Why Cheetah Is The Perfect Villain For “Wonder Woman 2”

Matthew Loffhagen
DC Comics
(Photo: DC Comics)

Ever since “Wonder Woman” ended up being the surprise hit that DC Entertainment had been looking for, fans have been clamoring for one key character to appear in the next movie: Cheetah.

No, not an actual cheetah, but the supervillain who is part large cat, because comics are weird.

Apparently, Warner Bros. has actually been listening, as “That Hashtag Show” is reporting that Cheetah genuinely will appear in the next “Wonder Woman” movie.

Source: DC Comics

Cheetah is a character who’s shown up in various forms over the years, but apparently the version we’ll be getting in the movie will be Barbara Ann Minerva, an anthropologist who gets overpowered by a cheetah god who uses her body as an avatar for all her gonzo evil plans.

It should be noted that Marvel also has a sexy cat woman, because comics are weird, and comic writers are clearly a lonely bunch. If Warner Bros. gets Cheetah into “Wonder Woman 2,” they could potentially win the race to get this character established in the public consciousness, but in fairness, it doesn’t seem like Marvel is in a hurry to get Tigra on screen.

Even so, Cheetah provides DC with an opportunity for something important: redemption.

After all, it’s hard to ignore the fact that Minerva’s origin story is pretty much identical to that of June Moon (aka the Enchantress) in “Suicide Squad,” right down to the embarrassing lack of clothing the characters wear after transforming, which can probably again be blamed on loneliness among comic writers.

Patty Jenkins has proven that, under her care, Wonder Woman excels in a way she doesn’t when directed by Zack Snyder or Joss Whedon. Now, she can take a turn at elevating David Ayer’s Enchantress origin, bringing us a version of the same story that doesn’t involve any really awkward male gaze exploitative filming.

Jenkins could here pull a James Gunn, by taking one of the weirdest, most bizarre comic book characters in DC’s lineup, and turning her into a cinematic marvel (no pun intended).

Cheetah and Wonder Woman
Source: DC Comics

After all, the MCU has proven that any comic book character (even Howard the Duck) can work on the big screen. Perhaps by rehabilitating Cheetah, Jenkins can help convince the Higher Ups at Warner Bros. that their problem isn’t in the source material; it’s in the absolutely ridiculous grimdark fantasy world that they’ve constructed around their iconic characters.

At the end of the day, if anybody’s going to make a movie about a sexy cat lady, it ought to be Patty Jenkins — if only so that the resulting movie is something that you’re not embarrassed to show your grandma.