This week, it’s the last Weekly Wonder Woman for a couple of weeks, since Christmas, Saturnalia, Hanukkah and various other holiday celebrations are on their way – Happy/Merry Whatevs to you all. It’s also the last WWW of the year, since 2017 is just round the corner now.
Despite all of that, the news hasn’t been letting up much in the past week. People are still mighty miffed about Wonder Woman no longer being an honourary UN ambassador. Current Wonder Woman artist Nicola Scott has penned something for The Guardian about the move. Even TIME magazine has had something to say about it – as well as the forthcoming movie – arguing that we need Wonder Woman now.
Talking of movies, there’s also been a new image released from Justice League featuring you-know-who and some of her besties:
Meanwhile, back in the comics world, a solicitation copy of the original Wonder Woman #1 has just been sold for $291,100, which is something of a record. Less happily, Volume 2 of The Legend of Wonder Woman has just been cancelled halfway through being created.
I am sad to announce Legend of Wonder Woman pt 2 has been cancelled. I am surprised & devastated I won’t be able to finish the project.
— Renae De Liz (@RenaeDeLiz) December 16, 2016
No one’s entirely sure why, although certain Tweets by the creators about the forthcoming Odyssey of the Amazons might be the cause – indeed, DC now says it’s down to a “challenging relationship” with De Liz and Dillon caused by what they’ve been Tweeting. Poor little DC.
After the jump, we’ll be looking at the only non-Elseworlds DC comic to feature our Diana last week, Wonder Woman (Rebirth) #12. Worried that you won’t have much to read this fortnight, though? Don’t. As well as a new issue of Trinity as well as the various crossover titles involving Batman ’66, The Bionic Woman and Wonder Woman ’77, tomorrow marks the start of the first big Rebirth crossover: Justice Leauge vs Suicide Squad. How thrilled are you? A little bit? Maybe a teeny bit? Oh, you saw Suicide Squad. Fair dos.
Wonder Woman (Rebirth) #12
In which the world learns of Diana’s powers, Diana learns of Diana’s powers, Barbara learns of Etta’s powers, prisoners learns about Diana’s powers and Diana learns about Ares’ powers.
Is it any good?
Yes. I still can’t quite work out why I’m not loving it though.
For starters, it’s a lot more fun than we’re used to from Greg Rucka. While the world tries to work out a good, completely underivative name for Diana, we have Barbara Minerva uttering a very famous phrase that hasn’t been seen in a Wonder Woman comic for a very long time indeed:
That leads into a somewhat coded conversation between Minerva and Candy about the lesbian Lesbian Poetess’s work.
Gosh, I wonder what that all meant, hey?
Meanwhile, Diana’s having a great deal of fun discovering her new powers, including the return of her Volume 2 ability to speak to animals – although she discovers they don’t usually have much to say for themselves.
It might be my imagination but the scene feels like a more joyful, more feminine, warmer American response to this iconic, rain-soaked, British scene from Miracleman #3.
Meanwhile, this feels like Greg Rucka’s response to Geoff Johns’ equally iconic ice cream scene from Justice League #3.
But the issue has two main, serious points. The first is Diana’s admission to Steve that she can never return to Themyscira and her mother, and that she had a girlfriend on the island whom she left behind, too:
What a lonely goddess she is.
The other point is the revelation of the true power behind the Sear Group: Ares. Yes, as was happily pointed out to me by Ian Miller, Sear is an anagram of Ares:
Yes, turns out that the Amazons don’t use the Greek alphabet either (well, maybe a couple of letters). And that Ares isn’t one of their patrons, despite various stories to the contrary, including basically the entire nu52.
What’s he been doing? Diana uses her lasso to discover the truth from the captive Sear Group fighters from the mall, and it involves a virus that makes people warlike.
But just as Barbara and Diana work it out, guess who should make an appearance – yes, it’s Volume 2 Ares!
Which is interesting. Because all this time we’ve been thinking Greg Rucka was returning Wonder Woman to his ideal of Volume 2. Yet, here’s Ares in Rucka’s Volume 2 run.
Is Ares going to take his helm off to reveal his true Rucka-favoured self? Is Rucka actually rejecting his own work in favour of George Perez’s more iconic look? Or is this the first indication that the lies of his other storyline actually started way before the nu52 and might even have begun as soon as Diana was bitten by that snake?
Who knows. But it’s interesting, no?
So why don’t I love it? I think for the same reason I don’t quite love Perez’s run – this Diana has no fire in her belly. She’s a long-suffering, gentle, young innocent abroad who apparently has no desires of her own. It’s a bit hard to love a heroine who doesn’t want anything for herself and has no truly appreciable personality. Not impossible and there are plenty of people who love the truly selfless, but this Diana could do with receiving some of her ice-cream-loving, nu52 self’s attributes, not just her Volume 2 self’s.
Still, that problem to one side, it’s still top notch stuff from one of comics’ best writers. A good way to end the year at least, given where we started it. Happy New Year everyone!
Rating: 6/7 (artwork: 6/7)
Disclaimer: Owing to the small fortune it would take to buy every single DC comic each week, this is not a guaranteed rundown of all the comics that feature Wonder Woman. If you know of any I’ve missed, email me or leave a comment below and I’ll cover them the following week