As a female filmmaker, I always try to support woman-led movies by promoting them, donating to them, or buying tickets to see them. When I heard that Wonder Woman, a film directed by Patty Jenkins, got a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes, I had to see it opening weekend. Everybody I know was raving about it, so it has to be magnificent, right? Wrong. I usually give comic book movies a pass because you sort of have to check your logic at the door. A lasso that also makes you tell the truth? Sure! Perfectly-applied eyeliner and hair in the heat of battle? Of course! But there are just some things I cannot stand, especially when they are going largely ignored.
So here is my breakdown of every plot hole (or plot gap) in Wonder Woman. Chronologically. Entering spoilertown .... now!
1. The mythology claims that the Amazons were enslaved by mankind after Ares corrupted man. So it makes sense that they are secluded on the island of Themyscira from both Ares and mankind. But they are constantly training for battle. With who? Ares? That's a battle against an actual god. They know they can't win. Maybe they're training for a battle with men? So then wouldn't their training include a little bit of actual knowledge on the outside world? Even Diana tells Steve that the Amazons are a "bridge to a greater understanding." So how can you understand the world if you don't even know that a war is going on? Or that the invention of guns and bullets has rendered all your training practically useless?
2. Patty Jenkins said in an interview that Diana is 800 years old. Assuming she's 800 years old in the present (2017), she would have been 697 years old during World War 1. And if she aged linearly, that must mean it took Queen Hippolyta 300 years minimum to discover that Diana was training secretly with Antiope. Even if we assume that Diana aged like a regular human but stopped aging around 20 years old, how does a mother not realize her child has been secretly fight training for even 1 month let alone many years?
3. The first person to ever come to Themyscira happens to land the very second Diana is at the top of a mountain, has a clear view of the ocean, and is looking in his direction.
4. If the dome of invisibility that covers Themyscira is penetrable by anyone, how has nobody found it before in the 200,000 years that humans have been a species? It seems to not be too far off the coast of England, since Steve and Diana can sail into port in nothing more than a small sailboat.
5. Steve flew into the German occupation on a German plane and then all of a sudden they believe him to be one of them? Without any sort of proof or identification, they trust him? And now he can be a spy for the allies?
6. If Steve launches a grenade at the building he stole the notebook from, how is Dr. Maru still alive? You may say that she was outside during the blast, but that blast was so huge that they make it seem like Steve barely got out of there alive. How were both Maru and General Ludendorff able to survive?
7. In England, Steve is recognized by German forces right off the bat. If they know his face so well and his cover as a spy is blown, wouldn't the book's owner, Dr. Maru, know what his face looks like too? How does she not recognize him at the party? More on this later.
8. How has Steve able to "send word" to his secretary Etta when he was literally either on an invisible island or on a tiny boat this whole time?
9. Steve has seen Diana fight on the shores of Themyscira. And he knows she brought a sword and shield. So why is he so protective of her in the alley and then surprised when she shows that she can fight? This should be old news by now.
10. One minute, Diana's sword and shield are too big and distracting to be walking around with them. The next minute, they both somehow fit into a tiny rucksack in the scene where she and Steve are crossing the bridge.
11. Diana deciphers that Dr. Maru's notes say that a gas powerful enough to melt gas masks is being created. But Steve already knows that. He saw it firsthand when he was spying.
12. Diana and Co. casually walk into an army trench on the Wester Front.
13. Patty Jenkins has stated that Diana is not bulletproof. She took the heat of the entire Front and didn't have a single bullet land on her barely-covered body? While you may say "that's because it's a comic book movie," I disagree. That can't be the excuse for everything - it's a cop out. And either way, this is the central turning point of the film. If every bullet is supposed to be no match for her anyway, then that means this scene has no stakes.
14. Chief finds a perfectly-suitable car with gas in it (probably from the castle's parking lot) to help get Sameer and Steve into the castle. All of these cars have drivers that are likely waiting in the parking lot for their masters to return, so where was this car's driver? And how can Chief even steal this car without anyone seeing him if the parking lot is filled with other drivers?
15. Sameer and Steve are able to get into a highly-guarded party with Germany's top brass by just saying that they lost the invite? And nobody recognizes him when not too long ago, he was spotted immediately while walking through London?
16. Diana is able to get into the same party by ... robbing a woman of her clothes? How? Did she knock her out? Strip her? Doesn't seem very Super-Womany. And then how did she get into the castle or the party without an invite or a driver? The woman was in an open-air carriage. Surely, the driver would have noticed the sudden random switch in occupancy.
17. Diana wears full armor underneath and sticks her sword into the dress. Even if you forget how glaringly obvious it looks to have a sword sticking out on your back - how did she manage to secure it perfectly into place on a dress she just stole moments ago? How does she get it past security? And how does Ludendorff not feel it when he dances with her? Or not feel her armor through the thin fabric?
18. The Germans all speak English amongst themselves. While you may say that is because this is a kids movie and kids can't read subtitles - my response is: if a child is old enough to see a film with repeated sexual undertones and this much violence, they are old enough to read subtitles. I think the real reason is so that when Steve comes up to Doctor Maru at the party, he wouldn't have to speak German with her. Because Chris Pine, the actor himself, can't speak in un-accented German. And that would have then given his character away.
19. Even though she's crazy, Doctor Maru is still one of the smartest people on the planet. Not for a second would she ever even consider a request from a random stranger to show him her classified, life-changing work. She also doesn't seem like the type of person to randomly start caring about romance and then immediately cool off when the man looks in the other direction.
20. And if Steve is such a smart spy, why would he ever think his seduction plan would work or that she would give him intel knowing nothing about him?
21. The gas in the village just stops mid-spread. And it has a visible barrier because it is conveniently orange. So not only can Steve tell where it stops, but he is able to get near it somehow without falling dead.
22. Ares has spent at least 60 years living as Sir Patrick Morgan, which is completely unbelievable because why would the God of War want to spend any amount of time at all as a squirrely diplomat that isn't even respected in his own board meetings? Moreover, to become an influential figure in politics and sit on an Imperial Cabinet, you have to be a real person with a history. You have to have had a life, gone to college, have friends who can vouch for you, etc. Those are your credentials. That's how you get elected. In the flashback with Ares, we see that he's always looked like David Thewlis (the actor who plays him). So how does somebody who has for hundreds of thousands of years looked the same just show up and get a position in a cabinet?
23. And if Ares is hundreds of thousands of years old (assuming his birth pre-dates the human species), how can Diana ever defeat him? Not only is she only 800 years old, but she just learned of the full breadth of her powers only seconds before defeating him. He's defeated every other god, including his own father Zeus! There is no way Diana should be able to win, lighting bolts or not.
24. Diana is able to overcome Ares because ... why? She searched her memory and could suddenly hear every word Steve told her, whereas previously she couldn't hear him? And how exactly does his admission of love give her strength? This "love conquers all and suddenly I'm all-powerful" is a cheap and overused way out of a plot hole.
25. How does Dr. Maru escape and why doesn't Diana follow through on at least capturing her? No matter how innocent and doe-eyed she might have looked, the woman is still a monster.
The following aren't plot holes. They are just annoying or unnecessary.
1. It's fine that Diana and the Amazons have a non-American accent. They are, after all, not American. I just wish they all had the same accent. Gal Gadot just has her normal voice and every other Amazon actress is trying to imitate her accent but can't quite get it right.
2. Diana falls in love with the first man she ever sees.
3. Diana trusts this man blindly and allies with him immediately. Even an entire army tracking him down doesn't sway her instant decision on him.
4. Sir Patrick Morgan gives the crew money and a place to run the operation? Not suspicious at all!
5. What's the point of the sidekicks? They didn't do anything but lift a brass door and set off a smoke signal. The sharpshooter didn't sharpshoot and his "ghosts" thing wasn't integral to the plot. And the linguistics expert didn't actually use his language skills.
6. Dr. Maru's facial disfiguration is not explained and adds nothing to the plot.
7. The gas capsules that Dr. Maru creates for General Ludendorff do nothing. They don't give him any powers and there's no clear reason for having them in the story. Sure - they gives him some added strength for a few seconds. But that is no match for an actual goddess. Why even put this in the film? Giving him the ability to want and even require an artificial "boost" of power makes it clear that he is not Ares from the beginning.
8. I'm bothered that Diana finds her strength through Steve's admission of love instead of through his sacrifice of his own body for the good of humankind. By killing himself, he shows her an example of a human who isn't selfish, who is genuinely good. But instead of using that as ammunition for her victory, the film does this flashback-to-a-minute-ago thing where now she can hear what she couldn't before and Steve's love gives her strength.
9. Diana did not need to consummate her relationship with Steve for it to have been love and for it to have been real. If anything, their need for physicality cheapens their relationship. Makes me call into question whether she loved him for him or for what he was able to give to her physically.