Since her creation in 1941, Diana Prince, a.k.a. Wonder Woman, has not been immune from controversy. Throughout the years, she has divided comic book fans and TV audiences alike on her image and sexuality, as well as her place in the world of #superheroes and distressed damsels. However, with her recent live-action cinematic debut smashing box-office records and achieving long-awaited approval from critics, it is evident her presence in the #DCEU is just as important as that of any male shield-wielding, crime-fighting counterpart — now more than ever.
The film, directed by Patty Jenkins and starring #GalGadot as our Amazonian princess, manages to update her image; showing her unapologetic strength, assertion and likability above all else. It is these qualities, among others, that prove Wonder Woman is a worthy opponent as well as a great role model for younger generations.
6. Her Ambition
"The world of men does not deserve you"
One aspect of the film that stood out was the opening sequences of young Diana, dodging her frantic school teacher while watching the Amazonian women training in combat. Although only minutes long, her ambition and defiance is clear as she looks on — kicking and karate-chopping despite being only a few feet high.
We can also see the strength and diversity of the other women in Themyscira and the positive influence they have on her. Before long, this ambition allows her to become the greatest warrior among them; leaving to fight the war to end all wars without any knowledge or experience of it (as you do!)
5. Her Nobility
Selflessness and honor is arguably what makes a hero so great — Diana shows she has this by the truckload. She saves pilot Steve Trevor without hesitation despite not knowing who he is, where he is from, or what he wants. Although this "role-reversal" is still not as common as we think on-screen, rumor has it that Patty Jenkins was inspired by Lois Lane when creating Chris Pine's character, showing us chivalry works both ways and is well and truly alive.
4. Her Passion And Morals
"You didn't even stand your ground!"
Storming a government meeting and being a woman in the mid 1900s? Unheard of. The time setting of the film allows frequent and fleeting references back to feminism in terms of the right to vote, women's professional roles at the time, and the fashion and image dominant culture encouraged. Guess what? Diana Prince defies them all. She rightfully calls out spy Steve Trevor's superiors on their strategies — her high morals and outspoken nature shows she is not to be messed with.
3. Her Independence And Defiance
Her defiance against others, particularly Steve, shows her fierce independence and self-reliance. The risks she takes pay off and help the greater good; even if that means she has to blitz through No man's land singlehandedly every once in a while. Obviously, it's all in a day's work.
2. Her Intelligence
The ability to speak hundreds of languages? Check. The patience to read all 12 volumes of lengthy novels? Check. Diana is as smart as she is strong; it is her intelligence that means she is unfazed by problems she faces as she outsmarts and strategizes her way through the war. It is a quality that any good role model would possess — female or otherwise.
1. Her Ability To See People For Who They Are
When all said and done, Wonder Woman's ideology and thoughts on love, war, good and evil are what power the story. Her allies cross the moral boundary, even calling themselves "liars, murderers and smugglers," but they still are able to contribute to the cause and be trusted. Despite their lack of leadership (and occasionally skill), she makes them feel valued, accepted and sees them for the good people they truly are.
Uniting Wonder Women Everywhere
The film is a wonderful tribute to previous interpretations of the character, even incorporating Lynda Carters legendary spin in the final battle. Despite past controversy, this film shows #WonderWoman is all about empowering women, strengthening the #DC comics filmography, and introducing a new generation to a classic superhero.
What are your thoughts? Is Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman a role model for a new generation?
Should we view fictional characters as icons? Who was your film/TV role model growing up? Lets us know in the comments below!