Wonder Woman’s appearance in the early golden age of comics made her the first prominent female superheroine. The psychologist William Moulton Marston created Wonder Woman somewhat as a counter reaction to the presence of prominent male superheroes (at this time Superman, Batman and Captain America), as well as a counterbalance to the "blood curdling masculinity" that was dominant at the time, with the hopes that the character could serve as an inspiration for young children (though in certain ways it was geared more towards female readers.) Marston had been partially motivated to create this character because of the accomplishments of his own wife, who was also an accomplished academic at a time when it was difficult for women to fulfill this role. As a result, the first Wonder Woman series contained many complementary articles and features which sought to highlight the inner power of women. There were articles for instance on the different career paths that women could pursue (according to the standards of the 1940s) as well as a series of stories on famous and accomplished women, called the Wonder Women of History. Marston introduced the character in All-Star Comics #8 in 1941. She became the lead character in Sensation Comics in 1941, and got her first solo book in 1942.

Superman begged his fellow heroes to arrest him, and while he was taken to the A.R.G.U.S. facilities, Diana expressed disapproval at Steve’s secret Justice League. Wonder Woman travelled to the Temple of Hephaestus and demanded Hephaestus tell her about what the box really was. Hephaestus answered that the box was not created by the Gods of Olympus and the truth was a mystery even to them. Wonder Woman decided to seek help from the Justice League Dark.[66] Suddenly, the three Justice Leagues converged at the House of Mystery, where the heroes were divided, one side led by Wonder Woman, the other by Batman. Zatanna, having taken Wonder Woman’s side, teleported the group away.[67] Wonder Woman’s group tracked Pandora’s box to Lex Luthor’s prison cell, where Pandora was offering the box to Luthor. Wonder Woman grabbed the box but was overwhelmed by its power.[68]
Diana quickly regained her sanity and was taken out of the mental hospital's care. She immediately noted the absence of Barbara and set out to locate her. However, when she arrived at Empire Enterprises, she was greeted only by Doctor Cyber.[81] Cale set Team Poison onto Wonder Woman once again, and Colonel Poison managed to shoot Diana through the chest. Diana and Steve quickly overcame their forces and followed Veronica Cale and Cheetah to a gateway that led to Themyscira. Wonder Woman and Cheetah fought, and a drop of Diana's blood fell onto the gateway which opened the portal to Ares' prison beneath Themyscira. Phobos and Deimos, whom Cale had turned into dogs with the help of Circe, entered the portal, along with Diana and Veronica Cale. Veronica found her daughter beside Ares.[82]
Though Diana was able to admit honestly that she did love Hades, she escaped her bonds anyway, explaining that she could still love him and refuse his proposal. Angrily, Hades sent all of the forces of Hell to kill her, but she and her friends were rescued by Strife. Confronted by her fiancé again, Diana explained that she had not lied. Wonder Woman has the capacity to love everyone - a concept that could never be understood by one incapable of love, such as he. The realization that he was loved unconditionally disgusted Hades so much that he sent them all away. Before leaving, Hephaestus gifted Hades with a mirror, and shot him with Eros' pistols, allowing, at least, for Hades to love himself.[23]
Comic books were more or less invented in 1933 by Maxwell Charles Gaines, a former elementary school principal who went on to found All-American Comics. Superman first bounded over tall buildings in 1938. Batman began lurking in the shadows in 1939. Kids read them by the piles. But at a time when war was ravaging Europe, comic books celebrated violence, even sexual violence. In 1940, the Chicago Daily News called comics a “national disgrace.” “Ten million copies of these sex-horror serials are sold every month,” wrote the newspaper’s literary editor, calling for parents and teachers to ban the comics, “unless we want a coming generation even more ferocious than the present one.”

"Not even girls want to be girls so long as our feminine archetype lacks force, strength, and power. Not wanting to be girls, they don't want to be tender, submissive, peace-loving as good women are. Women' s strong qualities have become despised because of their weakness. The obvious remedy is to create a feminine character with all the strength of Superman plus all the allure of a good and beautiful woman."
A few decades later, second-wave feminist Gloria Steinem's[228] Ms. Magazine debuted in 1972 with an image of Wonder Woman on the cover. Historian Tim Hanley suggests that this move shifted "the focus away from female superiority to sisterhood and equality, essentially making her a mascot of the women's movement".[225][229][230] This perception shifted over the years, as demonstrated in December 2016 when the United Nations decided to drop the title of "honorary ambassador for the empowerment of women and girls" which it had given to the comic book character Wonder Woman a few months prior, in a ceremony attended by the actors who had portrayed her (Lynda Carter and Gal Gadot).[231] The title was eliminated in response to a petition signed by 44,000 people which argued that Wonder Woman undermines female empowerment due to her costume, described as a "shimmery, thigh-baring bodysuit with an American flag motif and knee-high boots". The petition stated that "it is alarming that the United Nations would consider using a character with an overtly sexualised image at a time when the headline news in United States and the world is the objectification of women and girls".[232][233][229] Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins responded to both the petition and to the U.N.'s decision by stating that she thinks "that that's sexist. I think it's sexist to say you can't have both. I have to ask myself what I would apply to any other superhero".[234]
Wonder Woman (vol. 1) #105 revealed that Diana was formed from clay by the Queen of the Amazons, given life and power by four of the Greek and Roman gods (otherwise known as the Olympian deities) as gifts, corresponding to her renowned epithet: "Beautiful as Aphrodite, wise as Athena, swifter than Hermes, and stronger than Hercules", making her the strongest of the Amazons.[34] Wonder Woman's Amazon training gave her limited telepathy, profound scientific knowledge,[34] and the ability to speak every language – even caveman[34] and Martian languages.[175]
Impressed by this unknown woman's self-sacrifice, the Amazons entombed her with honors and clothed her in armor displaying the American flag pattern on her uniform, which they assumed were her heraldic colors.[37] Trevor's legacy was also the primary reason why Ares arranged for Steve Trevor to bomb the island, as he could not resist the irony of the heroine's son unwittingly killing her admirers.[37]
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