Wonder Woman is rejecting her iconic superhero name, choosing to simply go by “Diana” instead. This sudden change raises many questions, especially when a new Wonder Woman has recently been introduced to the DC Universe.
Since the creation of Wonder Woman, Diana has been a symbol of female empowerment and inclusivity. Arguably, the name “Wonder Woman” is a key component of the character that should never be changed. DC has gone through many iterations and reboots over the years, but only a handful of superheroes have been renamed, like Captain Marvel who became “Shazam.” However, a member of the DC Trinity might go through a similar change.
Diana of Themyscira is rebranding herself in Wonder Woman #771 written by Michael W. Conrad and Becky Cloonan with art by Travis Moore. When Dr. Psycho speaks to her and addresses her as Wonder Woman, Diana tells him to not use that title. Rejecting the name that she has gone by since her inception, her response to Dr. Psycho is obviously confusing for a few reasons. It isn’t immediately clear why Diana is reluctant to be called by the name that she hasn’t had a problem with before. In the moment, it seems like something has altered Wonder Woman’s memory, as she references her memories being foggy. “Wonder Woman, huh? Funny, you’re not the first one to call me that. But no, my name is Diana.”
However, this could indicate something more than unclear memories. Of course, there are a few theories that might make sense of Diana renouncing the name “Wonder Woman.” Firstly, since Dr. Psycho is an adversary of the Amazon, she might take his use of that name to be condescending. If the telepathic villain is calling her by the title as an insult, it would be reasonable for Diana to disregard such formalities. This exchange could also simply be an oddly framed retcon, establishing that Diana has never gone by “Wonder Woman.” It’s possible that she is only referred to as that by the media and broader society. Although a secret identity is worth having in the real world, in the context of her encounter with Dr. Psycho, going by her actual name isn’t such an odd choice. Instead of emphasizing Diana’s heroics, using her first name makes her seem more like a warrior who isn’t afraid to attach her real self to her actions.
In the case that this isn’t a retcon, and more of a straightforward rebranding, more questions are brought to readers’ minds. Since the recent Future State storyline showed Yara Flor inheriting the legacy that Diana is seemingly letting go of, it sets a strange precedent. It’s worth pondering if Yara Flor should still desire the name of a hero who doesn’t want to be associated with it any longer. However, it is also possible that this is the beginning of a new arc involving Diana reclaiming the name for herself, working towards the next chapter in her superhero career. After seeing what Wonder Woman means to others, she might find a new sense of meaning and ownership in donning the title.
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