- Main article: Wonder Woman on the Wonder Woman Wiki
Originally, Wonder Woman owed her abilities to the goddess Aphrodite creating Amazons superior to men, with Diana being the best of their kind.
The Golden Age Wonder Woman was later updated by Marston to be able to will a tremendous amount of brain energy into her muscles and limbs because of her Amazon training, endowing her with extraordinary strength and speed. According to her first appearance, she is stronger and more agile than a hundred of the best human athletes. In Sensation Comics #6 (June 1942), she is able to tear a steel door off its hinges. In one of her earliest appearances, she is shown running easily at 80 mph. In the same comic, she jumps from a building and lands on the balls of her feet. She can even type at a rate of over 160 words a minute during a test given to her. It was implied, and ultimately confirmed, that any woman who underwent Amazon training would gain superhuman strength. The TV series took up this notion,and in the first episode of Super Friends, Diana states to Aquaman, "...the only thing that can surpass super strength is the power of the brain." In early Wonder Woman stories, Amazon training involves strengthening this ability using pure mental energy.
Her powers would be removed in accordance with "Aphrodite's Law" if she allowed herself to be bound or chained by a male. In the television series, her magic belt allowed her to retain her powers when she was not on Paradise Island; removing it weakened her.
With the inclusion of Wonder Girl and "Wonder Tot" in Diana's back-story, writers provided new explanations of her powers; the character became capable of feats which her sister Amazons could not equal. Wonder Woman (vol. 1) #105 reveals that Diana was formed from clay by the Queen of the Amazons and was imbued with the attributes of the Greek and Roman gods by Athena — "beautiful as Aphrodite, wise as Athena, swifter than Hermes, and stronger than Hercules."Wonder Woman's Amazon training also gave her limited telepathy, profound scientific knowledge, and the ability to speak every language known to man and beyond. She was even fluent in caveman and Martian.
Although Wonder Woman's mythos was returned to its original interpretation between 1966 and 1967, new abilities were added: super breath, the ability to blow jet streams or transform water into snow, which apparently came from Hercules; ventriloquism; imperviousness to extremes of heat and cold; the ability to ride the air currents as if flying, even sensing air updrafts with her fingers; telepathy, including the ability to project images; microscopic vision; the ability to vibrate into another dimension; the ability to bestow wisdom to other beings; the ability to throw her tiara with such skill it could stop bullets; and others, according to the Encyclopedia of Comic Book Heroes.
Depending on the writer, Diana's invulnerability and power varied greatly according to the needs of the story. Throughout the late 1950s and early 1960s, Robert Kanigher, for example, portrayed Wonder Woman as being so strong that she, after standing atop her hovering plane and lassoing it with her magic lasso, was able to effortlessly lift Themyscira out of the way of an approaching tsunami using just one hand. She was able to make a coin into a bridge with her strength, or drill through a mountain within seconds, as well as hurl spaceships with enough accuracy she could bowl over a whole fleet. Her fingernails could cut through a steel door. She was even able to flip straight over while nearly paralyzed, and split a tree falling on her with her Amazonian boots.Kanigher showed Wonder Woman as a preteen able to lift whales, push a ship away from a whirlpool, and also as a toddler able to blow so hard on her birthday cake that she sent it into orbit.
In the Silver and Bronze Ages of comics, Wonder Woman was able to further increase her strength. She was unable to remove her bracelets without going insane. In times of great need, however, she would do just that, in order to temporarily augment her power tenfold. Since she would become a threat to friend and foe alike, she would use Amazonian berserker rage only as a weapon of last resort.
Before Crisis on Infinite Earths there were two Wonder Women: the first one lived on Earth-Two; the second, on Earth-One. The first canonical appearance of the Earth-One Wonder Woman is Wonder Woman (vol. 1) #80 (February 1956). Their first published meeting is Justice League of America (vol. 1) #100 (August 1972); however, their earliest meeting within the DC continuity is Wonder Woman (vol. 1) #228 (February 1977), which takes place in 1943, prior to the events of the Justice League of America story.
Wonder Woman's body is a mystical creation made from the clay surrounding Themyscira. Through divine means, her disembodied soul was nurtured in and retrieved from the Cavern of Souls. Once the soul was placed into the body, it immediately came to life and was blessed with metahuman abilities by six Olympian deities.
Demeter, the goddess of agriculture and fertility, blessed Diana with strength drawn from the Earth spirit Gaea, making her one of the physically strongest heroes in the DC Universe. She has been observed assisting in preventing large chunks of the Moon from crashing onto the Earth, supporting the weight of bridges, or hefting entire railroad trains. Although sometimes stated as possibly being physically weaker and slower than, for example, Superman, Diana's superior warrior training more than makes up for it, along with strength drawn from the earth itself, she is able to overpower beings such as Supergirl, and hold her own against beings such as Superman and Captain Marvel and on some occassions, even beating them in combat. Furthermore, unlike most of her contemporaries in Man's World, Diana is willing to use deadly force, which gives her more options to deal with opponents as circumstances dictate.
While not invulnerable, she is capable of withstanding great concussive force, shrugging off high-powered rifle fire with some pain but little injury, being knocked through a building, and even surviving a warp-core explosion. She is durable enough to survive the rigors of space until she runs out of breath. While her superhuman strength affords her great resistance to blunt-force trauma, her skin can be cut by weapons if they are sharp enough. Her muscles do not produce lactic acids, giving her great stamina. This allowed her to once battle a clone of Doomsday.
Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, blessed Diana with great beauty and a loving heart.
Pallas Athena, the goddess of wisdom and war, granted Diana great wisdom, intelligence, and military prowess. Athena's gift has enabled Diana to master over a dozen languages (including those of alien origin), multiple complex crafts, sciences and philosophies, as well as leadership, military strategy, and armed and unarmed combat. She can mimic voices, although it is more difficult for her to mimic a man's voice. More recently, Athena bound her own eyesight to Diana's, granting her increased empathy.
Artemis, goddess of the hunt, animals, and the Moon, graced Diana with the Eyes of the Hunter and Unity with Beasts. The Eyes of the Hunter ability gives Diana a full range of enhanced senses, including enhanced sight and hearing. Unity with Beasts grants her the ability to communicate with all forms of animal life and to calm even the most ferocious of beasts.
Hestia, goddess of hearth and home, granted Diana "sisterhood with fire, that it might open men's hearts to her." This power has been shown to control the "Fires of Truth," which Diana wields through her lasso, making anyone bound by it unable to lie. This ability also grants her resistance to both normal and supernatural fire as well as extreme heat.
Hermes, the messenger god of speed, granted Diana superhuman speed and the ability to fly. By concentrating, Diana can mystically defy the laws of gravity and propel herself through the air to achieve flight. She is capable of flying at speeds approaching half the speed of light and can go faster if need be. She is swift enough to deflect bullets, lasers, and other projectiles with her virtually impenetrable bracelets. Her brain can process information at an incredibly fast rate.
Diana possesses the ability to relieve her body of physical injury and toxins by becoming one with the Earth's soil and then reforming her body whole again.During John Byrne's run, it was stated that this is a ritual so sacred that it is used only in the most dire of circumstances.
She is able to astrally project herself into various lands of myth. Her physical body reacts to whatever happens to her on the mythical astral plane, leaving her body cut, bruised, or sometimes strengthened once her mind and body are reunited. She can apparently leave the planet through meditation, and did this once to rescue Artemis while she was in hell.
DC Comics has relaunched Wonder Woman with issue #1 in September 2011 as part of The New 52 relaunch, written by Brian Azzarello and penciled by artist Cliff Chiang. In the relaunch, Wonder Woman has acquired a new origin story. No longer did Hippolyta form her out of clay, but now the daughter of both Hippolyta and Zeus.
Powers and Abilities
- Superhuman Strength: Wonder Woman is vastly stronger then the Man of Steel himself, and one of the most powerful DC characters ever.
- Superhuman Durability: Though bullets can hurt her, they are never life threatening and she has taken blows from Darkseid, and true gods without the slightest damage, and has taken blows from omnipotent beings with moderate injury.
- Superhuman Speed: Diana has been displayed as faster than Superman himself, including reflexes.
- Superhuman Reflexes
- Superhuman Agility
- Superhuman Stamina
- Enhanced Healing Factor
- Oneness With Fire
- Animal Rapport
- Enhanced Senses
- Superhuman Sight
- Dimensional Teleportation
- Master Combatant
- Master Tactician and Strategist