Would you rather have a masked vigilante creepily spying on you from the shadows, an overpowered-alien monitoring you while flying far overhead, or a heroic warrior riding beside you on her pet kangaroo promoting truth, justice, and hairless armpits? If you're having trouble deciding, read on!
When it comes to the Holy Trinity of DC Comics, Batman and Superman definitely stand front and center, or at least they have until now. Hopeful, inspiring, and heroic - traits not normally used to describe a film set in the DCEU - Wonder Woman delivers a welcomed return to the spotlight for the Goddess of Truth. Really though, she never left, rather was just sidelined by an over saturation of testosterone in capes.
Ever since her debut, Wonder Woman has been one of the most iconic characters ever put to panel, and not just as a symbol for the empowerment of women. Yet despite her lasting popularity, she usually takes a back seat to her Justice League counterparts. But don't let all that inequality fool you, when it comes to saving the day and punching the bad guys away, Wonder Woman is the ideal hero to have by your side.
By Merciful Minerva! Here are the 15 Ways Wonder Woman is Better Than Superman and Batman.
15 She’s Royalty
How cool are you if your real name is just as awesome as your stage name? Usually, you change a name because the one you were born worth wasn't making the cut. Would we be just as excited to see Mission Impossible if it were starring Thomas Mopother III? Certainly no one would care if U2's frontman was Paul Hewson. Would Gotham's worst be shaking in their boots if “Bruce” was after them? Would the world look up in awe at Kal-El? No, someone with the name Kal-El gets strip-searched at the airport. Bruce gets his lunch money stolen on a daily basis. Princess Diana of Themyscira, on the other hand, well, she's actually a princess.
Don't think “Princess” is just as cool a moniker as “Wonder Woman”? Just ask every female you've ever met. What's even better, Diana's title isn't just for show, she's got the bloodline to back it up. She is literally the Princess of the Amazons, a race of warrior women from Thermyscira (aka Paradise Island). To summarize, Kal-El rules over the corn fields of Kansas. Bruce Wayne commands a senior-citizen butler and several orphaned boys in their underwear. Wonder Woman is the princess of Paradise and oversees an entire civilization of strong, beautiful women. Moving on...
14 She is a God
While being a princess is pretty cool, you know what's even better? Being a Goddess Princess. Superman might be considered godlike and Batman something straight out of hell, but Wonder Woman is actually a deity (or at the very least a demi-deity, which is still pretty good in our books). Her father is Zeus. Yep, that Zeus - god of the sky, ruler of Olympus and the dude that slept with pretty much every Greek woman alive. In this case, it was Hippolyta, queen of the Amazons. As a result, Princess Diana is an immortal being who, if this was 400BC and we were in Greece, we'd all be praying to.
Of course, Wonder Woman has a few origin stories, not all of which depict Zeus as her biological dad. In those instances, she was not born at all, but molded out of clay. Which is probably even more badass. Especially given that that clay emerged from the souls of abused and murdered women, and then was infused with the strength of Demeter, the beauty of Aphrodite, the wisdom of Athena, the speed of Hermes, the skills of Artemis, and the fire of Hestia. So Wonder Woman is either Zeus' daughter or she had Greek's greatest gods bestow her with the celestial gifts of life. Batman and Superman, on the other hand, were born because their mortal parents got married and had sex. Lame.
13 She Doesn't Need a Secret Identity
Unlike her iconic DC male counterparts, Wonder Woman's secret identity is one of the least important aspects of her character. Princess Diana journeyed to “the world of men” on an open mission of diplomacy and peace. Neither Batman nor Superman willingly chose the paths they took, but were forced into them by circumstance, and thus have parts (and people) they would rather not share with the rest of the world. Not so with the Goddess of Truth. She's not trying to fit-in and has nothing to hide.
When Wonder Woman debuted in 1941's All-Star Comics #8, she was triumphantly declared “only as Wonder Woman.” During the '80s and New 52, she similarly ditched having any alternate persona. While there have been times when she has had an alter-ego as Diana Prince, it wasn't for the same reasons as Bats and Supes. It was more to safeguard the world from her, than vice versa. Her caped brethren are always paranoid their secret identities are going to be discovered, and they try desperately to stop it from happening. Diana could care less. The reason why is highlighted in a great panel where she, joined by Bats and Supes out of costume, explains:
I'm here in my private identity... I'm still essentially myself, I'm just not announcing it to the world. You two make an elaborate production of it, practically transforming yourselves into different people.
You know when Hugh Jackman dresses up in cosplay at Comic Con and no one notices? It's kind of like that.
12 Her Private Identity is Just as Much a Hero
It's safe to say that no one thinks Clark Kent is super (except for maybe Martha). Bruce Wayne is more of a rich, arrogant jerk than an outstanding role model. One spends their day as a journalist to get near the action while acting as inept as possible. The other goes out of his way to personify a spoiled playboy. Overall, Batman and Superman do very little to inspire while disguised in their secret identities. Wonder Woman's alter-ego, on the other hand, is just as amazing as she is.
In the Golden Age, Diana Prince started off as an army nurse. She then worked her way up as an OSS secretary and was promoted to a Lieutenant then Major of Army Intelligence. From there, she became a U.N. translator, a U.N. Crisis Bureau agent, an Air Force officer, a Pentagon liaison dedicated to preventing global disasters, and an astronaut. In the '60s, when she lost her powers, she opened up a trendy fashion boutique in New York's Greenwhich village. Whether that last one was an ill-guided character development is up for debate, but could you see Clark Kent running his own business? Know what happened when Bruce Wayne was left up to his own devices? Zur-En-Arrh.
From secretary to humanitarian to astronaut, Wonder Woman's private identity has done just as much to help the world, albeit through somewhat less flashy (yet no less heroic) means.
11 She Earned Her Place in the World
Just as Diana Prince had to make her own way, so too did Princess Diana have to earn the right to be Wonder Woman. As royalty or the kid of a god, you would think she was entitled to pretty much everything. But that's not how Paradise Island works. Wonder Woman creator conceived Themyscira as an allegory for women being able to succeed without male dominated politics. One of their vital tenets was that everyone earns their place. When it was determined that one of them was to visit “the world of men,” the Amazons underwent a series of challenges to prove who alone was worthy. Princess Diana succeeded all, and was bestowed the mantle of Wonder Woman by her Amazonian sisters. Conversely, Bruce Wayne bought his way into Batman-hood, and Kal-El got a tan to become Superman.
Even more impressive/disturbing was when Wonder Woman underwent twelve deadly trials to get back into the Justice League after temporarily losing her powers, despite being a founding member. What's important here is that she self-imposed this test on herself. Sure, her teammates (and more importantly, the writers) should have known better, but in terms of character, this just goes to show how unwilling Wonder Woman is to let anyone tell her she doesn't deserve to be where she is.
10 Her Existence Doesn't Inspire Villainy
There's an age old argument that heroes create the villains that oppose them. While certainly crime and evil don't need an excuse, there is an undeniable correlation between trouble and the appearance of Batman and Superman. The vast majority of Batman's rogues gallery are extensions of his own existence (like Joker, Riddler, and Scarecrow), or at the very least drawn to Gotham due to his presence (like Bane, Ra's Al Ghul, and Hugo Strange). With all his masks and gadgetry, Batman has also escalated the caliber of criminal running amok. Much like Superman has done with Lex Luthor, who without the Man of Steel would probably just be another shady megalomaniac billionaire, or the president. Certainly, there would be far fewer attacks from outer space. Or do you really think Zod would give Earth a second thought if Kal-El weren't living there? Don't get us wrong, we're glad Supes is around when the likes of Doomsday appear, but his existence definitely encourages the bad guys of the universe to step-up their villain game.
Wonder Woman, however, rarely does the same. Most of Diana's rogues would be up to no good whether she was spinning around or not, especially since the majority of them are classical Greek gods, like Ares and Circe. Wonder Woman does not make her villains, nor did they create her. After all, how many of her recurring enemies can you name? Probably not a lot, because they are not a defining aspect of her character.
9 She is Physically Stronger
Right off the bat, we can remove the Caped Crusader from this one for obvious, puny human reasons. That leaves just the Man of Steel to outmuscle. We're pretty sure Wonder Woman is up for the challenge, being one of the strongest superheroes in existence; man, woman, or Hulk. Her Zeusian levels of strength puts her at the very least in the same category as Supes, but there's a very strong case to be made that she even exceeds him.
We could try to recount Wonder Woman's feats, all of which are on par with anything Superman has pulled from his cape, but we'd probably run out of Internet. She has overpowered Shazam, Hercules, Artemis, Powergirl, and Supergirl (who's probably stronger than her cousin). She doesn't know the limits of her strength, since she has yet to find something that adequately tests it, not even other gods.
And then there's her bracelets. Forged from the remnants of Zeus' shield, they actually weaken her powers so as to protect her opponents (and the world around her, frankly). Remove the Bracelets of Submission and Wonder Woman goes into full-on God Mode. How strong is that, you ask? Just ask Superdoom.
8 She Can Kick Their Butts in Hand to Hand Combat
For arguments sake, let's say Wonder Woman doesn't possess godlike, Kryptonian-crushing strength. She'd still whoop both Batman and Superman, thanks to her fighting prowess. All the Amazons of Themyscira are heavy-hitting warriors, well-trained in combat and the art of war. When Hercules tried to overthrow their home, Hippolyta manhandled him despite the demi-god's superior strength and durability. So just imagine what Wonder Woman could do to the World's Finest in a fight given the fact that she's even more superior in hand-to-hand combat than her mother.
Batman himself considers her the best melee fighter on the planet. For good reason too, since in The Hiketeia graphic novel, she beats the crap out Bats and he runs away with his cape between his legs. Compared to Diana's skills, Bruce Wayne's martial arts training looks like kindergarten. As far as going up against the likes of Superman, technique and experience will always win out over brute strength. The fact that Wonder Woman possesses both just means she can clean the floor with Supes all the more easily. Like she did during Injustice, when she broke the Man of Steel's arm.
7 She Doesn't Endanger All the People Around Her
A really great thing about Wonder Woman is that she doesn't get young children killed on the regular. Can Batman say the same? Nor does she level entire cities while trying to defend them. Really, pretty much everyone surrounding Batman and Superman, from coworkers to friends, family, man-servants, and random bystanders, are constantly being put in harm's way on account of these two. Not so with Wonder Woman, which means she wastes a lot less time rescuing people and a lot more time getting crap done.
A good reason for this is because most of her loved ones are either gods, superheroes, or badass Amazons that can take care of themselves just fine. Her human pals like Julia Kapatellis and Etta Candy occasionally find themselves in tough situations, but nearly always find a way out, and actually end up saving Wonder Woman more often than not. Like that time Etta liberated an entire concentration camp using nothing but a box of candy and then deflected a bullet from hitting WW with another box of candy. (Etta really likes candy.)
Her “damsel in distress” Steve Trevor has probably gotten the worst of it, having been a constant target of Diana's enemies and even died in her arms, but he's also in the military and has been a member of the Justice League, so it's not exactly like she's the sole reason his life gets jeopardized. Point is, we'd feel a whole lot safer running around a Wonder Woman comic than one with Batman or Superman. Especially if Etta Candy were there.
6 She Has Cooler (and More Deadly) Accessories
One of the more memorable occasions in which Wonder Woman kicked the crap out of Superman was Wonder Woman #219. The Man of Steel was tricked into believing she was Doomsday (because he's a sucker for anyone with a rudimentary knowledge in mind control), but since Kal lacks any semblance of fighting skills, Diana drops him with a few roundhouse kicks to the face, all the while holding back for fear of seriously hurting him. But what really puts her over the top is when the Goddess of Truth whips out her weaponry, using her bracelets to deafen him and her tiara of all things to slice his throat, putting an end to their fight right quick.
Wonder Woman's accessories aren't mere gadgets. Gadgets are technological trickery meant to overcompensate for a lack of innate ability. Accessories enhance the inherent qualities already present. The Sword of Athena, which can draw blood from Superman, is only as good as its wielder. The invisible plane is as transparently awesome as Wonder Woman herself. And what can't the Lasso of Truth do? Forged from the Golden Girdle of Aphrodite, it's one of the coolest superhero weapons ever imagined - binding, whipping, healing, truth telling, teleporting, and even allowing Wonder Woman to transform her wardrobe on the spot.
What's more, all her items are magically endowed (which is why Superman is helpless against them), as well as created by gods. Batman may try to counter with some of the most ridiculous gadgets ever conceived, but those toys don't come close to the heat Wonder Woman is packing.
5 She is Not Affected by Space Rocks, Heat Vision, or Magic
Like anyone, Wonder Woman has her weaknesses. She probably wouldn't be all that relatable if she didn't. But whatever physical shortcomings the Goddess of Truth may possess, she more than makes up for with her impressive set of superpowers, like being able to talk with dinosaurs. What's more, she is immune to some of the more debilitating conditions that adversely effect her fellow heroes. You could even argue Superman has a lot more vulnerabilities. As does Batman obviously, because he's a frail human that has been known to wet himself.
Granted, the Man of Steel has Wonder Woman beat in durability. She can get shot, poisoned, or poked in the eye just the like the rest of us. Luckily though, she has enhanced regenerative abilities that prevent those afflictions from being much of a hindrance. And her durability isn't anything to scoff at either. In fact, she can resist one of the few powers Superman has over her - his heat vision. That's right, Princess Diana is resistant to fire, be it immersed in the hellish flames of Ares or the laser eye beams of Clark Kent. (Even Superman isn't immune to his own heat vision.) Not being from Krypton, she could also care less about kryptonite, and to boot, she is impervious to magic, which as we all know are two of Superman's greatest weaknesses. So put these three in a room full of fire, kryptonite, and party magicians, and only one of them is walking out of there alive.
4 Her Powers Are Not Dependent on the Sun, Gadgets or Prep Time
Wonder Woman doesn't require anything to be Wonder Woman. She is a superhero, born and raised, through and through. Without his gadgets, Bruce Wayne is just a weirdo running around in a cape telling everyone he's Batman. Without a yellow sun, Kal-El is just an un-super, incredibly handsome dude that can no longer shoot rainbows out his fingers. Princess Diana is Wonder Woman no matter what's hanging from her hip, with the same exact abilities and powers regardless if we're on Earth, in Themyscira, near a red sun, or if she knows Lucius Fox.
Then again, Batman's greatest superpower (other than being rich) is prep time, right? He has spent hours collating elaborate plans detailing how to defeat everyone he has met or will ever meet, including all the members of the Justice League. How can Wonder Woman compete with that? In A League of One, we get our answer when she learns that her teammates will die fighting a dragon. In response, she promptly decides to take them all out before that can happen. She teleports Martian Manhunter into a volcano, swipes Green Lantern's ring then head-butts him unconscious, dropkicks Flash unconscious, tosses Aquaman into the clutches of a mythological beast, punches Batman in the solar plexus, and launches all of them into an asteroid belt where only Superman can save them. With all her teammates either subdued or distracted, she alone sacrifices herself to the dragon. Not bad for an afternoon's work with absolutely no prep time. Looks like Wonder Woman just out-Batmanned Batman.
Oh, and by the way, you know what Batman came up with for defeating Wonder Woman? Nothing.
3 She Lifted Thor's Hammer
If there was ever a question of Wonder Woman's worthiness, it was flattened when she nonchalantly picked up Thor's hammer - one of the few items that surpasses the Lasso of Truth in power and awesomeness. During 1996's Marvel vs. DC, the classic characters from each side were pitted against one another in a pseudo-celebrity hero battle royale. When Thor loses control of Mjolnir during his match with Shazam, Wonder Woman stumbles upon his hammer and receives a power jolt from the Norsian gods.
Available only to those deemed worthy enough, picking up Thor's hammer says a lot about a person's moral purity. Which is probably why we will never see the likes of the Dark Knight swinging it's mighty head. Superman for his part has held Mjolnir, but only temporarily. During Marvel and DC's other meet-up in the epic JLA/Avengers crossover, Supes gets his hand on both Thor's hammer and Captain America's shied to deliver a decisive blow to the enemy of the story. Later, however, he is unable to get Mjolnir to budge on account of no longer being worthy enough. Tellingly, Wonder Woman had no such problem; rather, she willingly tosses aside the untold power of Mjolnir since it would give her an unfair advantage in her fight against the X-Men's Storm. Because there is no substitute for honor, not even sexed up superhero outfits.
2 She is a Natural Leader
Thanks to Athena, Wonder Woman possesses god-given leadership. From commanding Amazons to acting as an ambassador to men, working as a high-ranking military official or founding the Justice League, Princess Diana is a natural born leader. She is royalty, after all.
If there weren't any evil in the world, Batman would surely hang up his cowl and Superman his cape. Their very existences are a response to crime, danger and destruction. But not Wonder Woman. Comic author Gail Simone perhaps summed it up best when she wrote:
If you need to stop an asteroid, you call Superman. If you need to solve a mystery, you call Batman. But if you need to end a war, you call Wonder Woman.
The Goddess of Truth's sole purpose isn't to single-handedly rid a city of evil or stop alien threats - it's to promote peace and good will, and lead by example. Alternatively, Batman would sooner kick you in the groin than let you get in the way of his vendettas, and Superman is too busy self-righteously trying to save people rather than help them save themselves. But Wonder Woman stands out as someone trying to guide us to a better tomorrow. Maybe Lois Lane would have been a lot better off if Diana had taught her how to use a sword instead of having Superman make her believe that whenever she falls off a building, he'd be there to catch her. Take it from us, the DCEU would be a lot better off if Diana were leading the charge.
1 She's a Woman
Wonder Woman stands for love and truth, which is something you don't get with male superheroes (other than maybe Captain Planet, but we're pretty sure he's androgynous). Yeah, Superman promotes, “Truth, justice, and the American Way,” but what does that really mean other than wealthy entitled white men doing whatever they want and everyone else eating lots of pizza? Batman doesn't even have a credo unless you count “I am vengeance. I am the night. I am Batman,” which is more terrifying than inspiring. In fact, show us any male superhero and we'll show you someone who propagates dominance, control, deceit, self-centeredness, and violence. Thank goodness for Wonder Woman and her openly feminine take on what it means to be a superhero.
Diana's creator was an unusual guy to say the least, but one thing that made William Moulton Marston truly stand out in the early 20th century was his firm belief that women would one day rule the world. That is why he created Wonder Woman - as an icon for the female-led new age, inherently more peaceful, benevolent and loving than her male counterparts. Comic author Gail Simone would later further the character's mission with the credo, “Keep faith. Trust to love. Fight with honor. But fight to win.” Now that's something everyone can stand for, whether you're a patriotic alien or the goddamn Batman.
There are any number of statistical studies showing in what ways woman are better than men. From excelling at school, surviving car crashes, being doctors, managing businesses, handling stress, making DCEU movies, the list goes on. But we're not here to add fuel to the battle of the sexes fire, just show that when it comes to being a superhero, Wonder Woman rules.
Not bad for someone who got their start as a superhero secretary.
Do you agree with the Goddess of Truth's superiority over Batman and Superman? Let us know in the comments.
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