No really, stand up job. Announcing the recent development that Thor will now be a woman come this October on The View, really was icing on the cake.
Unlike a lot of people, I did not rejoice at hearing that Marvel was going to be writing Thor as a woman, giving the Nordic God of Thunder a whole new storyline. This is because I just see this as a terrible marketing ploy that the comic book giant thought they could slip by unsuspecting readers. But, I suspect. I see through this measly attempt to “drum up female readers”.
Why am I not happy? Me, who wants the world to improve for female fictional characters?
Let me break it down for you:
Thor and his big hammer:
Thor was created as a male character, one with a huuuuge hammer and pretty blond hair. He has a history as Prince, and eventually King, of Asgard. Making Thor a woman will just remind viewers of that other guy, the one who claimed the title as God if Thunder first, and whose history will out shadow this new version. This announcement will also no doubt bring out the ugliest of trolls who don’t like it when their toys are messed with (read: giving their heroes a vagina).
Marvel and its plethora of male characters:
Yes, Marvel needs to focus on female characters. We need a lot more stories told involving female characters, ideally written by women (am I asking too much here?). But, this is not the way to do it. There are many already existing female characters in Marvel’s arsenal, ones that deserve a revamping of their own, if only to drum up some publicity. (hellooooo, a Storm Origin story film would be amaaaazing).
Wolverine wasn’t a household name until the X-Men movies and Hugh Jackman made him more digestible to a non-comic reading audience. If such energy was put into featuring more female characters, perhaps I wouldn’t get so upset when I went to the movie theatre, watching the endless array of trailers featuring white, straight, men.
Remember that time, Marvel, that you passed over Kitty Pryde in her own storyline to feature Wolverine? (X-Men:Days of Future Past). So great. Or how about that time that you made that Elektra movie that did so badly which made you decide against trying to feature a female lead while creating two box-office bombs starring Wolverine. Hilarious.
This isn’t a great leap for Feminism
While part of me is happy that Marvel is starting to realize that other people read their comics besides boys and men, I’m not exactly going to tipping my Feminist hat in their direction.
The very fact that they made this momentous announcement on The View leads me to believe that they have no understanding of their female readers. Perhaps they were watching CNN one day and noticed that there was a war on women and decided to be daring: “Look! We’re into women’s issues! We are going to give one of our main characters one of the most misunderstood, disempowered “objects” in the world!” (read: a vagina).
Marvel and DC, listen up. If you want to attract more female viewers, first realize that you currently have a large female audience. And, surprise! a male audience that will still read your comics if you feature a female lead that doesn’t look like she has two watermelons strapped to her chest.
If you want MY attention, invest in featuring female characters in your films (a Wonder Woman film is long over due). And when you do, please don’t expect a Nobel Peace Prize. Writing stories about women is not that hard, and really not that daring. Women are PEOPLE too and not some mystical race waiting to be explored. We’ve been around since men and just get up to the same mischief as our brothers.