File this story under the “I can’t believe this is a controversy” category.
Apparently continuing their quest to prove there isn’t a single element of society that modern day feminists can’t work themselves into a lather about, a number of them have taken to their keyboards to protest that the anticipated summer blockbuster movie Wonder Woman will feature the heroine without armpit hair.
If you think I’m joking, just Google it. Slate’s headline: “Were Gal Gadot’s armpits digitally bleached in Wonder Woman?”
Then there’s the Telegraph: “Wonder Woman faces wrath of fans for ‘digitally blurred’ hairless armpits.”
Even Forbes had a piece titled, “Wonder Woman Doesn’t Have Armpit Hair Because Women’s Bodies Freak Men Out,” where author Susannah Breslin dreamed of one day escaping this patriarchal madness, and entering a new era where,
“Young girls will be brought up on images of a different kind of Wonder Woman – one who shaves nowhere and hides nothing.”
Well that’s a pleasant thought for the future, isn’t it?
Admittedly I’ve never been into comic books or superhero films. So when I saw all this outrage about Wonder Woman’s shaved pits I thought perhaps it had more to do with a whitewashing of the original comic icon. But in my hours of research (“Sorry sweetheart, you’ll have to put the kids to bed tonight alone because I’ve got to go to Freak Planet Comics and Collectibles to see if Wonder Woman had hairy pits in 1941.”) I can’t find anything to indicate she has ever had anything but silky smooth underarms.
So why is this such a big deal now? One word: feminism.
If you’re having a hard time keeping up, yes, feminists are obsessing about the physical appearance of a female. In their efforts to defeat the dogmatic patriarchy and its expectations for the way a woman should look, they demand a movie character fulfill their dogmatic feminist expectations for the way a woman should look.
While pointing out that intellectual inconsistency might seem worthwhile, my research into this issue led me to stumble into a far more alarming reality. Apparently He-Man shaved his pits as well. I think I will see if Slate will publish my column on this paradigm-shattering revelation.