Tuesday night Alamo Drafthouse held two female-only screenings of the superhero blockbuster “Wonder Woman” at its Sixth Street location in downtown Austin.
The logic behind last week’s announcement of the showings was innocent enough: The DC Comics character is the most recognizable female superhero in comic lore. Still, the theater’s decision prompted a slew of dude-based derision on social media that made national news.
Outside a screening Tuesday, Jessica Jacobs said she didn’t see the harm in having a select number of audiences full of nothing but women.
“If you really wanna go see “Wonder Woman” at the Alamo, there’s a ton of other ones you could go to,” Jacobs says. “I don’t think two screenings constitutes it being considered discriminatory.”
Tiffany Blackstone and her sister also attended one of the screenings Tuesday night. The connection the two felt to the character growing up was, well, written on Blackstone’s sister’s face.
“We’ve loved Wonder Woman since we were a little girl,” Blackstone says. “My sister has a scar on her eyebrow, actually, from spinning around the house pretending she was Wonder Woman and falling and hitting the fireplace.”
Twelve-year-old Sylvia Grimes joined friends Khloe Lee and Sienna Fons, 9, for the screening. All three donned red capes and painted-on gold headbands in the style of the iconic heroine.
“It’s not very normal to have a movie completely based on women and their abilities,” Grimes says. She compared it to her experiences in sixth grade with physical strength and endurance tests at school.
“We do a physical test every year and what’s expected of men is higher than what’s expected of women,” Grimes says. “We’re not challenged as much as they are.”
But, during the initial dustup, Austin Mayor Steve Adler defended the screenings in a snarky response to an email his office got referring to women as a “second rate gender.” His response made national news, and 12-year-old Lee took notice.
“It makes me happy inside just knowing that someone’s sticking up for us,” she says. “It also makes me sad that someone thinks that.”