Acclaimed comic book writer Grant Morrison has set his sights on the Amazing Amazon and will be releasing an original graphic novel, Wonder Woman: Earth One next year. Illustrated by Yanick Paquette, the OGN is a modern retelling of Wonder Woman’s origin which follows J. Michael Straczynski’s Superman: Earth One and Geoff Johns’ Batman: Earth One. Both the Superman and Batman books sold extremely well and even appealed to both lapsed and brand new comic readers. It’s only natural that the third part of DC’s “Trinity” gets her turn in the spotlight.
In an interview with Hero Complex, Morrison discussed his influences and plans for this project. Here are a few excerpts:
I liked the idea of being able to write something that was like a novel, and also to tell a different version of the Wonder Woman story.
I read up on the old William Moulton Marston [pen name Charles Moulton] stuff, with Harry Peter, the artist… Wonder Woman was created as an opposition to what he saw as the bloodcurdling masculinity of the comics. He wanted to basically teach young men that submission to the loving authority of a clever and kind woman would be the best way to live, and it would end wars, and it would end the strife of men.
It’s not a comic about superheroes punching each other. It’s about the sexes and how we feel about one another, and what a society of women cut off from the rest of the world for 3,000 years might look like, and what kind of sexuality, what kind of philosophy, what kind of science would that have developed, and how would that impact our world if it actually suddenly became apparent that these women existed. So for me, that was always the original Wonder Woman story, but when you hear it retold, there’s a lot of potential in there to talk about the way we live today and the way the sexes view one another, especially in an age when pornography has become so ubiquitous, to go back to this sort of strange eroticism that Martson had. I think it is a really interesting way to talk about the issues we have in the world today.
So far, so good. But as a Wonder Woman fan, I found a few of his additional comments disturbing.
There’s something about the character that really annoyed me, to be honest, because I couldn’t quite get a hook on her. I felt like there were a lot of really strange contradictions in there…. And because it was a challenge to most people. If you read about filmmakers talking about Wonder Woman, it’s always, “Oh, we can’t make a Wonder Woman film because people wouldn’t buy into this, this, this or this.” So it seemed that it was a challenging character. And because I’d done Superman and Batman, I really wanted to do the DC trinity of major characters. So I kind of came to it ‘round the back door, but finally realized, “Yeah, I really want to do something with this and see if I can make it work in a way that I’d like to see it working.
We’re also going to deal with the notion of Wonder Woman having a costume, which I think is almost ridiculous. So we’re playing with that a little bit and doing something different from that, which surprisingly nobody has ever done. We’re going to do something with how she looks, which is quite different.
So DC has enlisted a writer who is “annoyed” by Wonder Woman, who finds much of her back history full of “strange contradictions” and who thinks her costume is “ridiculous” to tell her definitive origin story for a new generation?
*Sigh.* Like I don’t hear enough of that out of Hollywood. Why can’t anyone get and love the character for who and what she is? There is room for tweaking, but to be completely bewildered by the character and to have such hostile feelings for her trappings… this doesn’t sound like someone who is even remotely qualified for this project. I guess we’ll see next year when this graphic novel hits shelves.
How do you feel? Are you excited by the idea of Grant Morrison re-envisioning the Amazon Princess for a new generation? Comment below!