Princess Diana of Themyscira swept the nation with her sexy outfit, piercing eyes, and flowing, jet-black hair. And while there is a lot of controversy surrounding some of those key characteristics, there's no denying that she's remained an iconic powerhouse over the last 75 years, appearing in comics, television, animation and most recently, a live action film.
As Wonder Woman comes to the big screen as the first female superhero to get her own stand-alone film ever, we're diving into her history.
It's important to mention that there are many different versions of both Wonder Woman's and her Invisible Plane's origins. As times changed, Wonder Woman's story changed and developed, right alongside her captive audience.
Wonder Woman Rises
Wonder Woman first appeared in October of 1941 and was created by William Moulton Marston. He was a writer and the American psychologist who invented the polygraph, so it's no surprise that she wielded the Lasso of Truth. In fact, it is believed that he drew inspiration from his wife and early feminists including Margaret Sanger.
"Wonder Woman is psychological propaganda for the new type of woman who should, I believe, rule the world." -William Moulton Marston
Throughout the years, it's been said that Wonder Woman was sculpted from clay, given life from Aphrodite, and gifted with superhuman powers by the Greek Gods. She was also an Amazon warrior princess who was gifted with powers by the Gods. Or, depending on what you read/watch, she's Zeus' daughter and got her powers that way.
Created during World War II, she was initially depicted fighting Axis military forces. And while her initial enemies were super-villains, they became deities and mythological monsters over time.
Powers that Set Her Apart
With powers such as indestructible bracelets used to stop bullets; a Lasso of Truth which, when wrapped around someone, compels them to tell the truth; and an invisible plane (more on that below), she is also a highly trained warrior, skilled athlete, and strategist.
She was and is a powerful symbol of strength for women.
Wonder Woman has changed and evolved a great deal since her early comic days. A lot has changed since her creation and she’s undergone some revamping over the years, most recently with DC’s Rebirth story arc, but each version of her origin stuck to people in different ways.
Just take a look at one cosplayer and compare them to another. It’s likely that you’ll find some differences.
Flight of the Invisible Plane
Wonder Woman’s Invisible Plane was introduced in Sensation Comics #1 in January of 1942.
Originally, Wonder Woman could not fly, so the Invisible Plane served as her mode of about-the-world transportation. Over time, she gained the ability to fly on wind currents, but still had a use for the plane. If there was no wind, she couldn’t fly, but her Invisible Plane still could.
The plane was given to her by the Amazons—again, depending on what you’re reading—as a way to make long flights without needing to refuel.
Another origin story states that the plane was created in Diana’s childhood, making it invisible so that enemy fire would have a harder time shooting it down—something she watched her mother, Wonder Girl, deal with.
Being able to travel at 40 mps—that’s miles per second—Wonder Woman can summon the plane with her tiara. She can even fly it into outer space and other dimensions.
After some time, the plane was granted faster-than-light speed by Aphrodite as well as talking capabilities and intelligence thanks to gremlins. Yes, gremlins. We have a video all about gremlins and aviation:
Eventually, Wonder Woman was able to fly independent of wind current, and the plane was changed and adapted to these circumstances once again.
It’s always been a part of her story, and it’s inevitable that they plane will make an appearance in future Wonder Woman films. Will it be revamped once more? What other features will the super-plane have those past versions didn’t?
Okay, the second movie comes out tomorrow, right?