Wonder Woman's advocacy for women rights and gay rights was taken a step further in September 2016, when comic book writer Greg Rucka announced that she is canonically bisexual, according to her rebooted Rebirth origin. Rucka stated, "... nobody at DC Comics has ever said, [Wonder Woman] gotta be straight. Nobody. Ever. They've never blinked at this." Rucka stated that in his opinion, she "has to be" queer and has "obviously" had same-sex relationships on an island surrounded by beautiful women. This follows the way Wonder Woman was written in the alternate continuity or non-canon Earth One by Grant Morrison, and fellow Wonder Woman writer Gail Simone staunchly supported Rucka's statement. Surprised at the amount of backlash from her fanbase, Rucka responded to "haters" that consensual sex with women is just as important to Wonder Woman as the Truth is to Superman.
Fans of modern day comic book characters would have some difficulty relating to characters from the early golden age, and Wonder Woman is no exception. In her first appearance in the comics, she has obviously fulfilled the role of an icon for readers, but so too did her secret identity, Diana Prince. The character was created in a time when different cultural and societal norms existed in North America.
Olive Byrne met Marston in 1925, when she was a senior at Tufts; he was her psychology professor. Marston was already married, to a lawyer named Elizabeth Holloway. When Marston and Byrne fell in love, he gave Holloway a choice: either Byrne could live with them, or he would leave her. Byrne moved in. Between 1928 and 1933, each woman bore two children; they lived together as a family. Holloway went to work; Byrne stayed home and raised the children. They told census-takers and anyone else who asked that Byrne was Marston’s widowed sister-in-law. “Tolerant people are the happiest,” Marston wrote in a magazine essay in 1939, so “why not get rid of costly prejudices that hold you back?” He listed the “Six Most Common Types of Prejudice.” Eliminating prejudice number six—“Prejudice against unconventional people and non-conformists”—meant the most to him. Byrne’s sons didn’t find out that Marston was their father until 1963—when Holloway finally admitted it—and only after she extracted a promise that no one would raise the subject ever again.
Thus although by the modern depiction her accomplishments at the time seem ordinary, in that era they were more so. Diana Prince was originally an army nurse, but quickly attained the rank of lieutenant in Army Intelligence. This was partially a creative convenience so that she could be close to both Steve Trevor and received information which she needed to pursue her superheroics. In the real world though, this role in Army intelligence, even as the secretary to General Darnell, was still a rare position for a woman to hold in society. At this time as well, the character had her only real sidekicks in her history in the form of Etta Candy and the Holliday Girls. These characters gave the Wonder Woman a degree more of levity while also allowing the writers to focus on some issues which were more related to women. When Marston left the character, the strong driving force of the character to act as a strong moral guide and role model for female readers left as well and the character became more sensitive to the forces driving the industry as whole. Thus Wonder Woman changed somewhat to a more stereotypical woman. Her main interest was not always fighting crime, but for a time it became all in the interest of keeping Steve Trevor happy and interested in her for marriage. Also the backup stories featuring the Wonder Women of History were slowly phased out and replaced with features on marriage customs from around the world and trivial facts on random household objects.
The Silver Age format for comic books also did not generally favour a lot of story arcs, or at least, not memorable ones. In this period though the character did undergo some consistent changes as she battled a variety of common foes including Kobra, but the changed format gave her the ability to develop more as a character. The silver age stories of Wonder Woman can be broken into a few general arcs – the depowered stories (in the mod girl phase), undergoing tests to re-enter the Justice League of America, a golden age story about her work during the Second World War, her adventures as an astronaut for NASA, the hunt for Kobra, and eventually the return of Steve Trevor and the internal politics of working at the Pentagon. The most famous story which she was involved with at this time was “For the Man Who Has Everything”, a story focused on Superman, but also involving herself and Batman. The first major story arc which she was part of was Crisis on Infinite Earths, which also ended her silver age appearances.
Wonder Woman (vol. 1) #179 (Nov. 1969) showed Wonder Woman giving up her powers and returning her costume and title to her mother, in order to continue staying in Man's World. The reason behind this was that all the Amazons were shifting to another dimension, but Diana was unable to accompany them as she needed to stay behind to help Steve, who had been wrongly convicted. Thus, she no longer held the title of Wonder Woman and after meeting and training under a blind martial arts mentor I-Ching, Diana resumed crime fighting as the powerless Diana Prince. She ran a mod-boutique as a business and dressed in a series of jumpsuits while fighting crime. During this period, Samuel R. Delany took over scripting duties with issue #202. Delany was initially supposed to write a six-issue story arc, which would culminate in a battle over an abortion clinic, but Delany was removed reportedly due to criticism from Gloria Steinem, who, not knowing the content of the issues Delany was writing, was upset that Wonder Woman had lost her powers and was no longer wearing her traditional costume.
Upon becoming a super-heroine, Wonder Woman became a founding member of the Justice League. Her ambassadorial duties required her to visit Washington D.C., with army officer Steve Trevor as her liaison. When Parademons stormed Metropolis, Wonder Woman resolved to defend the city, meeting the heroes Superman, Batman, Flash, Green Lantern and Aquaman. They also met the young hero Cyborg, who attempted to warn them against the evil alien conqueror Darkseid. Unfortunately, Cyborg's warnings were meaningless, as Darkseid had already arrived. Although Darkseid had initially beat them without effort, Green Lantern rallied them in order to confront Darkseid as a team. Wonder Woman proved crucial in Darkseid's defeat, stabbing him in one of his eyes to prevent him from using his Omega Beams. This gave Superman and Cyborg enough time to throw Darkseid back into his home-world.
In 2011's The New 52, DC Comics relaunched its entire line of publications to attract a new generation of readers, and thus released volume 4 of the Wonder Woman comic book title. Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang were assigned writing and art duties respectively and revamped the character's history considerably. In this new continuity, Wonder Woman wears a costume similar to her original Marston costume, utilizes a sword and shield, and has a completely new origin. No longer a clay figure brought to life by the magic of the gods, she is, instead, a demi-goddess and the natural-born daughter of Hippolyta and Zeus. Azzarello and Chiang's revamp of the character was critically acclaimed, but highly divisive among longtime fans of the character.
Lennox suggests meeting Siracca, a fellow demigod daughter of Zeus as well. She travels to Lybia and finds a girl trapped in a vase. The girl tells Wonder Woman that when the soldiers came, everyone hid in a bunker. Leading her down, she triggers a trap which sends a plethora of knives, swords and daggers at her. Blocking them all but one, Diana looks to find the girl dissolving to sand. Crying at her failure, her time to mourn is cut short as the real Siracca, albeit in a zombie like form, ambushes her.
Since her attack on Veronica Cale, Cheetah had been captured by Cale and held in the basement of Empire Industries, where she was being experimented on by Doctor Poison. Cheetah suddenly dropped into a coma, before waking and massacring Empire Industries' staff, while screaming about the return of the so-called 'Dark Gods'. She attempted to kill Cale once again, but was restrained due to the timely intervention of Wonder Woman. Steve Trevor informed Diana that all over the world, people had begun acting strangely and warning of the Dark Gods. As she flew through the skies of Washington, she was suddenly attacked by a deranged Supergirl. After a lengthy battle, Wonder Woman was able to defeat Kara and restrained her in the Lasso of Truth, which knocked her unconscious. Jason returned after learning from the Fates that the armor that had been gifted to him by the gods was originally created for Diana, but had been mistakenly given to Jason after Zeus' death. It also allowed Jason to channel the power of any member of the Greek Pantheon, though he could only use one god's powers at a time. Jason began to explain his discoveries to Diana, but they were interrupted by a group of giant monoliths appearing in the sky, which began to activate. As soon as the siblings began to investigate, Wonder Woman was taken by a pair of Star Sapphires who needed her assistance due to an emergency on Zamaron. As Diana was forcefully teleported, Jason was left alone before the activating monoliths.
With a new decade arriving, DC president Jenette Kahn ordered a revamp in Wonder Woman's appearance. Artist Milton Glaser, who also designed the "bullet" logo adopted by DC in 1977, created a stylized "WW" emblem that evoked and replaced the eagle in her bodice and debuted in 1982. The emblem in turn was incorporated by studio letterer Todd Klein onto the monthly title's logo, which lasted for a year and a half before being replaced by a version from Glaser's studio. With sales of the title continuing to decline in 1985 (despite an unpublished revamp that was solicited), the series was canceled and ended in issue #329 (February 1986) written by Gerry Conway, depicting Steve Trevor's marriage to Wonder Woman.
In an October 25, 1940, interview with the Family Circle magazine, William Moulton Marston discussed the unfulfilled potential of the comic book medium. This article caught the attention of comics publisher Max Gaines, who hired Marston as an educational consultant for National Periodicals and All-American Publications, two of the companies that would merge to form DC Comics. At that time, Marston wanted to create his own new superhero; Marston's wife and fellow psychologist Elizabeth suggested to him that it should be a woman:
“I have the good Sergeant’s letter in which he expresses his enthusiasm over chains for women—so what?” As a practicing clinical psychologist, he said, he was unimpressed. “Some day I’ll make you a list of all the items about women that different people have been known to get passionate over—women’s hair, boots, belts, silk worn by women, gloves, stockings, garters, panties, bare backs,” he promised. “You can’t have a real woman character in any form of fiction without touching off a great many readers’ erotic fancies. Which is swell, I say.”