A protein bar company is using the upcoming film Wonder Woman to imply that female superheros should be thin. Hold for a moment while I bang my head on the table. Snack company thinkThin partnered with DC to slap Wonder Woman’s face (and body) on display cases. The promotion, which hawks discounts on movie tickets with the purchase of the protein bar, blatantly pushes an all too familiar tone deaf message that women should “think thin.” Not only does the body-shaming promotion perpetuate the notion that women should be judged by their looks instead of their actions, I have to ask why Wonder Woman’s image is put on diet protein bars and frozen yogurt while the superhero’s male counterparts appear on bags of Doritos, cereal boxes, and even car and airline promotions.
People cannot stop judging women by their bodies. This promotion’s association of women and the way their bodies look is particularly irksome considering how much image-related controversy has already surrounded Wonder Woman. After being cast in 2013, Gal Gadot, the actress playing the superhero, was criticized for being too thin—propelling a muscle-building transformation that launched “Wonder Woman workout” articles out the wazoo. Even Wonder Woman’s armpit grooming was hotly debated. Did anyone care this much about Batman’s five o’clock shadow or Thor’s mussed half-updo? Only when the first female superhero in years surfaces do the masses care so deeply about her body.
The site The Mary Sue also drew attention to the connection between thinkThin’s survey of which superpower American women desire and the pressure women feel to take up less space: invisibility was one of the most popular choices. Regardless of the thinkThin’s intention with the survey and the promotion, the implication of a link between women getting thin—making less of themselves—and being a powerful superhero is absolute garbage.