Last month, Joss Whedon’s unproduced Wonder Woman script surfaced online, appearing on Comicbook.com and Screenrant.com. On June 15, it resurfaced this time on Twitter, where it met head on with some internet fans and Daily Dot contributor, Gavia Baker-Whitelaw. Below are some of highlights of the worst parts of the script, by Baker-Whitelaw, as she echoes most of the sentiments of the new movie’s biggest female fans:
It’s easy to see why, because this thing is so sexist it’s hard to believe Whedon wrote and submitted it on a professional basis. Constantly sexualizing and demeaning its lead character, it’s like an evil mirror universe version of the movie we eventually got.
Diana’s introduction is the first warning sign, describing her “curvaceous” body instead of her thoughts or personality. It starts an ongoing theme of lurid descriptions of women’s appearances. (Especially their feet. Diana is barefoot in scene one, and we get several foot updates later on.)
Taking place in the present day, it reframes Diana’s origin story as a tale about Steve Trevor crash-landing on Themyscira and teaching Diana how to be “human”.
Rather than focusing on Diana’s strength and compassion, she’s portrayed as an arrogant yet clueless warrior, perpetually disrespected by every man in the film. One scene takes place in a nightclub where Diana confronts the villain Bacchus by—how else?—doing a sexy dance until he notices. The whole thing takes place from a leering male perspective, concluding with men fighting over her on the dance floor.
The screenplay displays a toxic attitude to Diana, with characters calling her a “bitch” or a “whore,” and commenting on her skimpy costume. Instead of being a feminist paradise, Themyscira is plagued by infighting and a lack of empathy for outsiders, and Diana even fights her own mother. Then there’s Steve Trevor, who overshadows Diana’s role from page one.
Steve Trevor spends the entire movie mansplaining to Diana, arguing and criticizing her brand of heroism. It’s a startling contrast with Allan Heinberg and Patty Jenkins’ depiction in the real movie, where Steve supports Diana, and the two characters enjoy each other’s company.
Much like Baker-Whitelaw said in the last part of her article, with Whedon working on Justice League and Batgirl, the future for the DCEU may have a few clouds on the horizon. But I guess only time will tell.
Justice League hits theater on November 17, 2017.