(Originally posted on my old blog on November 2, 2014)
In an article posted on October 30 by the site Bleeding Cool, speculation was made that the DCCU included a Wonder Woman trilogy that would start out not in the present day, but in the past, with two period pieces preceding a film set solely in the modern era.
Now based on the current schedule of films, this might create a softened Arrow-effect where her appearances in the modern era are divided by her development in the past.
If the reports are true, Wonder Woman, set for release in 2017 following her character’s appearance in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, would spend a considerable amount of time on Paradise Island before the arrival of a man would lead Wonder Woman to leave the island and come to man’s world. Man’s world, as we would find out in this movie, is set in approximately the 1920’s, which would be in the wake of the women’s suffrage movement and the First World War.
If they go this route, even if it’s not a major theme, I sincerely hope the events of the First World War are at the very least acknowledged in the movie, especially since (for those who haven’t been keeping up with the calendar) the proposed release date (June 23, 2017) falls two and a half months after the 100th anniversary of the United States entry into that war. (The war began in 1914; the US entered in 1917 and fought until the war’s end in 1918 on what is now honored in America as Veterans’ Day.)
The article goes on to indicate that the sequel “Wonder Woman 2” would take place in the 30’s or 40’s (i.e. World War 2). This is where things could get interesting as far as long time fans of the character are concerned.
While the character’s tie to the war may not be as vital to the current character as it is with Captain America, like her Kryptonian counterpart, her comic book creation preceded America’s entry into the war and she was featured in a number of issues promoting the Allied cause. In fact, when news first broke out that a solo Wonder Woman film would be made, one of my first thoughts was “Will they have her in World War II?” and since she’s an immortal Amazon, why not?
Fans of the television series starring Lynda Carter know of course that the first season took place entirely in WW2. Now as much as I love that show, I was personally disappointed when the show jumped 35 years without finishing the war. Now if this is incorporated into the movie, I would like the film to have her present at the war’s end or, if not, have a clear explanation as to why she’s not there (with Captain America, of course, it was being frozen in ice; with Wonder Woman it would more likely be being recalled to Paradise Island).
“Wonder Woman 3” would come back to the modern era with the Justice League. Not knowing what events are occurring throughout the DCCU in the intervening movies, any number of possibilities could exist concerning that film. Although, if you’ll notice the section abbreviations I have been using, perhaps the writers will play off that and feature some form of military conflict. The Bleeding Cool article indicated that WW1 would start out with warring factions vying for control of Paradise Island; perhaps WW3 could be the culmination of those events.
The Steve Trevor Question
If two period pieces precede Wonder Woman’s entry into the modern era, there is the question to me about Steve Trevor; how he will play a role throughout the events. In the Lynda Carter series, Wonder Woman aided Steve Trevor, played by Lyle Waggoner, during the war after his plane went down over Paradise Island during a fight with a Nazi agent. When Season 2 opened, Lyle Waggoner reprised his role as Steve Trevor, Jr.
I don’t think the writers of the film could get away with it this time, nor do I think they would try; but I would certainly not be against having Wonder Woman encounter various relatives of his in each era (in the same way Captain America was friends with Howard Stark in WWII before meeting up with Tony Stark in the Avengers). Depending on how Steve appears in the DCCU, he could be one of those Lieutenant Dan’s (Forrest Gump) where all his ancestors are military.
If Captain America: The First Avenger proved anything, it's that period pieces can work within major superhero franchises. And with a character like Wonder Woman who is from an island of immortal warriors, there is no reason not to do it. As both a fan of the character and someone with a strong interest in American history, I am excited to see where the writers ultimately go with this.