WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Young Justice #2 by Brian Michael Bendis, Patrick Gleason, Emanuela Lupacchino, Ray McCarthy and Alejandro Sanchez, on sale now.
After spending years together fighting crime and growing up, Tim Drake, Conner Kent, Bart Allen and Cassie Sandsmark were drastically altered during the New 52. While Rebirth made many popular characters familiar again, it largely ignored the relationship these four heroes once shared. Now, Brian Michael Bendis and Patrick Gleason’s Young Justice is giving us back the characters we have missed the most.
We are just two issues into the series and Tim is Robin again, while Superboy and Impulse actually exist once more. Wonder Girl is back too, and, though she is largely the character we remember, it is clear that several things have changed for her. What does this mean for Cassie and her relationship with Wonder Woman moving forward?
Keeping It All in the Family
Young Justice #2 contains a significant flashback scene where Wonder Girl meets with Zeus, but there are key differences between what we remember from old DC continuity and what is now canon. It would appear her relationship with Wonder Woman and the Greek pantheon has been drastically altered. There also appears to be a new element to her powers that we have yet to learn about.
First appearing in Wonder Woman comics of the 1990s, Cassie was introduced as the daughter of a human woman and Zeus himself. As a demigoddess, she was the half-sister of Ares and an ally of Wonder Woman. However, she is now apparently the granddaughter of Zeus instead, putting her true parentage into question.
The change sounds insignificant, but it does make some sense. Since Wonder Woman is now the daughter of Zeus, it would have been a bit repetitive to keep her origin intact. This would mean that, instead of being half-sisters, she is now Diana’s niece. What that means for their relationship is anyone’s guess.
Though Cassie has not been seen in several years — and her friendship with Wonder Woman absent even longer — it is implied that the two still have a relationship in this new continuity. That should (hopefully) mean Bendis and Gleason are skipping over her entire New 52 story, where she seemingly has no connection to Diana at all.
A New Birthright for a New World
Another huge difference introduced in this issue is that Cassie has some birthright that we never knew about before now. Established as an untold secret, Zeus refers to his granddaughter as “the future of the pantheon of the gods” and plans to bring her under his wing so she can embrace her destiny. What this entails is left unsaid, but it seems she is meant to join the pantheon of gods to “protect the realm.”
As part of her birthright, Zeus offers her a mysterious necklace that is said to contain immense powers. He says that it goes together with her bracelets and lasso to form the trinity of the gods, but instead of accepting these gifts, she ultimately rejects them. Not wanting to take a handout from her godly grandfather, she decides to hold off on taking the necklace until she does something to truly earn these powers.
We don’t know the true source of Cassie’s powers, but the existence of magical items calls back to the character’s origin. Initially, Wonder Girl’s powers came from magical items, like the sandals of Hermes and the gauntlet of Atlas, before getting her own abilities. She was given her own version of Wonder Woman’s lasso, so giving her gauntlets and a lasso puts her more in line with Diana’s own armory.
The issue successfully reestablishes Wonder Girl in the DC Universe, but it gives us more questions than answers. What exactly is Cassie’s birthright? What does this necklace do? How else has she changed since her last appearance? Whatever the answers end up being, it’s likely that her relationship with Wonder Woman and the Greek gods is about to change drastically.