Author: Olivia Munn with Mac Montandon
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Rating: / 5 Handbags
Another birthday came and went recently and one of my DH’s presents was a copy of Suck It Wonder Woman! The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek by Attack of the Show’s Olivia Munn. I have never seen Attack of the Show, but I had heard of Olivia as the reigning Geek Goddess and remember her from a brief appearance in a season 4 episode of Chuck.
It’s weird being a geeky girl. There’s not a lot out there for us and the expectations are pretty low. The stereotype is either an unattractive, socially awkward girl who hangs out with the nerds in hopes of getting some attention from these poor schmucks once they realize there’s no hope in hell of dating a cheerleader, or gold-diggers who go out with computer and science nerds for their increased earning potential. So, here comes Olivia Munn, talented, beautiful, popular and an unabashed geek who looks to break the stereotype. I was really interested to read what she had to say.
Boy was I disappointed.
Firstly the book is written like a blog, which would be fine if I wanted to read a blog, for free. But DH shelled out $20 bucks for the thing, so an over-arching theme and a little cohesion would be nice. Instead, the book reads like a stream of consciousness cross between Mean Girls and Men Behaving Badly. It is little more than a series of anecdotes which have less to do with being a Geek in Hollywood as it does with simply being in Hollywood. Her reminiscences are neither insightful as to the being a geek in Hollywood, geek culture within Hollywood/LA or celebrity members of that culture.
The other thing is that this book is definitely written for the fanboys. With chapters about getting laid (Chapter 6: Sex: What You Can Do to Help Yourself Have More of It and Chapter 17: Dating Tips to Help You Score), hooking up with a bridesmaid at a friends wedding (Chapter 12: Muscle Relaxers and Swimming Fully Clothed Really Don’t Go Together So Good [sic]) it’s obvious that this books main audience buys Clearacil in bulk and lives in their parent’s basement. Even her gallery of great women which features historical heavy weights like Catherine the Great and Eleanor Rosevelt – women who are Munn’s supposed ‘inspiration’ – are reduced to caricatures as conceptualized by Joe Francis and Hugh Hefner.
There is nothing new here, and that really does a disservice to those Munn says she’s trying to champion – those awkward, shy girls, who want desperately to fit in yet have interests and passions that set them apart from the crowd. Yes, we *know* it’s hard growing up when you like sci-fi and play D&D. It’s nothing new, get over it. Show us how you used your geekdom to forge an identity and a career for yourself, not complain about how hard it was to be true to yourself while surrounded by mean kids then take pot shots at people who are overweight.
All this isn’t to say that the book is a total washout. There are some hidden gems buried in here, most notably My Worst Day Ever which had me reaching for my hanky and On the Playboy Cover Shoot, Scandinavian Stylists and Picking out Panties was absolutely hilarious and give a glimpse of the real Olivia Munn as someone who is strong, passionate, sensitive,funny and not afraid to stand up for herself.
Someone I would really like to hear more from.
In the meantime,unless you are interested in girls who take swan dives into giant chocolate cream pies whilst wearing nothing but a fetish French maid outfit, this is a book to avoid. We geek girls will just have to make due with tweets from Amber Benson and Felicia Day until such a time as they write their own memoirs.