As you already know, my first introduction to comics was via Wonder Woman. I have to guess that this comic was also my first introduction to the superhero. I remember the Superfriends on Saturday mornings, but I’m pretty sure the comic book and record predate the cartoon, the show, or the underoos.
However, I was pretty aware of all of the above when I donned my underoos to play Wonder Woman.
The influence I remember most is Lynda Carter‘s TV version of Diana. I loved watching that show, and I soaked it in after school. Wonder Woman was, in my child-mind the perfect heroine. She was a princess, a warrior, a superhero. She was able to be professional and feminine when dressed as Diana Prince, and she was a rocking superhero in her red white and blues. (Not to mention played by an actress who had curves!)
What I hadn’t noticed until I looked up the underoos design from the 80’s was the golden eagle on her breastplate. I have been more familiar with the stylized stacked WW format that was popular in the 90’s, and had forgotten all about the eagle. What struck me a amusing, if not downright amazing, is the fact that I’ve got an eagle tattooed on my shoulder that looks alarmingly similar to the underoo version of Wonder Woman’s eagle. It had apparently soared into my subconscious mind in the early 80’s, and stayed there.
I kind of love that the golden eagle (and it is a golden eagle, not a bald one) that I’ve got as a personal symbol is quite probably rooted in Wonder Woman’s lore.
Randomly, I have done some reading about the evolution of Wonder Woman, and particularly her costume. If you have the time, the Agent of Style 70th anniversary articles are well worth the read. (Here are the links to part one, and part two). My favorite quote was just:
Diana doesn’t need to deny the fact that she’s a woman or a princess in order to be tough. She’s all those things.
Add to my weird subconscious fascination with WW, and you’ll find that I’m also sort of obsessed with the legends of the Amazons. I have read a lot and watched documentaries. They’ve found evidence of Warrior Priestess burials among the tribes of the fierce nomadic warriors the Scythians. They think these warrior women were likely the source of the legends. Fierce horsewomen and hunters, princesses, priestesses. For this reason, I’m particularly enamored with the restyling of Diana that might fit the history as well as her legend. Click here for the Scythian redesign of WW by Rory Phillips (via the Mary Sue) If I ever cosplay WW, it will probably be something more like that.
I’m disappointed that film projects and reboots of the WW franchise continue to fall flat. Since it looks like they are moving toward a Justice League movie, I can only hope that Wonder Woman will get more than a passing shout out.