A Look Back at Wonder Woman #5 (1987)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

There is nothing like witnessing the development of a pop culture icon like Wonder Woman with modern society in mind. After completing Crisis on Infinite Earths in the mid-1980s, DC Comics restarted their entire superhero universe opening lots of opportunities to reintroduce their superheroes, super villains and other characters to readers updated with the times. The Post-Crisis Wonder Woman involving the legendary George Perez and other creators saw the Queen of Superheroes updated with the 1980s in mind.

Even though Princess Diana and her fellow Amazons clearly expressed themselves in English to use readers, it turned out within the comic series that English was not their native language. In fact, Wonder Woman and her Amazon sisters all spoke Themysciran which is derived from Greek. Fortunately for Diana, she met someone who could understand her and communicate well. The language barrier is just one of the challenges Diana had to go through as she discovers man’s world.

We can now rejoin Wonder Woman and her journey of discovery in man’s world with this look back at Wonder Woman #5, published by DC Comics in 1987 with a story co-written by George Perez and Len Wein. Perez’s art was inked by Bruce D. Patterson.

Cover
A really striking cover by George Perez.

Early story

The story begins in Themyscira where the Amazons wait as Menalippe (their oracle) tries communion with their deities. One of the women expressed worry that the god of War – Ares – continues to gain power across the world. Even as she tries, Menalippe could not figure out the signs from their gods and Queen Hippolyte is eager to find out something about her daughter Diana.

Beneath Mount Olympus, Apollo remains in dreamless sleep. The women, in the presence of Hermes, remain uncertain about what has been going on. An ancient is near them.

In man’s world, war and chaos spreads. Steve Trevor appears in the television news as a rumored spy of the Soviet Union. At the same time, Wonder Woman makes waves in the news as a result of her battle with Decay

Quality

4
Wonder Woman and the supporting players.

Unsurprisingly, the very high quality of art, storytelling and characterization that started since issue #1 is well maintained by the creators in this comic book. What I love in Wonder Woman #5 aside from her continued journey of discovering more of man’s world and interacting with more with Steve Trevor (plus Etta Candy and other supporting characters) is the strong shift into the realm of fantasy which is full of action and other forms of spectacle!

For the plot, George Perez and Len Wein made a fascinating story that had a nice mix of Greek culture, fantasy and contemporary military battles. There were layers of intrigue as the creators made clear how Ares and his minions from the spiritual realm (related to Olympus and their deities) influenced mortals to fight each other so fiercely without even pausing to be clam and reasonable. This raises the stakes for Wonder Woman who is still adjusting to man’s world.

On characterization, each character here is well-written and clearly defined as believable individuals. The interactions between Wonder Woman and the others (plus their interactions in between themselves) are very rich to read and analyze.

When it comes to spectacle, this one is really loaded and, at the same time, much more imaginative! The shift from man’s world into the realm of fantasy (specifically a location often inaccessible to mortals) gave this comic book a fantastic atmosphere! There is a lot to enjoy here.

While it is not surprising that George Perez excellently illustrated this comic book, I should mention that his use of multiple panels per page here is quite clever. While using more than five panels per page is considered excessive by today’s standards, Perez managed to tell clearly the story and took time to control the pace. The spectacle scenes are fast but never disorienting. The character development and worldview scenes are never boring to look at.

Conclusion

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One of Ares’ sons influencing the world into war.

Undoubtedly, Wonder Woman #5 is a great comic book. Elements of militarism, fantasy and Greek mythology were excellently blended here and ultimately it presented Wonder Woman’s personal development and interaction with the supporting players with a lot of depth. At this stage, her interaction with Steve Trevor as well as Julia Kapatelis really blossomed here.

If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of Wonder Woman #5 (1987), be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the near-mint copy of the regular edition and the newsstand edition costs $26 and $51 respectively.

Overall, Wonder Woman #5 (1987) is highly recommended!


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

A Look Back at Wonder Woman #4 (1987)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

There is no doubt that George Perez’s famous handling of Wonder Woman (that became a key part of the Post-Crisis era of DC Comics) is influential for other creators. Over at Comic Book Resources, I read a 2017 article in which Wonder Woman movie director Patty Jenkins confirmed that Perez’s work on the Queen of Superheroes helped influence the movie.

Below is what Jenkins said in response to CBR’s question involving George Perez:

I think it was the fact that he expanded the role of the gods. It was always there — nothing he did contradicted what William Marston did and created, I think it only expanded upon and fleshed out who the gods are. What that relationship is, and how that works. What was a wonderful thing for us to take from.

I personally love the Wonder Woman movie and truly Gal Gadot IS Wonder Woman! As George Perez’s work on the Queen of Superheroes was influential to the director, it is clear that he set the standard on presenting Wonder Woman to the world.

With the movie and history talk over, we can now proceed on revisiting the Post-Crisis era of DC Comics with this look back at Wonder Woman #4, published in 1987 by DC Comics with a story by George Perez and Len Wein (script) and art by Perez (inked by Bruce D. Patterson).

Cover
The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Wonder Woman carrying Julia Kapatelis and her daughter Vanessa moving away from the villainess Decay (daughter of Medusa) as a huge portion of the Kapatelis home collapses. As expected, the next-door neighbors got disturbed and went out of their homes to see what’s going on.

While taking a break just out of the rubble, Julia checks on Vanessa and asks: “What has that monster done to her?”

Suddenly, Decay rises from the rubble and answers Julia’s question directly stating she will do the same thing to her and Wonder Woman. Decay has Wonder Woman’s tiara with her.

Decay’s appearance scares many onlookers. Wonder Woman tells Julia to keep the neighbors back. Decay says that she came only for the symbol of Wonder Woman’s power (the tiara specifically) which she will use to symbolize her power. Decay then flies away.

Before flying off, Wonder Woman tells Julia that she will return with a cure for her teenage daughter whose body got heavily wrinkled by Decay…

Quality

9
I hope Wonder Woman 1984 and future Wonder Woman live-action movies will have more hard-hitting action scenes like this.

Once again, George Perez and Len Wein crafted another excellent Wonder Woman comic book that is timeless and symbolic. While Wonder Woman #3 marked Princess Diana’s arrival in man’s world, this comic book marked her first-ever battle in the same world complete with disturbance on the local society. Take note that at this point, Wonder Woman still has yet to understand and speak English and she has not fully adjusted to the local culture and society. She also just befriended Julia, the university professor and only person who could communicate with her by talking in Greek. Even with all the trouble caused by Decay, Wonder Woman’s heroism laced with love and compassion backed by her Amazon values remains intact and this aspect alone makes this comic book worth reading.

Apart from focusing on Wonder Woman and the supporting players, the comic book gives a close look at what has been happening at Mount Olympus where the Greek gods and goddesses discuss the situation of Princess Diana. There are also a few scenes set in the American military base wherein Lieutenant Etta Candy secretly does detective work to find out what caused the anomaly that led the higher-ups to suspect Steve Trevor of wrongdoing.

As for the artwork, George Perez’s work here is excellent as expected. When destruction is shown, there is a strong sense of danger. When hard superhero action occurs, there is a lot of impact shown! I just love looking at scenes showing Wonder Woman saving people from certain death. Also there were some really powerful executions of action here (involving Wonder Woman) that I wish future Wonder Woman movies will someday replicate.

Conclusion

4
Wonder Woman striving hard to go after Decay, the monster responsible for the destruction seen here.

Wonder Woman #4 of 1987 is excellent! Apart showing the first time ever that Wonder Woman engaged in battle in man’s world, this comic book also has an intimate look on how Princess Diana struggles with focusing on her mission while adjusting to the local culture and making sure that evil beings from her culture would not succeed in destroying the people of man’s world.

If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of Wonder Woman #4, be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the near-mint copy of the regular edition and the newsstand edition cost $25 and $51 respectively.

Overall, Wonder Woman #4 (1987) is highly recommended!


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

A Look Back at Wonder Woman #3 (1987)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Like anyone of you guys and gals reading this, I’ve been limited to staying mostly at home as a result of the community quarantine imposed by the local authorities in response to the Coronvirus disease COVID-19 that started in China and has since turned into a global pandemic. Many people lose their jobs and have no income. Varied industries have been shut down. People are struggling to follow local authorities while there are some depending on relief goods (food, water and essential supplies) released by their respective governments or by charitable organizations.

The pandemic affected the entertainment industry too. As such, the much-awaited threatrical opening of the Wonder Woman 1984 movie had to be delayed by Warner Bros. from June 2020 to August 2020.

While waiting for the big movie to come out, let’s take a nice look back at Wonder Woman #3 published by DC Comics in 1987 with a story co-written by the late Len Wein and the legendary George Perez who worked on the art (inked by Bruce D. Patterson).

Cover
The cover by George Perez.

Early story

The story begins with Wonder Woman and Hermes arriving in the City of Boston in the United States. While flying in the air, princess Diana expressed her amazement of the city finding it exquisite and yet so disturbing. Even as Hermes cautions her from judging the people of man’s world, he states that man appears to have lost his way on Earth which makes him afraid and vulnerable to the influence of Ares.

He tells Wonder Woman that he led her to man’s world so that she could end the madness Ares has been causing on the people. Together they fly off to pursue the next objective.

2
Wonder Woman and Hermes arrive in Boston.

Meanwhile at the Hanscom Air Force Base, a general arrives to check on Steve Trevor who is recovering from the incident that happened at Themyscira (in issue #2). As it turns out, Trevor is under arrest as he is wanted for questioning in relation to the shocking murder of another general. It was also stated that Trevor returned without the jet he used….

Quality

If there is anything that stood out for me personally in Wonder Woman #3, it is the wonder that comes with discovery which was greatly pulled off by Len Wein and George Perez. As Wonder Woman arrives in Boston, observes how strange the society is to her and how she adjusts to the place and people around her, I got very engaged along the way. What Wonder Woman discovers and learns, I discovered and learned as well. In some ways, her discovery of man’s world (through Boston) reminded me of what I experienced during my first arrival in San Francisco, California decades ago. It should be noted that the dialogue is very rich continuing nicely from what was started in issue #1.

9
Wonder Woman and Julia Kapatelis slowly communicating with each other. 

Like in the first two issues, there is also a nice build-up of suspense which is connected with the fusion of both fantasy elements and Greek mythology. This comic book cleverly reminds readers what is happening behind the scenes in the fantasy realm (within the story that is) just as Wonder Woman and the people in man’s world move on with their respective exploits. Such suspense is very well used on adding depth to the plot while paving the way for sub-plots.

Also worth mentioning here is the introduction of professor Julia Kapatelis and her teenage daughter Vanessa as supporting characters who will prove to be crucial to Wonder Woman’s adjustment into their society. Personally, I just love the way the creators showed that Wonder Woman does not speak English and had yet to learn the language which added some depth into her first encounter with Julia.

Conclusion

I really had a great time reading Wonder Woman #3. This is a significant comic book as it marked Wonder Woman’s first arrival in man’s world during the Post-Crisis era (after Crisis on Infinite Earths) and a true modernization of the icon as well as her literary story during the Reagan years. As many true Wonder Woman fans already know, George Perez’s leading on reintroducing Wonder Woman in the 1980s is better and more dramatic than the Golden Age Wonder Woman.

4
Steve Trevor recovering and Wonder Woman and Hermes arrive at Harvard University.

If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of Wonder Woman #3 (1987), be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the near-mint copy of the regular edition costs $24 while the newsstand edition’s near-mint copy is priced at $51. As for the edition that does not have the month printed on the cover, the near-mint copy is worth $77.

Overall, Wonder Woman #3 (1987) is highly recommended!


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

A Look Back at Wonder Woman #2 (1987)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

After the end of publishing their landmark maxi-series Crisis on Infinite Earths, DC Comics gained an all-new slate to literally fill up by rebooting their entire superhero comics universe. They started the new universe (now referred to as the Post-Crisis Universe) with Superman, Batman and some others.

Then in late 1986, DC Comics reintroduced the post-Crisis version of Wonder Woman creatively led by the legendary George Perez (who was assisted by writer Greg Potter) with the release of the comic book Wonder Woman #1 (cover dated February 1987). That particular comic book retold (in great detail with Greek mythology) the origin of the Amazons who were reincarnated women (the souls of which came from women whose deaths were caused by men). The Amazons and Hippolyta (Hippolyte in this comic book) eventually got betrayed by Heracles and his men leading to a period of tremendous hardship. Beatings were obvious and rape was implied.

After getting freed, they are sent to the island of Themyscira. It was there when Hippolyta learned that she died previously as a pregnant woman. Using the clay of the island, the Amazons’ queen formed an infant girl. Then after communicating with the midwives in the spiritual realm, the soul of Hippolyta’ unborn daughter arrived into the clay child. This marked the birth of Princess Diana who would become Wonder Woman. For the newcomers reading this, Diana is the only Amazon who grew up from child to adult in Themyscira.

Right here is my retro comic book review of Wonder Woman #2 published in 1987 by DC Comics with the story done by George Perez and Greg Potter. The art was done by Perez.

Cover
Cover drawn by George Perez. 

Early story

The story begins in man’s world, at an American military base. Colonel Steve Trevor meets with his superior General Kohler who tells him that he has been chosen for a special mission which involves the use a new, modified fighter plane. Steve reacted that the coordinated provided lead to nothing out there. The general instructs him to shut his mouth and do what he was ordered to do.

In Themyscira, Princess Diana is set to start her first-ever mission as Wonder Woman. Her mission pits her against a god gone mad, and her mother Hippolyta and the Amazons are deeply concerned. Suddenly, the Lasso of Truth from Olympus arrives which Diana picks up. Immediately after that, the messenger of the gods Hermes arrives marking the first time in centuries that any Amazon saw him.

45

After a brief talk, Diana travels away with Hermes who could only guide her. They disappeared suddenly surprising the Amazons and Hippolyta who was not given an opportunity to bid farewell to her daughter.

Quality

As expected, Wonder Woman #2 has great qualities with regards to storytelling, characterization and artwork. With Greg Potter assisting George Perez, this comic book told not one but three story arcs each with a good amount of details and, amazingly, such stories were told rather efficiently complete with very believable dialogue. I’m talking about impressive writings and descriptions of the characters, apart from Wonder Woman herself, that include the Amazons, the gods and goddesses of Olympus and the American military.

The story also comes with a very nice touch of discovery which readers can easily relate with through Wonder Woman. As Diana develops and learns more, the reader gets connected with her even more. This is the Queen of Superheroes I’m talking about and the writing is truly excellent.

At the same time, continuing with what was first presented in Wonder Woman #1, this comic book also explores how much of a threat Ares (god of war) truly is not only to Wonder Woman and her Amazons but also on people in man’s world. The build-up of the tension is really nice and the pay-off is worth it.

Unsurprisingly, this comic book has great looking art. It’s done by George Perez after all supported with ink work by Bruce Patterson. Perez knows how to dramatize characters, pull of amazing shots of action and other forms of spectacle, and most of all, illustrate the very visual elements of Greek mythology complete with other visual concepts of the fantasy genre.

Conclusion

As it is clear it is not the launch issue of its monthly series, Wonder Woman #2 is still very significant as it marks the first-ever mission of Wonder Woman in the post-Crisis universe of DC Comics and also her first encounter with a modernized (for the 1980s specifically) Steve Trevor. Remember the first time Diana and Steve met in 2017 Wonder Woman movie? Remember how Wonder Woman reacted to see a mortal man for the first time ever as played by Gal Gadot and Chris Pine on the big screen? You will see some common elements between the film and this comic book about the two characters. Even the Amazons’ reaction to Steve alone makes this comic book worth reading and it should encourage readers to go back to first issue to understand the details about the Amazons’ culture and mindset.

10
Heavy inspiration about Greek mythology, culture and arts is evident not only in the artwork by Perez but also on the script itself.

If you are seriously considering acquiring an existing copy of Wonder Woman #2, be aware that according to MileHighComics.com as of this writing, a near-mint copy of the regular edition costs $24, while a near-mint copy of the newsstand edition costs $49. As for the other edition that does not have a month printed on the cover, a near-mint copy costs $77.

Overall, Wonder Woman #2 (1987) is highly recommended!


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

A Look Back at Wonder Woman (2017)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced by means of watching the movie and doing research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

I just love watching superhero movies, especially the ones that were well crafted by the filmmakers complete with solid storytelling, sufficient spectacle as well as memorable performances by the hired talents (both behind and in front of the camera).

Of all the superhero movies made by the forces of Hollywood starting with 1978’s Superman, I can clearly say that 2017’s Wonder Woman is my favorite. Don’t get me wrong. I did not limit myself to just DC Comics superhero movies. I saw all the X-Men movies and their spinoffs, almost all the Spider-Man flicks, almost all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies and even the obscure ones. Along the way, there were some great superhero flicks that became modern-day classics like Logan and Avengers: Infinity War.

Still it is the Gal Gadot-led, Patty Jenkins-directed Wonder Woman that I loved watching the most.

Let’s start with my retro review of Wonder Woman, the one film that arguably saved the DC Comics Cinematic Universe for Warner Bros.

WWposter1
The Wonder Woman movie poster from 2017.

Early Story

The story begins sometime after the end of Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice during which Diana finds a long lost photograph recovered by Bruce Wayne. Then she remembers her past in Themyscira where she grew up as the only little girl among the women called the Amazons and her mother is none other than Queen Hippolyta. Concerned that the wicked Aries is still alive, Hippolyta’s sister Antiope trains Diana (initially in secret until they were discovered) to be strong, brave and more capable than their fellow Amazon warriors.

One day, Steve Trevor arrives in Themyscira becoming the first-ever man Diana ever met. Tension rises when the Germans (from World War I Earth) arrive on their island causing the Amazons to fight in defense. A lot of people lost their lives, including someone very close to Diana.

While interrogated with the Lasso of Truth, Steve reveals who he is and what he has been doing. He states that back in his world, World War I is ravaging the world costing many people their lives. This causes Diana to stand up and stop the war somehow (she believes Aries is responsible). Queen Hippolyta disapproves of Diana’s analysis. After privately meeting with Steve, Diana then starts her move for a mission to stop the war in Man’s World.

Quality

Screenshot_20200228-213823_YouTube.jpg
Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman in the middle of German soldiers.

Let me start with the performances. Gal Gadot definitely IS Wonder Woman in this movie. Regardless of how many versions of Wonder Woman there are in comics, the Israeli actress truly captured the essence of Diana’s early development which includes her special place among the Amazons (note: she is the only Amazon who was born in Themyscira and grew up from infant into a mature woman), her fateful meeting with Steve Trevor, her entry into Man’s World and how she adapts with the events and people outside of Themyscira. Wonder Woman’s purity on saving the world, doing what is right and emphasizing love and compassion were all nicely translated into cinematic art by Gal Gadot. From doing the action scenes to saving people, speaking her mind among her fellow Amazons and interacting with others as she adapts with Man’s World, I really love Gadot’s work on bringing Wonder Woman to life. As her cinematic work is great, there is no doubt that Gadot will always be iconic to fans of the Queen of Superheroes and superhero enthusiasts in general in the decades to come right beside Lynda Carter (who played the icon on TV), Christopher Reeve (Superman), Robert Downey, Jr. (Iron Man) and Chris Evans (Captain America). Meanwhile, the portrayals of Diana as an 8-year-old girl as well as a 12-year-old were perfectly done by Lilly Aspell (who is truly skilled with horse riding) and Emily Carey.

QueenDaughter
Lilly Aspell as young Diana with Connie Nielsen as Queen Hippolyta.

Chris Pine is excellent as Steve Trevor who is portrayed to be very dedicated to his work, brave in what he does and still shows compassion instead of arrogance towards others. He also has great chemistry with Gal Gadot and, like in the comic books, their relationship is nicely translated on the big screen. Pine’s performance here is, in my view, the best superhero movie supporting role to date.

Screenshot_20200228-213746_YouTube.jpg
Chris Pine as Steve Trevor with Gal Gadot as Diana in disguise.

Connie Nielsen meanwhile is great in playing Queen Hippolyta and all throughout, there is always a sense of leadership complete with a touch of motherly love just like in the comic books. Her sister Antiope was nicely portrayed by Robin Wright as the one Amazon who taught Diana to be brave, strong and highly capable as an Amazon warrior.

Danny Huston, who played the lead villain in the 2009 movie X-Men Origins: Wolverine, played yet another military bad guy here but this time he’s a World War I German officer. He’s a villain with a purpose who not only fights for the glory of Germany but also strongly believes that war is natural and inevitable for humanity. In some ways, Huston’s Ludendorff reminds me Michael Shannon’s General Zod in Man of Steel.

Antiope
Robin Wright is excellent as Antiope.

When it comes to presentation, this film is Patty Jenkins’ 2nd movie as director (her debut was way back in 2003) and the great turnout of Wonder Woman as a high quality movie (as opposed to being a critical and commercial success) only proved yet again that the old saying in Hollywood – The director’s second movie is his/her best movie – is true. Jenkins, who also worked on television, not only prepared a lot to make this movie but also researched Wonder Woman, developed ways to get the most out of the cast members, tweak the written story of the film (by Allan Heinberg, Zach Snyder and Jason Fuchs) and, most notably, she led the production with a lot of passion. To put it short, Wonder Woman is a labor of love (and the No Man’s Land scene is iconic) that not only resonated with fans of the Queen of Superheroes but also with the film critics and moviegoers.

Regarding storytelling, I noticed that a key story from Wonder Woman’s origin in the comics (the contest of the Amazons) did not happen at all in the film. While there were die-hard fans of the icon who complained about it, I felt that the contest of the Amazons would have made this movie more complicated and surely would have lessened the impact of World War I as a key story element. Since the purpose of this movie was to emphasize Diana’s origin and her entry into Man’s World with a major mission, I believe that the contest of the Amazons can be made cinematically later in a future movie.

The way the story was told cinematically, it also captured Diana’s reactions to the events that happened around her. The scene in which she saw the village destroyed showed how death and destruction compelled Wonder Woman to accomplish her mission even though others find ending the war impossible. Along the way, the actors – specifically Gal Gadot – really added life into the narrative with their strong performances.

When it comes to on-screen humor, which is popular among moviegoers and is almost a requirement for most new superhero movies that come out, having it done by supporting players Lucy Davis and Saïd Taghmaoui was a clever move since it allows Gal Gadot to portray Wonder Woman without any performance disruption. Considering her short screen time, Davis as Etta Candy is really funny. The amount of humor in this film, in my view, was just right and never annoying.

Spectacle? Wonder Woman is loaded with action, stunts and exciting stuff! The action involving Wonder Woman was brutal and satisfying to watch, and Patty Jenkins’ use of slow motion on key moments was great (even comparable to John Woo’s past work) and at the same time not too excessive. The Themyscira battle between the Germans and the Amazons at the beach was engaging and strategically filmed. Also, it was fitting that the action ramped up nicely starting with the iconic No Man’s Land sequence. The final battle in the film, unsurprisingly, had lots of computer-generated images (CGI) which is understandable considering the fantasy element of Wonder Woman.

More on the action, I love the way Patty Jenkins had Gal Gadot, Robin Wright, Connie Nielsen and Chris Pine perform the action themselves which all made their characters even more believable. Of course, there were certain moments in which stunt doubles were used to do the more dangerous moments on behalf of the actors.

Screenshot_20200228-213315_YouTube.jpg
This happened just before the iconic No Man’s Land scene.

Apart from the core cast, a lot of the actresses playing the Amazons trained for several months not just to look the part but also to perform action sequences using weapons with actual skill. The stunt coordinators and specialists hired by the filmmakers deserve praise for contributing nicely on making the cinematic Amazons highly believable. This alone not only makes Wonder Woman stand out nicely among all Hollywood superhero movies but also reflects nicely what was portrayed in the comic books.

The production design is also top-notch. I love the scenic locations of Italy used for scenes set in Themyscira. The filmmakers also did a great job recapturing the look of World War I Europe from the historical pictures to the big screen. The costume designs were fantastic, and the standout designs were, unsurprisingly, the costumes of the Amazons which really made their fantasy culture look believable. The filmmakers decided to have much more colorful visuals instead of following the look of Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad.

On the music, the work by Rupert Gregson-Williams was great. His rendition of the Wonder Woman theme was very lively to listen to. The same can be said about the music he provided in the memorable No Man’s Land scene which had a nice build-up as Wonder Woman made her first full appearance in costume on the field. Other tunes played in the film suited the scenes well.

If there were any weak spots in this movie, it would be certain shots of action that were not filmed with precision. I’m talking about filming action scenes way too close to the camera combined with music video-style editing that’s supposed to make film look flashy. It’s not only disorienting, it also took me out of the movie.

Conclusion

Overall, Wonder Woman is one of the best-ever superhero movies ever made and easily my favorite of them all. It has an excellent balance between storytelling, character development and spectacle, and Gal Gadot gave the performance of a lifetime not only by bringing Wonder Woman into life in cinematic form but also emphasizing what the Queen of Superheroes stood for. As part of the current DC Comics Cinematic Universe, this movie stood out by having optimism and heroism as core themes (as opposed to the dark, gritty and even cynical approach of Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad) and, more importantly, by focusing strongly on Wonder Woman instead of building up for the Justice League movie (which was released months after this one).

Apart from high-quality production values and a strong creative approach, the cast and cinematic performances are easily among the best in the superhero movie genre. Chris Pine’s Steve Trevor is an excellent example of a supporting role that is engaging without ever overshadowing the lead role. By the end of the film, you will realize the impact that Queen Hippolyta and Antiope had on Diana’s personal development.

QH
Connie Nielsen made a great queen and mother in this movie.

Being strongly focused on heroism with optimism, director Patty Jenkins and her crew succeeded in making this film without ever succumbing to the extreme views of the Political Left in Hollywood and the loudmouth social feminists. When I see the battle between the Amazons and the German soldiers on the beach of Themyscira happen, I simply saw armed women defending their homeland not from men who intend to rape them but rather men who had no right to intrude in the first place. Even as there were scenes showing men in power in World War I Europe (putting Diana in a powerless position), there still was no feminist-inspired hatred towards men. Also the bond between Steve and Diana developing from friendship into a romantic relationship literally shut the door on extreme feminism.

As a Wonder Woman-focused story, this film succeeded on emphasizing the Queen of Superheroes to both long-time fans and mainstream moviegoers. This movie also had a nice mix of having a fantasy setting with Themyscira moving on to a historic setting with World War I Europe. On the origins of Wonder Woman herself, I don’t mind at all that the contest of Amazons was not told because this movie’s concept is already great to begin with and its running time of 141 minutes was just right.

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Gal Gadot will be remembered for a very long time for her excellent portray of Wonder Woman in cinema.

With all the greatness it was made with, I kept coming back to Wonder Woman when replaying superhero movies here at the comfort of home. In the cinemas back in 2017, I saw the film three times. Ultimately, I can say out loud that Wonder Woman is highly recommended and it is truly essential!


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Also my fantasy book The World of Havenor is still available in paperback and e-book format. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

If you are looking forward to Wonder Woman 1984, check out my preview and opinion about the first movie trailer.

Wonder Woman 1984 First Movie Trailer is Impressive

Hey readers, moviegoers and geeks! Were you able to watch the official, first movie trailer of Wonder Woman 1984? It was released globally today online and, in case you have not seen it, here is the movie trailer for your viewing pleasure.

That movie trailer, which was released around the time the Wonder Woman 1984 special event at the CCXP in Brazil ended, was a blast and having seen it, I am more excited for the movie’s June 2020 release. I plan to watch it on an IMAX screen by then.

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Official movie character poster for Wonder Woman 1984.

What can I say? It does not only have the 1980s setting (hence the year on the movie title), but the said time setting was made to be very lively in terms of visuals, fashion, style, music and feel. When it comes the decade in real life, it was the same decade when DC Comics published the maxi-series Crisis on Infinite Earths. Following Crisis, a major relaunch of the entire DC Comics universe followed and along the way Wonder Woman was reintroduced under the creative direction of George Perez. The George Perez-era of Wonder Woman, at least seen in the trailer, is looking like a big influence on the new movie starring Gal Gadot and Chris Pine (whose character Steve Trevor returns somehow) and directed by Patty Jenkins. This brings me to my next point.

Early in the trailer, Diana/Wonder Woman was shown talking with archaeologist Barbara Ann Minerva (played by Kristen Wiig). What’s so significant about Minerva? She is none other than the super villain Cheetah, specifically the 3rd version of the character that debuted in the comic books during the George Perez-era of Wonder Woman!

Here are some images from the pages of Wonder Woman #9 from 1988.

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All of the above images are properties of DC Comics.

As I mentioned before, the involvement of Cheetah in the movie is alone a great attraction. As far as the trailer goes, we only see Cheetah in her normal human form with Kristen Wiig. The way I see it, we will eventually see the super villain in her terrifying, animal-like form. I am speculating the filmmakers will save that for the movie’s release and will only show very brief, body part shots in the next two movie trailers leading into June 2020. It’s much better this way especially under the watch of Walter Hamada.

Regarding the return of Steve Trevor, I don’t want to speculate as to how he returns given what happened in the acclaimed Wonder Woman movie of 2017. Still, it sure is nice to Chris Pine return as Diana’s romantic partner because he and Gal Gadot have solid chemistry together and there is indeed a need to present more cinematic adventures of them together just like in the comic books!

As seen in the trailer, some shots showing Wonder Woman and Steve traveling together in a foreign land (with a desert environment) where they encounter military hardware operated by some group (or a government perhaps?). This is clearly a Cold War reference although which particular setting or historical event the movie is emphasizing remains to be revealed.

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Maxwell Lord.
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Barbara Ann Minerva/Cheetah.
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Steve Trevor.

The Cold War setting is the new era emphasized for Wonder Woman 1984. Story details are unintentionally light but what was shown in the trailer made the movie very promising.

As for other elements like the cinematic Maxwell Lord, shots of Themyscira, Wonder Woman’s armor and others, I’ll discuss those next time. Right now, things are looking great for Wonder Woman 1984 and we’ll see more what the filmmakers have left to offer in the next two movie trailers.

If my sources are correct, the creative synergy of director Patty Jenkins combined with passionate work implemented by Gal Gadot on playing the Queen of Superheroes should result a great Wonder Woman cinematic story as well as a solid superhero movie. On the part of Warner Bros. Pictures, it seems the studio and its creative teams are now in more solid footing when it comes to making new DC Comics superhero movies. The DC Comics cinematic stuff will resume on February 2020 with the release of Birds of Prey.

Wonder Woman 1984 will open in cinemas around the world on June 2020.

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Wonder Woman 1984 star Gal Gadot with cosplayers and fans during the CCXP in Brazil. (photo source – Wonder Woman Facebook page)

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Also my fantasy book The World of Havenor is still available in paperback and e-book format. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Why The No Man’s Land Scene In Wonder Woman Is Iconic

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from watching this feature film and doing online research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

From time to time in the world of cinema, something very significant happens on the big screen which impacts moviegoers deeply. Eventually they talk about for months or even years after seeing it. In due time, such memorable sequences or scenes become iconic. What remains talked about among moviegoers and superhero culture fans until now is the No Man’s Land scene from the acclaimed 2017 superhero movie Wonder Woman starring Gal Gadot and directed by Patty Jenkins.

Released on June 2017, Wonder Woman grossed $821,847,012 worldwide and was also critically acclaimed. Its optimistic tone made it stand out among the DC Cinematic Universe movies and it has been argued that Wonder Woman was Warner Bros.’ serious effort to symbolically pull their cinematic superheroes out of the cloud of darkness that started in 2013 with Man of Steel.

Wonder Woman had it all. Great hard-hitting action, humor (nicely performed by the supporting cast), good pacing, nice cinematography and of course the very fine performances by the actors especially with Gal Gadot’s portrayal of Diana/Wonder Woman.

Among its many scenes, the No Man’s Land sequence is the most defining piece of the film laced with great cinematic art, meaning and powerful symbolism. It’s a very iconic scene that deserves to be seen again and again. The scene also helped the movie win the Best Fight Award of the 2018 MTV Movie and TV Awards.

Why is the No Man’s Land scene so iconic?

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The moment that captivated moviegoers worldwide.

1) It introduces Wonder Woman’s iconic imagery to the world (both within the movie and to moviegoers) – Wonder Woman has been around since 1941 and for the most part she wears the tiara, the bracelets, the strapless top and the like. For the movie, the scene marked the first time ever Wonder Woman appeared wearing her famous costume (specifically a sacred Amazon armor within the story) introducing herself not only within the movie but also to the moviegoers in the cinemas. This scene was accompanied with the very powerful musical score of Rupert Gregson-Williams. By watching and listening, Wonder Woman’s first appearance in her armor symbolized the start of her effort to save people and turn the tide against evil and darkness.

2) Diana: No. But it’s what I’m going to do! – In the moments before Diana makes her appearance on the battlefield, she encounters a suffering woman carrying a child who asked for her help and tells her that their village was seized and her villagers who could not escape end up as slaves.

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Diana listening to a desperate lady whose village got ravaged.

Diana tries to convince Steve Trevor to help the affected people but he insisted on pushing through with their mission. For your reference, posted below is the dialogue from the film.

Steve Trevor: This is no man’s land, Diana! It means no man can cross it, alright? This battalion has been here for nearly a year and they’ve barely gained an inch. All right? Because on the other side there are a bunch of Germans pointing machine guns at every square inch of this place. This is not something you can cross. It’s not possible.

Diana Prince: So… what? So we do nothing?

Steve Trevor: No, we are doing something! We are! We just… we can’t save everyone in this war. This is not what we came here to do

(Diana moves away from Steve, loosens her hair, wears her tiara and turns back to Steve)

Diana Prince: No. But it’s what I’m going to do.

These moments before Wonder Woman’s rise clearly show that she is dedicated to saving people. Her disagreement with Steve was reasonable and the guy, who witnessed the Germans and Amazons clashed early in the film, underestimated Diana’s bravery and special abilities. Diana made the right decision even though her act looked suicidal to the men on both sides of the field. There is just no way she would ignore the fact that people got overwhelmed and have suffered. More importantly, the build-up that started with Diana’s talk with the suffering lady was simply perfect and very timely leading to Wonder Woman’s rise on the field.

3) She stood up for what she believed in – Not only was the No Man’s Land scene a fine display of Wonder Woman’s courage and heroism, it was also an extension of what she believed in and was she learned having grown up in Themyscira. Diana is a warrior but she’s not the type who focuses mainly on achieving victory only nor is she the type who gets satisfied with the use of violence as a means to win. She grew up oriented by her queen mother and Amazon superiors to be compassionate, brave, inspiring and loving. After turning the tide against the Germans and liberating the village, she did NOT develop a personal hatred nor grudge against the Germans. After all, she knew that men can be corrupted and yet they can still be reformed and saved. Wonder Woman stood up, moved forward, deflected the many pieces of ammunition fired at her and inspired Steve and their allies to follow her lead and turn the tide of battle. That’s a great reflection of her heroism, bravery and her dedication on standing up for what she believes in.

Wonder Woman cares about the people who need help and in return we the moviegoers care for her and look up to her as the Queen of Superheroes. She definitely is the kind of superhero we need to see more of in movies.

4) The No Man’s Land scene is comparable with real life art emphasizing struggle – Many may not have realized it until now but the iconic scene in the movie is quite comparable to real life artworks that emphasized bravery, struggle and the effort to be free if not victorious. The one classic art that comes to mind is Liberty Leading the People painted by Eugene Delacroix. That 1830 French artwork about the July Revolution showed a lady with a phrygian cap leading guiding her armed companions and leading the way as they step over some dead bodies on the ground. Liberty in that art was depicted by the painter as a lady of the people as well as a goddess-like figure. Wonder Woman in the No Man’s Land scene flowed with a nice pace using a few slow-motion shots to emphasize her ability to block a bullet with her brace. It’s like looking at a painting being animated. And then as Wonder Woman creates opportunities to beat the opposition, the allied soldiers gained the courage to climb up and run up the field to fight. As the breakthrough happens, Wonder Woman said, “Steve! Let’s go!”

Moments later there is a short shot of Wonder Woman in the foreground running (towards the camera) while the many allied soldiers in the background follow her.

The No Man’s Land scene is quite artistic in its own style and if it is not inspired by the Liberty Leading the People painting, it sure shares common themes of courage and battle with it.

Conclusion

The No Man’s Land sequence is truly iconic and it will always be identified with the cinematic Wonder Woman and even actress Gal Gadot herself. While waiting for Wonder Woman 1984 to come out, we can enjoy replaying Wonder Woman on Blu-ray and watch the story unfold. The No Man’s Land scene is always engaging and artistic to watch. Patty Jenkins and her creative team deserve our appreciation and gratitude.


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Also my fantasy book The World of Havenor is still available in paperback and e-book format. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com