Skip to main content

We Really Need to Talk About Wonder Woman 2 Being Set During the Cold War

Ever since details about Wonder Woman 2 started to leak out, I haven’t been able to think about much else, and I keep wondering what this new era will mean for Diana and Co. Talk to me.

Recommended Videos

As we reported yesterday, all signs point to Wonder Woman’s sequel taking place in the 1980’s, peak Cold War, with some sort of Soviet adversary. It’s unclear why Diana, ostensibly a neutral party in “the world of men,” would take America’s side—she ended up taking on Germany in Wonder Woman because of her alliance with Steve Trevor and the German attack on the Amazons. Had a brave citizen from the Central Powers been the first to end up in Themyscira and befriend her, well, that would’ve been a very different movie. And considering that the Cold War is a much murkier conflict that lacks the traditional war-movie battlefield, it’ll be interesting to see how she’s positioned and what her motivation is.

Screenrant says they’ve learned these production details:

Set during the 1980s, the film will send Diana against the forces of Soviet Union in the closing days of the Cold War. The production team is expected to remain on board for the sequel, with confirmation that Geoff Johns is developing Wonder Woman 2‘s script with Jenkins (who is still in negotiations, with all evidence and word of mouth pointing to her return once the contracts are signed).

Hooray, we had best be getting our Patty Jenkins back. Screenrant envisions this film as going the espionage route, with undercover machinations in Moscow and Stateside, and—yes, I can see this, and do I want to watch Diana Prince flawlessly infiltrate top-secret organizations? Do I want to see her venture into numerous countries, where she can speak All Of The Languages? I do. Given the fact that Russia—and its ongoing covert operations—remain the #1 topic dominating our news cycle, the choice of setting couldn’t be more topical and relevant. After their rather nuanced and well-researched treatment of WWI (especially for a comic book movie), I also trust the production to show that neither side is black-and-white good or bad.

However, this being said, I still have a lot of Thoughts. Some articles have speculated that Wonder Woman 2 is likely skipping over WWII (where she originated in the comics) in order to avoid the ground Captain America already covered in his origin-story movie (and considering that Wonder Woman already did a “hot war” so well, I’m not desperate to see another historical battlefield). But I think it’s hard not have these sequel plans also call to mind the best Captain America film (fight me), The Winter Soldier, which was, by all accounts, more of a cloak-and-dagger drama than previous Marvel efforts.

Directors Joe and Anthony Russo tied Winter Soldier directly to the 1975 spy thriller Three Days of the Condor (which starred Robert Redford, who had another sort of role to play in Winter Soldier), jokingly calling it “Three Days of Captain America.” They cited the political thrillers of that era as their primary inspiration for Cap 2. So even though Winter Soldier took place in the modern day, I can’t help but feel like Wonder Woman is hewing to a similar formula. First movie: origin in a world war. Second movie: international issues and organizational intrigue. To be honest, I wouldn’t mind if the third movie saw the Justice League divided a la Civil War and Diana kicking Batman’s ass or something, but that’s neither here nor there.

It’s also hard to avoid some of the movies’ existing parallels:

(image: thecaptainoutoftime tumblr)

Additionally, it’s being reported that Chris Pine will likely return somehow to the sequel as Steve Trevor. Now, I’m on the record as desperately wanting to see this happen, and speculating all the possible ways that it could. But with the Cold War news, I feel like the worst case scenario would be if he had somehow been captured (and preserved?) by the Soviets or they made a clone of him for evil purposes or something. Because this would be way, way too Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes-esque—a figure beloved to the hero secretly corrupted by the (Soviet) enemy.

He better not actually be seeing Red.

I want to cross all of my fingers and toes and hope that there’s no way the production would be this derivative. And since I really don’t want to see Pine playing a descendant of Steve Trevor with the same name and face (even though there’s precedent for that in the Wonder Woman comics and TV show), I find myself hoping that maybe he’ll just appear to Diana or dreams or flashbacks or, IDK, superdrug-induced hallucinations because government scientists were up to some weird shit during the Cold War.

Or maybe I’ll go with my favorite theory that I generated to keep myself warm at night, that there’s some sort of new God or magician involved who restores Steve to Diana’s side. But if this were the case, how do you account for Diana living without him at the beginning and end of Wonder Woman, and thanking Bruce Wayne for “bringing him back” to her by means of a photograph?

I know at this point this is all just rampant speculation, but I had to get it out there. This is what I spend most of my time thinking about, people. What’re your thoughts about Diana taking on the Cold War? How should Steve Trevor return? How mad will this movie make the Russians? Will Diana be rocking shoulder pads and permed hair? I have so many questions.

(images: Warner Bros./DC Comics)

Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!

The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—

Have a tip we should know? [email protected]


Kaila Hale-Stern
Kaila Hale-Stern (she/her) is a content director, editor, and writer who has been working in digital media for more than fifteen years. She started at TMS in 2016. She loves to write about TV—especially science fiction, fantasy, and mystery shows—and movies, with an emphasis on Marvel. Talk to her about fandom, queer representation, and Captain Kirk. Kaila has written for io9, Gizmodo, New York Magazine, The Awl, Wired, Cosmopolitan, and once published a Harlequin novel you'll never find.

Filed Under:

Follow The Mary Sue: