I have seen the new Star Trek. I liked it a lot. There was, however, one thing I did not like.
Seeing Uhura strip.
Don't get me wrong, I have stripped and I'm a big fan of allowing a woman to use that power to whatever effect she wants. It can be a thrill, and a big help in times of economic need, to get men to pay you just to see you take clothes off. Heck, it can also be a lot of fun in private with no money involved.
Uhura is not that woman. She is, empathically, not a stripper. She has no need to be, and no interest in allowing men to see her do it. But the sexiest thing you can put into a non-R film is a girl taking her clothes off. So we get to see Uhura strip, so as to get a cheep thrill and sexualize her. She deserves better.
The Orion slave girl? We see her partially unclad, but not removing her clothes. And I promise you, Uhura took her clothes off for no other purpose than to titilate the audience. It serves no other function. Indeed, it undermines her relationship with Spock, as we already know that A: Kirk wanted to see her unclad and B: It's Spock who is going to get to later, if that's the direction their relationship goes. For a Kirk/Uhura romance it might have helped the story along. If she'd been SO pissed at finding Kirk had peeped at her that she didn't back him up later, it would have been a plot point.
But as it is Kirk can perfectly well overhear her without us seeing her take off her cadet suit. That we dont tells me this was an intentional sexification of a character who deserves better. She's not just in a bikini, she is exposed to our salacious view, specifically to make us drool over her, which makes us think less about who she is and what she can do.
I still liked the movie, but the weakening of the only female character who's job is to do more than bring a male hero into the world and talk nice about him, pains me. It's the only misstep in the whole movie, btu I wish like hell it wasnt in there. Also, I wasn't paying enough attention: is she the ONLY person who is never given the Conn? I know kirk, Spock, and freaking Chevkov all get it at some point...
For the record, I think Zoe Saldana is te hawt, so if she ever wanted to play a stripper I'd be all in favor. But Uhura isnt it.