During the Silver Age, under writer Robert Kanigher, Wonder Woman's origin was revamped, along with other characters'. The new origin story increased the character's Hellenic and mythological roots: receiving the blessing of each deity in her crib, Diana is destined to become as "beautiful as Aphrodite, wise as Athena, strong as Hercules, and swift as Hermes."
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John Byrne's run included a period in which Diana's mother Hippolyta served as Wonder Woman, having traveled back to the 1940s, while Diana ascended to Mount Olympus as the Goddess of Truth after being killed in issue #124. In addition, Wonder Woman's Amazon ally Nubia was re-introduced as Nu'Bia, scripted by a different author. Byrne posited that Hippolyta had been the Golden Age Wonder Woman. Byrne restored the series' status quo in his last issue.
In February 1941, Marston submitted a draft of his first script, explaining the “under-meaning” of Wonder Woman’s Amazonian origins in ancient Greece, where men had kept women in chains, until they broke free and escaped. “The NEW WOMEN thus freed and strengthened by supporting themselves (on Paradise Island) developed enormous physical and mental power.” His comic, he said, was meant to chronicle “a great movement now under way—the growth in the power of women.”
Artemis of Bana-Mighdall briefly served as Wonder Woman during Hippolyta's trials for a new Wonder Woman. Orana, a character similar to Artemis, defeated Diana in a new contest and became Wonder Woman in pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths continuity. Orana was killed during her first mission. Others who have donned the Wonder Woman persona include Nubia, Cassandra Sandsmark, and Donna Troy.
Wonder Woman was taken to Zamaron where the Star Sapphires informed her that a Dark God had taken hold there, too. Diana fought the newly-emerged Karnell, Dark God of Love, who informed Diana that he and his brethren had come from the Dark Multiverse, which the Justice League had recently encountered. When Diana wore the Tenth Metal during the climax of the Justice League's battle with Barbatos, Diana had wished for the gods' return. Though she had meant the Gods of Olympus, the Dark Multiverse's gods were chosen instead, and thus she had unintentionally caused their invasion. Together with the Star Sapphire Corps, Wonder Woman was able to defeat Karnell, who retreated back to Earth. Wonder Woman left the Corps and returned home. In her absence, Jason had united with the Justice League and fought the Dark Gods, who had plunged Earth into chaos. Suddenly, the Dark Gods disappeared, only for them to return with Jason at their side. Jason fought Wonder Woman, but after he led her away from the Dark Gods, he revealed that he was using his armor to channel the power of Dolos, God of Deception, and was in fact deceiving the Dark Gods. Using the wisdom of Athena, Jason developed a plan to convince the Dark Gods to retreat back to their reality. He offered himself, along with the power of the Greek Pantheon, in exchange for the Dark Gods leaving Earth. The Dark Gods accepted the proposal and Diana tearfully said goodbye to her brother, who was taken with them to the Dark Multiverse. The planet was saved and its people returned to normal, but Diana was distraught over the loss of her brother.
In September 2011, DC Comics relaunched its entire publication line, dubbing the event The New 52. Among the major changes to the character, Wonder Woman now appears wearing a new costume similar to her older one, and has a completely new origin. In this new timeline, Wonder Woman is no longer a clay figure brought to life by the magic of the gods. Rather, she is the demigoddess daughter of Queen Hippolyta and Zeus: King of the Greek Gods. Her original origin is revealed as a cover story to explain Diana's birth as a means to protect her from Hera's wrath. Currently, Diana has taken on the role and title as the new "God of War".
GenresuperheroCharactersWonder Woman [Diana of Themyscira]; Steve Trevor; Charlie (of the Oddfellows); unidentified military officers; Jason; The Dark Gods [King Best; Mob God; Savage Fire; The God with No Name; Karnell]; unnamed Hong Kong residents; Mera; Green Lantern [Simon Baz]; Hawkman [Carter Hall]; Vixen [Mari McCabe]; Black Canary [Dinah Lance]; Batwing [Lucas Fox]; Blue Beetle [Jaime Reyes]; unnamed rioters; Justice League [The Flash [Barry Allen]; Aquaman [Arthur Curry]; Batman [Bruce Wayne]; Cyborg [Victor Stone]; Hawkgirl [Kendra Saunders]; Martian Manhunter [J'onn J'onzz]]; Supergirl [Kara Zor-El]; Hippolyta; Philippus; unidentified AmazonSynopsisWonder Woman battles the Dark Gods and Jason, who is under their control. Once freed from their control, Jason has a plan to stop the Dark Gods that involves a sacrifice.Reprints
I thought George's one "mistake" in rebooting Wonder Woman was making her only 25 years old when she left Paradise Island. I preferred the idea of a Diana who was thousands of years old (as, if I recall correctly, she was in the TV series). From that angle, I would have liked to have seen Diana having been Wonder Woman in WW2, and be returning to our world in the reboot. Not having that option, I took the next best course, and had Hippolyta fill that role.
After Jimenez, Walt Simonson wrote a six-issue homage to the I Ching era, in which Diana temporarily loses her powers and adopts an all-white costume (Wonder Woman vol. 2, #189–194). Greg Rucka became writer with issue #195. His initial story arc centered upon Diana's authorship of a controversial book and included a political subtext. Rucka introduced a new recurring villain, ruthless businesswoman Veronica Cale, who uses media manipulation to try to discredit Diana. Rucka modernized the Greek and Egyptian gods, updating the toga-wearing deities to provide them with briefcases, laptop computers, designer clothing, and modern hairstyles. Rucka dethroned Zeus and Hades, who were unable to move with the times as the other gods had, replacing them with Athena and Ares as new rulers of the gods and the underworld. Athena selected Diana to be her personal champion.
The original significance of Wonder Woman had the intentions of influencing many women of all ages, displaying the physical and mental strengths, values, and ethical attributes that not only men acquire. "Wonder Woman symbolizes many of the values of the women's culture that feminists are now trying to introduce into the mainstream: strength and self-reliance for women; sisterhood and mutual support among women; peacefulness and esteem for human life; a diminishment both of 'masculine' aggression and of the belief that violence is the only way of solving conflicts," Steinem wrote at the time.
While in London, Wonder Woman was summoned to help a young lady called Zola from the minions of the goddess Hera and after Diana defeated the enemies, she was informed by Hermes that Zola was pregnant with Zeus’s child, which caused Hera’s wrath. Diana then took took Zola and the injured Hermes to the island of Themyscira, home of the Amazons, where Hera’s wrath reached them in the form of her daughter Strife. Wonder Woman used the Lasso of Truth to stop Strife from hurting the Amazons, but it caused her to reveal the fact that Diana and her were sisters. The next day, Diana learned from her mother that she was in fact Zeus’ daughter and, hurt by her existence being a lie, she decided to renounce the name Diana, and swore never to return to the island again.
The Diana Prince alias also played an important role after the events of Infinite Crisis. Wonder Woman was broadcast worldwide killing a villain named Maxwell Lord, as he was mind controlling Superman into killing Batman. When Wonder Woman caught him in her lasso, demanding to know how to stop Superman, Maxwell revealed that the only way to stop him was to kill Lord, so as a last resort Diana snapped his neck. To recover from the trauma of killing another person, the Amazon went into a self-imposed exile for one year. On her return to public life, Diana realized that her life as a full-time celebrity superhero and ambassador had kept her removed from humanity. Because of this she assumed the persona of Diana Prince and became an agent at the Department of Metahuman Affairs. During a later battle with the witch Circe, a spell was placed on Diana leaving her powerless when not in the guise of Wonder Woman.
Her tiara's signature star symbol is now an eight pointed starburst. According to designer Lindy Hemming and director Patty Jenkins, every design decision made for Themyscira came down to the same question: "How would I want to live that's badass?" "To me, they shouldn't be dressed in armor like men. It should be different. It should be authentic and real ... and appealing to women." When asked about the decision to give the Amazons heeled sandals, Jenkins explained that they also have flats for fighting, adding "It's total wish-fulfillment ... I, as a woman, want Wonder Woman to be sexy, hot as hell, fight badass, and look great at the same time ... the same way men want Superman to have ridiculously huge pecs and an impractically big body. That makes them feel like the hero they want to be. And my hero, in my head, has really long legs." This corresponds to the original intent by William Moulton Marston, who wanted his character to be alluringly feminine.
Wonder Woman (vol. 1) #179 (Nov. 1969) showed Wonder Woman giving up her powers and returning her costume and title to her mother, in order to continue staying in Man's World. The reason behind this was that all the Amazons were shifting to another dimension, but Diana was unable to accompany them as she needed to stay behind to help Steve, who had been wrongly convicted. Thus, she no longer held the title of Wonder Woman and after meeting and training under a blind martial arts mentor I-Ching, Diana resumed crime fighting as the powerless Diana Prince. She ran a mod-boutique as a business and dressed in a series of jumpsuits while fighting crime. During this period, Samuel R. Delany took over scripting duties with issue #202. Delany was initially supposed to write a six-issue story arc, which would culminate in a battle over an abortion clinic, but Delany was removed reportedly due to criticism from Gloria Steinem, who, not knowing the content of the issues Delany was writing, was upset that Wonder Woman had lost her powers and was no longer wearing her traditional costume.