The new DC film, Wonder Woman, is breaking records in the U.S. and all over the world. It’s being hailed as a big step forward for female led superhero films and a step in the right direction for the DC movie universe. It has not been released in all Asian countries yet, but we’re starting to see some of the Japanese marketing for the movie. The Japanese version of the film’s trailer and other ad campaigns describe the heroine as,
“Move over, Harley Quinn! Special Japan release for Wonder Woman, the No.1 warrior beauty the world has been waiting for. She’s supposed to be one of the most powerful superheroes in existence, but she’s also an incredibly innocent and naive girl who knows nothing about men or love.”
This description of Wonder Woman really focuses on her beauty, innocence, and naivety. “She’s supposed to be one of the most powerful superheroes in existence”? Why not just say that she is one of the most powerful superheroes? Also, this movie summary makes it sound like a romantic comedy starring a love struck Wonder Woman who really needs a man. There are definitely Japanese fans who disagree with this take on Diana, but this is still the way the production company thought was best for the Asian market.
They even created an manga style poster for the movie in Chinese promos and it isn’t bad artwork, but the front primary image of Diana Prince shows her awkwardly clutching her sword and bent over with her butt peeking over the shield. All of the other posters for Wonder Woman focus on her strength and show her as a powerful warrior. Unfortunately, this one was an effort to appeal to the lowest common denominator of superhero fans. Plenty of Japanese fans of Wonder Woman have denounced these types of portrayals, but can you really blame the marketing campaign when so many other sexist portrayals of female leads are so popular in Asian markets?
Wonder Woman is set to drop in Japan in early August. I think if Wonder Woman does well there, it could be another strong example for depictions of women that don’t need to focus on her romantic appeal or her innocence.
If you are a Wonder Woman fan that wants to learn more about this bad-a** heroine and her weapons of choice, you need to check out the Man at Arms channel here on Viewster, where they forged both her sword, the God Killer, and her Amazonian shield.