‘Problematic’: Wonder Woman 1984 body swap causes controversy online

As far as sequels go, Wonder Woman 1984 was up high on the anticipated list.

After several delays, the Warner Bros film was released in theatres in December and has just dropped early on Foxtel’s Store today ahead of the three-month release window.

And while reviews were favourable among fans of the first 2017 film who were yearning for a blockbuster-worthy release, a point about one of the film’s plots is slowly gaining traction.

The plot in question sees Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) taking over the body of a character known as “handsome man” after Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) uses the Dreamstone to wish for his return from the dead.

One scene insinuates the couple had sex after they wake up in bed together, with some viewers having raised issues around consent about the random man whose body Steve inhabited.

Pop culture website The Mary Sue went as far as describing the incident as “rape” or at best “fantasy rape”, while countless users took to social media to call out the storyline.

WW84 director Patty Jenkins responded to criticism on Twitter in late December, retweeting a tweet from the account @DustyDontShoot, who had fiercely defended furore over the body swap.

The tweet links WW84’s body swap trope to the likes of 1988 Tom Hanks film Big, in which a child is in the body of an adult and has sex with an adult woman. It also points out that Diana revoking the wish meant she and the mystery man never actually slept together.

But users quickly hit back at Jenkins, with one declaring the correlation “false equivalence”.

Others though didn’t see an issue with the plot point.

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