Pedro Pascal's 'Wonder Woman 1984' Villain Has A Dark Comic Book History – Here's What You Need To Know

Gone are the goatee and helmet, but Game of Thrones and The Mandalorian heartthrob Pedro Pascal is indeed in the new trailer for next year's Wonder Woman 1984. His Maxwell Lord is a capitalist known for mythmaking. "Think about finally having everything you've always wanted," he says in the trailer, in a television broadcast over '80s scenes with boxy cars and shopping malls.In the short trailer, Pascal captures the comic books' Lord, a smarmy-smooth negotiator who acts as a thorn in the side of both Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) and her allies in the Justice League. As several commenters have pointed out on Twitter, the makeup team definitely succeeded in making Pascal "unhot." In some ways, Lord is a lot like Lex Luthor, but showier, using the media to craft a benevolent narrative around himself, before deploying that to damn his heroic enemies like Wonder Woman and ruin their reputations. He's also known for killing people and controlling minds, before later becoming one of Wonder Woman's most haunting nemeses.Lord's DC history dates back to the goofy Justice League International comics of the late-'80s, when he was created by Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis, and Kevin Maguire. The creative team's mandate was to cast their series with C-list heroes like Booster Gold, the Blue Beetle, and the Green Lantern Guy Gardner. Lord was initially written as scummy, unethical businessman who nonetheless believed in heroes and who used his influence to act as the League's money broker and press liaison. He got progressively darker as the years churned on, at one point developing mind-control powers and even becoming a cyborg. (Comics are fun that way.) The 2005 crossover Infinite Crisis pushed him fully into villainy, when he was revealed to be leader of Checkmate, a shadowy Illuminati-esque cabal that manipulates geopolitics.That crossover reveals Lord as a complete bastard. He executes his former ally the Blue Beetle with a point-blank headshot. He co-opts Batman's satellite spy network to attack the world's superhumans. He mind-controls Superman into trying to kill Wonder Woman. And when Wonder Woman finally has him immobilized, he manipulates her into brutally snapping his neck on international television, discrediting her heroism and driving a wedge between her and the public, not to mention her allies. He later rises from the dead only to antagonize her some more. (Comics!)In the Wonder Woman 1984 trailer, Lord appears to control something called a Chaos Shard, a crystal that grants wishes. This may be how Wonder Woman's beau Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) returns from the past or how the film's other antagonist Cheetah (Kristen Wiig), but we don't know the details just yet.However Lord winds up tormenting Wonder Woman, he serves as an example of the corrupting influence of power and capital—which often reveal even the most alluring men to be abusers and manipulators. If that's the message of Wonder Woman 1984, casting Pascal was a canny decision.Wonder Woman 1984 debuts in theaters June 5, 2020.