News broke last week that MMA fighter and noted transphobe Ronda Rousey is being considered for the title role in the upcoming Disney+ show She-Hulk. While some fans expressed concern that Rousey doesn’t have the acting chops actor the project, many others were dismayed for a different reason: Many see She-Hulk as a trans-coded figure, and Ronda Rousey is transphobic.
She-Hulk is a six-foot tall woman with broad shoulders and muscles for days. Her musculature has been appropriated and adopted by many members of the trans community, who have held her up as a symbol that having some masculine features doesn’t make you any less of a woman — or a hero.
The character is held up as such a trans icon that there’s even a Tumblr called “She-Hulk is a Trans Lesbian” dedicated to the phenomenon.
She-Hulk, also known as Jennifer Walters, is a lawyer who got a blood transfusion from her cousin Bruce Banner, the original Hulk. Instead of transforming into a giant green monster when she gets angry, Jen permanently grew into a larger, beefier, greener version of herself. She doesn’t have a second, “Hulk” persona — she’s always Jen Walters, She-Hulk. That’s what her body looks like.
While Rousey herself is also muscular, she has a history of making transphobic remarks, going all the way back to 2013 when she said that trans MMA fighter Fallon Fox “can try hormones, chop her pecker off, but it’s still the same bone structure a man has.”
“It’s an advantage,” she added. “I don’t think it’s fair.”
Despite plenty of chances to apologize, Rousey has never taken back those comments or other offensive actions over the years, including sharing a conspiracy video about the Sandy Hook shooting. If she really thinks a woman can’t have a body like Fox, she has no business playing She-Hulk — who, by the way, has the same “bone structure” as Fox does.
The Marvel’s next phase is witnessing an explosion of queer characters. In recent weeks, the studio has announced that bisexual Valkyrie will “find her queen” in the next Thor movie and The Eternals is getting a gay, married superhero. Meanwhile, rumors suggest that Hulkling and Wiccan may show up in Captain Marvel 2 and Wandavision and America Chavez could get her own TV show.
But reports that Rousey is being considered for She-Hulk is a reminder that there aren’t any trans characters in the MCU yet. Two trans actors played small roles in Spider-Man: Far From Home and Marvel is reportedly looking to cast a trans actress in an upcoming project, but it’s time for the studio to take the next step.
Luckily, we found just the woman to help Marvel out — Hustlers and Transparent star Trace Lysette tweeted last year that she’d “love to play She Hulk.”
Lysette is already a real-life superwoman, and she would be a great She-Hulk. She’d also be a great addition to the Marvel Universe — in absolutely any capacity. Hiring a talented trans actress is certainly a much better choice than someone who represents the opposite of everything the studio says it stands for.