Was Wonder Woman 1984 ‘80s Enough? Patty Jenkins Shares Her Worry For The HBO Max Film

Diana (Gal Gadot) in 'Wonder Woman 1984'

Wonder Woman 1984 is not the first high-profile Hollywood project to bring the 1980s back into the (neon green) limelight. However, some fans have wondered if it makes the most of the era it’s set in, especially where some of our most beloved ‘80s artifacts are concerned. Now that Wonder Woman 1984 is finally available in theaters and on HBO Max, director Patty Jenkins has been answering some of fans’ biggest questions -- including whether or not she thinks it’s '80s enough.

Wonder Woman fans know that a huge stretch of time passes between the first film and the 2020 sequel. Diana Prince trades in her World War I-era duds for some decidedly more fabulous fashion -- and she also has to battle a much different set of cultural issues. There’s no denying Wonder Woman 1984 reflects the year it’s set in -- the fashion, technology, and backdrop are all undeniably ‘80s. Still, Patty Jenkins’ definitely didn’t lean into the ‘80s aesthetic in the way some may have expected -- and she told Syfy Wire that this was a conscious decision:

It’s funny. I was worried that I wasn’t giving people enough '80s because the temptation is to go '’80s, haha,' and make all these '80s jokes and put in '80s tracks. We don’t have [a lot of] '80s tracks because as soon as you do that, you’re being self-referential. This should be like you’re going to a massive tentpole in the '80s that’s completely authentic, so if you throw away the '80s part of it, it ends up feeling very '80s... just throw that away and make a great movie.

There’s an understandable logic behind Patty Jenkins’ decision to not lean too much into the ‘80s vibes. If you go too hard in that direction, then the experience of watching the movie becomes more about picking out all the pop culture references and less about following the story.

As it is, fans have spent a lot of time dissecting Wonder Woman 1984’s developments, as well as what works and what doesn’t. The film has been praised by critics and seems to be holding up well among many DC fans, if its Rotten Tomatoes audience score is any indication.

Despite the challenges that have come from getting Wonder Woman 1984 in front of fans, it seems as though Wonder Woman 3 is indeed in the works. Should the movie go forward, it looks like we’ll be meeting Diana in the present day once more. That means she’ll be leaving the 1980s behind -- though given the recent nostalgic resurgence in interest in fashion and music from that time period, perhaps we won’t see too much of a change on screen.

Did you think Wonder Woman 1984 was ‘80s enough? What would you have liked to see that didn’t make it into the movie? Let us know in the comments!

Katherine Webb