Wonder Woman is an Amazon warrior princess and one of the most powerful superheroes in the DC Universe. The daughter of Hippolyta, she was given power by the Gods to fight against evil in all its forms. Although she was raised entirely by women on the island of Themyscira, she was sent as an ambassador to the Man's World, spreading their idealistic message of strength and love. Wonder Woman fights crime and acts as a positive role model for women everywhere. Her equipment includes the Lasso of Truth, magic gauntlets, and an invisible jet. In the secret identity she has adopted to become closer to humanity, she is Diana Prince, a government agent for the Department of Metahuman Affairs. Wonder Woman is also a founding member of the Justice League of America. She has also been a member of the Star Sapphire Corps, the Sinestro Corps, and the Justice League Dark.
Until DC's New 52 relaunch, there were a few other aspects of the origin story that remained consistent. Her mother, Hippolyta, created her out of clay, and the Greek gods bestowed her with life. She grew up among the Amazons who taught her the skills of a warrior as well as the lessons of peace and love. When Steve Trevor, an American pilot, crash landed on Paradise Island, the Amazons had a contest to determine who should receive the honor and responsibility to take him back to Man’s World and serve as the champion emissary of all the Amazons represent.
With a new decade arriving, DC president Jenette Kahn ordered a revamp in Wonder Woman's appearance. Artist Milton Glaser, who also designed the "bullet" logo adopted by DC in 1977, created a stylized "WW" emblem that evoked and replaced the eagle in her bodice and debuted in 1982. The emblem in turn was incorporated by studio letterer Todd Klein onto the monthly title's logo, which lasted for a year and a half before being replaced by a version from Glaser's studio. With sales of the title continuing to decline in 1985 (despite an unpublished revamp that was solicited), the series was canceled and ended in issue #329 (February 1986) written by Gerry Conway, depicting Steve Trevor's marriage to Wonder Woman.
In an October 25, 1940, interview with the Family Circle magazine, William Moulton Marston discussed the unfulfilled potential of the comic book medium. This article caught the attention of comics publisher Max Gaines, who hired Marston as an educational consultant for National Periodicals and All-American Publications, two of the companies that would merge to form DC Comics. At that time, Marston wanted to create his own new superhero; Marston's wife and fellow psychologist Elizabeth suggested to him that it should be a woman:
Following the events of Infinite Crisis, she disappeared for a year in order to rediscover herself, and took part briefly in the events of 52. In the span of One Year Later, she was re-imagined once again and was forgiven by Batman and Superman while given her third ongoing monthly title. Batman helped her establish a role at the Department of Metahuman Affairs under the name of Diana Prince (paying homage to her golden age alter ego.) She worked alongside Tom Tresser and eventually became romantically involved with him. A move among fans across the different companies occurred with characters reverting to their original numbering of series (this for instance happened to Iron Man at Marvel as well) and the third Wonder Woman series was relaunched with Wonder Woman #600. This was actually accurate at the time as it was the indeed the 600 issue released (not including issues numbered otherwise such as with a zero or a million). Issue 600 was used as a chance to reinvent the character as she discovers herself with no memories and in a new costume. This was a short lived experiment as the entire DC lineup was soon to be re-imagined into the new 52, though certain aspects of her redesigned costume remained.
Wonder Woman continued to use the plane for super speed, outer space, and multi-dimensional transport up until the unpowered era of Diana Prince. When Wonder Woman resumed superpowered, costumed operations in 1973, she continued to use the jet as before, but did glide on air currents for short distances. At one point, Aphrodite granted the plane the power to fly faster than the speed of light for any interstellar voyages her champion might undertake. Thanks to tinkering by gremlins, the Plane even developed intelligence and the power to talk. The plane proved a good friend, eager to help his "mistress" and her loved ones in any way possible. It got along especially well with Steve Trevor.
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She later became a major character in the DC Animated Universe in Justice League and its sequel, Justice League Unlimited. Both shows were massively popular and helped bring Wonder Woman back to relevance for a younger generation. The DCAU is notable for introducing the idea of a romance between Batman and Wonder Woman, something that was unheard of in the original comic books. Throughout the DCAU, Wonder Woman was voiced by Susan Eisenberg.
Shortly thereafter, Wonder Woman is shown being able to summon it with her tiara, have it hover by the War Department, and extend from it a rope ladder with which she could board it. She uses the plane to fly into outer space, and frequently transports Etta Candy and the Holliday Girls, Steve Trevor, and others. During the 1950s, the plane becomes a jet, and is often shown swooping over Lt. Prince's office; she strips out of her uniform at super speed and bounds to the plane. Though the Plane was depicted as semi-transparent for the reader's convenience, in-story dialogue indicated that it actually was completely invisible, or at least able to become so as the need arose.
Centuries ago, an argument between Aphrodite and Ares led to the creation of the Amazons, who have been guided and protected by the goddesses ever since. Ares' recent schemes to destroy the Amazons and his fellow gods led to an Amazon champion being chosen. This champion was the Princess Diana, daughter of Queen Hippolyta, whom Hermes escorted to Man's World. There she was called Wonder Woman. Hephaestus forged Wonder Woman's golden Lasso of Truth from the girdle of the earth-goddess Gaea, and her silver bracelets which he formed from the splintered Aegis of Zeus. While the Olympian gods were her patrons, other gods were her foes. Ares and his progeny, Deimos and Phobos, quickly set about challenging the princess in her quest. Phobos created the creature Decay from the "heart of the Gorgon," which Diana quickly dispatched. Meanwhile, Deimos recruited humans on opposing sides, inciting them to war.
Paquette detailed the changes he made to Wonder Woman's costume, stating that he removed the iconic American flag theme and instead incorporated a Greek influence: "The animal associated to Aphrodite is a dove so instead of an eagle on [Wonder Woman's] breastplate, it will be more of a dove. It's not the American eagle, it's the Aphrodite dove. Stuff that creates [the letter] W is by accident, so it's not like she already has a letter of the alphabet on her [costume]. In the end I've created a structure so it feels inevitable for Wonder Woman to look the way she does."
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.
Gods and Mortals (1987) Challenge of the Gods (1987–88) War of the Gods (1991) The Contest (1994) The Challenge of Artemis (1995) Paradise Island Lost (2001) Our Worlds at War (2001) The Hiketeia (2002) Down to Earth (2003–04) Who Is Wonder Woman? (2006–07) Amazons Attack! (2007) The Circle (2008) Ends of the Earth (2008) Rise of the Olympian (2009) Flashpoint (2011) The Lies (2016) Year One (2016) The Truth (2017) Godwatch (2017)
In the Silver Age, Wonder Woman's history received several changes. Her earlier origin, which had significant ties to World War II, was changed and her powers were shown to be the product of the gods' blessings, corresponding to her epithet, "beautiful as Aphrodite, wise as Athena, stronger than Hercules, and swifter than Hermes". The concepts of Wonder Girl and Wonder Tot were also introduced during this period.
“As to the ‘advanced femininity,’ what are the activities in comic books which women ‘indulge in on an equal footing with men’? They do not work. They are not homemakers. They do not bring up a family. Mother-love is entirely absent. Even when Wonder Woman adopts a girl there are Lesbian overtones,” he said. At the Senate hearings, Bender testified, too. If anything in American popular culture was bad for girls, she said, it wasn’t Wonder Woman; it was Walt Disney. “The mothers are always killed or sent to the insane asylums in Walt Disney movies,” she said. This argument fell on deaf ears.