During the 2020 lockdown, I was forced to really be with myself. After much introspection and reflection, I got in touch with my inner child again. The light, the joy, and ultimately the creativity. Much of which I lost somewhere around 2017.
I wrote a piece about the depression I was experiencing in 2017-2019 called, “What Would Wonder Woman Do about Depression? – Part Two”. It gives the details surrounding everything that happened in my life leading to such an emotionally fragile state. From which, I didn’t feel I had the chance to recuperate. Thankfully, the lockdown provided me that chance.
After couch surfing, coast surfing, and flailing my arms in general, I finally found a place of my own, & began truly getting settled in Los Angeles at the end of 2019. Then, just as I was experiencing some semblance of recovery from my depressive state, and getting a sense of comfortability with the Hollywood landscape, we went into lockdown. This gave me a feeling of being stopped dead in my tracks before even taking my first step. The initiation of lockdown triggered a flashback of the trauma from 2017-2019, and it gripped me in a horrible fear. So I turned to what was natural for me, and gave me clarity the last time. I turned to Wonder Woman.
I turned inward in many ways. Physically I began organizing my ‘Themysciran Embassy’ (home), in a way that made me feel safe and secure. Emotionally and intellectually, I dove deep into the mythology of the Amazing Amazon. Revisiting some of my favorite artists and storytellers. As per usual, one stood out among others: Phil Jimenez.
His run was one of my favorite collections of stories. Mostly because I felt as though he truly ‘got’ Diana, and represented her in one of the many ways that I believed she was truly supposed to be represented. I could go on and on about his fantastic choices for the character, and even talk about how or why many Wonder Woman fans have a powerful opinions about her, but I digress. Let’s stay on task here. It was while reading Wonder Woman Volume 2, #188 that the magic hit me, and everything was different.
As I read this issue, I came to so many realizations; About my past, my friends, my family, my work, my emotions, my health, and my own responsibilities. Why? Because when I looked at Bobby Barnes, something happened. I saw myself. Seeing myself in him caused me to take a really good look inside. My entire world came to a screeching halt and I was forced to exist somewhere that had always been difficult. The present.
I turned to my fellow Wonder Woman Afficionado Boston Blake for some really sage advice (as he always gives) about what I was feeling; Both about myself and the world around us. As per our usual “Amazon Bible Study” sessions, we simultaneously bounced some Wonder Woman mythology parallels off of each other. During said talk, I remember Boston saying, “Have you ever tried gestalt therapy?”, in mid-conversation. After some moments of discussion about gestalt therapy methodology, it all began fitting together. I looked at my imaginary inner child sitting in the chair across from me, and he looked exactly like Bobby Barnes. This was during the Trump administration, and I began thinking about all the people of the world fighting and taking temper tantrums on television and online. I began seeing myself in everyone else as well. It was clear that they were not in touch with their own inner children. They needed a hero. More importantly, they needed to become their own hero just like I needed my own inner Bobby to become Wonder Boy. That was the moment. That’s when I knew he needed to be made, and I was going to make him. The world needs Wonder Boy.
This blog is dedicated to telling the story of how my own Wonder Boy emerged and how “The New Adventures of Wonder Boy” came to be. I hope that in some small way, it helps the world tap into their inner super hero, and create a ‘Wonder Boy’ of their own.
As my Bobby says, #LeadWithLove
Brian J. Patterson