‘Spy’ Forgoes the Easy Fat Jokes and Delivers an Unexpectedly Awesome Female Action Star

I’m not that worried about the new all female Ghostbusters anymore. Not after watching Spy. If Paul Feig and Melissa McCarthy can match the energy and appeal of this comedy when they strap on the proton packs, I’m on board.

I’m totally on board.

In Spy, Melissa McCarthy plays a CIA desk jockey who is used to feeding information to spies in the field, but when the entire CIA spy network is compromised and the identity of every single spy is released (and her own spy is murdered), McCarthy must venture out into the field herself as her identity is unknown and track down a nuclear weapon and get revenge for the death of her charge.

So, yeah, I never would have used the word “BA” to describe Melissa McCarthy before, but I’ll be darned if she wasn’t a complete BA in this movie. What’s more is that the BA-ness is completely believable and, that in of itself, is kind of a big deal.

You see, Spy is not only a very funny movie with a very appealing lead character, but it’s actually a very progressive and forward thinking movie. Where the previews and commercials are painting it as a stereotypical “clumsy fat lady” movie, Spy is actually the story of a skilled and intelligent woman rising to a challenge.

Sure, there are jokes and she’s not the most graceful of secret agents, but the knows what she’s doing, she’s smart, and she has his drive and determination that just makes you want to root for her.

Spy is one of those rare comedies that takes the easy stereotypes and liquefies them in a blender and, by Zues, it is so much fun to watch those pieces get shredded. I’ve said it before, but Melissa McCarthy is the unlikely superhero and it is made totally believable. This isn’t the old Chris Farley humor where fat equals funny, this is something way more empowering.

It helps immensely that Spy is also very funny. Just about every scene achieves the laughs it was going for and the movie has no problem switching gears like any good espionage thriller does.

Jason Statham is actually very funny playing a strange parody of himself and, thankfully, that is about as self-aware and purposefully dumb as the movie gets.

Spy is not only a great comedy, it’s a great spy movie and a progressive little film while it’s at it. It’s clever, it’s confident, and if not for a small pacing problem in the first act, would have been near perfect.

I may be in the minority here, but I honestly think the new Ghostbusters movie will be fine provided it has the same qualities that made Spy such a wonderful film.

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