So, umm, apparently David E. Kelly thought he was writing Watchmen? There's a lot of talk about the legality of Diana's actions and a major plot point is if she's associated with the LAPD, which would be bad, because then all her illegal actions would reflect on their cases (basically, Diana is such a shitty superhero that even the LAPD wants nothing to do with her). There's even a line about how Diana is wire-tapping people. Yes, it's some sort of Bush-era metaphor (how original!) in which Wonder Woman
is the Bush Administration. Or not. I don't know.
We see Diana chase down a drug dealer and then turn him over to the cops, which a newscaster describes as "Abu Gharibs her quarry." A watching Diana then flips the channel to a critical Dr. Phil and a supportive Nancy Grace. I can't imagine any Diana would care what either of them have to say about her.
Diana is at all times surrounded by Tracie Thoms as Etta Candy (who is her publicist instead of a badass military officer) and Wesley from the Princess Bride, who is the CEO of her company. This whole "superhero running a company" aspect that has never been in continuity is introduced to the audience by a newscaster saying "as we all know" and then saying three lines about the situation. Great exposition there.
Wesley wants Diana to go to the infirmary, even though she's an invincible superhero and all she did was chase down a drug dealer, but she blows him off to go to her Diana Prince identity. This consists of, hilariously, her putting her hair into a ponytail and WEARING A PAIR OF GLASSES. Yes, they actually crib the most nonsensical, grandfather'd in aspect of Superman canon (as well as the "truth, justice, and the American Way" line. Yes, even though Diana isn't America. I know).
And all Diana does in her Diana Prince identity is sit at home and watch TV. And though she has a secret identity, one of her concerns is that her enemies would get to her through her open identity and kill Steve Trevor, which is why she breaks up with him. I just--make sense, damnit!
Also, her cat (because of course she has a cat) is named Sylvester. Mmm, corporate synergy! Shouldn't it be named something Greek?
Then again, maybe not, since no mention is made of Paradise Island, Greek gods, or anything to do with Diana's origin. We get one flashback, which is to Diana breaking up with Steve--because that's the most pressing aspect of her backstory, not how she got her powers or why she fights crime. Apparently, she just went to America and hung out, because she breaks up with Steve specifically to become a crimefighter.
So the first scene (of a WONDER WOMAN SHOW) was of an inner-city youth getting accepted into college and then collapsing because Veronica Cale sold him evil drugs. More on that in a minute, but the kid's mother shows up at Diana and tells her she wants to kill the drug dealer. All Diana says is "leave vengeance to me." I can't help but think that Diana's reaction to homicidal rage should be more, I don't know, even-handed? She's basically the Punisher in this.
Apparently spurred on by meeting the mother, Diana holds a press conference to denounce Veronica Cale (Diana is seemingly very hotheaded in this). She faces the camera and tells Cale "If the police don't get you, I will." Yes, our heroine just threatens to kill someone on national television.
Diana is also a horrible businesswoman, as in a meeting to discuss the Wonder Woman doll they're launching in a week or so, she A. completely ignores what's going on to talk shop with Etta Candy (in the comics, working at TACO BELL was serious business for her) and B. is completely surprised to see how boobtacular her action figure is. Because she didn't look at any of the designs I guess. She has a long rant about all her emotions before going to brood in her office.
Apparently, the Wonder Woman dolls fund all of Diana's crimefighting. Wouldn't, say, a fashion line or a perfume be more her speed? I can't see Beyonce, for instance, raking in most of her dough with Beyonce Barbie.
We don't have time for Diana's background or any of that, but we do have time for Wesley to ask Diana about her relationship with Steve. Good origin story.
Veronica Cale comes in to exchange some lesbian innuendo with Diana, who basically tells her "Give up or I'll kill you." Then she doesn't kill her. The subtext on Cale's part is so thick, and so unreciprocated by Diana, that I think it could count as a case of Psycho Lesbian
Diana goes to the hospital, first to talk with college kid cut down in the prime of his life, then to interrogate the drug dealer. But even though the show villainizes Cale for using her sexuality to get what she wants, Diana cringeworthingly tells the guard "This outfit opens doors for me." Another detective comes in and lets Diana torture the guy, then doesn't let her use the information she tortured out of him.
And apparently (this is never stated), the lasso can make people tell the truth, but it doesn't compel
them to tell the truth, so all Diana can do is slap it on someone and then beat them into talking. She also has a little plane, but it isn't invisible. I'd say David E. Kelley has never read the comics, but watching this, I'm not sure he's read anything. Ever.
Diana has dinner with a senator who's in bed with Cale (possibly literally; see: evil sexualized villain). He says that Diana "genetically isn't human." That's literally the only explanation we get of Diana's powers or origin or anything. For all we know, she might be one of the X-Men.
By the way, Diana's brilliant defense of her brazenly illegal actions is that with the wars, the recession, and unemployment, the U.S. government has bigger fish to fry. You could use that argument for everything. "Why are you stopping me from drinking and driving, don't you know there's a war on!?"
For the record, Veronica Cale's evil plan: She's developing a super-soldier serum for the military and, instead of testing it on, you know, lab animals or something, she's using it on third-world country people who are smuggled into the country (because she can't just test her stuff out of the country). BUT she's also testing it on ghetto kids, which is how Diana gets wind of all this in the first place. Cale ALSO keeps around the failed experiments just for Diana to find and expose, instead of killing them and burning the bodies like a good evil overlord. ALSO, even though Diana has the drug dealer in custody for, what, hours or even days, Cale does nothing to move the facility that's been compromised, even though Diana openly says she's gunning for her.
This isn't an idiot plot. It's a developmentally disabled plot.
Of course, Diana is in the swimsuit and HIGH HEELS to go into action. In the comics, Diana puts on armor when she knows she's in for a fight. Here, she takes off her pants.
At the facility, Cale bitches out Diana for all the illegal shit she's done, which is then never tackled, even though Diana has an open identity in this... in fact, an entire corporation! Do you think if Steve Jobs went around throwing pipes through people's throat, he could just go back to work the next day? And also, it's extremely wise for Cale to be there when she knows Diana is coming and Diana has threatened her repeatedly. Diana puts Cale in a chokehold before dropping her. Good lord, THIS is our arch-villain?
So, how does all the legal stuff sort out? Well, it turns out the attorney working Diana's case is Steve Trevor (cough CONFLICT OF INTEREST cough cough) and he immediately dismisses the case. So even though the show has repeatedly emphasized how evil Veronica Cale is for cheating the system and using friends in high places to manipulate shit, Diana does THE EXACT SAME THING and it's played for laughs. She's yukking it up after murdering multiple people a few hours ago.
Also, Steve is married now--it would be really easy for his beau to be Etta Candy, like in the comics, because Tracie Thoms is really playing an entirely different character, but whatever--so I guess they're taking the wildly popular "superhero pervs on a married ex" plot angle from Superman Returns.
Then Diana goes home, as Diana Prince, and has no friends other than her cat, as shown when she starts a Facebook page. I guess Wesley and Etta Candy and even Steve Trevor don't have Facebook accounts.
All in all, if they wanted to make a show about a ruthlessly, corrupt corporate executive who moonlights as a superhero, they should've made an Emma Frost TV show. She wouldn't have complained about her action figure's breasts being too big.
They managed to take Wonder Woman's complicated mythology and not only make it cheap and shabby, but actually make it more convoluted. I was watching it with prozacpark
and she got confused trying to follow the Diana Prince/Diana Themyscira/Wonder Woman concept, while Diana's origin wasn't even touched on. Wonder Woman isn't a character that you can assume a background familiarity with. If you start a Superman or Spider-Man series in media res, people will know what's going on, but you have to take time to introduce Wonder Woman. You can't just say "hey, Wonder Woman" and launch straight into some meta-y critique of the superhero genre, especially when it seems like it's written by someone who's never read a superhero comic in his life.
ETA: By the way, Tracie Thoms (a black woman) plays Etta Candy, a traditionally white (and husky, but she's thin here of course) character. It's worth noting that in the comics, Etta Candy is a badass colonel, while here, she makes Astrid in Fringe look like an A-list character. While Wesley gets all the facetime with Diana, she's a thankless assistant who exists only to remind Diana of her meetings. Read what you like into that.
It's also a little odd that Diana has a secret identity, but all her friends know about it, since I thought the point of a secret ID was mining drama from having to hide it from people. Here, all Diana would have to do if worst came to worst is come up with another cover identity.