When it came to the casting of Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, I was probably the first person to get in line behind all the reasons that her casting was a bad choice. After I watched Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice, my friend and I sat down and discussed the film. To my surprise, he liked Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman and brought up some points that I need to address.
One of the first things he said was that I was body shamming Gal Gadot for taking on her role. At first I wanted to laugh in his face, because he was saying it was just as bad as calling a woman too fat to play a role. Explaining that Gadot got loads of hate mail after the news was released that she was to play the iconic role.
After he said that I began to feel bad – but just slightly, and here’s why. I think it’s awful that anyone would have to receive hateful words about themselves based solely on how they look (apparently most where saying her breast are too small?? Omg people are stupid). That’s the worst, and she probably felt terrible about herself for awhile there, and probably questioned if she was even good enough to play the role. Now, don’t get me wrong, I think she played her role fine, her acting was alright for the scenes she was given (I in no way believe she was the saving grace of the film as critics are claiming, but whatever).
And while body shamming of women in Hollywood is awful, I just can’t wrap my mind around the idea that calling someone too skinny is the same as calling someone too fat. Mainly because, in this day and age, to be fat is absolutely the “worst thing a woman can be”, which is horrible and ludicrous, but ultimately true. Meanwhile, to be skinny is, apparently, the dream. Victoria Secret models in the 90s were a size 6 and curvy. Victoria Secret models now are a size 0 and look like Karlie Kloss. Gorgeous, but so skinny that I can see her rib cage. And I wouldn’t call her curvy…like ever. Maybe I’m wrong though? Maybe women get depressingly sad about being called too thin, and turn to looking at magazines of bigger women wishing they could look like them. Constantly being shown bigger women everywhere they look in film, TV, magazines, billboards….I’m sure it’s the exact same thing. (This is sarcasm by the way)
Now I’m not saying that this is Gal Gadot’s fault. I think it’s Hollywood and the casting directors fault. They constantly reaffirm this idea that to be skinny is beautiful. So when they looked at casting the iconic character of Wonder Woman, one that represented beauty AND curves, why not cast a size zero model? Yes, makes perfect sense.
So really, who’s to blame here. It’s certainly not Gadot. And while I don’t agree that my (and many others) anger of her being cast was wrong, I don’t see why she’s receiving hate mail and being blamed, because I honestly don’t think she should be.
Here’s my thing, if it was absolutely necessary to have her in the role, if her acting was so damn magical that she had to play the part, I would have just preferred a little more muscle definition and weight.
Example, Renée Zellweger was cast in the role of Bridget Jones, a character that’s supposed to be bigger. And Zellweger is anything but, she was a skinny thing when she was cast and the world lost their minds. But what did she do? Homegirl put on over 30 pounds to dedicate herself to the role. She was “for serious” about becoming Bridget Jones!
Gadot seemed to take the role seriously as well, but I’ve got a sneaky suspicion that a little biddy was whispering in her ear for her not to get “too big”. Cause that would just be crazy talk, I mean she already looked like a whale in the film! Probably a whole size 2 or something insane like that.
My friend also suggested that I may be slightly sexist about the whole thing. Wondering if I’d have been as annoyed if the role was reversed and this was a man. Oh trust me, I’d still be pissed. But he had a point, I’m not sure if I’d have been bitching about it as much if it was anyone but Wonder Woman. And it’s mainly because she’s such a powerful character and my favourite superhero.That being said, if they cast someone like Jesse Eisenberg as Batman and homeboy showed up with no muscle definition, only put on like 15-20 pounds and just expected fans to be okay with him playing the Dark Knight just because, you best believe I’d revolt!
Ben Affleck played Bats well because he looked the part, he gained the weight, he put on muscles, and he looked amazing. I mean come one, how many of you died during his work out scene as he was preparing to fight Superman. He was FIT!
So to answer my friends question, yes I think I gave Gal Gadot more of a hard time than I would another character, due to the fact that I have an issue with Hollywood, standards of beauty, and when films ruin my inner comic book nerd. No, I don’t ever want someone to feel shamed because of their body, and while I’m still not convinced that talking about her being too thin is as bad as some may lead me to believe, I agree with my friend in saying that it’s not right. So this is my open letter to Gadot, apologizing for all the cruel things that have been said to her, many of which I’m sure I’ve retweeted or agreed with, so I’m as much to blame as others. And while I still disagree with her casting choice, I need her (and my friend) to really understand why so many people are upset with it.
Do you agree with my long ass rant? Or do you agree with my friend that she was the perfect choice for Wonder Woman?