For years, Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Firefly creator Joss Whedon was hailed as a geek-friendly icon of feminist ideals, an illusion that finally came crashing down in the wake of a brutal blog post from his ex-wife Kai Cole last year in which she accused him of being a hypocrite for talking about feminism while cheating on her and manipulating her for years. The pop culture world largely reexamined its relationship with Whedon after Cole’s post, with a major Whedon fansite going so far as to shut down completely, but the backlash became much clearer last June when an unproduced Wonder Woman screenplay that Whedon wrote in the early 2000s leaked out and immediately got taken apart for being an overtly sexist take on the character.
Don’t tell that Whedon, though, because he still thinks it was pretty good. Variety caught up with him at the premiere of Avengers: Infinity War, and he says he couldn’t understand what people on the internet didn’t like about it. “People say that it’s not woke enough,” he theorizes, admitting that he wasn’t “the most woke individual” at the time, but he says the critics aren’t “looking at the big picture” and that he stands by what he wrote.
As for what he wrote, The Daily Dot unpacked a lot of the criticism last year, pointing out that Whedon’s script spent an excessive amount of time exploring Wonder Woman’s “curvaceous” body, including a number of “lurid descriptions” about her feet and a scene in which she must get a god’s attention by doing a sexy dance.
Perhaps most frustratingly, the script allowed Steve Trevor, the ostensible love interest, to overshadow Wonder Woman herself by making him the main character. Basically, it would’ve done everything wrong that Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman movie did right, and the fact that Whedon still publicly stands by it suggests that he hasn’t really learned anything from any of this.