Monday, June 5, 2017

It's Just Another #ManCrushMonday! #WonderWoman #SteveTrevor

If you haven't seen Wonder Woman, beware this post as there will likely be some spoilers. Not huge ones, but a few. I posted about Chris Pine in the Battle of the Chrises.  Today isn't so much about Mr. Pine himself as the character he portrayed in Wonder Woman, Steve Trevor.  Last chance to turn away from the spoilers.

For fans of the comics, Steve has always been the Lois Lane of Diana's series. Her constant companion and sometimes love interest. Depending on the incarnation, he hasn't always known her identities were one and the same, but let's talk about Patty Jenkins take on Steve Trevor and why its rolled up in a big ball of awesome.

Steve is on a Mission

When he crash lands through the ward around Themyscira, Steve was in the middle of a mission to help prevent more casualties in the Great War (WWI) and he had the information to make that happen. Finding an island of Amazons was the last thing he expected. He didn't trust them, because he doesn't trust anyone and yet he helped to fight against the incursion on the island to protect both the warriors he found and the mission he needed to complete. Answering their questions wasn't high on his list, not even to save himself.


Dealing with Diana

Steve is a spy, he lies all the time to preserve the mission. As he tells Diana, he had a choice between doing nothing and doing something. After already trying nothing, he must now do something. We don't dig any deeper than that, but it's clear Steve is haunted by the earlier choice and driven to not make that same mistake.

When Diana offers to exchange her help in getting off the island for his in hunting down Ares, he agrees. One thing I loved about these interactions was in the face of Diana's earnestness, Steve wants to believe her but he doesn't.

Image Credit: Warner Bros.

He can't question her skill, even if his natural instincts tell him he's supposed to protect her, both as a woman and an innocent. Once he accepts she will go to the front and she is holding him to his promise, he puts together his team. A team he intends to use to pursue his objective of ending the war while getting Diana where she wants to go.

The raw honesty between the two was refreshing. Steve couldn't tell Diana about what she was about to face, because she refused to hear anything that didn't involve getting her where she needed to go.

Her innocence and naivete made her no less a warrior, and Steve's charm acted as a mask for the world of pain and cynicism he endured after years of war. One quality they shared? Neither would give up on their goals, even when it brought them into conflict with each other.

Image Credit: Warner Bros.

The War to End All Wars

Sometimes side by side, sometimes running in parallel, Steve and Diana, along with Sammy, Charlie, and the Chief with support from Etta back in London pressed their advantage, conquering No Man's Land and liberating a small town called Veld.  It was there Steve rediscovered wonder, as he marveled that Diana was the one who saved them when she wouldn't listen to his reason. Crossing No Man's Land was impossible without Diana. Diana's determination sparked a sense of hope in Steve. A hope that his mission might not be in vain. It was in Veld, following their victory when this photo would be taken.

Image Credit: Warner Bros.


Cross-Purposes

Steve's method of doing things required subterfuge. Diana's was direct combat. It left them at cross purposes as they pursued their mutual objective of Luddendorf. Steve had to stop his poison, Diana had to stop him. She didn't agree with Steve's methods and Steve couldn't get through to her. So married to their goals, they couldn't or wouldn't listen to each other.

Image Credit: Warner Bros.

What You Believe

In the end, those cross purposes found Diana floundering as Steve's determination grew. He needed her help, but she couldn't offer it not when she felt betrayed. The damage had been done and as much as Steve wanted to stay by her side, he had to press on but he reminded her, "It's not about what we deserve, it's about what you believe." In that moment, we saw Steve found peace with his purpose. He was doing something. "I can save today. You can save the world."

I have never loved Steve Trevor more. His path brought him into Diana's life and Diana into his. They didn't change each other so much as hone who they really were underneath. She helped him find his hope, and he helped her find her faith.

I can't think of a better Man Crush than Steve Trevor--a flawed hero who chose to believe in a better world and did something about it.



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