On History: Me & Wonder Woman

By | Tuesday, May 30, 2017 Leave a Comment
For the life of me, I could not tell you what the first Wonder Woman story I encountered was. Much like Superman, she seemed ever-present for as far back as I can remember. My original "collection" of comics consisted mostly of Superman and Batman stories, with a handful of Flash, Green Lantern, and Green Arrow thrown in. And there were two issues of Wonder Woman -- numbers 208 and 209. They're a pair of entirely forgettable issues that I can barely recollect even after flipping through the coverless copies still in my collection.

Certainly, my most frequent encounters with Wonder Woman were via the Super Friends cartoon. She was obviously a mainstay from the first episode, but I seem to recall her role and appearances diminishing as the series progressed. I can still pretty clearly hear Shannon Farnon's voice as she portrayed the character, but I don't remember much of what Wonder Woman actually did on the show besides lassoing the bad guy(s) at the end of many episodes. Well, that and flying her invisible jet somewhere over the ocean so Aquaman didn't have to swim all the way out there.

And, of course, there was Lynda Carter television show. I'm certain I watched it fairly regularly, but I haven't seen more than a few snippets in GIF form since the show originally aired, and I couldn't tell you the broad outline of a single episode at the moment.

I apparently now have 54 various issues of Wonder Woman in my collection. I say "apparently" because the vast majority of them came from some long boxes I found on the curb a couple years ago, and I haven't yet gotten around to doing much more than jotting down that I had them.

Despite this seemingly general dismissal of the character, I have actually read a fair amount about her. Certainly much more than I've read the actual stories themselves. I've heard Denny O'Neil apologize for his depowering of her more times than I've even seen the actual issues in question. I think I've read more about William Moulton Marston himself than I've read WW stories.

Which I say to explain that I understand why she's an iconic character and why she's a hero to so many people. Just because I haven't come across a story that does right by her doesn't mean that I can't appreciate what she stands for. Just because my interests don't rank her high enough to really seek out the best stories doesn't mean it's a character I should dismiss. The new Wonder Woman movie opens later this week and, while I generally try to stay away from opening weekends, I might just find my way to a theater to spend more time with Wonder Woman than I've spent in a long, long time.
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