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Wonder Woman (Two-Disc Special Edition + Digital Copy) by Directed by Lauren Montgomery
Review by Charles Mohapel
Warner Home Video DVD  ISBN/ITEM#: B001LK8SQ6
Date: 27 March 2009 List Price $29.98 Amazon US / Amazon UK

Links: IMDB Info / IMDB - Lynda Carter / Wikipedia - Lynda Carter / Show Official Info /

I used to collect Wonder Woman comics when I was younger and remember the Junoesque (5' 10" (1.78 m)) Lynda Carter who played Wonder Woman on TV for three seasons from 1975 to 1979. As it turns out, she become the archetype for the role of Wonder Woman to the point where every subsequent attempt has been given up as a lost cause. The most recent attempt was in 2005 and like the character she played, Lynda Carter was such a dominant figure that all other challengers were mere shadows by comparison.

My Review

Disc 1:
Special Features:
Audio Commentary
Watching Wonder Woman, the animated feature film on her unusual beginnings was a really pleasurable 74 minutes and I watched it straight through twice before I began watching it and taking notes at the same time, but watching it with the accompanying Audio Commentary was a different pleasure altogether. Listening to Gregory Novak (DC Comics), writer Michael Jelenic, producer Bruce Timm, and director Lauren Montgomery providing their analysis as the film runs in the background was fascinating.

Here we find out that this animated film is a break with what they refer to as Warner Brothers' normal "house style". Lauren Montgomery talks of being influenced by Disney-style animation and how she had to adjust away from that style. Wonder Woman used character shading that was more along the style of Anime and Moi Animation Studio, the Korean animation house they used was very experienced at working for the Japanese animation studios.

A First Look At The Animated Feature Film Green Lantern
I had been completely unaware that Warner Brothers had been working on a full length animated feature film of Green Lantern, but was gratified to discover that the hero was the Green Lantern of my childhood, Hal Jordan. Christopher Meloni will provide Hal's voice, Victor Garber is Sinestro the renegade, Michael Madsen is the hulking Kilowog, and Tricia Helfer is the striking Boodikka, proof that Katma Tui wasn't the only gorgeous member of the Green Lantern Corps. Is it July 28th yet?

From Graphic Novel To Original Animated Movie - Justice League: The New Frontier
An interesting feature where Darwyn Cooke, the writer and artist of Justice League - The New Frontier, discusses serving as story and visual consultant on the animated movie based on his book. From initial doubts as to whether they could compress his story into a 75 minute film to pleasure that the producers had succeeded, you can hear Cooke's pride in both versions of his work.

Wonder Woman: The Amazon Princess
Listening to the origins of the character of Wonder Woman was great, but listening to the story of William Moulton Marston, the man who created her was fascinating. Not only did he create the fictitious Lasso of Truth, in real life he also created the first lie detector, an invention inspired by his wife's observations. Marston was a much more established writer than most comic book artists, the result of having been brought up in a classical literary tradition steeped in Greco-Roman history which he drew upon for Wonder Woman. Simply put, this segment rocks!

Batman Gotham Knight: An Anime Revolution
A fascinating feature on the making of this film, particularly how they used 9 different Anime directors to create individual segments that could be connected together. Not being a big fan of the genre, I was surprised to discovery that most Anime heroes would be called antiheroes in North America. Quite cool!

Trailers:

    Lego Batman Cute - Lego Meets Mario Brothers

    Inkheart Fun Family Fare

    Scooby-Doo And The Samurai Sword The Scooby Gang gets back to their Animated roots.

The Real Adventures Of Jonny Quest Season 1, Episodes 1-13

Disc 2:
Wonder Woman "A Subversive Dream"
I really enjoyed hearing the legendary Denny O'Neil, former editor and writer, DC Comics, as he gave us more background on William Moulton Marston. O'Neil observed that while the majority of comic book artists of that era were blue collar guys or had high school educations, Marston was a Harvard psychologist and both he and his wife held PhDs. Another really fascinating segment.

Wonder Woman: Daughter Of Myth
We get a little walking tour of part of the grounds of the breathtaking Getty Villa, all the while learning more about Wonder Woman. Following her first appearance in All Star Comics #8 in 1941, other comic companies of that era rushed to introduce their own superheroines, all of which proved inferior to the Amazon princess. However, Wonder Woman did end up being the inspiration for characters like Sydney Bristow of Alias; Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Xena, Warrior Princess; Ripley of Alien, and Lara Croft. Warrior Women kick some serious butt.

Bruce Timm's Top Picks:
1) To Another Shore (22:43)
2) Hawk And Dove (22:44)
Producer Bruce Timm shares his two favorite episodes of Justice League Unlimited and although I hadn't seen them previously, I quite enjoyed them.

Digital Copy

Whether you're a long time fan of Wonder Woman or a new fan, I think you'll really enjoy the 2-DVD set. I know I plan on watching it again after I finish writing this month's reviews.

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