Chattering Class

Director Angela Robinson on The Boundary-Busting Creator of Wonder Woman

The "Professor Marston and the Wonder Women" filmmaker tells us about the strange but true story about the man behind the D.C. comic hero and the women who inspired him.

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(Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

Each week on chattering class, we’re schooled by an expert in some party-worthy topic. The topic this time around? The creator of Wonder Woman, William Marston. And our teacher is indie filmmaker Angela Robinson.

Her new biopic is called “Professor Marston and the Wonder Women.” And it tells the unconventional life story of Marston. In the 1920s, before creating one of the most famous comic book heroes ever, Marston was a Harvard psychology professor, an inventor, a feminist, and — with his equally brilliant wife Elizabeth — lived in a polyamorous relationship with one of his students, Olive Byrne.

Rebecca Hall stars as Elizabeth Marston, Luke Evans as Dr. William Marston and Bella Heathcote as Olive Byrne in "Professor Marston and the Wonder Women." (Photo Credit: Claire Folger / Annapurna Pictures)
Rebecca Hall stars as Elizabeth Marston, Luke Evans as Dr. William Marston and Bella Heathcote as Olive Byrne in “Professor Marston and the Wonder Women.” (Photo Credit: Claire Folger / Annapurna Pictures)

In the audio above, Angela shares how she heard about the story, why she became obsessed with it, and how Marston’s psychological theories influenced her point of view.

  • Richard Barton

    Nice discussion. I’m still surprised that Jill Lepore’s book, _the Secret History of Wonder Woman_, doesn’t get more discussion. AFAIK, Lepore said all these things.