In the little flat that I share with Saffy and Amanda, the news that the new Wonder Woman TV show has been cancelled before the pilot even aired has been greeted by the kind of anguish you normally get when a child’s ice-cream cone plops to the ground.
“This is ridiculous!” Saffy moaned the other day. “They make the most stupid shows all the time. Stupid ghost houses and stupid fairy tales come to life, but they won’t make more of this kick-ass material? Seriously?” She hit replay on the YouTube clip for the fifteenth time that morning. It was a leaked montage of highlights from the show. In another room, Amanda was on her laptop searching for more footage.
The clip is only a couple of minutes long, but it’s a tantalizing glimpse of what might have been. Wonder Woman leaps over cars. She hurls her magic glowing lasso at the bad guys and pulls them off their feet. She looks majorly pissed as she hurtling towards another guy who’s shooting bullets at her which she blocks with her magic bracelets. There she is in her invisible plane. There she is kicking aside a ten-foot container with one star-spangled leg.
“She’s always beating up guys!” Saffy marveled. “I so love this show!”
And overlaying the whole montage is the Wonder Woman theme song – a fast beat, thumping melodic hook. “Change their minds and change the world!” Saffy croaked throatily.
“How can this be?” she muttered, hitting the replay button again. “This has got to be a mistake! Look at this! Look how fabulous this is?” she said, pointing to the sequence where Wonder Woman glides up through the air, her long tresses stylishly whipping around her.
When news first broke that Joss Whedon, the creator of ‘Buffy The Vampire Slayer’, was making a movie about their favourite Amazonian princess, Saffy and Amanda thought they’d died and gone to heaven. And when that project was cancelled, Saffy went out and bought the DVD of the original Lynda Carter series and watched it with Amanda for a month of weekends.
“Seriously, can we go out tonight?” I remember asking as I stood next to the TV. “Watching a 70s show on another Friday night is really, really sad! Hello?”
On the couch, Saffy and Amanda sat in their PJs, sharing a box of popcorn. On screen, the bespectacled Diana Prince twirled prettily and exploded in a flash into Wonder Woman. A quick check that her golden tiara was on straight, she dashed off to fight the Nazis.
“She is so amazing,” Amanda told Saffy.
“Oh, totally! I want to be her. Jason, get out of the way, you’re casting a shadow on the invisible plane.”
The girls perked up slightly when Hollywood announced it was making a new TV series instead. And just as quickly, they went into mourning when the pilot was cancelled.
“Why are they toying with our emotions like this?” Amanda wondered the other day on the crowded train to work.
“It’s ridiculous,” Saffy agreed. “It’s like being trapped inside a scene from ‘Truman’! God, why is this train so crowded? I hate this commute. I hate my job. I want to be a crime fighter.”
“Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could just spin around, explode and have changed into any outfit we want?”
Saffy gave the matter some thought. “I don’t think I’d be spinning for very long. I have so few outfits to wear. And when we spin into our new outfits, would they be dry-cleaned too?”
“I wish I could deflect bullets with my magic bracelets, too,” said Amanda, killer corporate lawyer and Harvard graduate.
“And let me tell you,” Saffy murmured as she moved her face out of someone’s armpits, “there are a few people on this train that I wouldn’t mind magic lasso-ing down a steep flight of steps. Don’t they shower in the morning?”
Amanda says her obsession with Wonder Woman is all about empowerment. That, and a smoking hot outfit and glittering accessories. “She doesn’t take crap from anyone,” she said recently. She added, with a rueful smile: “And if anyone tries, she’ll kick their ass! Such a great role model!”
“Aiyah, you or-ready like that, what!” Sharyn said, owlishly. “You don’t take crap from udder people oh-so. All the men in the office run away from you. Singapore men scared of power women like you, you know. Why you think you are still single?”
Amanda blinked. Clearly, she’d not looked her life in that light before. This evening, she replaced the Wonder Woman DVD, settled into the couch and proceeded to weep her way through ‘Eat Pray Love’.
“Oh, dear,” Saffy said.