Wonder Woman's character was created during World War II; the character in the story was initially depicted fighting Axis military forces as well as an assortment of colorful supervillains, although over time her stories came to place greater emphasis on characters, deities, and monsters from Greek mythology. Many stories depicted Wonder Woman rescuing herself from bondage, which defeated the "damsels in distress" trope that was common in comics during the 1940s. In the decades since her debut, Wonder Woman has gained a cast of enemies bent on eliminating the Amazon, including classic villains such as Ares, Cheetah, Doctor Poison, Circe, Doctor Psycho, and Giganta, along with more recent adversaries such as Veronica Cale and the First Born. Wonder Woman has also regularly appeared in comic books featuring the superhero teams Justice Society (from 1941) and Justice League (from 1960).
Marc DiPaolo introduces us to Wonder Woman's creator and history and he demonstrates how she is a "WWII veteran, a feminist icon, and a sex symbol" all throughout her "career". Wonder Woman stars in multiple films and is most commonly known for her red, white and blue one piece, and her tall, sexy assertiveness. What many people don't know is that she is a big part of history in the comic and superhero world because of how her character influences real life people of all ages, sexes, ethnicities, and races. "Marston created the comic book character Wonder Woman to be both strong and sexy, as a means of encouraging woman to emulate her unapologetic assertiveness." Charlotte Howell notes in her essay titled "'Tricky' Connotations: Wonder Woman as DC's Brand Disruptor" that Wonder Woman is, "inherently disruptive to masculine superhero franchise branding because, according to her creator William Moulton Marston, she was intended to be 'psychological propaganda for the new type of woman who, [he] believe[d], should rule the world.'"
(For the record, Marston and Olive Byrne’s son, Byrne Marston, who is an 83-year-old retired obstetrician, thinks that when Marston talked about the importance of submission, he meant it only metaphorically. “I never saw anything like that in our house,” he told me. “He didn’t tie the ladies up to the bedpost. He’d never have gotten away with it.”)
Gaines didn’t know any of this when he met Marston in 1940 or else he would never have hired him: He was looking to avoid controversy, not to court it. Marston and Wonder Woman were pivotal to the creation of what became DC Comics. (DC was short for Detective Comics, the comic book in which Batman debuted.) In 1940, Gaines decided to counter his critics by forming an editorial advisory board and appointing Marston to serve on it, and DC decided to stamp comic books in which Superman and Batman appeared with a logo, an assurance of quality, reading, “A DC Publication.” And, since “the comics’ worst offense was their blood-curdling masculinity,” Marston said, the best way to fend off critics would be to create a female superhero.
Pérez and Potter wrote Wonder Woman as a feminist character, and Pérez's research into Greek mythology provided Wonder Woman's world with depth and verisimilitude missing from her previous incarnation. The incorporation of Greek gods and sharply characterized villains added a richness to Wonder Woman's Amazon heritage and set her apart from other DC heroes.
Arcane Lore Expert: Wonder Woman, as both an Amazon demigoddess and an antiquities expert, possesses immense knowledge of and skill in wielding mystical artifacts and arcane lore, notably her Sword of Athena and Lasso of Hestia. Her encyclopedic knowledge was demonstrated when Wonder Woman reacted in dismay to Lex Luthor's speech (knowing how he had twisted the Olympians' history concerning Zeus and Prometheus), when she instantly identified a Parademon in Commissioner Gordon's sketch, and when she explained the history behind Steppenwolf and the 3 Mother Boxes to the remainder of the Justice League.
In defeating Ares, Diana was greatly injured. The gods were so pleased with her that they took her into the sea and healed her. Then, Hermes gave her winged sandals which would enable her to travel freely between Themyscira and Man's World. At some point, the god Pan was killed and replaced by a Manhunter android. It was this impostor who began a feud among the gods. The feud began when Zeus turned an amorous eye towards Diana, offering to make her a goddess if she participated in 'the ultimate sharing of the flesh'. When Diana and her mother opposed the great god, he was angered and punished Diana. She would have to complete a task for each of the gods, culminating in the defeat of the monsters beyond "Doom's Doorway." This doorway was the Amazon's charge for millennia and if Diana was unsuccessful, the Amazons would be destroyed.
After Darkseid and Grail's retreat, they returned to a base in the Amazon Rainforest, where Darkseid was setting his mysterious plans into motion. He tasked his loyal Female Furies with tracking down a godly relic he needed, but they were unable to do so thanks to the intervention of Steve Trevor and his A.R.G.U.S. forces. Meanwhile, Wonder Woman fought a number of villains that had been recruited by Veronica Cale: Zara of the Crimson Flame, Blue Snowman and Anglette. As Diana caught up with Steve at A.R.G.U.S. HQ, Jason returned wearing a suit of armor gifted to him by the gods, but with no knowledge of its purpose. As news came in of an attack by Grail, Wonder Woman and Jason immediately responded just in time to prevent Grail from killing another demigod. Wonder Woman bound Grail in the Lasso of Truth and forced her to reveal Darkseid's plans. Grail explained that Darkseid was looking to build himself an army of Amazons. Due to her half-Amazon blood, Grail was able to break free from the Lasso's grip and retreated.
With Wonder Woman arriving in pursuit, Strife warned of the prophecy Apollo and Artemis feared: a child of Zeus would kill a god to take the throne. That child could be either Diana or Zola's child. Sending Zola back with Hermes to have her baby in peace, Diana warned that if they were not left alone, she would fulfil the prophecy herself. Unfortunately, upon her return to Michigan, Diana found that Hermes had betrayed them, and once Zola gave birth to her son, he whisked the child away, and gave it to Demeter. Diana swore to get the boy back and bring Hermes to justice.
Despite helping win the war, defeating Ares and still loving humanity, Diana is still left sobered, emotionally broken, psychologically scarred, and devastated over not having been able to save the Belgian village from Dr. Poison, as well as over her beloved Steve Trevor's self-sacrificing death. Indeed, Diana would later claim that she "would never be the same" ever again after World War I. Moreover, in the years that followed, Diana bore witness to a "century of horrors" (Wars, Fascism, Communism, nuclear weapons' deployment, geopolitical brinkmanship, racism, homophobia, genocides, war crimes, propaganda, and etc.), and due to all of this occurring without Ares being there to spread corruption, Diana almost completely lost faith in humanity, coming to believe that humans "made a world where standing together is impossible". As such, Diana resolved to mostly abandon superheroism for 100 years.
Following the events of Infinite Crisis, she disappeared for a year in order to rediscover herself, and took part briefly in the events of 52. In the span of One Year Later, she was re-imagined once again and was forgiven by Batman and Superman while given her third ongoing monthly title. Batman helped her establish a role at the Department of Metahuman Affairs under the name of Diana Prince (paying homage to her golden age alter ego.) She worked alongside Tom Tresser and eventually became romantically involved with him. A move among fans across the different companies occurred with characters reverting to their original numbering of series (this for instance happened to Iron Man at Marvel as well) and the third Wonder Woman series was relaunched with Wonder Woman #600. This was actually accurate at the time as it was the indeed the 600 issue released (not including issues numbered otherwise such as with a zero or a million). Issue 600 was used as a chance to reinvent the character as she discovers herself with no memories and in a new costume. This was a short lived experiment as the entire DC lineup was soon to be re-imagined into the new 52, though certain aspects of her redesigned costume remained.