Actor Keanu Reeves went public on Saturday with his girlfriend, Alexandra Grant, and feminists quickly got defensive about her age.
Tabloids declared the longtime business collaborators a couple after they were photographed holding hands Saturday at the LACMA Art +Film Gala in Los Angeles. Reports noted that Reeves, 55, is a longtime bachelor.
They also made sure to mention that Grant is a respectable 46 years old.
On Twitter, advocates of female empowerment hailed Reeves as a rare male ally.
Many users praised him for dating someone they deemed “age appropriate.”
of course Keanu has an age-appropriate girlfriend. he is a Good Man https://t.co/Rnr3IdPzfG
— britt hates (@MissBrittHayes) November 5, 2019
One actress said she would perform sex on Reeves to show her appreciation for his act of feminism.
Gonna suck off Keanu Reeves to show how much I appreciate him having an age appropriate girlfriend
— Rachel Sennott (@Rachel_Sennott) November 5, 2019
A male liberal consultant said that Reeves had proved yet again to be “the coolest.”
Look, Keanu Reeves is the coolest and the fact that he's in an age appropriate relationship with someone he's known for years is just the latest evidence of that. I wish them all the happiness. https://t.co/XL0bsezvfs
— Ev🅰️n Sutton (@3vanSutton) November 5, 2019
It was hard to find a critical tweet about the couple, though quite a few commenters said they mistook Grant for English actress Helen Mirren, who is 74 years old.
Saw the photos and legit thought Keanu Reeves was dating Helen Mirren. Which I also would have supported. pic.twitter.com/rYoC9nCLzZ
— Travon Free (@Travon) November 5, 2019
Still, the outrage machine managed to kickstart itself, with users responding to all sorts of alleged slights against Grant, including that she has gray hair.
People are being gross about Alexandra Grant, saying she can’t possibly be 46 because her hair is gray. I’m 31 and my hair is mostly gray. Having gray hair at 46 is perfectly normal, y’all are just too used to women not being allowed to age.
— Caroline Mincks (@saucymincks) November 5, 2019
Some professed to be upset that people were talking about Grant’s age at all.
Model and feminist activist Emily Sears instead wanted everyone to acknowledge how lucky Reeves is to be dating a “highly accomplished artist, a philanthropist and a babe.”
Is the most fascinating thing to talk about Alexandra Grant REALLY her age? She’s a highly accomplished artist, a philanthropist and a babe. Can she please not be reduced to ‘Keanu’s age appropriate girlfriend’ -she’s a spectacular woman in her own right, he’s lucky to be her man
— Emily Sears (@emilysears) November 5, 2019
Others complained that the patriarchy wins when Reeves gets credit for dating someone nine years his junior.
I love Keanu and agree that who he's dating is refreshing and age appropriate but lol that Hollywood's conditioned us to see a 55yo man and a 46yo woman as the same age.
— alanna 🐝 (@AlannaBennett) November 5, 2019
A number of users chose to indignantly spotlight an obscure Twitter account that sprang up to make fun of Grant for her age and looks. The account was quickly removed.
— Friday Night Music Party (@BereftOfTheDial) November 5, 2019
Feminists claimed Keanu Reeves before Alexandra Grant
The cultural response was similarly laudatory after actress Helena Bonham Carter declared Sunday that dating younger men is “much more fun.” But in the #MeToo era, few declared actor Dennis Quaid an empowered man for announcing his engagement to to a 26-year-old PhD student. But actress
Reeves — who has lately experienced something of a career renaissance — has won praise from feminists before. In June, his apparently longstanding use of the “hover hand” technique in photos with women was cited as evidence of his respect for women.
However, other Twitter users saw Reeves as simply trying to protect himself at a time when many powerful men are fearful of sexual misconduct allegations.
“Lol Keanu ain’t taking no chances,” tweeted one man.
Lol Keanu ain’t taking no chances. 😂😂 pic.twitter.com/nnfIOZKbT1
— Kemoy Lindsay (@KemziLinzi) June 9, 2019
The post went viral.