Lynda Carter

It has been 20 years since she wore that formfitting superhero costume of red, white and blue, but many people persist in thinking of Carter only as Wonder Woman.

"It's a definite label that's been put on me," she says. "But I've never really minded it. The show has something of a cult following. I'm thrilled to be a cult figure. It's a blast."

Like her Amazon princess/superhero character, Carter, a 5' 10" Miss World-U.S.A., had it all: good looks, keen mind, graceful athleticism, fiercely independent spirit. Is it any wonder Wonder Woman (1976-79) and Carter still have adoring fans?

"The comments I get, they're definitely from both ends of the spectrum. For young men basically, Wonder Woman was strictly an adolescent fantasy. But there are women who tell me Wonder Woman was the first show that gave them a female hero."

The actress, still stunning at 48, has one of the old costumes and the trademark tiara and bracelets enshrined in a glass case in her Potomac, Maryland, home. But she's never tempted to try them on again. "That would be a little sad, don't you think? That was several lifetimes ago."

Carter starred in two other series (Partners in Crime in 1984 and Hawkeye in 1994-95) and many TV movies. But her priority today is home and family. Carter and her husband of 15 years, Robert Altman, a Washington, D.C.
attorney, have two preteen children, Jamie and Jessica. Their lives were turned upside-down in 1991 when Altman was accused of fraud in the BCCI banking scandal, but he was acquitted in '93. "It was a tragic time," she says. "But we're stronger because of it."

Carter still acts occasionally, but it's hard to lure her away from her Potomac, Maryland life. She finds being a hands-on mom more rewarding. "I waited a while to have my family and this is the good stuff."