Those comic book fans looking forward to Wonder Woman have a good idea of what the film will look like – and thanks to some new toy artwork can even get a better sense of its villain, Ares, the God of War. It’s been the one area of the film’s production that had been kept tightly under wraps, made easier due to the belief that Wonder Woman’s classic, divine villain will be primarily fueled by CG. The teaser image of Ares’ silhouette seems to confirm that idea, while promising a figure every bit as imposing as fans likely expect.
It’s not the first glimpse that fans have gotten of a design for Ares, but the finished, live-action look at Wonder Woman’s greatest villain has yet to be revealed officially. And judging by the packaging fans are now seeing out in the wild, that’s not going to be changing. It’s an admirable move, and sends a message to every young moviegoer or collector that the long awaited reveal of Ares in all his godly glory… well, that’s only coming in the theater. Until then all you get is a tease.
There are obviously more than one school of thought on the issue, since comic book blockbusters may keep every detail possible under wraps, only to see the tie-in toys and marketing reveal it anyway. In that case, instead of the audience glimpsing a finished design, a confirmed villain, or key plot points in carefully selected, crafted, and hi-res shots or vignettes, they get an alternative that fuels skepticism, not excitement. So as much as the Wonder Woman LEGO toys may reveal “Ares” in full costume, it’s a far cry from what fans hope to see in live action
It looks like those LEGO sets may be abstracted to a point Warner Bros. is comfortable with. But when it comes to the movie’s marketing on its tie-in Hot Wheels cars, Ares looms large – but even his own signature vehicle can’t crack open the lid on concept artwork, let alone a mock-up:
The car itself carries over two large parts of his presumed design, including his massive metal shield and the bone of his helmet, previously revealed in similar, but somewhat closer to the finished design toys. On one hand, the design is almost impossible to truly shock – since every fan of movies, video games, TV shows, or simply mythical artwork can guess the requirements. As the God of War, Ares will be dressed in imposing armor, likely dark, wielding a large sword in one hand and in keeping with his DC appearances, have a face reduced to blackness pierced by two glowing red orbs.
This silhouette confirms that the toy version seen previously is an accurate representation, but it seems clear that in his true form, Ares is far larger than a normal human being. Not only does that promise a memorable fight – along with adding new meaning to her claim of having “killed things from other worlds before” in BvS – but makes it seem even more likely that Diana will have a new superpower. A new power drawn from the Gods of Olympus themselves… who are also massive in size, not just power. Now who’s hoping to see an over-sized Zeus or Poseidon fighting back Darkseid’s forces in Justice League‘s opening battle?
It also seems that in keeping Ares absent from even the movie’s toy line, Warner Bros. and director Patty Jenkins are intent on keeping the identity of Ares, or his role in the story a secret as long as possible. Early test screenings may have spoiled the Ares twist, but only for those keeping a close watch on any and all Wonder Woman spoilers and theories. If the intent is to keep the average movie fan in the dark heading into the theater, then the moment it’s revealed that Wonder Woman is no ordinary superhero story will land with even greater impact.
That’s the kind of bombshell that many DC fans wished had been kept quiet regarding Doomsday’s appearance in Batman V Superman, so perhaps the minds behind the DCEU have taken that message to heart, and tailored their marketing accordingly. Here’s hoping.