wonder woman

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Exciting News! The Wonder Woman movie is schedule to be released on the 2nd of June 2017, and it is a highly anticipated film which is expected to be the pinnacle of Female led Superhero movies thus far. With movies like Catwoman and Elektraboth featuring female lead characters – being critical and financial bombs, it seems like Wonder Woman is set to pave the way for all future female superheroes in movies.

Although there have been a few strong female protagonists in the action and sci-fi genre, most notably being Sigourney Weaver  from Alien and Charlize Theron from Mad Max: Fury Road just to name a few; most females in these genres have been relegated to either being in a supporting role as a love interest for the male hero or being the damsel in distress that the male protagonists need to rescue.

Research Scholar Nandini Maity states in the journal article Damsel in Distress: A Textual Analysis of Gender Roles in Disney Princess Films that “[w]omen’s representation in popular culture facilitates the stereotype of the simple minded, emotional and domesticated female… The term “women‟ has become synonymous with the victim in the patriarchal society”.

You would think that this stereotype would not be prevalent in Superhero movies that are based on comic books; because in comics women can have just as much, if not more power than the men. But the movies seem to stray away from the immense impact that these women could have in these movies and seem to portray these powerful characters as people who are lonely and who need male companionship.

Some examples of these stereotypes in popular Superhero Movies Include:

harley quinn

Image from:  http://bit.ly/2ohTUhO

Now I am not writing this to critique the negative representation of women in superhero movies, I am writing this to provoke thought. I grew up watching Batman, Spider-man and Green Lantern saving people, a city or even the entire world. I could always imagine myself putting on one of those super suits and saving the world.

Now I’m an adult, I have sisters, cousins, and one day I might have a daughter; and I also want them to share in the marvel of having an idol to look up to in these superheroes. To strive to be independent women who can take on the world without needing any help from any man. Wouldn’t you like your daughter to be a Wonder Woman, or do you want her to be the property of a Joker?

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