In terms of the critical consensus, the DCEU has still to deliver a better movie than Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman, although the goodwill and enthusiastic early reactions towards Zack Snyder’s Justice League could potentially end up changing that. As it stands, though, Jenkins’ World War I comic book blockbuster remains the high point for a franchise that’s always struggled with consistency.
Even the director couldn’t make lightning strike twice after sequel Wonder Woman 1984 left a lot of fans disappointed, with Gal Gadot’s second solo outing as Diana Prince plagued by massive plot holes and some questionable storyline developments. That being said, you can tell from watching 1984 that Jenkins was given a lot more creative freedom the second time around.
It’s not like Warner Bros. tied her hands behind her back for the first film, but she’s admitted that the decision to have the third act devolve into a standard CGI-heavy battle between the hero and villain was essentially forced upon her by the studio. Not only that, but Hippolyta star Connie Nielsen has now revealed in a new interview that somebody behind the scenes wanted to have the Amazons given a backstory that would have made them the victims of a traumatic event, but Jenkins put her foot down and stopped it from happening.
“She was very clear about what the Amazons were supposed to be. And I think that there had originally been some idea that the Amazons had been deeply traumatized by some kind of horrible event that involved mass rape. Patty just said, ‘Hm, no. No, no, we’re not gonna put that on those Amazons. We don’t want to start out seeing them as victims, and why would we? Let’s just get rid of that part and make sure that these are heroes in their own terms’.”
Quite why anyone at Warner Bros. thought that using mass rape as a story point in a crowd-pleasing superhero movie was a good idea is unclear. Not to mention that it would also completely defeat the purpose of Wonder Woman‘s Amazons being strong, capable and determined warriors in their own right if the defining moment in the entire history of Themiscyra boiled down to them being victimized by men.