Emily Cutts, our Site-Based Mentoring Manager, a Big Sister, and self-proclaimed superhero nerd, weighs in on Wonder Woman's moment and why it's important for girls everywhere.
You’ve seen Wonder Woman twice already, what excites you most about this movie?
Imagine this: you’re a girl, and you love the magical realism of superheroes. You’re here for the comics, here for the comics being transformed into movies, and yet, on the big screen, you are glaringly absent. Comics have always been ahead of the cinematic experience when it comes to representation. For example, the Black Panther series (another movie to look forward to) was written in the 1960s as a comic series. Movies about superheroes up to this point seem to always have a male lead, and a camera that sees a woman for her curves and angles and helping the hero experience feelings. Thus, Wonder Woman excites me because it’s written for girls, for women, and it designs a S-hero whose power comes from her emotions, from her empathy. Certainly, there are flaws, and we anticipated that, but every step is an important step. As an audience member, I have been so starved to see an action sequence where my gaze wasn’t directed to the woman’s body, but instead to what a kick-butt fighter she is. There are a lot of emotions associated with being able to see this on the big screen. Between Wonder Woman and Ghostbusters, my nerd heart is singing!
Have you—or do you plan to—see it with your Little Sister Loraime? Why or why not?
I definitely intend to. We’ve talked about it endlessly leading up to the release. I think it’s so important to be exposed to S-heroes early on. We’re swimming against the tide when it comes to representation, particularly gender (and even more so race).
What makes the new Wonder Woman different from other female superhero representations out there currently? Are there any similarities with other female pop culture icons of the moment?
Well, first of all Wonder Woman is the only DC/Marvel movie that is about a heroine, though I feel like the tide is turning towards a cinematic experience that includes female voices. Between Ghostbusters, Hidden Figures, and Wonder Woman, we are breaking down the assumption that movies about women won’t sell (I’m looking at you, Marvel, and the Black Widow movie we should’ve gotten). In all of these movies, there’s this burst that happens in my chest: I am hopeful. I hope that feeling exists for girls earlier than it did for me.