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The Story Of Wonder Woman’s Lynda Carter



Lynda Jean Cordova Carter is not just the actress who played Wonder Woman for years. Lynda is also a singer, songwriter, model who has even won the 1972 Miss World USA.
At age 69 now in 2020, Lynda is best known for her live-action television series Wonder Woman which aired on ABC and CBS from 1975 to 1979. Click NEXT and follow our curated slides of the true life story of Lynda Carter.

Real Life Wonder Woman

Lynda Carter is one of Hollywood’s most well-known cultural icons, best remembered for her starring role in the Wonder Woman television series from back in the ‘70s. Carter had it all — brains, beauty, and phenomenal acting and musical skills — but along the way, she struggled to overcome challenges involving her personal battles and family issues before earning her legacy. This is her true life story that very few are aware of…

Difficult Childhood

Unbeknownst to many, Carter suffered the same sort of ridicule that many of us did growing up. Not only was she unpopular amongst her peers, but she was also bullied. Her classmates would refer to her as Olive Oyl from Popeye because she was tall and had big feet, which made her self-conscious. For this reason, she took a big step to create a new identity for herself…

Name Change

Even though she felt marginalized in school, Carter knew that this could not stop her from following her dreams of making it into show business. For this reason, she wanted to reinvent her image, so she changed the spelling of her birth name. Born as Linda Jean Cordova Carter, she decided to spell her first name with a “y” in order to stand out. People began to take notice as she began her career as a musician.

The Relatives

While still in high school, Carter decided to begin following her aspirations of becoming a famous musician. She already played both the guitar and marimba, and at age 17, she formed a group with two of her cousins called The Relatives. Interestingly enough, one of those members was Gary Burghoff, who later starred in M*A*S*H. Just like that, she was off on tour…

Transition to Hollywood

Carter and The Relatives toured around the United States for a couple of years before landing a gig at the Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas. This residency lasted three months, and funny enough, since she was under 21, she had to be snuck into the hotel through the kitchen. After this, Carter had decided she wanted to move to acting, but first decided she’d partake in another competition first…

Miss World Pageant

At the young age of 21, Lynda Carter decided to participate in her hometown Arizona beauty pageant, which she won. After that, she not only won the following Miss Phoenix competition, but also the Miss Arizona title as well! This catapulted her to the big stage, as she was then chosen to represent the U.S. in Miss World 1972. Though she didn’t win, she made it to the semi-finals, boosting her confidence as a national phenom. From there, she moved to L.A.

Nearly Gave Up

Even though she gained notoriety as a beauty sensation, Carter didn’t have immediate success acting in Los Angeles. Before being cast as Wonder Woman, she struggled to find Hollywood roles that paid well, forcing her to use the last of her savings. She even considered moving back to Arizona, but when she was offered the position, she was lucky enough to have friends and producers pay her rent so she could stay. This turned out to be career-launching help…

Wonderous Role

Cast as DC Comics’ Wonder Woman and Diana Prince, Carter was immediately thrust into the spotlight. From 1975 until 1979, the actress earned millions of fans’ thanks to her on-screen performance, influencing thousands of young women around the country. And not only did she gain fame as an actress, but she also reshaped the character of Wonder Woman in a way that many didn’t see coming!

The Spin

Few people realize that one of Wonder Woman’s most famous moves is actually one that Carter came up with herself. Since Diana Prince doubled as a dancer before transforming into Wonder Woman, Carter decided that her character should pirouette when changing into the superhero. This became highly recognizable despite the fact that it did not appear in the original comics. This wasn’t all she came up with either…

Stunt Double

Carter was full of ideas once taking on the identity of Wonder Woman, even fighting for equality in the male-dominated industry. Realizing there were many dangerous scenes in the action-packed show, she fought hard to find the first-ever female stunt double in Hollywood. This made her an influential presence, allowing her ideas to be taken seriously. However, a lot changed for the role model after the show’s end…

Fighting Alcoholism

After Wonder Woman went off air, Lynda Carter battled her dependency on alcohol while searching for a new place in the film and television industries. This only got worse after her first marriage ended in the early ‘80s, causing her to push away those who were close to her. She struggled emotionally for some time, but how would she persist to move forward and continue her once fulfilling career?

Keeping Hush

Even though she wanted to seek help, things got worse before they got better. After getting married for a second time, she continued to resort to alcohol, yet hid it from her husband and children. Though she kept it from them, feeling that she was no longer involved in her kids’ lives, her husband begged her to pursue professional help. Carter then responded the only way she knew how…

Recovery Period

Taking her husband’s advice, Carter decided to pursue medical treatment in her new home of Washington D.C. She used both her resilience and her faith to remain strong, claiming that her family’s support and her own personal focus helped her get out of the funk. After successfully completing treatment, Carter says she learned a lot about herself. Since then, she’s remained sober, but this wasn’t the end of her problems…

Back to Music

Post-Wonder Woman, Carter decided that instead of strictly acting, she’d also go back to her love for music. In 1978, she released her first album “Portrait,” and some of the songs were even performed on the show before its end. Afterwards, she even had her own Lynda Carter Special, which even saw her performing with the great Kenny Rogers. But eventually she had to go through some new familial struggles…

Husband’s Fraud

Not long after she recovered from her alcohol addiction, it was now Carter’s turn to stick by her husband’s side. In 1992, Robert Altman was accused of bank fraud, and being a lawyer himself, faced a long prison sentence if convicted for coercing regulators in the acquisition of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International. However, once surviving the long trial, Altman was acquitted on all charges, allowing he and Carter to go back to living their lives. This allowed Lynda to get back to doing what she loved most…

Family Focus

Despite having to go through some tough times during her alcoholism and husband’s fraud accusations, Carter has dedicated a lot of her recent time to her family. After moving to Washington D.C. to join Altman in 1985, the couple had two kids — James and Jessica, born in 1988 and 1990 respectively. To this day, she remains very focused on bettering their lives, but her daughter hasn’t followed in her mother’s footsteps…

Jessica Carter

Though Jessica Altman Carter could have likely taken after her mother and entered the world of Hollywood, she chose to pursue a different path entirely. She decided to follow her father’s passion instead, as Jessica first received her Bachelor’s in psychology from the University of Michigan, and then went on to get her Ph.D. in law while interning in Washington D.C. Her mom, however, has remained a familiar face all these years later.

Continued Acting

Carter hasn’t starred in any leading roles per se, but she has made a lot of appearances in television and feature films alike. Over the years, she’s appeared on TV series like The Muppet Show and Smallville, and even in movies like Super Troopers and the remake of The Dukes of Hazzard. Though she’s returned to Hollywood in limited fashion, Carter is also making her mark in other industries as well…

Video Games

You may not have expected her to become involved with the video game industry, but that’s exactly what Carter’s done. She first made her mark on the scene by serving as a voice actress in the Elder Scrolls series, and more recently as a character in Bethesda’s Fallout 4. She even curated some of Fallout’s soundtrack, allowing her to fuse her passion for acting and music together. But if you thought she was done with music, think again.

More Albums

Along with her love for acting, Carter has continuously returned to her first true passion of music. After over 30 years since her debut, she released a follow-up record titled “At Last.” Not only did it do well, but it topped the U.S. Billboard Jazz charts! She then put out a third record called “Crazy Little Things” in 2011. But even this hasn’t been her only role in the public eye…

Cosmetics Advocate

Since her acting days in Wonder Woman, Carter has always been a face of the cosmetics industry thanks to her flawless skin. Not only has she been an advocate for various lipsticks and facial creams, but she also is a big supporter of sunscreen usage as well. Growing up, her mother insisted on the importance of skin care, and she’s followed the advice ever since. Another thing her fans enjoy learning about is her health routines.

Diet & Exercise

Many women have been envious of Carter’s figure since they first saw her on TV, but maintaining a healthy diet has always been important to her. The actress and singer stays active by running and rowing, but also takes walks and hikes whenever she can to get out of the house. Her workout routine serves as a daily part of life, but even though she’s no longer Wonder Woman, she’s incredibly supportive of her successor…

Carter on Gadot

Carter’s role as Wonder Woman was a huge step for feminism, and with the unprecedented success of her former character in last year’s movie, her legacy was certified. Not only did she accompany Gal Gadot on the new film’s red carpet, but she also praised the young actress for her beauty and talents, claiming she was the perfect fit for the role. And this isn’t the end of the original Wonder Woman’s legacy either.

Role Model

To this day, Lynda Carter continues to push forward-thinking regarding all women’s issues, from the need for more female leads in Hollywood, to the advocation of LGBTQ rights around the country. Carter continues to be a long-time face of feminism, and many of her female and male fans alike are in support of the causes she fights for. She hopes to continue to give strength to the next generation by empowering all young fans.

Lasting Legacy

Thanks to her revolutionary role as Wonder Woman back in the ‘70s, Lynda Carter has been able to touch the lives of millions of women around the world. As an all-around talent, Carter’s acting, voice, and looks have inspired many generations to break barriers and excel in whatever their passions are, despite the naysayers. It’s very likely that long after her career is over, Carter will remain in the hearts and minds of those who dream big.