Wonder Woman is coming to theaters carrying the weight of DC Film's future on its back, as DC Extended Universe movies like Man of Steel, Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad left critics unimpressed, and fans bitterly divided. Wonder Woman has been touted as the turnaround point for the DCEU - and with the recent major shakeups with Justice League, it's Wonder Woman that has the best chance of bringing a much-needed win for the DC Comics movie universe.
Like Captain America: The First Avenger, Wonder Woman has the freedom of being a period piece that's set chronologically before the rest of the events we've seen in other DC films. However, the movie still has enough connective tissue to fit snuggly within the established DCEU mythology, while possibly pushing certain elements of the universe forward.
Read on for an explanation of Wonder Woman's DC Extended Universe Connections. (Warning: This Article has Mild SPOILERS!)
In Batman v Superman, we met Princess Diana/Wonder Woman when she came to Metropolis looking for a photo (revealing her immortal nature), which had been stolen from here possession by Lex Luthor. By the end of the film, she had recovered a flash drive with a copy of the photo on it - but not the original.
SPOILER: During the course of Wonder Woman's origin story, we learn that the photo was taken at glorious moment in Diana's life: A celebration in the small town that Wonder Woman and her WWI team (Allied spy Steve Trevor, con man Sameer, sniper Charlie, and smuggler "The Chief") liberated from German oppression.
It was the same night that Diana and Steve truly fell in love, and remains one of her most treasured memories, as well as a reminder of the noble potential of mankind.
The Wonder Woman trailers have already revealed that the film's story is bookended by the modern day story of Diana working at the Louvre Museum in Paris - where she receives a big gift, from a new friend.
SPOILER: After the events of Batman v Superman, Bruce Wayne apparently never stopped searching for Diana's lost photo, because it is Wayne Security that pulls up to the Louvre with an armed guard for a briefcase that contains the original photo of Wonder Woman.
The gesture is one meant to further establish the bond between Diana and Bruce, who already have a flirty, "Will they, won't they," dynamic going. It's clear from Wonder Woman's depiction of Chris Pine's Steve Trevor why Diana may once again feel that sort of kinship or spark with Bruce Wayne/Batman. Both men have a need for justice, with compassionate hearts that are hidden beneath thick facades of bravado.
In many ways, Wonder Woman reveals the foundation for very real possible romance between Diana and Bruce Wayne.
Before jumping into its historical drama story, Wonder Woman goes to some lengths to establish the mythological origin of The Amazons, and their connections to the Greek Gods.
In that story, we learn how the Amazons were created by Zeus, in order to protect mankind from Ares, The God of War, and how the mystical Island of Themysicra was created to hide the Amazons from Ares, after they were enslaved to him for a time.
SPOILER: While growing up on Themyscira, Princess Diana learns the history of the Amazons from Queen Hippolyta - including a purposefully vague revelation that within a tower stronghold on the Island, The Amazons have been given many powerful mystical gifts by the gods over the ages. Some of these artifacts (like the Lasso of Truth, the mystical armor, or the God-killer sword) were taken by Diana as she left the island to venture into man's world - however, there are other artifacts hidden on Themyscira that will have a major impact on the larger DCEU.
We know from Justice League promotional materials that living computers that are known as "Mother Boxes" were hidden on Earth in at least three locations: one with ancient tribes of men, another with the kingdom of Atlantis, and a third with the Amazons, on Themyscira. These artifacts will become the major objects everyone is fighting over in the Justice League movie.
To tell the origin story of Ares and The Amazons, Wonder Woman uses an impressive motion-capture CGI sequence, which is designed to look like a Renaissance painting in motion.
That painting depicts the story of Ares killing his Greek god brethren, and ultimately his father, Zeus. One of Ares' victims is none other than Poseidon, the god of the sea - and during that moment of the origin sequence, there is a conspicuously noticeable artifact shown onscreen.
SPOILER: When Poseidon is slain by Ares, we his legendary trident go sailing into the air, flung off into some unknown fate. It's a quick and minor moment, but the Trident featured in the scene looks conspicuously like another DCEU artifact: Aquaman's Trident.
This is purely speculative, but it seems like Wonder Woman makes a purposeful showcase of a Trident that could come to be one of the most powerful weapons in the DCEU.
SYNOPSIS: Before she was Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), she was Diana, Princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, Diana meets an American pilot (Chris Pine) who tells her about the massive conflict that's raging in the outside world. Convinced that she can stop the threat, Diana leaves her home for the first time. Fighting alongside men in a war to end all wars, she finally discovers her full powers and true destiny.
Wonder Woman is directed by Patty Jenkins, from a screenplay by Allan Heinberg & Geoff Johns, story by Heinberg & Zack Snyder and Jason Fuchs, and stars Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Connie Nielsen, Robin Wright, Danny Huston, Elena Anaya, Lucy Davis, Saïd Taghmaoui, Ewen Bremner and David Thewlis.
Wonder Woman is now playing in theaters.
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(Photo Credits: Warner Bros. Pictures & DC Comics)