Gal is gorgeous. She’s the Wonder Woman for a generation, the same way Adam West was Batman, Christopher Reeve was Superman, Robert Downey Junior is Iron man or Lynda Carter was, well, you know. So it’s easy to forget that she fought like an Amazon for this recognition.
Full disclosure: I’ve read most Wonder Woman comics. I´m a DC fanboy. I mean, I´m in my forties so i haven´t been a boy in a while, but you know what I mean. I´m one of those. And Wonder Woman is my second favorite character (after Superman). But I never read a perfect solo Wonder Woman story. There was always something missing, something that could be better. Until now.
Super heroes are not people. They are power fantasies, they are ideals. As Neal Adams once said, everyone KNOWS how Batman is supposed to be. Wonder Woman is a Greek demi-goddess gifted with, among other things, the beauty of Aphrodite. Gal Gadot is a human being, so she can never measure to the image of the love goddess in every human being imagination. And while most fans were polite enough to wait and see, a vocal loud and crass minority made sure to tell the whole World Wide Web how they felt about her lack of curves and most specifically, her breast size. When she was cast nobody was convinced. I know I was not (“why not Gina Carano? She wants the part and she´s a fighter!”). The best thing said about her was that she´s tall.
And then, BVS happened. And she stole the movie. Yes, the Batman suit rocked, but the Caped Crusader acted like the Punisher, the sad Man of Steel acted like Super-Emo, Doomsday looked like a poor man´s Hulk, Lex Luthor was the worst possible version of the character and WTF was that with Jimmy Olsen in the beginning! Wonder Woman, however, was great. She looked and most important, acted the part. The fight at the end was great. Even if Doomsday looked like a grey Hulk.
But it was just a fight. Wonder Woman is more than that. Wonder Woman is exactly who she was at the Patty Jenkins movie.
She´s super strong, but she also trained since she was a child. She´s fascinated by little kids and she will fight evil when evil presents itself, not when it´s convenient. Yes, this Wonder Woman kills. But it´s the Great War. When Superman kills the warlord that holds Lois Lane hostage it´s very clear he had other options. Batman kills so much that the moment when he has no other option (to save MARTHA), there is no gravitas to the act. Wonder Woman kills because she can´t help it. And she stops when there´s no point in it, even if it´s one of the main villains. Because she´s a hero.
But what really makes her great is that she inspires! When a fellow soldier loses confidence, her smile and a joke makes him gain it again. That was the moment when all the male audience falls in love with Gal Gadot. At least the ones that weren’t in love before. That´s Wonder Woman.
And Gal Gadot is Wonder Woman now. The comic book version is already changing to reflect her body type and winning smile. Most fans are already defending her against the haters the same way Christopher Reeve was defended against any criticism. I mentioned for a few DC fans that the story in the movie is probably the best Wonder Woman ever, and nobody protested. George first arc in the 80´s comes close, but lacked the action.
The action: Gal is a former soldier. Hollywood has the best fight choreography in the world and the best special effects. And technology finally caught up with comic book grandiose. It was the moment.
The DC universe in the movies needed to be saved. Thanks, Wonder Woman.