After watching Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, I will never see Wonder Woman quite the same. This examination of the lifestyle and thought process of WW’s creator, William Moulton Marston show a man defiant of the stodgy morals of his time. The roaring twenties were not so roaring as Marston lost his tenor and livelihood as the details of his alternate lifestyle became known. His creation of Wonder Woman came as a result of his change of work direction.
Luke Evans (Dracula and F&F) imbues the character of Professor Marston with a nod towards intellectualism but tempers it with a bohemian and libertarian attitude that was never going to withstand the glare of investigation. His loss of being able to make a living in the scholastic world led to him pouring his alternative views into his invention of Wonder Woman.
Cleverly incorporating images from the actual early editions of the WW comic books, you begin to realise how risqué the original character was drawn. The themes of domination, submission and bondage are clear to see and it makes one wonder how the publishers of the time got away (even temporarily) with it. It’s also interesting to note that some of Marston’s real living relatives have come out and denied some of the more salacious elements of the film.
The creation of such a lasting character as Wonder Woman with the multiple versions to reflect the temper of the times is a testament to Marston’s brilliance and clever subversion. This is a human story and one that fans of the bigger than life comic book figures will enjoy as well.