While Smallville gave an excruciatingly detailed look at Superman’s early days over its 10 season run, the CW series featured an odd mix of superhero guest-stars from the other corners of the DC Universe. Characters like Green Arrow, Aquaman, the Justice Society, and Cyborg were all featured in the series, but some of Superman’s most iconic allies like Batman and Wonder Woman never appeared in the live-action series.
However, that changed with the Smallville Season 11 comics. Shortly after the series brought Batman into the CW show’s world, it also introduced the Smallville universe’s version of Wonder Woman. Now, we’re taking a look back at how DC’s Amazon Princess finally met Tom Welling’s Superman on the comics page.
Diana first appears in “Olympus,” the fifth arc of Smallville Season 11 by Bryan Q. Miller and Jorge Jimenez. The first issue in the arc shows a flashback to the events that would eventually bring the character to Man’s World. Roughly 20 years ago, a boy named Steve Trevor washed up on the shores of the mythical Themyscira as the sole survivor of a tragic crash. Diana, the youngest of the all-female Amazons and the daughter of Queen Hippolyta, finds him. Despite the misandrist teachings of her society, Diana becomes fast friends with Steve, and the two develop of mutual crush. Unfortunately, Steve is soon discovered, and Queen Hippolyta leaves the island to take the boy back to America. Years later, Diana defies the requests of the other Amazons and leaves the island in search of her mother, who never returned.
Her first adventure in Man’s World sees Diana saving Senator Martha Kent, who was attacked by men working with D.E.O. director Bones. As Clark becomes acquainted with the now-adult Steve Trevor, who works for the D.E.O., Lois tracks down Washington D.C.’s “vigilante in white.” This vigilante is none other than Diana, with her ivory choice in attire a reference to her infamous Agent Diana Prince-era costume from the mid-60s. As Lois and Diana begin to talk, they’re attacked by winged mythological creatures who serve Felix Faust. They’re able to draw Diana’s blood, which they take back to their master.
Superman and Diana meet, and they learn that Bones and Faust were part of a World War II-era anti-occult squadron, with a curse gone wrong leaving Bones with a fittingly skeletal appearance that he covers with makeup. Diana also realizes that her mother is alive, before reconnecting with her “secret boy” Steve Trevor. Steve marvels at how Diana now has incredible strength and speed like Superman’s, which developed as she aged. Diana, having been dubbed a “Wonder Woman” already by Lois, allows herself to be arrested by the military in order to see her captured mother.
Secretly, Faust uses this to finally release his master Hades, who had been imprisoned by Hippolyta and Zeus. Hades, the destructive Lord of the Dead, takes the usual place of Wonder Woman villain Ares, the God of War. The magically empowered god begins to overwhelm the vulnerable Superman, but Wonder Woman, now sporting Amazonian armor joins the fray. Her costume is essentially a more Greco-Roman variant of her traditional costume, and she’s armed with a sword and her Lasso of Truth. Together, they defeat the evil Hades and leave the world to come to grips with the catastrophic, paranormal events that had taken place. Hippolyta returns to Themyscira, but Diana stays behind and takes the civilian identity of Diana Prince, the D.E.O.’s newest agent.
Diana would become a frequent guest star in the remaining Smallville: Season 11 stories. Not only did she help Superman and Green Lantern against the invading Yellow Lanterns, but she was part of the final Justice League seen in the series’ finale. In these later stories, she was seen riding a mythological Pegasus, apparently lacking her modern comic incarnation’s ability to fly. And even if Crisis on Infinite Earths showed how Clark eventually gave up his powers, the Earth of Smallville is likely still protected from a particularly wondrous woman.
While Smallville is a long way from Themyscira, Wonder Woman still eventually found her way into the world of the beloved Superman TV series.