To say that I have been looking forward to the movie Wonder Woman is a vast understatement. She was one of my favorite superheroes growing up (let’s be honest -- which little girl didn’t want to be Wonder Woman), and I was looking forward to seeing where the DC cinematic universe was going to take her origin story.
In a world peppered with amazing male heroes like Captain America (who we love too, of course!), Spiderman, Ironman, and far too many to mention, it was time for a woman superhero to take center stage, and in a film that was directed by a woman, too!
I was even more excited to take my 6-year-old daughter Bella to see Wonder Woman. It makes me happy that Bella has many strong and amazing women to look up to in pop culture today -- Hermione, Rey, Jyn, Moana, and, of course, the late great Princess Leia. She is living during a time when women are finally given a chance to shine, and I can only hope that it continues in the years to come.
Like her mom, Bella loves sci-fi fantasy and is a big fan of Star Wars and Harry Potter. She even loves dressing up in costumes as I do. Seriously, I could not ask for a better movie date and costuming partner. Plus, I knew this would be especially poignant for her as a girl growing up in this world.
So, when we got invited to Warner Brothers Philippines' "Fans First Screening," which happened worldwide, I put together a costume for Bella that showed her as the young Diana of Themyscira. She was stoked to be Wonder Woman as a kid, so much so that when she saw young Diana on the big screen at the start of the film, she jumped up out of her seat and squealed!
My heart danced with happiness at watching a DC superhero movie getting it right finally. Gal Gadot was an inspired choice as the Amazon warrior princess, and she executed the role beautifully silencing anyone who was still on the fence about her casting once and for all. And the other Amazons -- there are simply no words -- they were fierce fabulous and amazing.
As a woman, I was moved watching Wonder Woman. I was moved at what Gal, Patty Jenkins, and all the women in movies and pop culture before them have finally achieved. It was a movie for us girls, one that shows us we can be fierce and empathetic, strong and beautiful, and, most importantly, work well with men for the good of all.
These lessons were especially important to me as a mother of a little girl. While the movie made me teary, I straight up started crying when I turned and watched my daughter watching Wonder Woman on the big screen.
I was initially worried she might be too young to enjoy or understand the movie fully, but I was wrong. She was riveted from start to finish and much like Diana’s innocence that required Steve’s help to understand the world, I had to give Bella a little parental guidance to navigate the movie’s more mature themes. But I know she picked up the most important one -- that she IS Wonder Woman. That any woman can be.
She turned to me towards the end of the film her eyes shining and as big as plates and whispered, “Mommy, she’s as strong as Superman!”
Michelle Katigbak-Alejandro is a writer and editor and creative director of Peanut Butter and Glitter, a party, craft, and lifestyle blog about her adventures with her daughter, Bella.
This is an excerpt from a story that originally appeared on her blog and published with permission. Edits have been made by SmartParenting.com.ph editors.