Created by William Moulton Marston, also the inventor of the prototype of the polygraph under the pseudonym Charles Moulton, Wonder Woman is an Amazon princess who throws a rope
around people and bounces bullets off her bracelets. She's great if you like that sort of thing. Her reruns
on the Sci-Fi Channel are strictly last-resort TV, but bearable.

A super-hero published by DC Comics.

Wonder Woman is likely the best known of all female super-heroes. Ask someone to name a male super-hero, you are going to get answers ranging from Superman and Batman to Spider-man and Wolverine. But, ask someone to name a super-heroine, they are most likely to say Wonder Woman.

Three women have held the mantle of Wonder Woman. The most famous is Diana of Themyscira. Diana is one of the legendary Amazons, created by the five goddesses of Greek mythology (Artemis, Athena, Demeter, Hestia, and Aphrodite) as a warrior race who were peaceful at heart. Their queen, Hippolyta, longed for a child, which the goddesses granted by endowing a clay figure Hippolyta had created with life. So was born Diana, the Amazon who would one day be known as Wonder Woman.

Threats from Ares, the Greek god of war, caused the Amazons hold a contest to choose a champion to go into the world. Diana was forbidden to participate, but did anyway, hiding her identity. When she won the contests, Diana was given the mantle of Wonder Woman, along with the costume and the Lasso of Hestia (also known as the Lasso of Truth). Diana's reflexes and strength enabled her to deflect bullets with her bracelets and she wears a headband that is made of a nearly indestructable metal, which can be used as a thrown weapon.

Diana left her home, lived for a time in Boston, fighting the forces of evil Dubbed Wonder Woman by the press, Diana had many adventures, joining the Justice League for a time as well as fighting along side many other heroes.

Eventually returning to Themyscira (or Paradise Island as it is also called), Diana found that her mother was not pleased with her actions while she was in "man's world" and another contest was held to see if she would continue to hold her position as Themyscira's representative in the world. Diana lost the contest and an Amazon named Artemis was given the title of Wonder Woman. She only held the title for a short time before dying in battle against the White Magician. Diana then took up the mantle again. Soon however, Diana was also killed due to wounds inflicted upon her by the Demon Neron.

The Greek gods decided that since she had died heroically that she should be rewarded, so they transformed her into the goddess of truth, causing Thomas Bulfinch to roll over in his grave.

The mantle of Wonder Woman now vacant, the gods decided that Diana's mother should become the next Wonder Woman, so Hippolyta took up the call. she was only active for a short time, until Diana returned to Earth to continue her heroics as Wonder Woman. She was finally transformed back into a mortal after angering the gods for her disobedience.

The character of Wonder Woman appeared in as one of the heroes in the 1970's cartoon show the Super-Friends. She was also the star of a 1970's movie starring Cathy Lee Crosby of That's Incredible fame. Finally also in the 1970's a television series starring Lynda Carter aired for a couple of seasons.

"Suffering Sappho!"

William Moulton Marston, Harvard-trained psychologist, sensationalist author, quiet polygamist, inventor of the lie detector, adopted his most famous role as Charles Moulton, creator of Wonder Woman. She was not the first super-female to emerge from the Rosie the Riveter era, but she became the most famous, and the longest-lived. She made her first appearance in an All-Star Comics #8 supporting story, (December 1941), followed that with a cover appearance on Sensation #1 (January 1942), and soon claimed her own title, still in publication, in the summer of '42.

Naturally, she experienced many retcons along the way.

Her mother is Hipplolyte, brunette queen of the Amazons, who led them from the evils of man's world to hidden Paradise Island. She fashions her daughter from the clay of the earth and invests her with powers, aided by the gods and goddesses of Classical mythology. In particular, they are helped by their patron, Aphrodite. At the start of World War II, pilot Steve Trevor crash-lands on the Amazon's island. The queen's daughter must disguise herself to enter a competition to determine which Amazon should return Trevor to civilization. Naturally, Princess Diana wins. She takes on an American flag-inspired outfit (initially with a skirt), takes him home in an invisible plane, and takes on the identify of nurse Diana Prince. Later, she gets a secretarial job with U.S. military intelligence. She becomes Wonder Woman whenever necessary; her powers include superior strength and speed. Her bracelets defect bullets; her lasso forces people to tell the truth. Superman has kryptonite; Diana loses her powers if someone welds her "bracelets of submission" or (as they are sometimes later called) "Vambraces" together.

Steve and Paradise Island experienced the first retcon not long after they first appeared. It soon became a fact that no man could ever step foot on Paradise Island without disastrous consequences-- even though Steve passed some time there without incident. The island's sexist nature has been revised several times throughout its odd history.

Perhaps the most bizarre element of the early comics are Wonder Woman's sidekicks, the girls of a rather fetishistic sorority at Holliday College.1 The Holliday Girls are statuesque women with interchangeable personalities. The exception is their apparent leader, Etta Candy. Etta is, initially, a large, heavy-set female who loves eating sweet things. A few issues in, she becomes short, rotund, and less domineering. She remains in the comic until the 1950s.

The comic goes through a number of permutations after the war, but Wonder Woman is one of the few super-heroes to survive. In deference to the 1950s attacks on comic books (Dr. Frederic Wertham's Seduction of the Innocence claims, among other things, that Wonder Woman was a lesbian role model), she stops saying "Suffering Sappho!"

Beginning in 1959, we get supporting stories retelling Diana's early, childhood adventures. Retroactively, she now called herself Wonder Girl when she was young, and wore a variation of her adult outfit. Later, Wonder Tot adventures (again, with a variant of the outfit) appears. Finally, in 1961, a bizarre set of circumstances leads to all three versions of the character existing simultaneously. The possible effects of being mentored by the person you will one day become were ignored. The stories proved popular, and we'll return to them shortly.

In 1960, the comic attempts to introduce a new version of the Holliday Girls, including a new Etta Candy. They don't take, and quickly disappear. Although the Earth 1/Earth 2 dichotomy has not yet been established in DC comics, these may be regarded as the Earth 1 Holliday Girls. The Earth 1/ Earth 2 distinction created by DC Comics (wherein the heroes of the 1940s and the heroes of the late 1950s lived in parallel universes) could be used to account for a number of retcons, such as Wonder Woman's childhood career, Hippolyta's now inexplicably blonde hair, and Wonder Woman's newfound ability to ride air currents-- in effect, to fly. This ability removed the need for her invisible plane, an odd vehicle which has had many forms and origins throughout Wonder Woman's history-- and at times, does not exist at all.

Wonder Girl herself becomes the center of a good many retcons. She joins the Teen Titans, which consists of various teen sidekicks. Great confusion ensured as to her actual identity, since she coexisted with her adult self. As Wonder Girl disappears from Wonder Woman stories, the Titans' version of Wonder Girl is transformed into an entirely different character, Donna Troy, a sort of adopted Amazon. Donna has since undergone numerous transformations, and continues to fight crime-- while the name "Wonder Girl" has been taken by entirely different superheroines. By this point, Wonder Girl's origins and incarnations require more effort to explain than superstring theory, so we should return to her adult inspiration.

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Wonder Woman loses most of her powers and stops wearing her traditional outfit. These events are changes, rather than retcons, and they do not last long. She has her old powers and outfit back in time for the first successful Wonder Woman2 TV series. That show spends a couple seasons in the 1940s and then skips ahead to the then-present; Lynda Carter's version of the character doesn't age. It's a pity that idea hadn't occurred to Wonder Woman's writers in the 1980s; it would have saved some very odd retcons that came to pass.

Wonder Woman continues much as she had, as the 70s end and the 80s begin. A previously unrevealed second clay daughter of Hippolyta, Nubia, appears in the 1970s. Wonder Woman's ability to ride air-currents becomes the ability to fly outright. There are changes, too: the Earth 2 Wonder Woman marries Steve Trevor. His Earth 1 counterpart is killed and then restored to life-- twice-- before he and his Wonder Woman follow the Golden Age characters to the altar in 1986. The writers know, by this point, that these changes will not last.

DC's Crisis on Infinite Earths wipes out the universe in 1986; a new Wonder Woman will emerge, free of her previously established history.

Post-crisis, George Perez rewrote Wonder Woman. She emerges only recently from Paradise Island-- now called Themyscira--whose patron is now Gaia, and whose Amazon citizens are reincarnated souls of women who died by male violence.3 The Greek gods play important roles in many of her adventures, even more so than in the 1940s. She meets Steve Trevor and a very different Etta Candy; Steve and Etta eventually marry each other. This Wonder Woman acts as Themyscira's ambassador to the rest of the Earth, and eschews secret identities.

Later, she dies, and her mother takes her position. In a series of tales written by John Byrne, Hippolyte even travels back in time to World War II, thus giving the Golden Age of comics a Wonder Woman. The twist is interesting, though it undoes painstaking efforts to rewrite the history of the 1940s Justice Society of America without the Amazing Amazon.

Paradise Island is also destroyed. However, death rarely takes in comic books, and Diana returns, deified, the Olympic Goddess of Truth. DC restores Themyscira, and then eliminates it again, and then.... Diana becomes quasi-mortal once more, eventually takes on a secret identity, and something akin to the original Wonder Woman once again fights crime in four colors.

For a couple of years.

In 2011, DC once again rebooted, starting all issues with #1 and significantly rewriting their history. Wonder Woman's has been most problematic. Minor controversy surrounded changes to her outfit, but that could easily be altered. Many fans showed enthusiasm for her more mythic adventures. The classical gods, reimagined in a more Lovecraftian manner, play even bigger roles than in past incarnations. Changes to her origins, however, have left many fans-- female fans in particular-- angry.

The Amazons became much more bloodthirsty and anti-male. Now, they reproduce with the help of captured sailors, whom they destroy, Praying Mantis-like, after using. Male offspring they sell into slavery. Far from being enlightened symbols of some kind of feminism, they have become a man's nightmare-creatures.

Wonder Woman herself, formerly a creation of a woman with supernatural aid, has become another bastard child of Zeus, who impregnates Hippolyta. As with the changed Amazons, this just feels wrong, symbolically. In 2012, DC raised eyebrows again by entangling Diana romantically with Superman. DC also felt the need to have her declare her heterosexuality during an encounter with Batwoman.

In 2017, DC did a "soft reboot" of their history, and Warner Brothers released a successful Wonder Woman film that portrayed a more traditional version of the character. Wonder Woman remains one of the longest-lasting and most-recognized comic book icons. We shall see what changes and revisions remain in store.

1. The early Wonder Woman comics feature frequent bondage scenes, and a handful of paddlings. Suffering Sappho indeed.

2. Previously, a pilot had been shot for a 1967 camp version of Wonder Woman. It never sold. Cathy Lee Crosby played the powered-down version of the character in a 1974 made-for-tv movie. Wonder Woman has also appeared in numerous cartoons; in 2008's Justice League: The New Frontier, Lucy Lawless provided the voice.

3. I'm thinking, if this were the case, that Paradise Island would be a good deal larger than it is.

Ok. Wonder Woman the movie.

I was mildly excited about seeing it. I like movies less and less as I get older. My father didn't like movies. I thought it was weird that he disliked movies. But I am turning in to him....

I loved comics as a kid. But I thought the DC heroes and heroines were really boring in the 1970s compared with Spiderman and the Fantastic Four. Superman is Mr. Perfect and an alien anyhow. Who cares? Wonder Woman isn't human anyhow and why's she dressed as a man's wet dream? It's not a practical fighting costume. Stupid. Invisible Girl. Sigh. Token woman, but yeah, she represents us better than most heroines: she's a wife. She becomes a mother. She is treated as the weakest link. She has less brains, less power, less anger and flames. Yep. Invisible, just like the rest of us girls.

Reading Wonder Woman and the Very Angry Comediennes I thought, shit, now I don't want to see Wonder Woman after all.

But I changed my mind and went with my daughter.

At first I didn't like it. I do. Because I have talked to two men, who interpreted events differently than I do. So what I like is the movie's ambivalence....go women, go woman directer, go men that worked on it, go people, go go go....


1. Does she have sex with him?
guy 1: yes. "Maybe more than once, since he is young." Uh, how do we count that? Is the number of times they have sex the number of times HE ejaculates? Or the number of times SHE does? Or if she cums 3 times and he does twice, does that count as having sex 5 times?
guy 2: no. She has already said in the boat, amazons have sex with men for procreation and have noted that men are not necessary for pleasure.
me: dunno. IF she did have sex, then why?

2. Was she drunk?
She was handed a drink before the fade out from him kissing her. Does it have alcohol? How much? Do Amazons drink alcohol? We don't know. Maybe she was drunk and banged him.

3. Has she killed anyone or anything before?
Ok, so she kills lots of people before the fade out from them kissing. Maybe she is banging him out of shock, grief and because she's drunk. On the other hand, she was raised fighting. Was she raised slaughtering chickens, cows and pigs? Are Amazons vegan?
guys: it's true love
me: I am wearing scepticals.

4. Hey, Amazons do it for procreation.
maybe she is sober, figures he's got a good chance of croaking and her too and decides to procreate. Why not? She's raised Amazon.

5. What are the role models for women?
ok, first of all, how many women are there in the film?
Are the Amazons women or are they something else? After all, Zeus takes them away to the island. BUT there are still women with men in the war. So, did Zeus only take women warriors? They are virgins, too. Only women virgin warriors? And why would she not be allowed back to the island? Because she is not a virgin? But hey, someone has got to sacrifice themselves to make more Amazons. Unless they aren't human and live forever. There were no children on the island. Maybe her calling or mission or whatever is really to produce more Amazons.
Ok, so I postulate that the Amazons are not human. Neither is she, she's a damn goddess. So there are two women in the movie: a villainess and a fucking secretary. Great. Oh, and some token crying victim women. I am role modelling away. If I have to pick one or the other, I wanna play the villainess. And they each get about one or two sentences and yeah, I knew the Brit was the evil God, duh.
One of the guys said, well, it's set in that time during a war. Oh, so there were no women around in WWI? How about some fucking camp followers? How about a women fighting on the front dressed as a man? Where is Mata Hari? Give me a nice bitchy whore to role model. Or, damn, I hope the Native American sidekick is a chick and that the PTSD Scotsperson is trans.

6. The only good woman is untouched by men.
Bleagh. This was my initial response. I hate the women are good until fucked by a man. Only virgins are pure, only virgins are moral, only virgins are good. Fuck me. Disney fucking princess. And once you are fucked you are bad, aka a Disney Queen. Oh, but, she is a goddess, so it doesn't count. Zeus fucked every woman and goddess he could get his hands on. Was Ares a slut? I don't know. Did Hera sleep around or was she in love, faithful and just pissed off all the time.

7. What is the outcome if Steve isn't killed off?
Bleagh again. A man is noble if he kisses the woman's hand and leaves her to continue his noble mission. What is a woman who says I love you and I am not going to marry you and keep house and bear your children because I like fighting a lot better? A noder said to me today: "well-- men don't like embracing badgers- as a general rule". Men are allowed to be aggressive. In women we call that Bitch. So he is killed off so that she can keep fighting and there isn't a keeping house issue and also she can remain pure in the future because it was True Love. Maybe she let him get on the plane deliberately....I could see that. Saves her a fuckload of role trouble.

So... I kinda hope the real mission is for her to repopulate the Amazons. She can bang whoever the fuck she wants. Just like her daddy.

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