When did you realize that seeing Robin Wright barrel down a mystical beach, racing into a battle against a bunch of Germans, was exactly your purpose in this world? Wonder Woman’s first scenes deliver on a promise that feels predetermined: We needed — nay, deserved — to see Wright simultaneously shoot a trio of arrows into the chests of the pesky German soldiers who invaded her paradise of womanhood and statement cloaks. House of Cards keeps her laser-focused and disconnected, but Patty Jenkins’s movie lets Wright build a character in more vivid hues. She’s majestic and elegant and entirely deserving of her own spinoff. Cancel my dermatology appointment, hold my calls: Seeing Robin Wright go to war in Wonder Woman cleared my skin and paid my bills.
As Antiope, Wonder Woman’s aunt and Themyscira’s greatest warrior, Wright hits her sweet spot. There’s all the strategy and steel of Claire Underwood, but Antiope wears her wounds with more pride. There’s a scar on her shoulder that we’re never told the story of. It’s nice that we get to fill in the blanks of her battle history ourselves. Antiope could look me in the eye and say, “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty,” and I would agree and declare that we were one nation, under Robin Wright, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
Genre stories like Wonder Woman need a mentor to guide our hero into maturity, and Wright’s more than up for the job; she sneaks away with every scene she’s in. When Steve Trevor crash-lands near Themyscira’s shores with the German Navy on his tail, Antiope launches into action. He mumbles an aside hoping the warriors have guns. It’s almost quaint! Pray tell, what will a gun do when Antiope is firing off arrows and glares? She runs up a shield, catapults into the air, twists around, and shoots soldiers three at a time. Jesus could walk on water, but could he serve face the way Antiope does when she’s killing men in her statement jewelry? If her scowl is the last face you see before you die, well, you’re welcome.
Robin Wright is expected to return as General Antiope in Justice League. First of all: Thanks. Second of all: Nice try. Wright deserves more than an appearance in Justice League, more than the 20 minutes of screen time she gets here. She’s a talented actor, to be sure, but Wonder Woman proves that she’s also an elegant action star. She’s not all brawn: She’s blocking blows and leaping off horses, while also acting her heart out. Her moves seem so natural that maybe they should come with some of those comic book-action words so you’re sure what you’re seeing. Skreech! Kapow! Robin Wright just saved the day.
Imagine it: Wright in a John Wick of her very own. Let’s do another Mad Max with her upfront. Or what if she’s whizzing around with a band of merry assassins (ideally Michelle Yeoh and Sigourney Weaver, and maybe Angelina Jolie makes a cameo) in a crime movie with lots of stunts? Recruit her for the Rihanna–Lupita Nyong’o buddy comedy where they’re scamming dudes — Issa Rae, she’s the retired covert agent that Riri has to coax back into the fray. Can we add her to the Fast and the Furious lineup? Daniel Craig, stop stressing! Feel free to slip off that blazer and undo that top button — you’re good to retire as Bond. We’ve found his next incarnation and her name is Robin Wright.