Warner Brothers/Getty Images
In this photo from 1977, Lynda Carter gets it done as one of many Wonder Woman.
In this photo from 1977, Lynda Carter gets it done as one of many Wonder Woman. Warner Brothers/Getty Images
Dear Wonder Woman:
I know we're not close. I am not much of a comic-book reader, and back when you were being played by Lynda Carter from 1975 to 1979, I wasn't quite old enough for that to be up my alley. I did always admire your invisible jet, which I knew mostly through the Superfriends cartoons.
I've seen some of your costume reboots (no pun intended). While you don't know me, I believe you know my dear friend and comics guru Glen Weldon, who has discussed your jacket and so forth in the past. I realize that you have often been asked to embrace the ridiculous, the silly, the impractical, the spangled, the swimsuit-y, and the downright inappropriate.
You have been through a lot.
But Wonder (can I call you Wonder?), you deserve better than this. Now granted, that — your latest look for your new pilot at NBC — is better than the original version we saw. You have dark blue pants instead of electric blue pants, and they gave you back your red boots. And, of course, the fact that you have pants at all, rather than star-spangled underwear, is an improvement.
Nevertheless, lady, these are not clothes for butt-kicking. They are clothes for high-kicking, specifically in a Rockettes Christmas show where you and sixty other women just like you are playing the part of an entire shipment of Wonder Woman Barbies that Santa had to throw away because they were deemed too naughty for the kids on the "nice" list.
Tell me the truth, Wonder: If I asked you to participate in a 50-yard dash, and it were you against someone you really wanted to be beat, is there any possibility you would say to me, "Sure, let me run inside and get my red plastic bustier that sucks me in like Scarlett O'Hara and supports fully 30 percent of my natural blessings?" THERE IS NO SUCH POSSIBILITY. You would not do yoga in that top. You would not run to catch a bus in that top, unless you crossed your arms over your chest the whole way there.
Look, there was a time when it had to be this way. There was a time when nobody understood that women could be good at fighting and also hot. There was a time when functionality had to take a back seat to fashion, and this is when your star-spangled undies were invented, you see. There was a time when you couldn't have it both ways. But now you can! Linda Hamilton didn't wear fishnet stockings in Terminator 2, did she? Did she? (...Did she? It's been a while.) There's nothing in The Hunger Games about Katniss wearing stilettos in battle. Buffy didn't slay vampires in a tube top and I think you get my meaning. They have really improved sports bra technology since the late 1970s, and there's no reason you should deny yourself its benefits.
I am all for you being gorgeous. I am all for you embracing your right to be a sex bomb and a crime fighter at the same time, but that doesn't mean a strapless corset made of plastic. Not only can you not use your lasso in that outfit, you can't raise your arm to hail a taxi in that outfit. I understand that you have an invisible plane. Or maybe in this version you don't. Maybe you have an invisible Vespa because of the urban environment. (I apologize for the fact that I have just envisioned you wheeling along on an invisible Segway, and it was really funny.) But you still have to get from one place to another, and that's just not a travel-friendly outfit.
All I'm saying is that you are an iconic crime-fighter. You have a job to do, and your job is to protect me from ... well, I don't know who, actually. Um, Hatchet-Head? Is that someone? Circus-Face? I don't know, I'm just taking shots in the dark. But my point is that the sorts of people you are charged to fight represent a grave, grave threat to all of us. We can't afford to have you distracted because you're yanking up your top all the time like a poorly-fitted bridesmaid at a hastily planned wedding. If you wouldn't wear it to step class at Bally's Total Fitness, don't wear it for battle.
I am only thinking of you. And, of course, the possibility that you will fail to defeat Circus-Face because you will be stuck on a sidewalk with your boot heel in a street grate while you yank on your bustier (classically described by Sandra Bernhard as designed to "boost your yays") and treat yourself with baby powder for a serious case of full-body chafing. And then Circus-Face is left to destroy us with his trapeze ray or his clown button or his elephant gun, and that's the end.
If this is how we all go down, I'm blaming your wardrobe.