It may have taken 75 years, but the world’s greatest female superhero finally has her own feature film and it kicks ass! Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman is packed with rousing scenes that show off why DC’s Amazon princess has endured for so long, which might explain why it features hardly any references to other DC heroes or the shared DC universe as a whole.
Evidently, Warner Bros. and director Patty Jenkins were confident enough to let Wonder Woman stand on her own without relying on characters like Batman as a crutch, which was arguably the right call, but this also means that there are fewer cool Easter eggs than we’re used to seeing in modern superhero movies. However, that isn’t to say that there aren’t any good ones, as there are still a number of nods and callbacks to the comics and other bits of pop culture that influenced the making of the film.
Here are the 20 hidden details in Wonder Woman you may have missed (and if you haven’t seen the movie yet, be wary because full SPOILERS are discussed).
20. Justice League Plates
During Wonder Woman’s brief opening scene set in modern day Paris, a car sporting a Wayne Industries logo arrives at the Louvre to deliver a special photo to Diana. We don’t actually see Bruce Wayne or any of the other Justice League members in the film, but there is a reference to the superhero team nonetheless. The license plate on the Wayne Enterprises car reads JL-828-VZM, a cool little nod to the team Wonder Woman is helping put together.
19. Museum Job
Some viewers may wonder why Diana is at the Louvre in the first place — after all, couldn’t Bruce have shipped that photo anywhere? — but it’s actually in keeping with Wonder Woman’s day job in the comics. The film retains Diana’s museum interest from the 90s comics, in which she worked at Gateway City Museum of Antiquities rather than the Louvre. Interestingly, this is where she would meet Cassie Sandsmark, who would later go on to become the third Wonder Girl.
18. Hercules Nod
Although Hercules isn’t mentioned by name, Wonder Woman does contain a subtle nod to the formidable demi-God. When Diana is told the story of how the Amazons came to exist, she’s told at one point that it was her mother Hippolyta who lead the Amazons to freedom after mankind enslaved them. The story avoids specifics but in the comics, it was Herkales (or Hercules) whom Ares sent to Themyscira to challenge Hippolyta in combat. The Amazon Queen proved victorious but invited Herk and his men into her city to feast, having been impressed with the son of Zeus’ prowess in combat.
Unfortunately, Herkales turned out to not be a man of character after all, as he drugged all the women, forced himself on Hippolyta, and enslaved the Amazons. In other words, this very well could be the same story used in the DCEU (perhaps a Hippolyta/Antiope prequel movie could fill in the gaps?).
Other than Diana herself, Connie Nieslen’s Hippolyta and Robin Wright’s Antiope are the only Amazons who get fleshed out in any meaningful way, but even the background ones get to kick butt. One of these background characters is Artemis, who in the comics faces off against Wonder Woman in a tournament before she leaves Themyscira. She’s played by Ann Wolfe, who is widely considered one of the greatest female boxers of all time. Wolfe has two prominent scenes: one during the sparring sessions, where she takes a shot across the back and simply stares down the Amazon who hit her and later when Diana spars against her before facing Antiope.
16. SMS Schwaben
Mere minutes after Diana rescues Steve Trevor from drowning, a German battleship pierces the veil of Themyscira and a battle between German soldiers and the Amazons ensues. While we’re reasonably sure that this battle never actually took place, it turns out that German battleship is a real one used in World War I. The landing boats the soldiers use to get to the beach are stenciled with the name “SCHWABEN,” aka the real German dreadnought battleship known as the SMS Schwaben.
The ship was originally launched in 1901 and operated before and during WWI. What’s interesting is that the ship operated primarily in the North and Baltic Seas, so it’s unclear why this ship in particular was used for the film. One possible explanation is that someone on the production team is a big naval history buff and put the Schwaben in as a bit of a joke, as the Schwaben actually replaced the outdated SMS Mars — aka the Roman name for Ares — in 1905.
15. Bath Scene Origins
The scene in which Diana walks in on a naked Steve Trevor in the bath is one of the film’s best bits of comedy, but it’s also a neat subversion of a Greek myth. The myth in question sees Actaeon encounter the goddess Artemis (fittingly known as Diana in Roman terms) in the bath. He ends up being punished for his accidental peep show by being transformed into a stag — in contrast, Diana learns what an “above average” male’s anatomy looks like — but the theme of innocence lost is very much present in both.
14. Paradise Island
At one point in the film, Steve Trevor refers to Diana’s home as “Paradise Island,” partly because it truly is a paradise and also because “Themyscira” isn’t the easiest name to pronounce. But it’s also a callback to the very early days of the comics, as Wonder Woman creator William Moulton Marston originally envisioned the Amazons occupying Paradise Island.
Marston, a noted feminist and all-around bizarre guy (he was involved in a decades-long polygamous relationship and keep in mind this was in the first half of the 20th century), viewed paradise as anywhere where men had yet to travel, hence why the home of the Amazons was given its name. Paradise Island didn’t become known as Themyscira until 1987 when George Perez came up with the name (he receives a shout-out in the thank you section of the film’s credits).
13. Rosie Pose and War Posters
At one point during the alleyway scene in London where Diana easily dispatches a gang of Ludendorf’s spies, the Amazon princess strikes a pose that appears to be a homage to the iconic “Rosie the Riveter” motivational poster from World War II. Obviously, Wonder Woman is set a few decades before this poster even existed, but it’s such a important feminist symbol that it makes perfect sense for director Patty Jenkins to give it a nod. The film as a whole is resplendent in period-accurate posters, such as the “Eat Less Bread” poster hanging on a wall in London.
12. Wonder Woman’s Weapons and Powers
As you might expect, the Wonder Woman of the DCEU is an amalgamation of many different incarnations of the character, though she adheres closest to the New 52 version in terms of appearance and origins. Diana’s most iconic weapons are present and accounted for, most notably the Lasso of Truth, which is referred to here by a new name — the Lasso of Hestia. Hestia is the Greek goddess of the hearth (as well as domesticity), which is why the Lasso gets hot when Steve is being interrogated. Diana’s sword, the Godkiller, also comes from the comics. Forged by Hephaestus, the ancient Greek blacksmith god, the sword was actually wielded by Deathstroke at one point.
However, Diana’s greatest display of power is arguably her lightning powers, which she uses to vanquish Ares. As you might have guess, these come from her father Zeus and are a very recent addition to the Wonder Woman mythos, having been introduced in Gail Simone’s Wonder Woman #39 (2010).
11. Doctor Poison’s Look
One of Wonder Woman’s minor villains, Dr. Maru — or Doctor Poison — is pulled right from the comics, though Elena Anaya’s version of the character is quite different from the one seen on the page. The major difference between the two is that in the comics, Maru wore a mask to hide her true gender, whereas in the film it’s to hide her disfigurement.
The two really look nothing alike, but the film does include a small nod to the character’s comic origins in the green lab coat she wears and the over-sized goggles resting on top of her head.
10. John Carter Connection
There’s a point in the film where Steve Trevor starts handing out Edgar Rice Burroughs novels, which seems like an odd inclusion but actually makes sense when you consider what some of the author’s works are. Burroughs wrote Tarzan and John Carter of Mars, both of which follow a similar arc involving fish out of water characters struggling to adjust to unfamiliar new worlds (and if the John Carter reference flew over your head right now, it’s probably because you and everyone else never watched the movie. It’s surprisingly decent and you should check it out).
9. Nod To Donner’s Superman
Richard Donner’s Superman is a hugely influential film in the superhero genre, so it’s fitting that Patty Jenkins would include a homage in her own film that in many ways feels like a spiritual successor to Donner’s film, at least in terms of its tone and sense of idealism. The “bullet catch” scene, in which a disguised Clark Kent catches a bullet meant for Lois Lane, is an iconic one that displays Kent’s hidden powers. Likewise, Diana deflecting a bullet meant for Steve clues him in to what his mysterious companion is truly capable of, so it’s hardly surprising that he lets her take the lead and dispatch the rest of the goons (though he does get a good punch in).
8. Ice Cream
Wonder Woman may be better than any of us, but even an Amazon princess can’t resist the taste of an ice cream cone. The scene where Diana first tastes a vanilla ice cream cone and tells Steve it’s “wonderful” is very reminiscent of a moment in the New 52’s Justice League: Origin. After fighting off a Harpy attack, Wonder Woman bonds with a little girl, who opens her eyes to the wonder of ice cream, eliciting a gleeful “ice cream is wonderful” reaction. We are very much in agreement on that point!
7. Zack Snyder Cameo
Zack Snyder has largely been responsible for establishing the look and feel of the DC Extended Universe up to this point and though it appears as if he had little to do with the making of Wonder Woman from a creative standpoint, he still managed to get a small cameo in the film. Snyder turns up as a US Soldier during the scene in which the photo of Diana, Steve, and their companions is taken after their liberation of the town of Veld (he’s off to the left in the background).
This marks Snyder’s second appearance in a DCEU movie … well, sort of. We’re not really sure if starring as Bruce Wayne’s hands in a brief shot from Batman v Superman truly counts as a cameo but at the very least, it’s cool that Snyder clearly isn’t into making his appearances at all distracting.
6. Sameer is a Blackhawk
The team that Steve Trevor and Diana bring along on their important mission isn’t really based on anything from the comics, but at least one its members shares a link to the Blackhawks. In the comics, the Blackhawks are an elite team assembled to fight the Axis powers. While there is no character named Sameer among their ranks, the actor who plays him — Said Taghmaoui — claims that Sameer is based specifically on the character Andre Blanc-Dumont.
5. Fausta Grables
Given its World War I setting, we unfortunately don’t get to see Wonder Woman beat up on any Nazis, but there’s still a great homage to one of the most infamous Nazi characters in Wonder Woman history. The character in question is the woman played by Rachel Pickup whom Diana swaps dresses with at the German gala. Pickup’s character is credited as Fausta Grables, aka the Nazi Wonder Woman, who was introduced in the Lynda Carter TV show in an episode titled “Fausta: The Nazi Wonder Woman.” There, she was played by actress Lynda Day George. We wonder if the Fausta from the DCEU ever sought revenge for Diana taking her dress …
4. The Duke of Deception
Although Danny Huston’s Ludendorff turns out to not be the film’s true villain, there’s still some really interesting background to his character. For one thing, Ludendorff was a real person! Erich Friedrich Wilhelm Ludendorff was a German general who commanded the German army towards the end of the First World War. After the war, he became a nationalist conspiracy theorist whose ideas contributed to the formation of the Nazi party’s ideology.
Additionally, Huston’s Ludendorff is based on a DC Comics character called the Duke of Deception, who works for Ares. In the comics, the Duke is an actual demi-God, but in the film he turns out to be human, albeit one who successfully deceives Wonder Woman into thinking he’s Ares himself.
3. Sassoon and Owen
Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon are two of the most famous poets of the First World War (the former died tragically just as the war was coming to an end) and their work opened many eyes to the true horrors of the conflict. This is very much a viewpoint the film shares, so it’s fitting that both Owen and Sassoon’s portraits can be spotted among the pictures of fallen soldiers Diana looks upon back in London near the end of the film.
2. Lynda Carter Nods
It just wouldn’t feel right if Wonder Woman didn’t include some sort of callback to the Wonder Woman TV show of the 1970s starring Lynda Carter and luckily, the film doesn’t disappoint in this regard. The circumstances are quite different but Diana’s spin during her final battle with Ares can be viewed as a nod to Carter’s Wonder Woman and the spin she would do to get into her costume.
The other Easter egg is Diana’s costume in the very last scene. We see her wearing a red turtleneck with her hair pulled back into a ponytail, which is the same look Lynda Carter often sported when she was out of costume on the show.
1. Boom Tube?
Wonder Woman does not feature a post-credits scene (unlike Marvel, DC doesn’t require every one of its films to have one), but it really doesn’t need one, considering its ending appears to lead directly into the events of Justice League. The final scene is practically a post-credits scene anyway, as we return to the present day as Diana explains in voice over that she has again taken up her position as the Earth’s protector. She then hears a low boom in the distance and literally leaps into action (she also leaps pretty high and far, begging the question: can this Wonder Woman fly? But I digress).
The safe assumption is that this BOOM Diana hears is a Boom Tube of Apokolips, aka an inter-dimensional gate that Darkseid’s forces use to travel to other realms, but given Wonder Woman’s penchant for fighting terrorists and other modern day forces of evil in the comics, it could also just be a random crime in need of a hero.