Donna Hinckley Stacy Troy (Wonder Girl)

wondergirlfilmThe penultimate character from Brick89‘s request is quite a tough lady, who unfortunately received only one (unfaithful) live action adaption despite her popularity: Wonder Girl, the sidekick of Wonder Woman (and later heroine on her own). Debra Winger portrayed the character in the Wonder Woman tv series, but instead of having Donna Troy take the mantle of the young heroine as in the comics, they created DrusillaDiana‘s little sister and second daughter of Hippolyta. At first, Drusilla arrives to America to urge Diana to come back to Paradise Island, but she’s involved in a misadventure involving Nazi spies, and she stays (at least for a couple of episodes) to fight evil as Wonder Girl at her sister’s side. In the comics, her origins are quite different, and she doesn’t make such a mess during her first mission. Let’s see together the first steps of a heroine who grows up to become one of the greatest female heroes of DC Comics.

The first version of Donna Troy was a simple human, an orphan who saw her mother die of cancer, and who later suffered another major tragedy when the orphanage she grew up in burnt to ashes. She was found by the heroine Wonder Woman, who took pity in the girl and grew fond of her: wanting to offer her a family, Wonder Woman took Donna to Paradise Island, and made her a honorary Amazon. Thanks to the futuristic Purple Rays Donna was given powers nearly identical to an Amazon’s ones, and she spent years training in the many arts of Paradise Island, including the art of war. When she was finally ready, she joined her mentor in her quest in protecting Men’s World as Wonder Girl, basically the teenager version of Wonder Woman. This, however, was the happy part of her story: after Chrisis on Infinite Earths, her past was completely rewritten. She was actually born in Themyscira, but not as a human, not even as a regular Amazon: Princess Diana was sad and lonely, since she was the only child on the island, so when she was twelve years old, the sorceress Megala created a magic mirror for her. When Diana looked into the mirror, a fragment of her soul was absorbed by it, creating a magic duplicate of the princess who wondergirlcomics1could be her friend, so that the kid didn’t feel lonely anymore: Donna was born. Being a duplicate of the original, the resemblance between the two girls was striking, and even Megala had problems telling the two of them apart. The girls played on this resemblance, but this proved to be Donna’s downfall as well: an old enemy of Hippolyta, the Dark Angel, wanted to abduct Diana in revenge against her nemesis, but she took the wrong girl, and kidnapped Donna instead. The evil sorceress vented all her cruelty on the baby, and cursed her to live through many lives, each one of them would have ended up in tragedy: she knew a mother’s greatest pain is to know her child is suffering, thus she inflicted the greatest pain she could conceive on the one she believed to be Hippolyta’s daughter. Donna began her personal trip to hell.

Every time Donna reached the lowest point of her life, Dark Angel appeared, made her remember all of her past lives (and sufferings), then erased from the world’s memory her current life, making her start a new one, in a sadistic neverending cycle. After being born several times, Donna came into the world again as the daughter of Dorothy Hinckley, a single mother who was mortally ill. Just before dying, Dorothy gave her daughter into adoption, and Donna was taken in by Carl and Faye Stacy, who raised her as their own. Tragedy struck once again, as Carl Stacy suddenly died in an accident at work. Unable to raise Donna on her own, Faye gave her in adoption once again, but it’s unclear if the girl was taken by another family or if she was put into an orphanage. The only thing she remembered from this part of her life was a fire that destroyed the place she had learnt to call “home” and that killed the people she regarded as family. She was miraculously saved by Rhea, a Titan and  the ancient Goddess of Earth: compassionate and caring, Rhea brought Donna to New Cronus, where the Titans resided, and made Donna one of her Titan Seeds, children from all around the universe she had saved from certain death. Each Seed was named after a place that used to worship Titans, and Donna received the name “Troy”, in homage to the city that ruled on the Bosphorus in ancient times. Rhea raised the Seeds as her own children, preparing them to become gods among gods, but when they reached adolescence she sent them back to their original planets, with their memory of New Cronus erased, until, after developing in their own environment, they were ready to come back as experienced and wise gods. When wondergirlcomics2she turned thirteen, Donna was sent back to Earth, where she grew up once again experiencing being sent from foster family to foster family. With her body reaching maturity, however, both her Amazonian heritage and Rhea’s blessing emerged, and she found out she had superpowers. Adopting the name Wonder Girl, she used her abilities to help people, so that nobody would experience her same pain: along with other teenager heroes, Robin, Speedy and Aqualad, she founded the Teen Titans, a “junior Justice League“, thus strenghtening her commitment in making the world a better place…until a curse she didn’t remember of exacted his toll once again, obviously.

Donna Troy is a young woman forged by the pain she endured during her childhood, who managed to turn her suffering into compassion, her grief into empathy; she uses her strength to protect others, and albeit passionate she always tries to help. As Wonder Girl, she possesses Amazonian strength, speed, durability, stamina, agility and reflexes, she heals quickly from physical wounds and she can fly; being Wonder Woman’s duplicate, she also shares a psychic bond with her; she’s been trained in the art of war, and she’s a superb hand-to-hand combatant, a weapon master and a skilled tactician; she fights with her Lasso of Persuasion, that forces anyone touching it to do what she demands, and the Amazonian Bracelets of Submission, nearly indestructible. Molded more by her personal tragedies than by the fires of battle, Wonder Girl lives a neverending cycle of loss, abandonment and loneliness, but she always tries to rise above her defeats, alone or with her loyal friends.

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