P:R Redesign: Allen Holt’s Wonder Woman!

Note: It seems a lot of people spend a lot of time thinking about the clothes Wonder Woman wears — and I’m not complaining. Artist Allen Holt recently submitted to us this redesign of DC’s warrior woman and armors up this Themysciran the way. While armoring up Wonder Woman isn’t a new idea, Holt’s decisions here really stand out. – Chris A.

Here’s what Allen said to us about the design:

  • I very much didn’t want her cleavage hanging out. I was fine with the corset-y top, and fine with her being voluptuous, but I felt strongly that her chest should be more covered. I’d like to think I still got across “sexy and powerful” without a huge amount of cleavage.
  • I took the blue and stars out, because I don’t know why Wonder Woman would have American iconography as part of her costume when she’s not American. She’s probably closer to Greek than anything else. I kept the red and the gold WW (which I think we could pretend is more of a tribal design than actually standing for “Wonder Woman”) so that it’s still recognizably Diana.
  • I was going to give her pants, but when researching ancient Greek armor – most of the soldiers in the reference I found weren’t wearing pants. So maybe that’s reasonably historically accurate and helps sell the sexy.
18 comments on “P:R Redesign: Allen Holt’s Wonder Woman!
  1. This is what I’ve wanted Wonder Woman to look like my entire life. Greek iconography front and centre. She represents the mythic component of the DC universe.

  2. A lovely Amazonian Diana.

    However, the stars and blue actually have a reason behind it. In the New Earth history of Diana, it was explained that when Steve Trevor’s mother landed on Themyscira and later sacrificed herself for the Amazons, the USA flag on her uniform was used as inspiration for the Wonder Woman uniform in her honor.(which is why Diana didn’t just toss Steve’s ass as if he were an enemy, since she saw his USA flag insignia)

    It actually wouldn’t be historically inaccurate for her to wear pants, due to an ancient albatross which depicts a Amazon in trousers.

    So, now that I’m done debunking, I’ll draw my attention to the actual design.

    I’m glad Allen went with the pointy tiara, since it provides good brow protection. On the spaulders, I feel they should have a few more straps. With only the torso straps, I feel it might be a little too loose and could be exploited. The war skirt looks bulky and looks like it could take some heavy duty damage, which I love. The greaves are simply perfect.
    The only thing I really dislike is the gloves, as for Allen’s trend of historical “accuracy” they seem way too modern in design, and there are plenty historic Greek gauntlets designs that have worked well with this.

  3. I love the Greek armor angle. This works well, but the missing blue hurts it. Yeah, she wouldn’t be wearing “American” designs, but the colors red and blue go together in a way that makes the combination show up in a LOT of places other than the US flag. I’m not missing the stars, because 5-pointed stars within Greek armor do some way out of place (not sure why the headgear has one actually), but brightly colored skirts wouldn’t be entirely inappropriate for Greeks. They’re often depicted wearing muted colors or white, but in reality, Ancient Greeks had a lot of color.

    Also, I like the design of the footwear, but the detailing in the shins/knees seems a bit like you’re trying to tell us something. “Look up!” Is that supposed to be some commentary on how male costumes often point toward the crotch or just some weird coincidence that there are giant arrows?

  4. It would be funny if the trim on her chest piece was just a geometric Scythian-inspired bit of artwork, and the first mainlanders who saw her just assumed that it was the initials W. W.

    Also, if there are high-kicking panty shots for this redesign, they should clearly show that she is wearing authentic Bronze Age Greek undies. That is, a well-wrapped and somewhat bulky loincloth.

  5. I like it but sandals? I always question that aspect when used. Yes she has her roots in Greek mythology, but they are also warriors, and if she’s going to be modern, a modern warrior wouldn’t wear sandals. Not enough protection or traction. That said overall great design.

  6. Blue and stars isn’t necessarily American. Take a look at the Australian flag for example. How about the night sky and the stars in it…

  7. I really appreciate all of the feedback and constructive criticism, everybody! I really appreciate it — even/especially examining the details. That’s the kind of thing I’ll try to keep in mind either if I draw this costume again or with the next redesign I do.

  8. As ever, I think Wonder Woman’s costume represents something about her. In this version, she represents a gladiator, a warrior — and an agonizingly practical one at that – and I wonder why this makes her “Wonder” Woman? Why does Wonder Woman, who was created to represent the antithesis of war (and the Amazons were reimagined to embrace this idea), now represent something so horrific? (let’s not fool ourselves about what war is). And how did a character like Wonder Woman — an immortal Amazon born and raised on an island Paradise in another dimension — come to represent the enemy she was created to fight (Ares)? How did a character who was originally all about fun and sexual power and competition and self betterment and anti-war suddenly become this literal embodiment of battle glory? Is this the only way people can take her “seriously” — to turn her into that which she was created to resist/fight/transform in the first place?

  9. I especially love the shoes and the ponytail. This redesign hits all the right notes, being historical, practical, and just plain cool. But I wish the skirt was a navy blue. Everything else looks great!

  10. Ooh, that’s great. Nice work, for sure.

    Normally not a fan of making the Wonder Woman costume too armored, but in this case the restraint in how much armor there is and the simplicity of the shapes and colors maintains that Olympic-athletic feel that Wonder Woman should have.

    I’m probably one of the few people who really has a problem with the whole “Xena/warrior princess” thing that people have done with Wonder Woman over the years – the character was created explicitly to be the counterpoint of the men-at-war machismo superheroes of the day, someone who was all about love, compassion, and a different kind of strength. Making her into a stern “warrior” is totally backwards (and not to get too Freudian, but giving her a sword is the worst offender, imo).

    But this redesign manages to walk the line of the compromise between fighter and athlete beautifully.

  11. I REALLY love the look of this costume!

    While I do find it a bit weird to have a WW costume without the blue and the stars, the use of red and gold in the costume really makes it stand out in a good way. It feels refreshing and vital in a way that superhero costumes should be, and the armour looks like it should be on a warrior.

    As other people pointed out, the shoes are great, and one thing I did notice was the strap leading from the shoulder pad to the chest armour, a nice bit of detail that most artists seem to forget about such things, like how support is needed.

  12. This is a good look for her first few outings, but I feel like a WW functioning in the modern world wouldn’t STAY in this sort of outfit. There would be modern tweaks and element changes. She’s not a person out of time, she’s a modern heroine and modern elements, helpful to her doing her job, would creep into the design

    That said, I can imagine there being one gag in this design where someone talks about ancient people not wearing underwear (whether true or not) and giving her the Star Spangled panties (new) as a cover up for down there, and she looks at them with a mix of revulsion and confusion

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