Wonder Woman’s Origin Fundamentally Changed (Again) in the New DC Universe [SPOILERS]
As we roll into the second month of the relaunched DC Universe, and long-time readers continue to process the many changes in the established history of their favorite characters, DC Comics has dropped another bombshell in an article at The New York Post about the new origin of Wonder Woman. SPOILERS FOLLOW.Wonder Woman will soon be revealed as the daughter of Zeus, the Father of the Gods who ruled the rest of the Greek pantheon on Mount Olympus in Greek Mythology. This revelation will take place in next month’s Wonder Woman #3, written by Brian Azzarello and illustrated by Cliff Chiang. “She’s going to learn she’s not who she was told she was,” Azzarello told the Post. “Everybody’s got a father, even if he’s not the nicest guy in the world.”
While Wonder Woman’s history has always been tied closely to the world of Greek mythology, her former origin (at least since 1959) was far more matriarchial; raised on the all-female, Amazon-ruled island of Themyscira, Diana was born not from a man and a woman, but sculpted from the clay of her homeland by her mother, Queen Hippolyta.
DC Co-Publisher Jim Lee told the Post that rewriting the character’s origins to make her the offspring of two parents rather than, say, sand could make Wonder Woman accessible to many readers. “In this case, making her a god actually makes her more human, more relatable,” said Lee.
Zeus was a notorious womanizer in classical Greek mythology, frequently descending to Earth for liaisons with human women that often produced super-human offspring like the heroes Hercules and Perseus. These illegitimate children (and their mothers) were often the source of vicious retribution from Zeus’s jealous and vengeful wife Hera.
Wonder Woman #1 may already have shown readers a taste of that vengeance in a scene where a pregnant woman named Zola is only narrowly saved from a deadly centaur attack by Wonder Woman. The god Hermes then warns Wonder Woman to “Protect her… or the Queen will see her dead.”
We also learn that Zeus himself has disappeared, and when his son Apollo summons Oracles to learn his whereabouts, he is told that “one of your father’s children will murder another and take their place” and that this “is what your father wants.” Does this prophecy of godhood apply to Zola’s unborn child, or to Wonder Woman herself? Where is Zeus? As another apparent bastard of the god of sky and thunder, will Wonder Woman face Hera’s wrath as well once the truth about her parentage is revealed?
The new origin raises as many questions as it answers, and only time will tell how the mythological roots of the most famous female character at DC Comics will play out now that the fundamental building blocks of her character have literally been redefined.
What do you think about these changes to the origin of Wonder Woman?