Elise Jost of Moviepilot observed that "Gadot's take on Wonder Woman is one of those unique cases of an actor merging with their story, similar to Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark. Gal Gadot is Wonder Woman, and Wonder Woman is Gal Gadot." Jost praised Gadot's interpretation of Wonder Woman as the one in which Gadot "absolutely nails the character's unwaveringly positive outlook on life. She's a force of nature who believes in the greater good; her conviction that she's meant to save the world is stronger than her bullet-deflecting shield. She's genuine, she's fun, she's the warm source of energy at the heart of the movie." The Federalist suggests that Wonder Woman is "a story of Jesus". "The movie is wrapped up in faux Greek mythology, true, but there's no mistaking the Christology here." "Perhaps Christ in the form of a beautiful and kick-ass Amazon is all that our contemporary society can handle right now", stated M. Hudson, a Christian feminist. On HuffPost cultural critic, G. Roger Denson, who regards the superhero genre as a source of contemporary "Mainstream Mythopoetics" ("the making of new yet vitally meaningful, if not symbolic, stories filled with imagery reflecting, yet also shaping and advancing, the political, legal, moral and social practices of today"), wrote that the "No Man's Land" scene "that people are crying over in theaters and raving about afterward happens to be among the most powerfully mythopoetic scenes ever filmed at the same time it is one of the oldest myths to have been utilized by artists and writers after it had been invented by early military strategists and leaders." Specifically "used by director Patty Jenkins", the scene raises "the esteem for powerful yet compassionate women as heroes and leaders to a level equal with that of men for having won over a huge and adoring popular audience around the world".
Gaines decided he needed another expert. He turned to Lauretta Bender, an associate professor of psychiatry at New York University’s medical school and a senior psychiatrist at Bellevue Hospital, where she was director of the children’s ward, an expert on aggression. She’d long been interested in comics but her interest had grown in 1940, after her husband, Paul Schilder, was killed by a car while walking home from visiting Bender and their 8-day-old daughter in the hospital. Bender, left with three children under the age of 3, soon became painfully interested in studying how children cope with trauma. In 1940, she conducted a study with Reginald Lourie, a medical resident under her supervision, investigating the effect of comics on four children brought to Bellevue Hospital for behavioral problems. Tessie, 12, had witnessed her father, a convicted murderer, kill himself. She insisted on calling herself Shiera, after a comic-book girl who is always rescued at the last minute by the Flash. Kenneth, 11, had been raped. He was frantic unless medicated or “wearing a Superman cape.” He felt safe in it—he could fly away if he wanted to—and “he felt that the cape protected him from an assault.” Bender and Lourie concluded the comic books were “the folklore of this age,” and worked, culturally, the same way fables and fairy tales did.
Although created to be a positive role-model and a strong female character for girls and boys, Wonder Woman has had to deal with the misogyny that was commonplace in comic book industry for decades. For example, Wonder Woman was a founding member of the Justice Society of America. This roster included the original Flash and Green Lantern. Wonder Woman was an experienced leader and easily the most powerful of them all, yet was rendered a secretary. This would also be accompanied with her losing her powers or getting captured on most Justice League adventures. During the '50s and '60s, comic writers regularly made Wonder Woman lovesick over Steve Trevor, a Major in the United States Army. Stories frequently featured Wonder Woman hoping or imagining what it would be like to marry Steve Trevor.
Additional music featured in the film are: "Another Little Drink Wouldn't Do Us Any Harm" by Clifford Grey and Nat Ayer and performed by Edgar Trevor and Cecil Cooper; "Molly O'Morgan" written by Fred Godfrey and Will Letters and performed by Ella Retford; "It's a Long Way to Tipperary" written by Jack Judge and Harry Williams; "Sous les ponts de Paris" written by Jean Rodor and Vincent Scotto and performed by Lucienne Delyle; "I'll Walk Beside You" written by Edward Lockton and Alan Murray and performed by Ewen Bremner; "Green Grow the Rushes, O" written by Robert Burns and performed by Ewen Bremner; and "Schatzwalzer Op. 4" written by Johann Strauss II and performed by the Berlin String Quartet.
Supporting Amazons • Antiope • Artemis • Belyllioth • Cassandra Sandsmark • Department of Metahuman Affairs • Donna Troy • Ed Indelicato • Etta Candy • Ferdinand • Fury • General Blankenship • Helena Sandsmark • Hellenders • Hercules • Hippolyta • Holliday Girls • I-Ching • Julia Kapatelis • Jumpa • Lauren Haley • Lyta Milton • Mala • Micah Rains • Mike Schorr • Natasha Teranova • Nemesis • Nubia • Olympian • Orana • Phil Darnell • Philippus • Rama Chandra • Sarge Steel • Sofia Constantinas • Steve Trevor • Titans of Myth • Trevor Barnes • Vanessa Kapatelis • Warkiller • Wonder Girl • Wonder Man
The series has been one of the most altered of the New 52 event. Joey Esposito and Erik Norris of IGN noted that the new creative team provided "a creative well that appears bottomless." Timothy Callahan of Comic Book Resources called the title "the best of the New 52" and described the work of Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang as "a clean, poetic story with a strong mythological pull."
In present-day Paris, Diana receives a photographic plate from Wayne Enterprises of herself and four men taken during World War I, prompting her to recall her past. The daughter of Queen Hippolyta, Diana is raised on the hidden island of Themyscira, home to the Amazonian women warriors created by Zeus to protect mankind. Hippolyta explains the Amazonian history to Diana, including how Ares became jealous of humanity and orchestrated its destruction. When the other gods attempted to stop him, Ares killed all but Zeus, who used the last of his power to wound Ares and force his retreat. Before dying, Zeus left the Amazons the island and a weapon, the "Godkiller", to prepare them for Ares's return.
Sword Mastery: Wonder Woman is an extremely skilled swordswoman, with centuries of experience wielding her magical God Killer sword (and later the Sword of Athena) in many battles, including those of World War I. Thus, she managed to slash at enemy soldiers with her sword even while racing past on horseback, to instantly slice apart in mid-air a car hurled at her by Doomsday with the Sword of Athena, to later do the same to massive piece of debris hurled at her by resurrected Superman, and to sever one of Doomsday's arms during her battle with the monster, delivering wounds that would have otherwise been lethal, had it not been for the monster's incredible healing factor and adaptive evolution.
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."
She asked him who he was, but before he could answer, the two noticed several boats coming through the island's forcefield. Steve noted that he was one of the good guys and the people on the boats—Germans—were bad guys. Having noticed the invading ships, the Amazons quickly gathered on the cliffs above the beach. Hippolyta ordered Trevor to move away from Diana, but forgot about him as the German soldiers began to come closer to shore. She took command of her army, ordering the archers to fire on the boats. Diana and Trevor took cover behind boulders on the beach.
Diana sees Sir Patrick Morgan in the base, who reveals himself to be the true Ares, and tells her of his plan for a world without humanity by having them destroy each other. Ares proposes that Diana help him accomplish his vision of paradise, but Diana promptly refuses, not wanting to kill billions of innocents. Ares then reluctantly engages her in an epic battle while Steve and his comrades attempt to dismantle the plane harboring the mustard gas.
Demeter, the goddess of agriculture and fertility, blessed Diana with strength drawn from the Earth spirit Gaea, making her one of the physically strongest heroes in the DC Universe and the strongest female hero in the DC Universe. This strength has allowed her to easily overwhelm Superman and Supergirl. She has also held her own against Darkseid. Her strength has no measurable limits and she can break the Chronus Scepter, which is universal in its destructive power. However, now Diana is the daughter of Zeus, king of the Greek Gods, so it is unclear as to how much of her power and strength is a direct result of her divine heritage. Her connection to the earth allows her to heal at an accelerated rate so long as she is in contact with the planet. However, as mentioned earlier, now that she is a demigoddess, it has been suggested that she heals extremely quickly also due to her divine heritage. In rare cases where she has been gravely injured, Diana showed the ability to physically merge with the earth, causing whatever injuries or poisons to be expelled from her body; such an act is considered sacred, and can only be used in extreme cases.
Diana, after her death, was granted divinity as the Goddess of Truth by her gods for such faithful devotion. During her brief time as a god of Olympus, Diana was replaced in the role of Wonder Woman by her mother, Queen Hippolyta. Unlike Diana receiving the title of Wonder Woman in honor, Hippolyta's role as Wonder Woman was meant to be a punishment for her betrayal in Artemis' death as well as for unintentionally killing her own daughter. However, Hippolyta eventually grew to enjoy the freedom and adventure the title came with. Whereas Diana used the Lasso of Truth as her primary weapon, Hippolyta favored a broad sword.
The success of the superhero television series Supergirl informed the marketing and promotion strategy used for Wonder Woman. According to Time Warner chief marketing officer Kristen O'Hara, they wanted to approach the Wonder Woman marketing campaign in a light manner, similar to how they did with Supergirl. O'Hara elaborated that the modest campaign route they took for Supergirl aided in establishing a large central fanbase among women well in advance of the series, which reportedly generated 5 million female superhero fans in one week. They were then able to model over time, and grow that audience leading up to the 15-months-later release of Wonder Woman. Though neither the film nor the series are aimed exclusively at women, the latter's campaign gave them their first opportunity to begin collecting data about female superhero fans. In May 2017, a promo for Wonder Woman was released during the season finale of Supergirl, featuring a remix of the song "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'" and Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) wearing Wonder Woman's boots. The promo included an appearance by Lynda Carter, star of the 1970s Wonder Woman, who plays the American president on Supergirl.