Great Hera! We’ve all been simply wonderstruck by Wonder Woman’s golden armor in the kaleidoscopic posters released for Wonder Woman 1984. But we also know our history—this is far from the first time Diana’s fashion choices have set the world abuzz. To maybe a greater extent than any other A-List DC Super Hero, Wonder Woman’s look has been radically interpreted time and again. Take a look at her costume and discover what went into its design here and then read up on five of the most daring pieces in Wonder Woman’s wardrobe below. Then get your speculation engines revving on whether any of them will be seen when Wonder Woman 1984 finally hits screens.
Leisure Suit Lariat
Perhaps the definitive Wonder Woman storyline of the Silver Age and/or Bronze Age began in Wonder Woman #178, when Diana found herself pulled in two directions. While her people prepare for a long-awaited journey for Themyscira to ascend to a higher plane of existence, Steve Trevor, the love of her life, has been framed for murder. Ultimately, Diana chose to remain in the mortal world, abandoning her mantle as Wonder Woman and the incredible powers that came with it. She ALSO chose a brand-new wardrobe, sporting a wide variety of those mad mod outfits of the 1960s. But most memorable of them all was her pure white color scheme, visually representing the tabula rasa she had made of her life. As the first issue of the storyline asks, without her connection to Paradise Island, without her powers, “Who Is Wonder Woman?” Later, the white jumpsuit from this era would return for Wonder Woman’s “One Year Later” storyline, as the signature look of her re-established civilian identity Diana Prince.
As fans of Wonder Woman’s iconic 1970s-era TV series can attest, perhaps just as famous as Diana’s costume changes is the way she executes them. Throughout the series, an exuberant 180 degree pirouette is enough to magically change Diana’s street clothes into her Wonder Woman raiments—or whatever variety of her suit is called for. The most unique of these transformations may be her star-spangled wetsuit, complete with a tiara-patterned bathing cap which protects her carefully managed hair as she plumbs the depths of the Pacific coastline. And when a motorcycle chase is called for, Diana’s diving suit doubles as her chosen biker gear…with an added helmet for safety, of course.
Belts and Biker Shorts
And speaking of biker gear, well… Look, before you judge, understand that the ’90s were a different time. All the DC Super Heroes were dressing like this, trying to out-extreme and over-edge each other. And with Diana having recently lost the t**le of Wonder Woman to her rival Artemis of the Bana-Mighdall, can you really blame a gal for trying something different? If you’d like to witness Diana’s journey through the wildstorm of the image-obsessed nineties, the story begins in Wonder Woman #93.
Jim Lee’s 21st Century Woman
It’s easy to forget after the much wider line reimagining that came with the New 52 in 2011, but one of the biggest comic book headlines of 2010 was the dramatic changes that writer J. Michael Straczynski and artist Jim Lee brought to Diana for the historic Wonder Woman #600, in both story and costume. Some frankly dubious claims were made at the time that this was Wonder Woman’s first significant costume change since her debut in 1941—though as we can clearly see from this list, no one putting forth such an idea was grasping a Golden Lasso of Truth. Once again divorced from her past on Paradise Island, Diana dug her ’90s blue bomber jacket out of the closet, and paired it with a more sensible top and dark leggings (which some people went MAD over, let us tell you). In retrospect, the whole ensemble actually looks pretty nice. But it wouldn’t be long before Jim Lee drafted a redesign hewing closer to her classic look for the New 52.
Golden Eagle Armor
Eagle-eyed readers have already spotted a likely source of inspiration for the daring look showcased in the Wonder Woman 1984 posters and trailer: the gold-plated, winged armor of writer Mark Waid and artist Alex Ross’s Kingdom Come, as donned by Diana during a climactic battle of the gods. Nothing short of operatic in its scope, the Wagner-invoking Valkyrie look was certainly appropriate in capturing the dramatic tone of the material…though it has a certain Hawkwoman vibe to it. If this was in fact a starting point for the 2020 film’s armor, then, if anything, it seems the costume department may have been exercising RESTRAINT in their design. But who knows? If each new poster and trailer have taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected from Wonder Woman 1984.
A version of this article originally ran on DC Universe. Be sure to subscribe to DC Universe Infinite for unlimited access to more than 24,000 comics from every era of publishing, plus original t**les, special fan events and more!
Alex Jaffe is the author of the “Ask the Question” column on DCUniverse.com, and writes about TV, movies, comics and superhero history for both DCUniverse.com and DCComics.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AlexJaffe.