kicking ass.
So, being an empowered woman means doing exactly what men do.
The issue I have with ass-kicking being the means of female empowerment isn’t that a woman is doing what a man is doing — fighting — it’s the underlying assumption that, if a woman is doing anything other than kicking ass, she’s not being “strong.”
For example: You don’t have to look long to find examples of people calling Cortana, a character from the video game Halo 4, a “sex object.” Cortana was seen by many as a poor portrayal of femininity.
She was naked.
She was emotional.
She needed other peoples’ help.
A man was the reason why she did what she did.
To critics of Cortana, a woman who is not ashamed to be naked, who does not hide behind “emotional walls,” who needs others’ help, and who is willing to sacrifice herself for the man she loves, cannot be an empowered woman.
So, in Halo 5, Microsoft responded to the criticism:
Now Cortana is Space Hitler.
Because, according to Microsoft, committing genocide is more empowering then making the choice to save the life of a loved one and being open and honest about one’s feelings.
My point is: A woman shouldn’t have to kick ass in order to be considered “strong.”
Sometimes, being “strong” means not being ashamed to cry or say “Help me. I don’t know what to do.”
0:40 — 1:50:
Another thought about the trailer:
I feel bad for the Germans.
Unless something happens to make them superhuman, or unless something happens to Wonder Woman to make her weaker, the Germans are regular people fighting a demigod.
One reason I stopped playing The Force Unleashed 2 is because I felt bad for the legions of Stormtroopers I was going through like a hot knife through butter.