WONDER WOMAN 1984 - 10 Key Mistakes Made By Latest DCEU Film That Could Have Been Avoided

Wonder Woman 1984 has come under fire since arriving on HBO Max last Friday, but there are 10 key mistakes the DCEU film could have avoided. Scrap that. These should have been avoided by the sequel!

Wonder Woman 1984 is not a bad superhero film, even if some YouTubers and Twitter users would have you believe it's the worst comic book adaptation to come along in recent memory!

Many respected critics, including those here on CBM, have reviewed the sequel positively, but it's impossible to ignore the film's flaws. Mistakes were made along the way which could, née should, have been avoided. Had that been the case, perhaps Wonder Woman 1984 would have truly soared.

As things stand, it seems unlikely to leave a lasting impact, and there will be those hoping an eventual third film can make things right and conclude the trilogy in a meaningful, exciting way. 

That's understandable, especially if you take a look through these crucial, undeniable mistakes...
 

10. Building The Story Around The MacGuffin

Dreamstone

There's nothing wrong with a superhero film having a MacGuffin, but in Wonder Woman 1984, the story is completely beholden to the Dreamstone. 

Everything that happens is a direct result of its existence, and the way events escalate because of it both overcomplicates things and leaves us with a list of niggling, frustrating questions. Why, for example, does Max Lord go from wanting oil reserves to willingly sending the world to war?

He has nothing to gain from that, and is clearly smart enough to realise so.

Instead, as his health fails (which could have been easily remedied), so does his common sense, and it becomes increasingly difficult to buy into the rules of this particular MacGuffin.
 

9. Revisiting Steve Trevor

Trevor

Steve Trevor's death in Wonder Woman was heartbreaking, not least because it meant saying goodbye to a character who should have become a fixture in Diana Prince's life.

Bringing him back in Wonder Woman 1984, and revealing that Diana Prince has spent decades wallowing after him, is just plain depressing, though. It's not you can even argue that Wonder Woman gets a sense of closure here because she was still clearly mourning in Justice League.

Chris Pine is great, but it feels a lot like the main reason for bringing him back was because bankable actor Chris Pine had a sequel option in his contract. 

Retreading the fish out of water trope also did little to help.
 

8. The Main Antagonist Became The Secondary Villain

Cheetah

In the build up to Wonder Woman 1984's release, Cheetah was marketed as the film's primary antagonist and often cloaked in secrecy (a first look came thanks to promo art and toys). 

Dr. Barbara Minerva is given a key role in the sequel, but Cheetah is an afterthought. Appearing near the end of the film's final act, she battles Wonder Woman once, loses relatively quickly, then renounces her wish, becomes Barbara again, and learns...life was better when no one paid any attention to her because she's not hot enough? 

It's a weird storyline that only becomes sillier the more time you spend thinking about it. 

However, you choose to look at it, Cheetah was wasted, and fans didn't get what they were promised. 
 

7. 1984

WW1

One of Wonder Woman 1984's biggest mistakes is right there in the title. 

When the script was written, we have no doubt everyone's revitalized love of the 1980s (primarily thanks to Stranger Things, it seems) was high in the minds of Patty Jenkins and Geoff Johns. 

Unfortunately, the constant release date delays make this sequel feel stale, even if Jenkins' unique visuals help it stand out. Revisiting the past was the biggest mistake, however, especially when the time had clearly come to follow Diana Prince's story in the present day. 

A host of continuity errors caused by this trip to the 1980s have just annoyed fans, especially with it now clear that the Amazon was never truly in hiding.
 

6. A New Costume With No Meaning

WW11

Gosh, that Golden Eagle armor sure did look cool on all those posters, eh?

Actually, it looks pretty rad in the film itself too, but Wonder Woman 1984 fails to ever really justify why it should be there. While Diana Prince is bested by Dr. Barbara Minerva in the White House, that's primarily because her powers are fading. When the Amazon dons this armor, she's regained her abilities, and has no clue her friend has become Cheetah.

It protects her to a degree in that fight, but the wings are quickly destroyed, and the helmet is also ditched early on. It just becomes another costume, and not one Diana really needed.

Trust us on this one; the Golden Eagle armor was made for marketing, not fans.
 

5. Lack Of Originality

WW112

What does Wonder Woman 1984 bring to the table we haven't seen before? 

There's a lot about this sequel which should be applauded, but it ultimately fails to really do anything new for the character or the DCEU. As noted, a 1980s setting feels stale at this point, while everything from a rock that grants wishes to an ill-fated romance and a good person who becomes a villain have been done before.

And done better. 

Breaking the mould in the superhero genre isn't easy, but whereas Wonder Woman presented fresh ideas, this sequel sorely lacks the sort of originality needed to make it a true hit.
 

4. Too Much Romance, Not Enough Action 

WW1123

There are a lot of good things to be said about the romance between Diana Prince and Steve Trevor, with the chemistry between Gal Gadot and Chris Pine clear for everyone to see. 

However, the love story too often dominates proceedings. 

It's an important part of the genre, but does anyone come into a film like Wonder Woman 1984 hoping for romance more than blockbuster action scenes? The sequel does deliver some stellar set pieces, but they feel too few and far between, especially in a film that's bloated at 150 minutes long. 

Films like this need more than just action, but there's almost too much character work here, most of which feels unnecessary (did Maxwell Lord really need a son to make him sympathetic?).
 

3. Failing To Embrace The Comics

WW11233

Wonder Woman 1984 certainly doesn't disrespect the comics it's inspired by, and there are times when it embraces them in ways we can't help but appreciate like the Invisible Jet's debut. 

In other ways, it feels like this sequel needed to spend more time taking its cues from them, however.

We're not necessarily saying this would have made the film better, but just imagine Diana Prince being left with no other choice than to break Maxwell Lord's neck to stop him? That's a very famous comic moment, and one that would explain why Diana - traumatized by her actions - chose to hide herself from the world.

Cheetah might have also benefited from being a little more like the comic book villain. 
 

2. A Predictable Outcome

WW112333

The second it became clear Wonder Woman's powers were fading, and that using the Dreamstone had negative consequences, who didn't see Steve Trevor's second sacrifice coming? 

We know that he's not part of Diana Prince's life a few decades after this film is set, so his demise was inevitable. It's also no secret that the DCEU didn't fall into a nuclear war in the 1980s, so is it really that shocking when Maxwell Lord renounces his wish and the Amazon saves the day? 

There's too much predictability in Wonder Woman 1984, and that hinders this film. 

Lynda Carter's cameo is a nice surprise, and probably the only legitimately shocking moment in 150 minutes.
 

1. Lack Of Ties To The Wider DCEU

WW1123332

You can blame Marvel Studios for this, or simply the nature of comics themselves, but fans go into films like Wonder Woman 1984 expecting world building and ties to other characters they love.

Aquaman scaled that back after the negative response to Justice League, but mentions of the team were appreciated, as was the way it completely changed Arthur Curry's status quo. Now, when he next crosses paths with his fellow superheroes, he's the motherf***ing King of Atlantis. 

Some familiar names aside, this sequel does little to connect itself to the wider DCEU.

It's too standalone in a lot of ways, and contradicts much of what's been seen before. Why didn't Diana Prince use her powers of flight and invisibility when appearing in the present day? 
 

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