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Wonder Woman 1984 ending explained, and the questions we *still* have

Before Wonder Woman 1984 dropped in HBO Max and cinemas, we had a lot of questions. What would Barbara look like as Cheetah, and would we have Cats flashbacks? How did Steve Trevor return from the dead? What terrible ’80s fashion choices would reappear?

Of course, Wonder Woman 1984 is streaming now, and that means we have answers to those questions. But it also means that there are plenty more questions in their place. 

Even with the film all wrapped up – and a cheeky post-credits scene to boot – there are things we’d like to know. Warning: Wonder Woman 1984 spoilers below.

Wonder Woman 1984‘s story is rather straightforward, though there are some convoluted subplots too. In the aftermath of a mall heist, a load of artefacts are brought to the Smithsonian where Diana and newcomer Barbara Minerva (Kristen Wiig) work. 

Amongst them is an innocuous stone, but it’s something that oil magnate Maxwell Lord (Pedro Pascal) desperately wants to get his hands on. It turns out if you hold the stone and make a wish, it will grant it – but it takes something away from you in return. 

Diana wishes for more time with Steve and lo and behold, Steve is resurrected (sort of). Barbara wishes to be more like Diana, cool, smart and strong, and suddenly she draws the attention of everyone around her and can walk in heels!


But Lord wishes to become the Dreamstone and it disintegrates and he gets the power to grant wishes, but also the choice of what to take from the wisher. However, in exchange for his initial wish, Lord’s body begins to break down. 

There are some MacGuffin shenanigans in which Diana and Barbara (who’s still sort of a goodie) figure out what the Dreamstone is and that the only way to stop it is to renounce one’s wish. Barbara, not ready to be meek and invisible, flees.

Meanwhile, Lord worms his way into a military base (on the way there, accompanied by Barbara, he grants her a second wish and she asks to become an apex predator – a totally normal wish) with a satellite transmitter that sends particles that ‘touch’ everyone. He broadcasts his message: make a wish, whatever you want, and in return I’ll take your health. 

pedro pascal in wonder woman 1984

This causes chaos throughout the world, as you’d expect. Diana, whose powers have been taken in exchange for her wish, reluctantly lets Steve go and then goes to find Lord. 

She battles Cheetah, eventually defeating her, before finding her way to Lord mid-broadcast. By connecting to him via her lasso of truth she interrupts his broadcast and pleas with everyone to renounce their wishes.

They do, and all is right with the world. The end. Okay, so now for the questions we still have.

Where is the Dreamstone? 

Maxwell Lord wished to have the stone’s powers, and when he did it disintegrated. But when he renounced his wish, did the stone reform itself? 

wonder woman 1984, wonder woman 1984 trailer, maxwell lord

How did Barbara know Maxwell was at the White House?

In their first showdown, Barbara shows up to protect Max as she wants to keep her wish, but how did she know he was there? The last we saw her, she was with Diana and Steve in some hippie’s apartment learning about the stone before vanishing. 

When did Diana change into that golden armour?

This is a bonus one, because one of the Digital Spy team remembers seeing Diana briefly go back to get the golden-eagle armour before battling Cheetah, while the other one (your writer here) doesn’t. Did it happen? Who knows?

gal gadot in wonder woman 1984

What happened to Cheetah and Maxwell Lord after they renounce their wishes?

Barbara returns to her normal form and is looking forlornly over the cliffside. Did she give up her wish? We presume so, but we have no idea why

She was outside and presumably unconscious after her fight with Diana and so probably didn’t hear Wonder Woman’s rousing call to everyone to stop being selfish jerks. Did she just have a change of heart after nearly dying? Again, who knows?

Max, meanwhile, renounced his wish when he realised his son was in danger of being nuked and ran to meet him somehow very quickly given how isolated the military based seemed when the scene started. Was he apprehended for his crimes against humanity? Is he in jail now? 

kristen wiig as cheetah in wonder woman 1984

What happened to Handsome Man while he was taken over by Steve?

The poor guy! Did his family and friends not wonder why he wasn’t returning their call? Did he think he’d had a week’s long blackout? Is he now traumatised by an out-of-body experience where he watched himself fight alongside Wonder Woman?

He seemed fine when we caught up with him in the final moments of the film, and he didn’t recognise Diana when they ran into each other, so our guess is at the very least he probably has no memory of what happened. But we reiterate, did none of his family, friends, or co-workers wonder what happened to him?

chris pine, gal gadot in wonder woman 1984

Did everyone forget that the world nearly ended?

Approximately six months after the world nearly ended in a nuclear disaster, everyone seems… fine? They’re enjoying themselves at a winter carnival and apparently, there was no long-term fall out between any of the warring nations that nearly wiped existence off the Earth.

Will Steve come back again?

steve trevor tries on some 1980s clothes and diana looks on in wonder woman 1984 clip

We don’t think so, and Chris Pine has said he thinks Steve is done. But never say never, as the comics have precedent for him coming back multiple times after death. 

Does it set up Wonder Woman 3?


Wonder Woman 1984 is streaming in cinemas and HBO Max simultaneously on December 25, 2020 in the US.

Written by Gabriella Geisinger

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