„The humor is partly wishful thinking – What if the cutest guy around also had a passionate interest in progressive women’s issues? – but it’s mostly rooted in the likelihood that the dude has never read a page of Jacques Derrida, Gloria Anzaldua or Margot Canaday in his life.“ (rollingstone.com)
Tatsächlich wurde der kanadische Schauspieler (Drive, Blue Valentine, Crazy Stupid Love) in den letzten Monaten zu einer neuen Ikone des Feminismus hochstilisiert. Gosling-Bilder gespickt mit Feminismus-Theorie-Elementen haben sich quer durchs Netz verbreitet und vervielfältigt. Kreiert wurde das Meme basierend auf dem Original-Meme Hey girl von Danielle Henderson, Doktorandin an der University of Wisconsin/Gender and Women’s Studies program.
Die Washington Post sprach bereits vom Phänomen Ryan Gosling – hält sich dabei allerdings nicht mit feministischen Theorieansätzen auf, sondern formuliert es schön old-boy- ähm …school-mäßig: „Ryan Gosling represents the completely unrealistic ideal that women want all men to live up to: elusive, edgy, potentially dangerous but also kind to dogs, considerate enough to take his mother and sister to the Oscars and willing to unashamedly fall in love in movies based on lousy Nicholas Sparks romance novels (‚The Notebook‘) as well as star in movies about guys who date blow-up dolls (‚Lars and the Real Girl‘).“
Der Irish Independent versucht herauszufinden, warum Ryan Gosling so perfekt für Feminist_Innen erscheint (… und schafft es leider nicht ganz, das Bild einer mieselsüchtig-wütend-militanten Fundamentalfeministin dafür nicht zu bemühen):
„And so our hero says such things as: ‚Hey girl, gender is a social construct but everyone likes a cuddle.‘ Clearly even the angry unappeasable militant chicks adore him.
Of course, there is no firm proof that Gosling is a feminist — although evidence is so far positive.
Exhibit A: Ryan had a year-long relationship with Sandra Bullock, a mind-bending 17 years older than him.
Exhibit B: He is always very specifically lovely about his female co-stars and former girlfriends.
Exhibit C: When it looked likely that Blue Valentine was to be given a 17 rating because it features Gosling giving prolonged oral pleasure to Michelle Williams, he wrote to the US censors. He pointed out that „scenes that portray women in scenarios of sexual torture and violence for entertainment purposes“ had received far lower classifications. So, feminist sistah, cunnilingus champion, dark road-knight and adoring boyfriend. For the intelligent modern woman, Ryan Gosling is the erotic multi-tool.“
Im Interview mit sheposts.com versucht Danielle Henderson eine Erklärung für den Erfolg von Feminist Ryan Gosling – und zwar genau damit, dass es eben schwerfällt, das Meme in eine der gängigen Schubladen zu stecken (s. o.): „Feminists are apparently not supposed to have a sense of humor. I think people are really liking the fact that this site is intelligent while simultaneously silly, and obviously self-referential. A lot of my followers are women’s studies majors, or people who have taken women’s studies classes, and love seeing inside jokes presented in this way. For example, if you’re a women’s studies major, you’ve probably read ‚The Yellow Wallpaper‘ at least 18 times. Now matter how much you like that story, it gets a little ridiculous. There’s a lot of ’snark‘ (hate that word), and a lot of intellectual examination of pop culture going on with most popular feminist sites, but not a lot of fun. I think I’m having fun with feminism, but not making fun of feminism. People recognize and respond to that crucial difference.“
Zur Entstehungsgeschichte des Memes meint Henderson übrigens in einem anderen Interview: „It was started out of academic frustration. I had seen the movie, Drive, and the video where he was reading from the original meme so he was on my brain. I was talking with fellow students about theory and how difficult it was to move through it so quickly. I decided to make a play off the meme image and make FRG for my five friends. I thought it would be helpful for our homework if we had something nice to look at and something funny to laugh at. I put the five slides on my own personal tumblr, but my friend suggested I move it to it’s own site. I moved it to feministryangosling.com and it was literally on Jezebel the next day. It just took off from there. I had no idea it would blow up the way it did. I greatly underestimated the popularity of Ryan Gosling and feminism! I greatly underestimated that those two working in conjunction would do something for people.“
Während also Danielle Henderson die Verbindung von Ryan Gosling mit Feminismus und der, wenn man so will, Mainstream die Humorfähigkeit von Feminist_Innen unterschätzt hat, ist es gut möglich, dass das Rolling-Stone-Magazin den Helden der Geschichte unterschätzt, wenn es schreibt, es sei wahrscheinlich, dass „the dude has never read a page of Jacques Derrida, Gloria Anzaldua or Margot Canaday in his life“. Warum? Vielleicht, weil Ryan Gosling Dinge sagt wie diese: „I think like a girl, I think,“ he says, in answer to a question about growing up with his mother and sister (his parents had divorced). Having been bullied at school thanks to his early TV success, Gosling was home-schooled by his mother for a year, which meant an ever greater female presence in his life. „I was literally raised by my mother and my sister. And I just feel like I wouldn’t know how to think any other way. My sister was my best friend and my hero growing up. Because I was home-schooled I didn’t have a lot of friends and I did ballet, which was always just girls. All of that had an effect on my brain.“