Though I haven’t watched many superhero movies, I’ve been fortunate to see many of the good ones, and both Captain America: The First Avenger and Wonder Woman are in that category. I’ve been a fan of Marvel for over three years now and only recently got into the DC-verse, but I like both pretty much equally. Though these two films – The First Avenger and Wonder Woman – come from different studios, there are enough similarities between them to have sparked many blog posts, articles, and debates. (Personally, I don’t think DC ripped off Marvel.) And as you know my love for comparison posts, well, this one was inevitable.
// Story //
CA:TFA – Steve Rogers, a short, weak guy with a heart of gold becomes Captain America, a tall, strong guy with a heart of gold and takes down loads of Nazis and HYDRA agents during WWII while still remaining, not a perfect soldier, but a good man. Lots of feels and awesomeness.
Wonder Woman – Diana, princess of Themyscira, leaves her island home with pilot Steve Trevor to defeat Ares, god of war, and stop WWI. Along the way, she learns a lot about herself, humans, and the struggle between good and evil. Lots of feels and awesomeness.
// Hero/Heroine //
CA:TFA – Steve Rogers is quite possibly the best fictional hero ever. Period. He’s basically the epitome of goodness. He’s brave and strong and loyal to his country, his friends, and the world. And the grenade scene? I totally teared up the first time I saw that bit. Powerful stuff.
Wonder Woman – Diana is everything goals. (So is Gal Gadot, but that’s a whole other discussion.) She is the epitome of love, with her kind, caring, and compassionate outlook on life. Seeing WWI through her eyes gives you a fresh realization of how horrific and devastating it was. But even after all the awful things that happen around and to her, Diana does not give up her hope and joy or her resolve to help save humanity. ❤
// Villains //
MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD FOR WONDER WOMAN.
CA:TFA – The Red Skull bores me, frankly. Zola is another thing altogether – I hate him, mainly for all the horrid things he does to Bucky. Sure, he seems all compliant and boot licking, but I believe he always thought himself superior to the Red Skull. At least, that’s the impression I got from The Winter Soldier. But, overall, the villains in TFA aren’t much. Though Richard Armitage’s HYDRA agent was rather good.
Wonder Woman – Dr. Poison is an interesting sort of villain. Her experiments are… *shudders*. That general dude, though…bleh. He’s really forgettable. But the best villain of the film is most definitely Ares. The first time I watched Wonder Woman, I knew the big twist about Sir Patrick being Ares, and I wasn’t at all impressed with either of them. David Thewlis is not one of my favorite actors. But upon rewatching the movie, I found I couldn’t take my eyes off him. He is an absolutely chilling villain, the way he’s infiltrated into the highest levels of British government and how he recognizes Diana right away and all that. A great, great villain.
// Other Characters //
CA:TFA – First, of course, there’s Peggy. One of the best female fictional characters ever; she even got her own spin-off series, though it was regrettably short-lived. I like Peggy lots. Howard Stark is another one of my favorites – Tony, you had a great dad. 😉 And Bucky! Sebastian Stan did a perfect job of capturing Bucky, first his fun, carefree side, and then – as the war progresses and especially after he escapes from Zola – his darker, more conflicted side. It’s both great and wrenching.
Wonder Woman – STEVE TREVOR. Just…Steve Trevor. Love him. Diana’s mom and aunt are good characters as well, and Steve’s secretary, and Charlie and all the rest. But I definitely like the secondary characters in The First Avenger better. Except for Steve. (Trevor, not Rogers.)
// Love Story //
CA:TFA – *bawls* I like the fact that it was Steve himself and not just his incredible good looks/muscles that first attracted Peggy to him. Like the thing about waiting for the right partner. Or the flag pole. Or the grenade. It makes a good basis for a good relationship. A good relationship that ends tragically, making “I had a date” now hiiiiigh up on the list of most heartbreaking movie quotes ever. I WILL NEVER GET OVER THOSE TWO.
Wonder Woman – *bawls* I don’t think there’s much denying that Steve was attracted to Diana on a physical level at first, but I also think that they were just friends for at least the first hour or so of the film. Maybe even more. He was able to see just how amazing she was as a person, and she was slowly able to get over her distrust of people in general and men in particular. AND THEN IT ALL ENDED. I will never get over those two, either.
// Music //
CA:TFA – I have this soundtrack memorized because I’ve watched the movie so much. ‘Farewell to Bucky’ always makes me tear up because it’s rather emotional, especially when you know what happens later in the films. And the main theme is rousing and patriotic and instantly recognizable.
Wonder Woman – ‘Is She With You?’ That’s all.
// Ending //
CA:TFA – Will I ever get over the final scenes in this movie? I don’t think so. Everything from Steve and Peggy’s heartbreaking last (or so they think) conversation to Howard’s determination to keep searching to the war’s end (WHICH STEVE NEVER GOT TO SEE) to “I had a date”, it’s one big feelsy moment after another. And I love it.
Wonder Woman – Uh…basically the same thing. Diana’s epic, epic battle with Ares (who is her brother – #mindblown) and Steve’s sacrifice and the way that Chief and Charlie and Sameer all sort of huddle together in what they believe to be their last stand and Steve’s photo on the wall (I always think of the bit in TFA when the Howling Commandos are all like “To the captain”) and Diana’s inspiring final words. Amazing.
// Overall //
Captain America: The First Avenger is insanely close to my heart, but I think Wonder Woman is the better movie. Almost all the characters in both are very huggable and relatable and awesome. I’m torn! I really can’t decide. Though I would more readily watch Wonder Woman right now, just because I’ve seen The First Avenger a million times. You can take from that what you will.
Have you seen either of these movies? What do you think of them?