What I Do Is Not Up To You

Diana turns to Steve and exclaims: “What I do is not up to you”. This phrase has been around for a long time and it defines Wonder Woman perfectly. She doesn’t need anyone to tell her what she can and cannot do, and most importantly, is an independent agent who is capable of brokering her own decisions and will. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to viewers and fans that this Amazon is a strong and resilient individual that will stop at nothing to pursue justice, doing was is right and not what is easy.

My husband got me a shirt with this slogan (link from The Tee Warehouse) after I won the “we are moving to a custom brand new house a few blocks away” argument because he realized there was no stopping me when my made was made up. I’m sure many spouses can relate to this dynamic, especially when their partner is headstrong and entrepreneurial. Backing down is never an option for me, and I attempt to achieve a win-win every time I am up against a situation in which many people would yield or compromise. This gift conveys how much he appreciates my will power and since he ordered it, by mistake, in a guy’s size he gets to see me wear it to bed or around the house although he keeps insisting I could wear it outside.

Vanity, thy name is MrsEnginerd. LOL

Women are told every day that they can’t do what they do or know what they know. In business and in society, their decisions are questioned, scrutinized and taken lightly. Congress is making bills to legislate over their rights to reproductive coverage and/or abortion because “their virtue must be protected”. Ladies can’t state that they like the pleasures of the flesh or the satisfaction of a career without being accused of being sluts or selfish, and even worse, inconsiderate of their husband’s and family’s needs. Heck, their hard work is devalued so much that they even get paid less because their performance in many fields is considered to be inferior to men. Sexism is alive and well folks; we need to make an effort to eradicate it.

If you have little girls or young women in your family, or love a very wonderful and impressive woman, take this message to heart. What they do is not up to you and furthermore, does not represent you. The men and women in their lives must support and build up their confidence and pride so they can reach their goals and enjoy their very well deserved achievements and accolades. Don’t sell yourself and themselves short. With an open mind and a courageous heart we can all live up to our full potential. My grandparents believed in my mom and she retired as a Colonel or Full Bird from the Army. I have a Masters and BS in Engineering. Someday my daughters, adoptive or by proxy, will be able to go to Mars and beyond. We need more Wonder Women in our lives. Let’s build a better future together!

Hooahh!😎💪🏅

10 Things You May Have Missed While Watching Wonder Woman

Spoilers to follow…

By now, movie goers have been slammed with reviews and opinions of DC’s cinematic adaptation of Wonder Woman. Truth be told, I cried, cheered and cherished every moment of her debut and thanked the Gods for Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot but knew many were not aware of the inside jokes or tips of the hat to the original super hero. Feminist or not, I implore you: Read up on Diana’s legacy during her last 75 years of history before throwing shade at plot points you didn’t understand. This film was fan service to the extreme and had a few reshoots with a very pregnant leading lady to make the film more relatable to the uninitiated viewers. Those just introduced to this leading superhero may not be aware of the following:

1. By defeating Ares, Diana becomes the God of War.

She is a demigod and daughter of Zeus. A weapon designed to eradicate Ares from existence. In Greek mythology, besting the God of War means you become “IT”. Similar to the Elder’s Wand in Harry Potter, the power is passed on to the conqueror. Ladies and gents, we have a new sheriff in town and she is all out of bubble gum. The new God of War is full of compassion and confidence. Does this mean that future wars are to be blamed on her? How will she influence the will of men? To be continued…

2. Amazons are not immortal, and more so outside of Thermyscira, Diana can be killed.

By a lead bullet no less. What makes Wonder Woman so badass is that she goes into battle knowing she can die. She is vulnerable and can get beat down by enemies and that fact doesn’t phase her. You see her bleed and hurt just like any other human. She just doesn’t dwell on the pain and works through it, gracefully. Broken ribs? No problem. She’s got this. 💪💪💪💪

3. No one calls Diana Wonder Woman during the entire movie.

She is always Diana, Princess of Thermyscira and the Amazons, Daughter of Hippolyta, God Killer. Steve gives her the last name Prince to make her appear normal. Not a single soul calls her Wonder Woman. She is always herself and her moral fiber earns her peers’ respect. Ain’t that grand?

4. Diana’s Amazonian armor is the color of Steve’s country of service.  

For this movie, Steve is both US Air Force and a spy for the British Army. The colors of the Union Jack and the USA flag are similar shades, but for modernization’s and shock value’s sake, DC made the colors more metallic and armorish. The original outfit for Wonder Woman was made in these colors to make her more relatable to the world of men. She wears the flag, in a way, of the imperialists and superpowers of the world at the time of her inception. (1940s)

5. The Amazonian Queen and General are played by actresses who have played popular movie royalty. 

Connie Nielsen played a Greek princess in Gladiator, and Robin Wright played Buttercup in The Princess Bride. Even though it doesn’t relate to the lore, these ladies are icons in their own right and could have not been cast more appropriately. The rest of the amazons were Olympic athletes and fitness stars, among others. All these women trained and were not faking it. They all made me proud to fight wearing a skirt.

6. In the comic books, Diana’s original cover story is that she is Steve’s secretary.

She gets clearance this way and is close by every time Steve needs saving. The trope of the damsel in distress was reversed in their love affair. Originally, her love for Steve is what has her leaving the protection of her Queendom, and Etta Candy was a college student that befriended the Amazon when she was introduced to the world of men. It is Etta who tells her how to dress and what to say or do. This is why this secondary character’s role is so meaningful: a woman helping another sister without passing judgement. Wow!

7. Another trope reversed: Man’s savior and protector is a woman

There is a reason why the word human is not used. All the points made are about men and their nature. Men or man is plural for humankind BUT, in this movie, the emphasis on the world is meant to anchor us around the concept of the patriarchy and its hegemony. In other words, the darkness and cruelty of humanity is embodied by men, and it is up to a man to prove they are creatures worth saving. The woman in the room doesn’t understand why men can’t be more like the Amazons and why women in general aren’t more like her. Hmmm.

8. Hippolyta plays the role of Queen and King, misogyny and all.

The Queen goes out of her way to protect her daughter and keep her in the dark about her true power. She refuses to train her because a Princess should not be a warrior and tells her she was made if clay, a very frail and temperamental material. When she leaves to fight Ares, the Queen calls her “Her greatest sorrow”. Considering she had an affair with a married man and raised the kid on her own you’d expect her to be more progressive and would want more for her daughter. A little more support, mom?

9. The Amazons’ knowledge is thousands of years old but they never show how advanced it truly is.

Diana has never left “Paradise Island” and has to rely on information collected and analyzed almost a millenia ago. This is why everything is new to her but her people are incredibly advanced. In the comics, the medicine in Thermyscira borders on magical and can heal almost anything. Yet Antiope dies and we move on. Hmmm.

10. The invisible jet is never explained (or shown).

We know Wonder Woman has an invisible jet. It appears it could be made of transparent aluminum (wink wink) and has some kind of stealth propulsion that makes it undetectable. Why did they not explain this part and/or skipped it? Does it matter? Aliens? Wayne Tech perhaps? It will probably not make it into the movies. One can dream…

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There are many other intricacies left unexplained or unmentioned but I’d need to see the movie again to fully exploit and explain those. Are there any you remember that aren’t on this list? Share your thoughts in the comment section!

Enjoy!

Gal Gadot is not Wonder Woman: She Is Just the Actor That Portrays Her

I am getting tired of the mainstream media making everything about politics. I’m tired if men saying Wonder Woman as a film is a waste of time because women can’t be heroes or that the movies they star in are not worth the film used to capture the story. Now, I have to put up with people turning Wonder Woman into a white zionist because Gal Gadot happens to be Israeli? WTF!

Wonder Woman is a symbol of justice, truth and love. She was born on a fictional island called Thermyscira because her author, Dr William Moulton Marston, a psychologist, realized that no woman of this earth could be sold as a superhero to the men of the 1930s. Why? These men of power viewed women as weak, inferior and not worth the right to vote; things to be controlled and cared for. In a way, his duplicity worked out and after 75 years she is still an icon and one of the most popular and successful characters in DC/comic book history.  Diana Prince stands for more than whatever Gal Gadot, Lynda Carter and Patty Jenkins stand for or have achieved. The Queen of the Amazons was designed to save the world and serve as an example of what women can accomplish if they are given the power and space to perform.

When they announced Gal Gadot was cast, I didn’t like the decision because she was of Fast and the Furious Fame. Her acting wasn’t atrocious but it didn’t draw me in. She was too skinny, etc. Ironically, the fact that she was an ex-soldier for the Israeli army was the only plus to me as this meant she had combat skills and first hand experience of courage under fire. Soldiers are loyal, and execute orders BUT they are also trained to use judgement and to avoid conflict. Just like Wonder Woman.

Yes, Gal participated in the war against Palestine in which men, women and children died. My parents and cousins fought battles against enemies foreign and domestic too. I bet she has no qualms about having represented their country, regardless of the blood spilt. So did my family.  Yes, they all regret the loss but they did the wrong thing, according to those who oppose war, for the right reasons. The victors will write history and in 200 years we will see how well we will be judged, when the dust has settled. For now, all these people live daily with the consequences of their actions and have moved on from the events in question to a more promising future.

The movie itself is not about the Holocaust or has zionist undertones. It attempts to paint the first world war as the horrifying event in history it was, and to pay homage to the lives lost by asking the viewers to reconsider bigotry, racism and blind patriotism. Regardless of who plays Wonder Woman the message would have been the same and just as powerful, until some critic with a dissenting opinion decided to make it about Ms Jenkins, the studio or any of the cast members.

It always happens. An agenda comes in politics and startegists decide it is best to smash and bad mouth the intention of the plot or backers to devalue the content. Where were these detractors when white actors were cast as black heroes? When asians were poorly portrayed as illiterate buffoons or martial artists? When where they when Italians played Latinos and Latinos played the bad guys? Don’t get me started on the portrayal of Arabs and Muslims as agents of evil. Doesn’t surprise me we are making this about Gal Gadot and not about the character. She is Israeli so she must be evil, and therefore Wonder Woman’s portrayal is tarnished by this happenstance. Give me a break people!

I’m a Wonder Woman fan well versed in her character, deeds and lore. Her origin story and her achievements are out of this world, and live in the annals of comic book history. If liking this movie and Gal make me a Semitic supporter and person to be hated so be it. I refuse to make this superhero about the people behind her cinematic portrayal. I love Steve Trevor and I dislike Chris Pine. In my world, that would be more of a valid reason to boycott. To each their own, except in this case. Step away from my feminist idiol. You definitely don’t deserve her.

Wonder Woman Day: June 3rd

DC is rolling out the red carpet to celebrate the Amazon Princess on June 3rd; to celebrate the Wonder Woman in all of us! 

We are all Wonder Women, from the moms with post partum depression that seek help to the women that fight for equal rights, equal pay and gender neutrality. On and ofd the field, housewives or career driven, the females of the human species ensure there is a future for all of our hopes and dreams. It is they who nurture, inspire and/or lead the way with kindness, vision and resilience. Being a woman is hard, comes with many biological and social expectations that are difficult to escape, and they have to meet these in 4 inch heels and a dress. 

Wonder Woman is a symbol of truth, strength and humanitarianism. She transcends her legend and her legacy. Born in Themiscyra, the daughter of Zeus and Hypolita, God of War trained by Ares himself, she is tasked with getting Steve Trevor off her native island to deliver him safely back to his military comrades. Depending on the age and era, her origin story changes and molds with the times, proving how relevant Diana Prince is to the people of Earth. Protector. Warrior. Courage and grace under fire. The Queen/Princess of the Amazons rises to every occasion bringing love and justice to all. Her creator, Dr William Moulston Marston would be proud of her fantastic 75 year legacy. (Check out the Wonder Woman blog section for more information on the history and significance of the character.)

Watch the eponymous movie in theathers June 2nd. Lynda Carter would be so proud!! 🙂

Enjoy!

Wonder Woman, The True Amazon by Jill Thompson

I know what you are thinking: Another origin story? Didn’t Earth One Vol 1 give a new spin on the story for the Rebirth launch? Yes, it did. However, because of the 75th anniversary of the Wonder Woman comics, DC tapped veteran Jill Thompson to create storylines and art work in her signature style. The panels are beautiful and full of emotion; the hair and wardrobe options for Diana and her co-stars are fatastic and stunning, in my opinion. Truly spectacular.

For a character that has been around for so long it is a shame that the fans haven’t gotten more graphic novels and side stories of Princess Diana and her crew throughout the years. Based on my research and consultants this is the first stand-alone book that has ever been penned for our Amazon warrior. This says a lot about how women, even superheroes, fare in the male dominated comic book world. Even one of the DC Holy Trinity is left behind regardless of popularity and sales because it is still thought that female leads can’t command the same respect and readership as the DC men.

Considering the 75th anniversary is giving way to a lot of firsts, with Wonder Woman fearure film is around the corner in 2017, I am glad to have been given the opportunity to read Jill’s alternate origin story which humanizes Diana’s upbringing. The artwork alone is superb and the writing is really brilliant and emotive. It is not a stretch to insist on a Wonder Woman that isn’t flawless and fierce considering that during her upbringing Queen Hypolita over protected her. There is no reason to believe that she couldn’t have been a spoiled insuferable brat during her early years. Youngest born daughter/ Princess complex anyone? If the gods gifted you with qualities beyond compare, in a place everyone reminded you of how much of a unique snowflake you are, wouldn’t you be a bit self absorbed too?

Think about it for a second. Diana grows up in a place where she is the Queen’s only heir. She is the Princess of the Amazons, and has an entire island full of women with exemplary talents meant to serve her and her mother. Whatever she desires is granted on a whim. When you are raised like this in an island paradise there is a risk that the grown ups will let you get away with murder. Though in past incarnations of the origin story Mars himself and the gods train the future warrior, give her the lasso, tiara and bracelets, and educate her about war, conflict and history, it was really bold to propose that she may have come to all these tools and enlightenment through her own experiences, quests and failures.

The turning point for Diana was moved away from Steve Trevor and the world of men to center around her selfish actions which cost the Amazons a beloved and very valuable asset, one she cannot reclaim and restore. Thus her shame is greater because there is no way to resolve the situation and she must live knowing her actions had a dire consequence. This forms in her a more mature sense of empathy and a cautious nature that later will become her signatures. To come back home she must repent and make amends. 🙂

I liked how by the end of the narrative Diana must leave Themyscira to embark on a journey of self discovery and redemption that turns her into the character we know and love. There is something regal and graceful about learning lessons the hard way. It is understandable that because Wonder Woman has always been a paragon of virtue and love many people disliked the direction of the story. Showing a version that is not perfect to a T can be annoying as this can make Diana seem petty, despicable and clueless, non-superheroe qualities that define the men in the genre, especially in the DC universe. But, as a person from which perfection has been highly expected, it was refreshing to meet a less glorified female lead; a more relatable, multidimensional and rich flawed character.

Expecting a super heroe to be kind and impressive from the get go with no faults almost questions whether or not the rest of us could truly aspire to become wonder women. I like the fact that in this alternate reality she is not squeaky clean and that she goes through a huge loss that gives her perspective. This is after all what most of us want from life: the ability to recognize failures as learning experiences and problems as opportunities for growth and development. This iteration may not be your Wonder Woman but it was within the parameters of what she could have turned out to be: human like me.

Enjoy!

Earth One: Wonder Woman Vol. 1

Renowned comic book writers Grant Morrison and Yanick Paquette created an alternate origin story for Diana, Princess of the Amazons as part of the Rebirth Earth One series cycle. Based on the reviews I was expecting something spectacular but it turns out it was more of the same: our protagonist learns about her birth and reason to be after helping Steve Trevor, a US Air Force pilot, escape Paradise Island. What is a bit different is that this time Queen Hypolita sends her Amazons to retrieve the Princess who is wanting to become an ambassador between the two worlds, as she explores the hospital Trevor is in and the rest of the land of man. Her goal is to return to “Earth” after being judged by her mother to help further the plight of women, the sick and those affected by the harsh realities of war becoming their healer.

Although the artwork is superb, Nathan Fairbairn’s vision is ruined by predictable dialogue and satirical remarks. The graphic novel winks at past incarnations of the heroine but it is a bit to overt to be cute or beneficial. I felt like I was reading the same story that I already knew but with some minor alternations. Nothing in the content was avant garde or mind blowing to warrant the price of the edition. Volume 2 is in the works but it really needs to wow me to get my cash. Really disappointed by the cheek in tongue attitude and rehashing.

Skip it unless you need to own everything published under the Wonder Woman series.

The Secret History of Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman is turning 75 years old!! She looks good for her age. 😉

Mrs. Enginerd - Nerd Whisperer

As an avid reader of DC Comics, Wonder Woman became my favorite super hero, and as the most successful woman in comic book history, I was surprised to learn very few books were available on the subject of her genesis and rise to popularity. To me, it was no secret that Wonder Woman was a symbol of feminism; an excellent leader, and the perfect mix of brawn and wisdom. (Lynda Carter’s incarnation of the superwoman is still my favorite, even during the campy moments of the series.) Part Mother Theresa and part Margaret Thatcher, Diana Prince was everything I aspired to become: a pioneering woman that would fight for fairness with kindness, never backing down to the will of men. My expectations of this book were very high and because of this it didn’t fully deliver.

Here’s why:

Jill Lepore writes a compelling story about the history of Wonder Woman…

View original post 633 more words

Sensation Comics Featuring Wonder Woman

To my utter disbelief, Rebirth will not include Sensation Comics, a compilation of Wonder Woman short stories. From encounters with Cheetah to tales of love and war, this offshoot covered alternate story arcs for our favorite Amazonian heroine, unrelated to her main title series. It was full of color, innovation and diverse writer/artist content; a true celebration of women and the influence they can have on the world and each other. I think it was one of the best reading experiences I have had reading comic books. It’s that good!

The many versions of Diana portrayed in the series serves to inspire an entire generation of girls to be strong and confident in their abilities. She helped female athletes prove they belonged in the competitive world, and made sure little girls weren’t bullied or put down because they were seen as weak or different. She befriends many foes and works with them to achieve the greater good. On one of the latter installments she helps her mortal enemy, Cheetah, to beat a life threatening condition. Her compassion is legendary and the center of many of the narratives. A woman’s strength is in her character and Diana never disappoints in this respect.

If you have the opportunity, grab one of the issues and experience Wonder Woman in a whole new light. There is a version for everyone, including young boys and adult men. The writers went through great lengths to include many examples of the female condition, and many physical and spiritual versions of the superhero, focusing on those issues where men could help us continue to further the cause of feminism and human rights. The knowledge shared on this subjects was subtle yet sublime. It is better read than explained, and even my husband agrees it is one of the best New 52 series out there. Excellent starter pack for the young daughters or sons in your life interested in comics. They will learn about life and justice in a way that is neither crude nor cruel.

Enjoy!

The Legend of Wonder Woman

When the New 52 was up, DC decided to gift me with an – online 23 chapter and print 9 part – alternate origin story of Wonder Woman which they aptly called Legend of Wonder Woman. The intent, as I saw it, was to allow a woman writer and artist take a stab at the story that had suffered at the hands of the Finches. Lo and behold, Renae De Liz delivered with a gloriously penciled account of how Diana came to be, going back to her 1932 roots and redefining her personality and journey of self discovery.

In this version, our Princess is back to being born out of clay but her mother, the Queen, has skeletons in her closet that are revisited on her progeny. Diana trains under the tutelage of one of the best Amazon warriors, and learns how to defend her mortal form. By chance, she uncovers a plot to dethrone her mother, meeting once more with Steve Trevor, the reason she has left Thermiscyra so many times before. Yet, on this occasion, she does so not because she fell in love but rather to ensure his safe departure from a discord torn island of the gods. As their champion, the Gods embark her on a journey to save her Amazonian tribe and to discover what she is made of. Strong, beautiful and kind, Diana is let loose on a world that is not only new to her but is full of challenges, one of which is learning how to read English. It’s all Greek to her! Ha!

It took me way too long to realize that Wonder Woman is a foreign warrior princess. Even though she is dressed in the Stars and Stripes, she is an immigrant. It is bittersweet to know that for a female superhero to exist, and portray the qualities of what is now a modern woman, she couldn’t be “American”, much less of the times. Thi is why I like this version the best because Diana is always one step ahead, never oppressed or marginalized, totally in control of her identity. Her fight for truth and justice neverending; peace is her goal, even when she is the most capable and strong soldier. She is the best of both genders, the perfect human: bold, intelligent, kind and brazen. Nothing can stand in the way of protecting her family and friends and she can kick ass and take names even better than Batman and Superman combined.

I enjoyed following Diana from birth all the way to the day she fulfilled her duties as Queen of the Amazons. Hypolita must be proud of her daughter, who shatters the glass ceiling imposed by the Gods and her mortal condition. Although Rebirth shows promise and a one shot graphic novel is in the horizon, I wish more women were given a chance to write stories using Diana’s voice, fulfilling the intent of her creator Dr William Moulton Marston to remind us that the ladies have brawn too, and that together we can rule over a prosperous world. We don’t need a man to tell us what to feel or what to do, and in the end, it is mankind that needs us the most. What would guys do without their Wonder Women? 🙂

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