Wonder Woman: A Ramble about Female Leads (I promise it's not whiny, angsty, etc.)

"Oh, no," you all say. "Please, not this topic," you beg. "Hasn't there been enough of this?"

Well, as my dad would say, No. No there hasn't. And this is my blog, so I will talk about whatever I want. If you don't want to read this, you may leave. I won't judge. :)


I went to see Wonder Woman exactly a week ago. And it was kind of epic. Besides two brief slightly uncomfortable scenes, this was the best superhero movie I've seen in a long time, mostly because it didn't feel like a superhero movie. It gets four stars out of five from me (star off for those aforementioned moments of inappropriateness and the overuse of slo-mo), and I'd be happy to see more of Diana in the future. The themes that run throughout are human depravity and grace. Both of which are prominently discussed. It was so good.

And it had a female lead.

But when I think about it, is that really all that important? Had Diana been a man, would this have been a worse movie? Would the well-written script and compelling story be detracted from by a male lead?

The answer that I'm going to give is: No. And I'll explain. Without spoilers, in case that worries you at all. And I definitely recommend this movie. Just maybe read a content guide first :) There's a refreshing lack of profanity.



I honestly think that Gal Gadot, who played Diana, is such a good actress for the role that she could do anything and it would be perfect (in the role of Wonder Woman, that is.) The fact that the character is well fleshed-out and the actress is wonderful definitely contributes to this movie's success as the first serious superhero movie with a female lead.

But, honestly, how important is the whole "superhero movie with female lead" business?

There's been a lot of movies (and books) that have a female lead lately. For example, Hunger Games, Divergent, and the new Star Wars movies, Force Awakens and Rogue One. Katniss, Tris, Rey, and Jyn are all very strong women, and they should prove to us that women are not underrepresented in Hollywood. Just look at how popular Hunger Games is, or the fact that Force Awakens made it to the number 3 (or 4?) spot on the list of Top 50 Highest Grossing films of all time. People enjoy seeing good movies with good protagonists.

And honestly? The gender of the main character doesn't really factor into what movie I watch. I sit down, say, "This looks like a good movie!" (or book) and I watch it. And if the movie is good, I like it. I've fangirled about Tony Stark and Obi-Wan Kenobi more times than I can count, and I love stories like the Wingfeather Saga, Fog of Forgetting, and Pilgrim's Progress. These all have male leads. If the character is a good role model and has a strong personality, I won't care if it's a man or a woman, a kid or an adult, a boy or a girl. That character will rise on the list of Beloved Characters of Faith.

The fact is: I think there's something that people in twenty-first century America don't really understand.

If the role model/hero/MC is real and someone we can relate to and look up to, it doesn't matter what their gender is. I've never once felt slighted because I haven't seen a superhero movie with a female lead. In general, superhero movies are supposed to just be good vs. evil, and whether good is male or female, if they're presented right, they will be someone I admire and look up to. Gender has never been a factor, and I didn't even notice until people started talking about it.

Fact is: (hey, I said it twice!)

There are roles for men and roles for women, and men and women are, ultimately, equal in value. They have different jobs, different needs, different strengths, but in reality they cannot exist one without the other. And as long as women have the same opportunities as men, in terms of voting and available jobs and that kind of thing, we're doing okay as a society. Let me know if you'd like me to do a post on what my views of feminism is (I identify as a first-wave feminist, most of the time, and I'd be happy to talk about it.)


So basically, this was a ramble that went nowhere. My verdict? This was a fun movie. You should see it. But I don't think the fact that Diana is female really makes all that much of a difference. Is it a victory for women, or is it just a logical next step in the lineup of superheroes? I think we don't know yet. But this is Diana's story; the fact that she's a woman doesn't really make a difference.

Did you see Wonder Woman? Are you going to? Chat with me about this, okay? My brain is mush after a full day at the airport and I'm going to die most likely. I have no idea what this post is even about. Let me know what you think.

~Faith


Comments

  1. You make a lot of valid points. Personally, I'm not a feminist in any way, shape, or form. I believe we are of equal value to God. We can all vote, buy things, and we all have the same chance at opportunities if we take those chances. I know that's kind of the stuff first wave feminism is about, but does it need a label if we're already equal in society? (Not trying to offend or make fun of what your opinion is. Please don't take it that way.)

    However, I did hear this movie was good. I'm not really into superhero anything, but maybe one day I'll check it out. I also like how you pretty much said it's your blog and you'll talk about what you want.

    That is the beauty of America. We can all have different opinions.
    God bless you, Faith!
    <3

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    1. I am a first-wave feminist mostly because society needs to know that we have the equality we need. No offense taken :)

      It was a really good movie.

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  2. Good post, Faith!

    I love seeing and hearing stories about strong women. I also agree that women can (and have) been excellent leaders, and will continue to do so. Some of our greatest saints are women ~ St. Theresa of Avila, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Jeanne D'Arc are just a few examples.

    I do agree with some of the first-wave feminism stuff, but I don't identify as a feminist either. I identify as feminine instead. There is a phrase that we Catholics use a lot to explain this "Men and Women are equal in dignity, but complimentary in role." As long as society follows this mantra, I think we are good.

    Catherine
    catherinesrebellingmuse.blogspot.come

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    1. I like that mantra. It's very helpful. That's what first-wave feminism is mostly about, at least as far as I can tell.

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  3. I haven't watched Wonder Woman, but I may in the future. I think I may have seen a movie with her in it as wonder woman, but I really don't want to watch the movie ever again. It was Batman VS Superman. Eek. That movie made me sick and certain parts of it made me wonder if it was horror. Plus there was a scene that was inappropriate and a scene of...just never mind. Anyway, no I haven't watched it. Is it out in theaters?
    I'm not feminist. I mean, what exactly is it? I've heard of it and all that, but I haven't really talked about it or researched it or anything. Is it liking woman more than men? I'm sorry if that sounds bad. I just don't think about it much. ;)
    We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us, meaning all of us no matter who we are.
    God bless you, Faith. <3
    I hope your brain recovers! A summer day spent in an airport can be torture. (Not saying that I've ever been on a plane. I thank God I haven't.) Lol

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    1. Feminism, by definition, means the advocacy of women's rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes. Now, I know I said I'm not a feminist. We're already equal in this country. Feminists today want to claim we aren't. They want abortion to be legal and pretty much paid for, along with birth control. (I don't judge anyone who uses birth control. Personally, for me, I don't think I agree with it.)

      Also, feminists are pretty disgusting nowadays. I won't say all the things they do because it really shouldn't have publicity and I know younger people will probably see this comment. Feminists thing the LGBTQ+ community don't have rights. They also feel black people don't have rights.

      Here's the thing. (Sorry, this is going to get long) In America, we are all equal. We have equal chances. We have equal pay. Its all about how many hours we put in and what we focus on. I could go to college and try to become a scientist if I wanted, but I don't. That doesn't mean women can't become scientists. It's a choice on what we focus on. No one is discriminated against by a majority of people. If they are, its a person's opinions and that doesn't make it right.

      Feminists want all these rights, but they don't understand the consequences. They try to say they are for children, but they want abortion. They also try to say they are for Islam, but they don't understand that people in Islamic countries, women especially, are treated like crap.

      I think I might end up doing a post on this soon. I'm very passionate about being Anti-feminist now. I'm for what we have now. We have equal rights and we don't need to create problems out of nothing.

      Of course, I encourage you to do some research as this was my opinion and I want everyone to make their own opinions. You'll have to look on both sides of the argument.

      But, the fact is, we have equal rights in this country. There is no oppression. There are people who talk down to women, but that doesn't make us victims. We just have to rise up past that.

      Sorry this was so long.
      God bless y'all.
      <3

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    2. Thanks! I definitely do not agree with modern feminists- at all. I want to be a professional pro-life advocate when I grow up. But at this point, first-wave feminism feels as foreign as it was a hundred years ago, and those are the "rights" that I believe we should have. Not unlimited abortions. Not wining that we're in the minority. We are equal, and I think third-wave feminism needs to be reined in. Now.

      And to LHE: yeah, it's in theaters.

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    3. And Bataan v. Super man sounds awful. I never plan on seeing that one. This one is much better.
      .

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    4. Ivie B- Wow, thanks! I wasn't expecting that , but I have a better understanding now. I was just thinking about those women who were parading on the streets and talking dirty. I myself oppose abortion. I am completely against it. It's the same thing as murder. They are growing humans who can't defend themselves. They aren't a "blood clot" or "nothing" yet. I mean how would "you" like to be murdered before you've had a chance at life. You wouldn't. (I'm speaking generally when I say "you".). Thanks for answering my question. (Don't worry about long comments. I just posted one on Gray's and think she'll freak once she sees it. Lol Plus, I love long comments. They're the best.)

      Faith: Hope I didn't sound rude of anything. I feel like women need to be stopped in some ways. Abortions need to be stopped. I mean, they say "Oh, I didn't know this would happen." ----You need to deal with your actions and go on with life. Doing things with someone else can be good and can be bad, but once a baby comes into the picture, then the situation turn into a precious thing. We need to deal with the consequences of our actions for goodness sake. (That's another subject for another time. Sorry for rambling.)
      In other ways, things need to be dealt with.
      Ivie: I read a article that talked about women in Saudi Arabia (mostly Islamic people), and those laws and rules are crazy. Women need to be treated better there and probably in many other countries. Also the movie Priceless by For King and Country is a movie that brings up a subject that nobody wants to think about. That needs to be stopped. If you look up the movie, it will say what it's about without you having to watch the movie. I've heard that it's a touching movie, so I would recommend it if the summary doesn't bother you.
      Now I want to watch Wonder OWmen. Lol
      Both: Thanks for answering my comment. <3

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    5. I've heard of the movie Priceless. I'm not really big on For King and Country. I really used to like them, but their songs are played so much on the radio that I got burned out.

      I saw your comment on Gray's post, lol. I was like, "Whoa."
      But you made fabulous points. And yes, the women there are treated like crap.
      Also, I'm full pro-life, too. I'm sure I'll talk about it at some point. I've got a lot of post ideas in the works. Great things, coming.

      Faith: Yes, the first wave of feminism is foreign now. At the time, I think it was totally necessary and these third wave feminists need to realize that we live in a blessed time. We all have equal opportunity.
      God bless y'all.
      <3

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    6. Ivie B: They play the songs so much, but usually I just change the song and listen to one I haven't heard in a while.

      I tend to ramble....lol. I' glad you liked what I had to say. :) I can't wait to see what posts you've got coming. Your posts are always good ones.

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    7. I saw Priceless, and it was really good. Hard, but good.

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    8. I haven't seen it yet, but the people that have told me that it was a hard movie to watch, like you said. I saw what you said about your grandmothers. I'm so sorry. <3

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  4. I do agree with your points, that as long as characters are relatable and are people worth looking up to, then it doesn't matter their gender. I'd love to read more about your views as a first-wave feminist. ^.^

    xoxo Abigail Lennah | ups & downs

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    1. It's so true. And I'll keep that in mind- probably I'll do a post on that soon.

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  5. This is awesome Faith! I have watched Wonder Woman and there is two uncomfortable scenes I wish they could've left out but it was awesome. I agree it doesn't matter if superhero is male or female. Its if the character is human enough to relate to.
    http://greenacresfarmgirlliving4god.blogspot.com/?m=1

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    1. Yes! I completely agree with you. :)

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  6. Ooooh, I'm seeing it today!!!! I'm SO jazzed!!!!!!!!!

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  7. I totally agree!! (And I'm going to see the movie with my friend really soon, so I might do a review... :)) The gender of a hero doesn't matter, it's if we can relate to the character and have fun watching/reading about them. I actually have many, many story ideas with male leads. Not because I hate female leads, or don't appreciate them or even write them. But because I felt that a male would be the best way to tell this story. That's all. Nothing else to it.
    Anywho, loved this post. ^_^

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    1. Yes! The hero needs to be the hero, and gender should have nothing to do with it. Nothing else to it.

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  8. I'm not too worried about it. I think it's impactful for some women and young ladies, and I think that can be both good and problematic. Ultimately, they feel what they feel, and I don't have too much control in that. I don't know that any male looks at a male character and says, "Hey, that's a guy, and he's awesome, and I'm a guy too, and that's awesome," but it seems to happen with females sometimes (in a less-simplified monologue). There's a level of moroseness to that, but if it's inspiring to them and helps them out, I think that's probably good. I think we're seeing some flux going on in the writing community with gender, but I think it'll sort itself out in time and for the better. Not too long ago, female protagonists were very rare, at least in American storytelling. There should be some level of balance, even if we're still working out some kinks of what that means. I write more male characters than female characters, but I try to get a good number of female characters in too. The stories I can tell with various casts are going to be different, not utterly so, but to a decent degree. As you wrote, the roles are different but equal. I like to explore many areas.

    I really don't disagree with you here, and I would say I'm probably a first-wave feminist too (I just have a lot of experience playing Devil's Advocate, haha). It comes down to kindness, respect, and love in the end, I think. Too much analysis bogs everything down.

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  9. I wouldn't mind you doing a post about being a first-wave feminist, because I am kind of clueless about it, but these things have recently come to my attention and I'm curious :D

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    1. I will probably end up doing one this coming week :)

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  10. You make some really good points with this! Honestly, I think, in some ways, the movie would have to change if there had there been a male protagonist. Because men and women are different, stories about different genders are going to come about in different ways. Not that they can't still portray the same qualities and values, but there would just be a different feel to the movie if Wonder Woman had been a man. I don’t think it would be a worse movie necessarily, as long as she had always been a man and was a man in the film, but I do think it would be different.

    As far as having more female leads, I both agree and disagree: yes, there are a lot of female leads nowadays and that’s awesome, but there’s also evidence that there are not as many female leads as male and that actresses aren’t being paid as much as male actors. All you have to do is google “gender pay gap” or “female actors paid less” and the articles and evidence pop right up. So, while many recent popular movies have portrayed female protagonists, are we really equal in the society if we are portrayed and paid a fraction of the amount that men are?

    As far as having female leads in the movies, this is just me, but I never wanted people to change their stories or bend over backwards to put girls or, more specifically for me, black girls, in their movies; but when I was younger it meant a lot to know that girls like me could be more than just slaves or girls “from the hood.” In the media I saw, the majority of black girls were one or the other, no in-between. They weren’t just normal, middle-class girls with normal middle-class lives. I use that example to say that I think it’s important to portray different people in different roles to show just how varied human beings are. Having women and girls in nontraditional roles show that we can be all of kinds of things. We can be anything. And the movie being made doesn’t make this true, but the movie being made helps to show those who have trouble visualizing this idea that it is true, thus making it easier to believe and to strive for.

    Interesting post! You gave me a lot to think about!


    Alexa
    thessalexa.blogspot.com
    verbosityreviews.com

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