60 Photos of Lynda Carter Like You've Never Seen Her Before

By Sarah Norman | August 8, 2023

Carter's first variety show drew in huge audiences and was a massive ratings success

Bursting onto television screens in 1975, Lynda Carter is best known today for her work on Wonder Woman, a television adaptation of DC's first female superhero comic book series. She quickly became a favorite with fans who enjoyed her earnest portrayal of the iconic character, putting her own twist on Wonder Woman's evolution through her work on the series. When the show ended in 1979, Carter moved on to make a name for herself in music, film and television, becoming famous for her elaborately produced, star-studded musical variety shows.

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Her impressive performance in Wonder Woman and her reputation as a talented singer and dancer led to immediate offers for Carter to star in her own musical variety shows. They were conceived as one-off television specials, allowing Carter to have a greater hand in writing, directing and producing her own shows, a rarity for women in 70s Hollywood. Carter's first show was called Lynda Carter's Special. Airing in January 1980, just one month before Carter's appearance on The Muppet Show, it featured country superstar Kenny Rogers and Australian pop sensation Leo Sayer as special guests.

Carter sings a duet with Welsh star Tom Jones during a 1979 musical variety show

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During the seventies, musical variety shows dominated weekend night and holiday programming. Carter, whose passion for music and theatre blended together beautifully in this immensely popular niche, started working behind the scenes. She worked on several television specials in the late 70s, co-writing songs and choreographing showstopping dance routines. Carter also began performing in the specials, taking on supporting roles and performing musical numbers alongside some of the greatest legends of the day like Tom Jones and Kenny Rogers. Along the way, Carter learned the ropes of the production process, skills that she would later come to rely on.