Given the success of her debut in 2017, comic and film fans alike are eagerly anticipating Gal Gadot donning the armour once more for Wonder Woman 1984. Again helmed by director Patty Jenkins, the sequel sees the action move from the World War I trenches to 1980s America. But while the locations and foes may have changed, there are familiar faces from the first film including Robin Wright, Connie Nielson and (somehow) Chris Pine joining Gadot’s Lasso Of Truth-wielding Princess Diana.
And much like its predecessor, the Cold War-set Wonder Woman 1984 is based on fragments acquired from on the vast seam of the character’s source material rather than one single comic book. But when it comes to inspiration for future cinematic endeavours, Diana’s rich history on the page is full of fabulous stories that reveal the inner complexities of her character, while also packing in the action that balances Greek mythology with contemporary settings. We’ve picked out five of Wonder Woman’s best stories that we’d love to see receive the silver screen treatment.
1. JLA: A League Of One (2000)
One of the few Justice League of America stories where Wonder Woman stands front and centre and shows the rest how it’s done. Beautifully illustrated and written by Christopher Moeller, this one-shot has all the strong themes and epic set pieces to make a comic book blockbuster of monstrous proportions. With the antagonist none other than a centuries-old dragon, Drakul Karfang, the story begins with Diana stopping another eruption of Krakatoa and along the way includes goblins, mermaids, nymphs and oracles. When the latter prophesises that one of the Justice League will be killed destroying Drakul Karfang, Diana decides that only one member should therefore take on the dangerous quest: herself.
Naturally the other members of the team aren’t delighted with Wonder Woman’s plan, which necessitates subduing them and launching them into space in pods to keep them from interfering (and Superman busy retrieving them), leaving her to face off against the dragon in one of her toughest battles. It’s an age old tale of good versus evil that has whiffs of The Hobbit all over it, with Diana’s purity not only leading her to take on Drakul but acting as her main armour. Frankly who wouldn’t want to see this fantasy-heavy colossus played out on the big screen?
2. The Circle (2005)
Given a fresh start by Gail Simone, The Circle gives Wonder Woman a new modern role while also looking back at her roots. We find Diana in a new job as an agent for the Department of Metahuman Affairs, with a new partner in the shape of Tom Tresser and even a few gorilla guests in her apartment for good measure. Given the story includes run-ins with adversaries Gorilla Grodd and Captain Nazi, with a huge battle on Wonder Woman’s home island of Themyscira, there’s plenty of scope for an over-the-top actioner with humour to boot.
The run has been praised for its contemporary realisation of Wonder Woman as both a powerful warrior and proponent of peace, but what makes The Circle such an intriguing story is the dynamic between Diana and her mother, Queen Hippolyta, who has been played Connie Nielson alongside Gal Gadot in the DC Extended Universe. With questions over how Diana came to be, and disquiet among the Amazonians under Hippolyta, it’s full of surprises and thrills.
We'd be keen to see more action on Themyscria (via GIPHY)
3. The Hiketeia (2002)
We’re not sure how this tale of Batman vs Wonder Woman would work in the DC Extended Universe after the Caped Crusader’s lacklustre punch-up with Superman, or indeed with Robert Pattinson’s upcoming role in The Batman film. But given it’s such a cracking tale we can’t help but wonder what it would look like on the big screen.
The one-shot from Greg Rucka, who would go on to write for the character for three years, is an updated Greek tragedy that starts off with an ancient ritual called a hiketeia, which bounds Diana to a young woman called Danielle Wellys. However, when Wellys commits a crime she is pursued by Gotham's finest, leading to Batman and Wonder Woman to face off against each other. Packed with emotion as well as action, it's treasured by Wonder Woman fans.
We'd expect a few more spark to fly between Wonder Woman and Batman (via GIPHY)
4. Eyes Of The Gorgon (2005)
Penned during Greg Rucka's three-year tenure, this eight issue run starts by pitting Wonder Woman against one of her greatest foes: Medusa, the serpent-headed gorgon from Greek mythology whose gaze turns onlookers to stone. While we've seen this deadly battle played out in the two Clash Of The Titans movies, Princess Diana takes the place of Perseus and comes up against Medusa in a brutal bout that's viewed by millions on live television.
It's only the first part of the story though, with a power struggle in Olympus that sees a beaten, bruised and blinded Wonder Woman coming to the aid of her patron Athena. Not only are the illustrations a visceral treat, but the story balances political intrigue in both Diana's adopted home in 21st-century America and in the home of the ancient Greek gods. Sounds like the basis of a wonderfully ostentatious, violent flick to us.
5. Spirit of Truth (2001)
Between 1998 and 2001 Justice League members Batman, Superman, Shazam and Wonder Woman were treated to one-off stories from Paul Dini, whose credits include Batman: The Animated Series and almost every great cartoon from the 80s and 90s. Alongside painter Alex Ross, the Wonder Woman Spirit of Truth is not only the best of Dini's collection, but one of the hero's best appearances in her 79-year history.
Despite a ton of impressive action, the book finds Diana in reflective mood, with her achievements and efforts being stifled and under appreciated by the world she is so desperately trying to help – a core theme of the character that's told brilliantly.
Wonder Woman is constantly coming up against the patriarchy (via GIPHY)
What's your favourite Wonder Woman story? Let us know at @Cineworld.