The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) unveiled four Forever stamps last week in commemoration of the 75th anniversary of an iconic superhero: Wonder Woman.
Initially appearing in October 1941 in a back-up story for All Star Comics No. 8 – and meant to test her appeal at a time when female superheroes were rare – Wonder Woman quickly broke out and headlined her own title by the next year. Subsequent generations came to know the star-spangled heroine with metal bracelets on her wrists and a magic lasso by her waist via her hit 1975-79 television series and roles in animated shows and movies. In 1972, she also earned a historic appearance on the cover of Ms. Magazine No. 1. More recently, this past March, she was seen for the first time in a live action motion picture with her introduction in the movie Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
The USPS celebrated Wonder Woman’s diamond anniversary by chronicling her evolution on Forever stamps from her Second World War origins to today. This new issue showcases four different stamp designs on a sheet of 20 stamps depicting Wonder Woman during four eras of comic book history: Golden Age (1941–55); Silver Age (1956–72); Bronze Age (1973–86); and Modern Age (1987–present). The selvage features the current block-letter Wonder Woman logo in white against a comic book style power burst rendered in shades of blue.
On the first row of stamps, Wonder Woman of the Modern Age wields a hammer with a power and determination befitting her roots in the heroic world of Greek mythology.
The Bronze Age Wonder Woman’s bold stance empowers the second row of stamps. With her fist held high and bulletproof bracelets gleaming, the Amazon princess leads the charge against injustice.
The third row of stamps depicts Wonder Woman during the Silver Age. Although she possesses great strength and speed, the world’s favorite superheroine prefers compassion to the use of brute force. With her golden lasso of truth close at hand, she compels honesty from her foes.
In the last row of stamps, Wonder Woman from the Golden Age bursts onto the scene as originally envisioned by creator William Moulton Marston.
Art director Greg Breeding, of Charlottesville, V.A., designed the stamp pane. The Wonder Woman stamps will be issued as Forever stamps and always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce price.
PREVIOUS PHILATELIC HONOURS
In 2006, Wonder Woman was part of the first USPS stamp pane honouring comic book superheroes. Half of the stamps on the DC Super Heroes pane depicted portraits of the characters; the others highlighted covers of individual comic books devoted to their exploits. Wonder Woman was joined by Aquaman, Batman, The Flash, Green Arrow, Green Lantern, Hawkman, Plastic Man, Supergirl and Superman. The first-day-of-issuance ceremony took place at Comic-Con in San Diego.
Art by Ross Andru & Mike Esposito
Wonder Woman has been an iconic inspiration for countless women and men since her debut in All Star Comics No. 8 in December 1941. The most recognizable female character in comics, created by William Moulton Marston, she remains a figure of strength, beauty, and courage.
Wonder Woman No. 22 (2nd series)
Art by George Pérez
As a worldwide ambassador of justice, equality and peace, Wonder Woman soared to new heights in the late 1980s. The character returned to her roots as an Amazon warrior from Paradise Island, land of heroic women. Her special powers were gifts from the Olympians.