The 'Justice League' Movie Just Makes the Lack of a 'Wonder Woman' Movie More Noticeable
It seems the war between Marvel and DC is never-ending across all mediums. On the television front, Arrow is competing with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. On the movie front, The Dark Knight and Man of Steel have been competing with Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor. Considering how successful the Avengers cinematic universe has been, it should really come as no surprise that DC would want to emulate that with their own version of the Avengers. Warner Bros. has confirmed that there will be a Justice League movie directed by Zack Snyder in our future and the news is as unsurprising as it is sad.
It's amazing, of course. The apex of the superhero movie trend is huge ensemble films with dysfunctional psuedo-heroes pulling together to save the world. (Wasn't that the real draw behind The Avengers and X-Men? Besides Tom Hiddleston's face and Hugh Jackman's biceps?) The sad part of the news is that Warner Bros. is jumping forward into a Justice League movie with no more apparent set-up than the Batman trilogy, a Green Lantern flop, and the Superman movies. Am I the only person asking what about Wonder Woman?
Hollywood has a notorious problem with getting Wonder Woman right that has been preventing any attempts at reviving her for the big or small screen. Unlike The Avengers' Black Widow, there aren't even any plans for a Wonder Woman movie at this time. That seems downright ridiculous when you consider that the "Big Three" of DC Comics, the three heroes that even the most casual comics fan can name off the top of their head, are Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. She was the first prominent female superhero in comic book history and she's been adapted into other media much, much less than her male counterparts.
The longer Wonder Woman goes without a television show or a movie to call her own, the easier it's going to be to keep pulling the "there has to be the right script" card. She's been elevated to some kind of sacred level that is working against her, putting a lot of pressure on Gal Gadot to give a perfect performance in Batman vs. Superman as an incarnation of Wonder Woman that gets the audience interested in seeing more of her. At this point, is there a "right" way to write Wonder Woman when no one is writing her at all?
Much like the Iron Man movies over on the Marvel side of things, the Dark Knight trilogy makes up the most popular movies in the Justice League franchise. Man of Steel was basically Superman with a Batman-esque tone and Arrow is the Green Arrow if he was actually just Batman. DC has found a formula that works and is content to stick to it even if they have to tweak a few things to make it fit. If they're willing to take such liberties with other heroes, is their audience really going to object to a Wonder Woman who is more of a brooding anti-hero than Lynda Carter's Wonder Woman of the 1970s?
Even if that look doesn't work for her, does it matter? Captain America is the furthest from an antihero that it's possible to get in the Marvel universe and Captain America: The Winter Soldier is raking in the millions at the box office. I'd kill just to see people who are able to name Wonder Woman's supporting cast as easily as Alfed and Robin come to mind for Batman and Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen come to mind for Superman.
The fact of the matter is, the world isn't just ready for a Wonder Woman movie. It's practically waiting for a Wonder Woman movie. The longer that film studios drag their feet, the more noticeable it's going to be that there are no superhero movies with female leads and the more taboo it's going to seem. Maybe one day we'll live in a world where Hollywood doesn't wait until they've made a film for everyone in an ensemble movie except the female hero before they consider it, as is the case with Black Widow. Today is clearly not going to be that day.