Like so many superhero movies, while the recently-released Wonder Woman 1984 told an original story, it pulled from decades of source material, with the titular protagonist having debuted in 1941’s All Star Comics #8. As such, along with William Moulton Marston being credited as Wonder Woman’s creator, Wonder Woman 1984, which was directed and co-written by Patty Jenkins, also thanked various other creators who’ve worked on the superheroine over the years, including George Pérez, Alex Ross and Nicola Scott. However, artist Liam Sharp, who’s worked on both Wonder Woman and Cheetah in the comics in recent years, was not listed in the credits.
Liam Sharp addressed being left out of Wonder Woman 1984’s “thank you list” on social media, noting how he was the primary artist on Wonder Woman’s Rebirth run, in which Barbara Minerva, a.k.a. Cheetah, was featured heavily. Eventually this absence caught the attention of Patty Jenkins, who issued the following apology to Sharp:
To be clear, the Rebirth era of the Wonder Woman comic book did influence Wonder Woman 1984, as evidenced by writers Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott, who collaborated on that run’s earliest issues, being listed in the credits. According to Patty Jenkins, Liam Sharp being left off the list was an error, and she was indeed thankful for his work on Cheetah in particular. Sharp thanked Jenkins in a follow-up tweet for clearing up that this was an oversight, as well as expressed appreciation for “all the kind feedback” he received on Twitter.
Although the original version of Cheetah, whose real name is Priscilla Rich, debuted in 1943’s Wonder Woman #6, the Barbara Minerva incarnation wasn’t introduced until 1987’s Wonder Woman #7. That said, since being created by George Pérez and Len Wein, Barbara has become the principal person to hold that mantle, with recent tellings of her origins having her originally start out as one of Diana Prince’s friends, but then becoming the heroine’s enemy after being corrupted by power. That dynamic is on full display in Wonder Woman 1984, with Kristen Wiig playing the DCEU’s Barbara.
Warning: SPOILERS for Wonder Woman 1984 are ahead!
In the DCEU continuity, Barbara Minerva’s supervillain journey began when she wished upon the Dreamstone to be like Diana Prince, her new friend. As a result, she became more confident and strong, but it came at the cost of losing her kind heart. However, it wasn’t until Barbara expressed her desire to Maxwell Lord to become an apex predator later in Wonder Woman 1984’s story that she transformed into The Cheetah.
Once Maxwell Lord relinquished the power of the Dreamstone, Barbara Minerva reverted back to her human form, although it was unclear if her original personality also returned or if she still had an axe to grind with Gal Gadot’s Diana. Because Wonder Woman 3 is expected to be set in the present day, it’s hard to say if we’ll see Barbara again, but for now, Kristen Wiig’s performance has been one of Wonder Woman 1984’s chief sources of praise.