Diana was born circa 5000 years ago on the newly-created island of Themyscira to Zeus and Hippolyta, the Queen of the Amazons, mere months after the War of the Gods. Zeus intended for the child to one day grow strong enough to defeat Ares, the God of War. Fearful for her daughter's safety, Hippolyta lied to Diana about her true parentage, instead telling Diana that she'd sculpted her from clay and prayed to Zeus to bring her to life. Diana would believe this story for most of her life.
As the daughter of Zeus, Wonder Woman has incredible control over the supernatural divine energy of the Olympian Gods, which she usually emits through her Bracelets of Submission. When she clashes her bracelets together, she releases a large spherical blast of orange (or sometimes white-hot) energy, with it being powerful enough to accidentally injure Antiope, send the mighty gods Ares and Steppenwolf flying back, and even push back the gigantic monster Doomsday. At full power, Wonder Woman could generate these shock waves from her body, notably to destroy the restrains Ares put her in and knock down a small German battalion with a very powerful omni-directional shock wave. She was also capable of using the energy to shield herself, as the debris Ares sent flying at her disintegrated against the invisible field as she built up her attack. She could also freeze the momentum of targets in front of her, causing Ares to be forcibly suspending in the air when he tried flying into her before she blasted him away. Wonder Woman can also transmit this energy through her shield. By striking one of her bracelets with her shield, she generated an energy wave that knocked down a bridge, and Cyborg and Steppenwolf with it.
At the end of Infinite Crisis, Wonder Woman temporarily retires from her costumed identity. Diana, once again using the alias Diana Prince, joins the Department of Metahuman Affairs. Donna Troy becomes the new Wonder Woman and is captured by Diana's enemies. Diana then goes on a mission to rescue her sister, battling Circe and Hercules. Diana defeats the villains, freeing Donna and takes up the role of Wonder Woman again. Circe places a spell on Diana, which renders Diana into a normal, powerless human being when in the role of Diana Prince; her powers come to her only when she is in the role of Wonder Woman.
Diana attends Clark's funeral in Smallville along with Bruce, with the latter paying for it as an anonymous donor. The two share a conversation about honoring Superman by bringing together the three other metahumans, in case a worse threat to the world should ever arise. Diana inquires why Bruce is proposing it. He replies that it is simply due to a feeling he has that things will imminently get worse (in reality, he was following the instructions given to him by the scarlet time-traveler that appeared in one of his "dreams", as well as heeding Lex Luthor's enigmatic warning). Diana walks away from the graveyard, pondering his words.
Cheetah isn't the only one experiencing unexplained bouts of rage; this type of behavior is happening globally. Across the globe, thousands of people are lashing out in anger, rioting and swearing off the gods they once worshiped, all of them praising that these next gods, the Dark Gods, will be coming soon. According to Trevor, those that are affected by this rage are people whose confidence and belief in their respective gods is shaken, no matter who they are, and no matter what planet they come from.
Some men were unhappy with women-only screenings held at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Austin, with some opponents of the gender-restricted screening stating on platforms such as Facebook that such screenings were discriminatory against men. A gay Albany Law School professor initiated a complaint with Austin's Equal Employment and Fair Housing Office claiming discrimination against male prospective customers and employees of the theater. The chain responded with an online statement saying the event "may have created confusion—we want everybody to see this film" and announced a similar event at their Brooklyn location. Tickets sold out in less than an hour, prompting the chain to schedule additional screenings. On July 18, Alamo Drafthouse proposed settlement offers of a Wonder Woman DVD to the complainants, stating "Respondent did not realize that advertising a 'women's only' screening was a violation of discrimination laws."
A. O. Scott of The New York Times wrote that it "briskly shakes off blockbuster branding imperatives and allows itself to be something relatively rare in the modern superhero cosmos. It feels less like yet another installment in an endless sequence of apocalyptic merchandising opportunities than like ... what's the word I'm looking for? A movie. A pretty good one, too." Michael Phillips of Chicago Tribune compared the film to Captain America: The First Avenger, noting that as with "the first Captain America movie over in the Marvel Comics universe, DC's Wonder Woman offers the pleasures of period re-creation for a popular audience. Jenkins and her design team make 1918-era London; war-torn Belgium; the Ottoman Empire; and other locales look freshly realized, with a strong point of view. There are scenes here of dispossessed war refugees, witnessed by an astonished and heartbroken Diana, that carry unusual gravity for a comic book adaptation." Katie Erbland of IndieWire commended its thematic depth, explaining that "Wonder Woman is a war movie. Patty Jenkins' first—and we hope not last—entry into the DC Expanded Universe is primarily set during World War I, but while the feature doesn't balk at war-time violence, it's the internal battles of its compelling heroine that are most vital." Alonso Duralde of TheWrap similarly felt that, "Diana's scenes of action are thrilling precisely because they're meant to stop war, not to foment it; the idea of a demi-god using love to fight war might sound goofy in the abstract, but Jenkins makes the concept work." Ann Hornaday of The Washington Post praised Gadot and Pine's performances as well the film's detailed plot and narrative while comparing of some slow-motion action sequences to The Matrix. Stephanie Zacharek of Time magazine hailed the film as a "cut above nearly all the superhero movies that have been trotted out over the past few summers" while praising Gadot's performance as "charming" and "marvelous" and commending Jenkins's direction of the film as a step forward for women directors in directing big-budget blockbuster films in Hollywood.
Jenkins disagrees with this line of critique. She has stated that she was raised by a second-wave "feminist mother", who taught her to be "both super aware that there had been sexism but also: 'Congratulations—thank you, now I get to do whatever I want, Mom!'" Jenkins thus notes that it is this upbringing which has led her to question a feminist critique of Wonder Woman's costume. When she was working on her own version of Wonder Woman's "Gladiator" re-design of the outfit (in the 2016 film Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice) Jenkins decided that Wonder Woman (as well as the other Amazons) "shouldn't be dressed in armor like men ... It should be different ... I, as a woman, want Wonder Woman to be hot as hell, fight badass, and look great at the same time—the same way men want Superman to have huge pecs and an impractically big body." Jenkins also notes that she is "frustrated" by the critique of Wonder Woman's appearance, stating "when people get super critical about her outfit, who's the one getting crazy about what a woman wears? That's who she is; that's Wonder Woman." Gal Gadot concurred with Jenkins, arguing that the character "is a feminist" as "feminism is about equality and choice and freedom. And the writers, Patty and myself all figured that the best way to show that is to show Diana as having no awareness of social roles. She has no gender boundaries. To her, everyone is equal."
In two social event scenes in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, it's implied the Wonder Woman character does not consume alcohol. Non-alcoholic consumption is a characteristic usually associated with Batman who, in this cinematic version, does consume alcohol. She is seen consuming a small amount of alcohol in Wonder Woman, however, when offered some by Steve Trevor.
On October 21, 2016, the United Nations controversially named Wonder Woman a UN Honorary Ambassador for the Empowerment of Women and Girls in a ceremony attended by Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information Cristina Gallach and by actors Lynda Carter and Gal Gadot. The character was dropped from the role two months later after a petition against the appointment stated Wonder Woman was "not culturally...sensitive" and it was "alarming that the United Nations would consider using a character with an overtly sexualized image".