Justice League may not be the critically acclaimed movie that Warner Bros. wanted or the box office heavyweight many believed it would be, but it's certainly going to provide answers to a lot of fans' burning questions. Chief among them is why Wonder Woman had seemingly given up saving mankind at the time of Batman v. Superman. This was not only a contradiction to her character's potrayal in the comics but also to the 2017 film Wonder Woman, which clearly showed that the superhero was out saving the world even in present day.
This major plothole in the two #DCEU films seemed to have been the product of the difference in the vision of the folks over at DC, but in Justice League, Diana herself gave the perfect answer to exactly what happened.
The Change In Visions
Despite Bruce having encountered Diana before, he clearly had no idea who "Wonder Woman" was in the Doomsday battle scene, or what it's commonly known as, the "Is She With You?" scene.
She revealed later in the film that it was because she had grown dispirited of helping man and given up hope to the point that she'd stopped suiting up to save people. Most likely, this was the product of Zack Snyder's disturbingly dark view of the world, and he felt that a character as uplifting as Diana had to be given a gloomier update. Of course, when Patty Jenkins's Wonder Woman, stormed the box office this year, the solo film made sure to establish Wonder Woman as perhaps the most compassionate superhero on screen, one who was never afraid to help anyone she felt was at risk. The movie even ended with Wonder Woman leaping out of a building, clad in her iconic garb, to save the world — which, according to Batman v. Superman, shouldn't be the case.
So, what exactly has been going on for Diana in all these years?
The Grief Of Wonder Woman
In a pivotal (and rather excellent) scene from Justice League, Bruce Wayne asks Diana why she lost faith in mankind and stopped being the superhero that the world needed. Bruce compares her to Clark, asking why she hadn't chosen to become the symbol of hope that Superman had become.
Diana explains it was her grief over Steve Trevor's death that made her hide for all these years. In fact, Diana hadn't given up at all, but had been saving and helping anyone that she could; she just chose to do it secretly. And while this explanation is entirely plausible, Gal Gadot herself weighed in to the question recently, explaining the behind-the-scenes details of the retcon:
"We realized that actually, there is no way that Wonder Woman will ever give up on mankind. The reason why she left the island was because she wanted to make their life better and safer – they are her calling. So – I’m giving you a very honest answer – sometimes, in a creative process, you establish something that is not necessarily the right decision, but then you can always correct it and change it. So Wonder Woman will always be there as far as she concerns for mankind."
Those who've seen Justice League would know, though, that Batman's words clearly get to her and in the end, Diana is shown greeting kids, talking to the press and being publicly acknowledged as a hero.
Why Wonder Woman Needed To Stay In The Light
This is no doubt a positive change that DC has made for the character. Anyone who has read the Wonder Woman comics knows that her faith in the goodness of others is an essential part of her, without which Diana simply isn't the loving superhero fans look up to. Snyder's dark take on her is the perfect example of how the DC films have failed to understand the crux of what makes the DC characters so important.
To be honest, Wonder Woman was one of the characters least affected by Snyder's dreary #DCEU world — let's not forget he made killers out of both Superman and Batman. But her presentation in Patty Jenkins's Wonder Woman was clearly more in sync with the comic book character. In fact, the film even ends with Diana’s voiceover telling us:
“Only love can save this world. So I stay. I fight, and I give…for the world I know it can be. This is my mission, now. Forever.”
It seems that DC has learned their lesson from the success of #WonderWoman, making her the optimistic role model we all love in Justice League. It's safe to say that after the rapturous acclaim of Wonder Woman, going along with Zack Snyder's jaded vision of the Amazonian princess would have been a foolish thing to do. The character's resurgence in 2017 as a pop culture phenomenon has largely been due to the character's bright vision of the world, and the heroine's strong and sensitive nature.
By sticking with the version of Diana we all fell in love with in Wonder Woman, DC has made us fans proud. Not to mention, this change has also set up Wonder Woman 2 in a fabulous way. How exactly was Diana saving people under the radar post-Wonder Woman? We'll just have to check out the Patty Jenkins's Wonder Woman 2 in November 2019 to find out more.
What do you think of Diana's reveal in Justice League? Sound off in the comments below!