Monday, October 11, 2010

Wonder Woman...TV Show?

Entertainment Weekly claims that David E. Kelly (a bunch of shows I'd rather forget) is writing a treatment for a Wonder Woman TV show. There's been a WW movie on hold for about a decade while different studios rewrite her origin and try to figure out how to portray an invisible plane on-screen and whether Megan Fox would make a good Diana Pince (she would not). So TV networks have apparently expressed interest. This could be a Very Good Thing or a Very Bad Thing. Here are some thoughts I have that would make the show work:

1) No invisible plane. No flying. Invisible planes are stupid, and flying is a great idea, but live-action TV has yet to portray such an action in any sort of convincing way (Smallville just ignores that particular power). If it were a movie, I'm sure the budget would be there, but a network TV show? Probably not. Find some other way for our girl to get around.

2) Lynda Carter must be present in a meaningful way. Obviously, she can't be Diana Prince anymore (which is a Damn Shame), but she could easily play Hippolyta, WW's mother. The show must acknowledge Lynda's singular, important presence as the character in a way that allows the audience to move away from her, and accept the New Kid. Casting Lynda as Hippolyta is the only respectful way to do that.

3) Don't use the old costume. Not even the JLU costume. It's kitchy, impractical, and certainly not modern. However, the new post #600 costume--the one designed by Jim Lee--is modern, practical, and good lookin'. This is something a superheroine would wear, as opposed to something she'd wear to a Halloween party.

4) Be careful with the origin story. The old origin story is stupid. I'm just gonna go ahead and admit that. A modern WW could have some kind of military origin story--a superpowered child brought up in a military complex (codenamed Themyscira?) and trained to be an American force for good. Many fans will accept a reworked origin so long as series staples show up in one form or another. Respect must be paid to the origin, corny as it is.

5) Wonder Woman is a brunette with blue eyes. She is tall, authoritative, curvy, and chesty. The biggest mistake you can be make in casting Wonder Woman would be to get some flat-chested youthful blonde who just happens to be a big name right now in TV. The show will fail if it strays too far from Diana's look and the familiarity of the character. Unfortunately, network TV has been grappling with curvy leads for a looooong time. Sofia Vergara on Modern Family is the exception that proves the rule. But even if you have to go with some no-name actress who we've never heard of, Diana Prince has to look like Diana Prince. Lynda Carter is her mother, remember?

6) Use the interesting villains, please. Cull from the more recent comics if you have to. If you stick with the military thing, her enemies can be other successful, but rogue, agents with codenames and powers that reflect their specific powers. You can have Cheetah and Hades that way.

7) No Lasso of Truth. It's stupid.

Anyone else? What should/should not be a part of this TV show? Casting ideas? Plotpoints? Go nuts!


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Sean Craven said...

Okay, Zach, here's why I should be in charge of Wonder Woman. I mean, first, there's the obvious -- I've had animation scripts broadcast on BBC, and I'm a pro fiction writer. Barely, but I am.

But those are just qualifications. I have a real edge. See, I'm the only person on the planet who's willing to go all-out and do a true reboot of the character based on a return to her true roots.

Unlike any of the other major comic book characters, Wonder Woman was designed by a crazed shrink as a tool for his insane social engineering project.

That is the Wonder Woman I could bring to the world.

A Wonder Woman who stars in thinly-veiled bondage pornography for pre-teens, teaching them to submit to loving female authority.

(I'm not kidding. I'm leaving out the best stuff!

Listen. At the end of the day, I'm an old-fashioned guy. And I think Wonder Woman should be disturbing, yet draw the eye, like roadkill or a cousin's cleavage.

Have you ever seen an early Wonder Woman story? This is the tradition!

Kelly said...

You're an idiot. Invisible plane means STEALTH. We have them today in our military. Wonder Woman would be a great television show. As far as the lasso of truth... The idea came from the source, the man who created the lie detector test also created Wonder Woman, William Moulton Marston.

Anonymous said...

Kelly, I'm with you - Zach - you're an idiot.
Who needs a stream of comtemporizing and American military angle in a character that is completely fantastical and amazing?
What you're asking for is another series of ALIAS.
Don't get me wrong - JJ Abrams rocks.
But you don't mess with Wonder Woman.
Her outfit is supposed to be worn in honour of her heritage. Her powers are god-given gifts and tools she utilises to fulfil her mission.
Her background is steeped in mythology and history that has shaped the modern world...look how people embrace shows like Xena, Hercules, etc?
If anyone reads this from David E Kelley's team - make sure you cast an unknown and for the love of Zeus make sure she's tall and curvy.