What Wonder Woman Taught Me By Marie Borthwick

 

I can’t remember the first time I learned about the lasso of truth, the pretty tiara and those fabulous bullet proof bracelets. Sometimes it feels like I have known her since I was born!

Wonder Woman started out as a DC comic heroine, she first appeared in All Start Comics #8 (December 1941). In her homeland of Themyscria she is known as Diana. Wonder Woman’s powers include:

  • Super strength
  • Flight (original wonder woman didn’t have this talent though, it was later added)
  • Super-speed
  • Super-stamina
  • Super-agility

The thing that always appealed to me about Wonder Woman is well – her fantastic outfit. As a young girl I made bracelets like hers (or so I thought they looked) out of construction paper and would get my sisters to throw rocks at me so I could block them – it didn’t work out too well. One, my sisters were only too happy to throw rocks at me and two – well my bracelets were made of construction paper, certainly not indestructible like those ones Wonder Woman had.

As a kid I feared (and was in awe at the same time) Wonder Woman’s “Lasso of Truth”. This thing could be wrapped around anyone and bingo, they told the truth. When I watched the TV I would always try to imitate the motions of my hero when she twirled the lasso ready to snare a bad guy. I was triumphant right along with her when she did catch someone in that lasso of truth; it was like we were a team.

And yes, I did make my own lasso of truth, but as all I had to snare was the family dog… I never found out if mine worked as well as Wonder Woman’s.

As a warrior princess (one of the first!) heroine Wonder Woman was a role model for many young girls my age. Created to be “… a feminist ideal, championing [Amazon] the causes of love, peace, sexual equality to a world torn by the hatred of men.” (Marston)

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There are many other aspects of Wonder Woman that make her a fantastic superhero overall – she is skilled in hand-to-hand combat, warfare in general and the ability to communicate with animals that serves her well.

Many comic book fans may be disappointed to learn that I have never read a comic – well as a child I never did (I have recently as an adult). The way I learned about Wonder Woman was through the glory of modern television – of course since the TV series (starring Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman) was on from 1975-1979 I watched it in reruns on Saturday mornings. I would sit with my bowl of cereal, my security blanket and just WATCH.

To me Wonder Woman represented (and still does) the best of everything about womanhood. She is strong, confident, self-assured and a kick ass fighter when she needs to be. She has the ability to know when to fight and when NOT to fight. Her lasso of truth taught me the power of telling the truth, it taught me while it may be painful – it’s the right thing to do. It may seem silly to some to admit being taught valuable lessons about honesty by a fictional character – but, it is what it is and I am not ashamed to say it.

I would love to see Wonder Woman come back to the small screen – but without the “spruce up” that old series usually get these days. I don’t want my childhood hero to fall by the way side just because some Hollywood big wig decided she needed new accessories, new abilities or new outfit. To me Wonder Woman will always be the Lynda Carter version – she was the one that taught me strength, honesty and love.

Quick note from Pav – I’m proud to say my children own the DVD collection of all three seasons of Wonder Woman and watch it ad nauseum. Ahhh, Nazi’s and bell bottoms, it doesn’t get much better.

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