We have to admit, this one caught us by surprise. In an interview with USA Today last Friday, UFC Bantamweight Champion, Olympic Bronze Medalist, and Expendables 3 star Ronda Rousey used her platform to address the issue of sexism in comics. Here's what she said:
"I'm tired of watching this thing where the woman's superpower is dumbed down. In The Fantastic Four, the woman is the invisible one. In X-Men, (telekinetic) Jean Grey gets tired all the time," Rousey says. "Wonder Woman is cool, but she has bulletproof bracelets, while Superman is a bulletproof dude. It's like she has really cool accessories. I think about that a lot."
Ronda Rousey has competed in the 2008 Olympics where she won a medal. She is an Ultimate Fighting Champion. And during the debut weekend of her blockbuster movie, Expendables 3, the thing she wanted to make sure was addressed was her opinion on the handling of female superheroes. Because apparently, this is something she is constantly thinking about. That's pretty badass.
While it's true that superheroines were often given powers that kept them further away from danger (a byproduct of society's views on women during the Golden and Silver Age, when most of today's most popular superheroes were created), the comic book industry itself has undergone a grim and gritty makeover since at least the mid-eighties, leaving behind some of the more campy elements of superheroes (like a focus on bulletproof bracelets). So it's good that Susan Storm is now portrayed as one of the most powerful heroes in the Marvel Universe in the comics, but hopefully the movie adaptations, which have a tendency to draw more from the original concepts than recent material, will reflect those changes.
Take that, Goyer! And that! And that!
Of course, the depiction of female superheroes may be a moot point in and of itself as long as Kevin Fiege continues to do a little tap dance whenever he's asked about a female-led superhero movie, and David Goyer continues to insist that the timing is not right for a Wonder Woman film. But if these comic book movie moguls do wise up and give us that Wonder Woman movie we've been waiting for, we'll be sure to send Feige and Goyer Rousey's way so she can pummel some sense into them. What do you think, readers? Are Rousey's criticisms on point?