The men behind Star Trek Into Darkness have thrown us ladies and boner-loving dudes a bone and released a deleted shower scene featuring a sinewy Benedict Cumberbatch in response to the completely justified criticism they've been getting over Alice Eve's gratuitous underwear scene.

Here's a screenshot of Cumberbatch showering (you can find the full clip over here):


Thanks for the pecs, but sexism doesn't work that way. Nakedness doesn't simply cancel out nakedness, and we have no context for the above shot, so we don't know where it fit into the film or why. But what any reasonable viewer who's seen Star Trek Into Darkness does know is that Eve's underwear scene doesn't make sense, even knowing its context. It was gratuitous hot naked lady flesh, pure and simple.


As Devin Faraci over at explains:

There are a couple of problems with [Eve's] scene. For one thing, there's absolutely no reason for her to be stripping. The movie doesn't even offer the flimsiest of explanations, like having her get radioactive goo on her clothes after examining the torpedos. I honestly don't know why she has to strip down in this moment during this conversation. It's almost like the actions of someone with a mental deficiency.

What irritates me the most is the JJ Abrams's cognitive dissonance in trying to justify his equal-opportunity topless scenes.

To be clear, Abrams admits that Eve's strip scene didn't work as well as he wanted, but he nonetheless defends it: "To me it was a balance—there's a scene where Kirk is topless earlier," he said in an interview with Conan O'Brien. The difference is, Kirk is shot topless, in bed, after he's presumably finished a coital romp with a pair of actual sex kittens. There's justification for him to appear topless. His nakedness, in that context, is a wordless salute to his virility.

Like all blockbusters, Star Trek is a movie stuffed with dudes—dudes who are funny, dudes who are friends, dudes who talk a lot and fight and who convey complex emotions. Struggling to exist amidst these dudes and all their snappy dialogue are two women—Uhura and Eve's character, Carol Marcus—neither of which are afforded the same amount of character development, dialogue, or screen time. And one of those women's biggest moments is posing in her underwear.

That is not equality, it's just fucked up—the kind of fucked up a whole porn's worth of Cumberbatch's pecs wouldn't fix.