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.
"Honestly... I think we're gonna be dead way before that. And you know what? I don't mind. It's an honorable end. But we've gotta shut Steppenwolf down. Superman's a no-show. You've got no powers, no offense. This guy might be working for the enemy. We don't now. You're tripping over your feet, and mine... whuf, you're gorgeous, and fierce... and strong. I know we went to war with the Amazons, but that was before my time. You know what? I don't wanna die. I'm young. There's shit that I wanna do. I just feel like... I didn't really embrace the sea or the land. I've been a loner my whole life. But being part of something bigger, like this... maybe I'm scared because... I'm meant to..."
Wonder Woman actress Gal Gadot reacted positively to Diana's rebooted orientation, and agreed her sexuality was impacted by growing up in the women-only Themyscira. Gadot stated that Wonder Woman feels she need not be "labelled sexually", and is "just herself". "She's a woman who loves people for who they are. She can be bisexual. She loves people for their hearts." Coming from a society that was only populated by women, "'lesbian' in [the world's] eyes may have been 'straight' for them." "Her culture is completely free from the shackles of heteronormativity in the first place so she wouldn't even have any 'concept' of gender roles in sex."
The sister of Hippolyta, general of the Amazonian army, Diana's aunt and mentor. On being cast for the film, Wright said, "It's two-fold because when Patty Jenkins called me, the director, it was a three-minute long conversation. She said, 'I'm doing a movie about Wonder Woman. Do you want to be her trainer?' And I was like, 'Yes. Of course.' And the general of the Amazonian army. That was pretty cool." Describing her character mentoring and training Diana to be a warrior, Wright said, "It's a sixth sense that it is coming and I think that's also in the mythological story behind Antiope and Queen Hippolyta. They know it's coming and it's her duty as the aunt to her young niece to make sure she is the fiercest warrior of all time." On the Amazons fighting style, Wright said, "It's hand combat. Yes, swords and knives and arrows, but the precision that they have, right, as these warrior women; it's so nice to see that disparity between what we had in the day of just raw fighting materials and the guns and how easy that is in comparison." The message of the film, Wright stated, "is not just female empowerment. It's about love and justice. That's what the film's about. And what a great message to spread to our little ones." Commenting about training for the film, Wright said, "The most empowering was to get into that physical shape. So we were doing horseback riding training, weight training, martial arts, and 2,000 to 3,000 calories a day".
Wonder Woman's sexual and bondage themes in her earliest days were not without purpose, however. Her creator, William Moulton Marston, theorized that human relationships could be broken down into dominance, submission, inducement and compliance roles which were embedded into our psyche. Because males were, more often than not, dominant in societies, Marston believed that "Women as a sex, are many times better equipped to assume emotional leadership than are males."  Marston wanted to convey his progressive ideals, through his use of bondage imagery, that women are not only capable of leadership roles, but should be in charge of society. Although Marston had good intentions with these themes, in Wonder Woman's early appearances, the bondage elements were controversial, as they were often seen to overly fetishize women in power rather than promote such women. Noah Berlatsky criticized this imagery in Wonder Woman's earliest days noting that "the comics take sensual pleasure in women’s disempowerment."  Despite having the mixed messages of this imagery, Marston fiercely believed that women would soon rule the earth and meant to showcase his predictions through sexual themes in his stories. He was an open feminist while studying at Harvard where he once said "Girls are also human beings, a point often overlooked!" 
William Marston's earliest works were notorious for containing subversive "bondage and sapphic-undertones" subtext. Among Wonder Women's infamous catchphrases, "Suffering Sappho", was a direct reference to lesbianism. Fredric Wertham's Seduction of the Innocent referred to her as the "lesbian counterpart to Batman" (whom he also identified as a homosexual). After Marston's death in 1947, DC Comics downplayed her sexuality and feminist origin. Wonder Women, without Marston's creative direction, become more "traditional" superhero fair; the lesbian relationships and sexual imagery disappeared from the "Wonder Woman" comic, along with Wonder Woman's super powers. During the Comics Code Authority-decades since, Wonder Woman's subversiveness had been gradually stripped away; subsequent comic book writers and artists either didn't know know what do with her or barely hinted at Wonder Woman's erotic legacy. Similar to whitewashing, Wonder Woman's queerness and feminist identity throughout the latter half of the 20th century was never discussed and rendered "invisible" in adaptations in favor of the dominant sexism portrayal of women in comic books.
"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."
After preventing a terrorist attack at a refugee camp in Greece, Wonder Woman returned to a government facility in the United States and was examined by a sickly doctor, Dr. Shannon Crawford. That evening, Diana attended the wedding of Etta Candy's brother, where she discovered a bomb seconds away from detonation hidden underneath one of the tables. She was able to contain the blast, but Etta was injured by a piece of shrapnel. She returned Etta to Dr. Crawford who removed the shrapnel, before touching Wonder Woman with an Amazon-strength sedative she had developed, leaving Diana too weak to fight back. Dr. Crawford told Diana that she had a rare genetic illness, and that she intended to use Diana's Amazon blood to develop a cure, saving her life as well as providing life-saving treatment for others afflicted with the same disease. Diana awoke to discover Crawford had developed Amazonian strength as a result of the blood transfusion. She was able to bind Dr. Crawford in the Lasso of Truth, which rejected the lie and restored Crawford to her previous state. Having lost hope for a cure, Crawford injected herself with the sedative, killing her. Wonder Woman was too late to stop her, but she understood Crawford's decision to end her pain and held her as she died.
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.
Her outfit did not receive any prominent change until after the 2005–2006 Infinite Crisis storyline. Similar to her chestplate, her glowing belt was also shaped into a "W". This outfit continued until issue #600 – J. Michael Straczynski's run of Wonder Woman's altered timeline changed her outfit drastically. Her outfit was redesigned by Jim Lee and included a redesigned emblem, a golden and red top, black pants, and a later discontinued blue-black jacket.
Their first adventure together as a serious couple involved a battle with Doomsday, a monster of Kryptonian legend. Superman, already familiar to the monster, explained that Doomsday was sealed into a pocket dimension called the Phantom Zone. Seeking preparation against enemies that could match them in power, Wonder Woman asked Hephaestus to forge weapons for them. Later, the Justice League intercepted the arrival of General Zod, another Kryptonian survivor. Superman gave him shelter in the Fortress of Solitude, but the couple discovered their relationship was now public knowledge.
Wonder Woman's origin story relates that she was sculpted from clay by her mother Queen Hippolyta and was given a life to live as an Amazon, along with superhuman powers as gifts by the Greek gods. In recent years, DC changed her background with the retcon that she is the daughter of Zeus and Hippolyta, jointly raised by her mother and her aunts Antiope and Menalippe. The character has changed in depiction over the decades, including briefly losing her powers entirely in the late 1960s; by the 1980s, artist George Perez gave her an atheltic look and emphasized her Amazonian heritage. She possesses an arsenal of advanced technology, including the Lasso of Truth, a pair of indestructible bracelets, a tiara which serves as a projectile, and, in older stories, a range of devices based on Amazon technology.
Orion tells Diana that he was sent to earth to fight a threat, and surprised that the possible threat he faces is a mere child. They find out that Zola's baby is being kept with Hermes, who in turn is hiding in Demeter's realm. Going back to the hotel to regroup, they find Zola and Hera missing. Finally finding them in a bar, Diana comes face to face with War, her old master.
In August 2010 (issue #600), J. Michael Straczynski took over the series' writing duties and introduced Wonder Woman to an alternate timeline created by the Gods in which Paradise Island had been destroyed and the Amazons scattered around the world. In this timeline, Diana is an orphan raised in New York. The entire world has forgotten Wonder Woman's existence and the main story of this run was of Diana trying to restore reality even though she does not properly remember it herself. A trio of Death Goddesses called The Morrigan acted as the main enemy of Wonder Woman. In this run, Wonder Woman wears a new costume designed by Jim Lee. Straczynski determined the plot and continued writing duties until Wonder Woman #605; writer Phil Hester then continued his run, which ultimately concluded in Wonder Woman #614.
A. O. Scott of The New York Times wrote that it "briskly shakes off blockbuster branding imperatives and allows itself to be something relatively rare in the modern superhero cosmos. It feels less like yet another installment in an endless sequence of apocalyptic merchandising opportunities than like ... what's the word I'm looking for? A movie. A pretty good one, too." Michael Phillips of Chicago Tribune compared the film to Captain America: The First Avenger, noting that as with "the first Captain America movie over in the Marvel Comics universe, DC's Wonder Woman offers the pleasures of period re-creation for a popular audience. Jenkins and her design team make 1918-era London; war-torn Belgium; the Ottoman Empire; and other locales look freshly realized, with a strong point of view. There are scenes here of dispossessed war refugees, witnessed by an astonished and heartbroken Diana, that carry unusual gravity for a comic book adaptation." Katie Erbland of IndieWire commended its thematic depth, explaining that "Wonder Woman is a war movie. Patty Jenkins' first—and we hope not last—entry into the DC Expanded Universe is primarily set during World War I, but while the feature doesn't balk at war-time violence, it's the internal battles of its compelling heroine that are most vital." Alonso Duralde of TheWrap similarly felt that, "Diana's scenes of action are thrilling precisely because they're meant to stop war, not to foment it; the idea of a demi-god using love to fight war might sound goofy in the abstract, but Jenkins makes the concept work." Ann Hornaday of The Washington Post praised Gadot and Pine's performances as well the film's detailed plot and narrative while comparing of some slow-motion action sequences to The Matrix. Stephanie Zacharek of Time magazine hailed the film as a "cut above nearly all the superhero movies that have been trotted out over the past few summers" while praising Gadot's performance as "charming" and "marvelous" and commending Jenkins's direction of the film as a step forward for women directors in directing big-budget blockbuster films in Hollywood.
Diana is depicted as a masterful athlete, acrobat, fighter and strategist, trained and experienced in many ancient and modern forms of armed and unarmed combat, including exclusive Amazonian martial arts. With her godlike abilities of incalculable superhuman strength, nigh-invulnerability, speed, flight, healing factor and semi-immortality, Diana’s fighting prowess is enhanced. In some versions, her mother trained her, as Wonder Girl, for a future career as Wonder Woman. From the beginning, she is portrayed as highly skilled in using her Amazon bracelets to stop bullets and in wielding her golden lasso. Batman once called her the "best melee fighter in the world". The modern version of the character is known to use lethal force when she deems it necessary. In the New 52 continuity, her superior combat skills are the result of her Amazon training, as well as receiving further training from Ares, the God of War, himself, since as early as her childhood. The Golden Age Wonder Woman also had knowledge in psychology, as did her Amazon sisters.
Additionally, Mayling Ng, Florence Kasumba, Madeleine Vall Beijner, Hayley Jane Warnes and Ann Wolfe portray Orana, Acantha, Egeria, Aella and Artemis, respectively, all of whom are Amazons. James Cosmo appears as Douglas Haig, Steffan Rhodri appears as Darnell, and Dutch supermodel Doutzen Kroes portrays the Amazon Venelia. Samantha Jo was cast as the Amazonian Euboea, and previously played the Kryptonian, Car-Vex, in Man of Steel. Zack Snyder also makes a brief cameo appearance in the film as an unnamed soldier.
After Crisis on Infinite Earths, George Pérez rebooted the character in 1987. She wore an outfit similar to her 1970s one, but now with a larger glowing golden belt. This outfit continued until William Messner-Loebs' run, which had Diana pass on the role of Wonder Woman to Artemis. No longer Wonder Woman, Diana sported a new black biker-girl outfit designed by artist Mike Deodato Jr. After John Byrne took over writing and art duties, he redesigned the Wonder Woman outfit (Diana was reinstated as Wonder Woman at the end of Loebs' run) and joined the emblem and belt together.
Straczynski's run focused on an alternate timeline created by the Gods where Paradise Island was destroyed leading to many Amazons being raised in the outside world. It revolves around Wonder Woman's attempts to restore the normal timeline despite the fact that she does not remember it properly. Wonder Woman in this alternative timeline has been raised in New York City as an orphan and is coming into her powers. She is aware of the presence of Amazons, but does not remember her childhood on Paradise Island. Wonder Woman wore a new costume designed by DC Comics co-publisher Jim Lee. Writer Phil Hester continued the storyline.