‘Wonder Woman 1984’ Cheetah backstory: How it changes her comic book origins

Maxwell Lord is n’t the only villain in Wonder Woman 1984. In the 2020 sequel to 2017 ‘s Wonder Woman, one of Diana ‘s most fear archenemies, Cheetah, comes to frightening life in an electric performance by Kristen Wiig. But this menstruation superhero film makes a few key changes to the lineage of Cheetah, one that strays from the comics. here ‘s how Wonder Woman 1984 reimagines Cheetah in a new way for the DC Extended Universe. warning : Spoilers for Wonder Woman 1984 ahead. In Wonder Woman 1984, Diana Prince ( Gal Gadot ) resurfaces from hiding to take on Maxwell Lord ( Pedro Pascal ), a fail petroleum baron who teams up with Dr. Barbara Ann Minerva ( Kristen Wiig ), a gawky archeologist who magically becomes an agile femme fatale, entirely to turn into a half-human, half-wildcat killer named Cheetah.

Her transformation is caused by the Dreamstone, a powerful keepsake said to grant those who touch it their wish. Barbara, who has a boastful girl-crush on Diana, uses the Dreamstone to become “ like ” Diana. The Dreamstone takes Barbara ‘s wish literally and uses it to slowly turn her into a powerful Amazon-like warrior. late, when Maxwell uses the Dreamstone to give himself its powers, Barbara gets one more wish, which she uses to become a orion like “ something never seen earlier. ” And therefore, Maxwell grants her wish, turning her into Cheetah. Cheetah is one of Wonder Woman ‘s most ill-famed villains — the Joker to Wonder Woman ‘s Batman. But Wonder Woman 1984 goes to some pretty great lengths to change Barbara and her origin story as Cheetah. here ‘s how different Cheetah ‘s fib is in Wonder Woman ‘s comics .Wonder Woman 1984 Dr Barbara Ann Minerva Kristen Wiig, as Dr. Barbara Ann Minerva, in ‘Wonder Woman 1984. ‘Warner Bros. Pictures

Cheetah: William Moulton Marston’s “Folly of Jealousy”

Cheetah was the inspiration of Wonder Woman creator William Moulton Martson, an american psychologist besides credited with co-creating the lie detector with his wife, Elizabeth Holloway. ( Wonder Woman ‘s “ Lasso of Truth ” is a comic book version of Martson ‘s invention. ) In addition to his work in psychology, Martson turned to comic books as a way to educate and inform young people on his studies about homo behavior, arsenic well as to champion women ‘s rights. Cheetah made her debut in comics in Wonder Woman # 6. Marston intended Cheetah to be the embodiment of abnormal emotions, in particular jealousy. That ‘s how he came up with the beginning Cheetah, a socialite named Priscilla Rich. After being upstaged by Wonder Woman in public, Priscilla ‘s jealousy manifests into a half-human, half-cheetah when she looks in the mirror. “ Do n’t you know me ? I am the real number you — the cheetah — a punic, persistent huntress ! ” her expression tells her. Cheetah then gives Priscilla the ability to turn into her and to “ take your revenge ” on Wonder Woman .Wonder Woman Cheetah Priscilla Rich, the beginning Cheetah in DC Comics history, in ‘Wonder Woman ‘ # 6.DC Comics Decades late, in 1980, Priscilla Rich dies as Cheetah in Wonder Woman # 274. Her death paves the way for the second Cheetah to take up the mantle : Priscilla ‘s niece, Deborah “ Debbie ” Domaine, another affluent socialite. Unlike her aunt, Debbie regrets her affluent upbringing and alternatively tries to become an ecology activist. She even meets and becomes Wonder Woman ‘s friend — until Debbie is kidnapped by the villain Kobra, who brainwashes Debbie into continuing her aunt ‘s bequest as Cheetah. When DC Comics hit the readjust button on its continuity after 1985 ‘s Crisis on Infinite Earths, both Priscilla and Debbie were written out of continuity to give way to the third and now most fecund Cheetah, Barbara Ann Minerva.

Barbara Ann Minerva Wonder Woman 1984 Barbara Ann Minerva ( Kristen Wiig ) and Diana ( Gal Gadot ) in ‘Wonder Woman 1984. ‘Warner Bros. Pictures

Barbara Ann Minerva

A british archeologist born to ( again ) a affluent syndicate, Barbara ‘s heat for archeology leads her to a tribe in Africa, one protected by a defender who has the powers of a cheetah. When marauders kill the defender, the powers transfer to Barbara. The only problem is, the powers work good when given to a virgo. Because Barbara was not, the powers wind up cursing her : being in her human form is painful, while her cheetah form gives her an insatiate bloodlust. Cheetah ‘s composition of jealousy continues in Barbara, who seeks Wonder Woman ‘s Lasso of Truth. In DC ‘s history, Barbara is by far the most fecund Cheetah, remaining active to this day. She is re-imagined heavy in the 2011 New 52 boot, this time as another Amazonian possessed by the Goddess of the Hunt. But In 2016 ‘s Rebirth, another major boot of DC continuity, elements of Barbara ‘s older origin was restored, again making her an archeologist seeking proof of the Amazons ‘ being. She is recruited by a U.S. Navy SEAL, Steve Trevor, to communicate with Wonder Woman, who has equitable arrived in Man ‘s Land and merely speaks antediluvian, ancient Greek. Long history short, the two become friends — until Minerva becomes obsessed with discovering olympian deities. She winds up in the crosshairs of the sons of Ares, Deimos, and Phobos, who turn Barbara into a daemon. In Wonder Woman # 18, Barbara becomes Cheetah .Wonder Woman Cheetah Cheetah makes her ( new ) debut, in ‘Wonder Woman ‘ # 18.DC Comics While Barbara is still Cheetah in mainstream continuity, there was calm one more cheetah who briefly stole the powers : Sebastian Ballesteros, an Argentine business baron and the alone world to ever become Cheetah. In 2001, Sebastian temporarily took the powers from Barbara — convincing the implant god Urzkartaga that a man would succeed where previously women have failed — until Minerva kills Sebastian and takes back her powers .Wonder Woman 1984 Cheetah Kristen Wiig, as Barbara Ann Minerva/Cheetah, in ‘Wonder Woman 1984. ‘Warner Bros. Pictures

How Wonder Woman 1984 changes Cheetah

While the kernel details of Barbara ‘s report in Wonder Woman 1984 divert from the comics ( there are no plant gods or evil mirror reflections involved ), there are actually quite a few recurring elements. In Wonder Woman 1984, Barbara is indeed covetous of Diana ‘s smasher, confidence, and might. That emotion drives Barbara throughout the movie, as Barbara ‘s envy and puppy love with Diana lento manifests into something black. And like her comedian reserve counterpart, Diana is indeed an adept archeologist, which is how she comes in liaison with the Dreamstone in the first plaza.

Though Wonder Woman 1984 takes a leave turn from Barbara ‘s narrative, much of William Moulton Marston ‘s original intentions with the character remain intact, even now on HBO Max. Wonder Woman 1984 is now in theaters and streaming on HBO Max .

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