Manbabies cry digital tears over women-only "Wonder Woman" screening

Alamo Drafthouse announced they were holding a women-only "Wonder Woman" screening, causing many a Twitter meltdown

Published May 25, 2017 3:54PM (EDT)

Gal Gadot as Diana in "Wonder Woman" (Courtesy Warner Bros. Entertainment)
Gal Gadot as Diana in "Wonder Woman" (Courtesy Warner Bros. Entertainment)

Women are woefully under-represented in movies, and as the misogynist backlash against last year's "Ghostbusters" reboot revealed, there are plenty of people who resent it when women celebrate efforts to create empowering figures in our pop culture zeitgeist.

This brings us to the backlash against Alamo Drafthouse who will be hosting a women's-only screening of "Wonder Woman"across several locations on June 2.

Said Morgan Hendrix, representative for the nationwide theater chain, "We asked ourselves, 'How do we create a land of Amazonian women? Well — we just hold a women's only screening!'" Morgan added, "After all, she lives on a women's only island and comes from a land of women. This makes perfect sense." Indeed it does.

But then . . .

To their credit, Alamo Drafthouse has actually tried responding to some of these comments in a relatively mature and straightforward manner. The problem, of course, is that the people making these arguments aren't doing so from a reasonable place.

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The idea that a women-only screening is analogous to a hypothetical men-only screening is clearly absurd, especially considering that women are the group that has been under-represented in superhero movies, not men.

It's no more reasonable to assume an air of victimhood when hearing about such an event — particularly by comparing it to racial segregation — given that white male privilege remains very real. Indeed, it isn't sensible to get incensed at hearing about a women's-only screening for any movie — much less one about a character as iconic and empowering as Wonder Woman

As ever, pop culture carries political weight, and those who want to protect male privilege frequently do so by fighting petty, often disingenuous battles in cultural spaces. We've seen it before with reaction to the "Ghostbusters" reboot, the creation of the Gamergate campaign and with male critics being disproportionately harsh on female-led movies.

The schtick is tired and it's time for these boys to grow up.


By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a professional writer whose work has appeared in multiple national media outlets since 2012 and exclusively at Salon since 2016. He specializes in covering science, health and history, and is particularly passionate about climate change, animal science, disability rights, plastic pollution and the intersections between science and politics. He has interviewed many prominent figures including former President Jimmy Carter, former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, animal scientist and activist Temple Grandin, inventor Ernő Rubik, mRNA vaccine pioneer Katalin Karikó, actor George Takei, and right-wing insurrectionist Roger Stone.

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Alamo Drafthouse Film Gamergate Manbabies Misogyny Movies Partner Video Wonder Woman