In the newly-released Wonder Woman 1984, it's been several decades since viewers first met the heroine and in that time a lot has changed. Not only does the film find Diana living a fairly quiet life in Washington D.C. in the 1980s, but she's also very much still figuring out her powers, her abilities, and her place as a hero in Man's World. In the film, that means the development of some new powers, powers that the Amazon comes into in a way that is not only authentic to the development of Diana as a character but has some roots in comics as well.
Warning: Spoilers for Wonder Woman 1984 below. Quit reading now if you don't want to see those spoilers!
In Wonder Woman 1984, Diana (Gal Gadot) develops two new major powers that help further evolve the character towards her iconic comic book version, specifically the ability to turn something invisible but most notably the ability to fly. The invisibility power is something that Diana uses to create the iconic invisible jet. When she and Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) "borrow" a jet to fly to Egypt in pursuit of Maxwell Lord (Pedro Pascal), Diana has to think fast in order to hide the aircraft from radar. She ends up trying to tap into something that her father Zeus could do, telling Steve that her father was able to hide Themyscira from the world and she's been trying for years to turn things invisible as well, though her only success at that point had been a coffee mug. Luckily for the two of them, she's able to make it work for the aircraft, bringing the invisible jet to the live-action screen and making for a pretty stunning scene in which they fly through Fourth of July fireworks.
That scene is also important to the development of Diana's other major new power in Wonder Woman 1984. Up until now, we've never seen Diana fly. She even tells Steve in Wonder Woman 1984 that flight is his power and something that she can't do. Steve then explains to her that flight is all about feeling the air and the currents, giving her a very passionate and eloquent description of the basics of aerodynamics. It's a conversation that will come into play later in the film.
After Diana renounces her wish -- it was literally stripping her of her powers to have Steve "alive", her powers being the cost of having her wish granted -- and Steve is gone, Diana is seen using her lasso to swing through the sky, essentially hitching a ride on a passing plane. It's there in the clouds that Diana replays what Steve's told her about flying and, after a moment and a bit of getting used to things, Diana learns to ride the currents. In just a few minutes, Diana is able to fly, lasso not necessary.
The idea of Diana having to learn to fly comes straight out of the comics. You see, Wonder Woman couldn't always fly. That's actually where the origin of the invisible jet came from since in her early appearances flight wasn't one of her super powers. It's something that she's had to learn and develop at various points in her comic book history. Having Diana have to learn new powers and skills on screen in Wonder Woman 1984 highlights the humanity of the character. Diana may be an Amazon with immense power, but she's not without flaw, something that makes her passion for protecting humans even more meaningful. It's also a nice way to nod the characters comic book history, considering that she's had quite a few odd and one-off powers over the years.1comments
Wonder Woman 1984 is now streaming on HBO Max and playing in theaters.
What do you think about Diana learning to fly in Wonder Woman 1984? Let us know in the comments.