Every week (or fortnight), Weekly Wonder Woman keeps you up to date on everything involving DC Comics’ premier superheroine
More birthday celebrations last week (and probably work next week because of the Bank Holiday) means WWW is likely to be FWW for the next few weeks at least. Still, given that seems to work for DC, why not for WWW, too?
— Variety (@Variety) April 24, 2018
But that’s your lot, so let’s head straight to the comics. Just the usual suspects, as far as I know, although of course that number is set to diminish very soon. So after the jump, let’s talk about Wonder Woman #45, Justice League #43, The Brave and the Bold #3 and the final issue of Trinity, #22.
Wonder Woman #45
Diana fights Darkseid – and wins. Jason fights some Amazon parademons – and wins. Hippolyta fights Grail – and wins.
A surprisingly not-awful conclusion to James Robinson’s latest story, with our Diana fighting well, even breaking one of the Big New God’s fingers…
…before ultimately defeating Darkseid in a very Diana way – through love.
Released in the process are the spirits (?) of her dead godly relatives, including Zeus, so without the extra energy, Darkseid evaporates in a whiff of atheism, presumably.
Meanwhile, Jason, having not only seen his mum for the first time but also seen her twatting Grail around impressively, suddenly feels all filial. But go he must and he gets a present from his mum along the way:
No clues there as to which Artemis designed it – goddess or Amazon? – but it’s a nice gift.
What happens to Grail afterwards? Well, the Amazons stick her in a prison fit for a goddess – one that’s already occupied, thanks to Greg Rucka.
What could possibly go wrong?
So a pretty decent place for Robinson to leave things at. We’ve got some new ghostly gods, demi-gods, goddesses and demi-goddesses out there, waiting to be incarnated, no doubt, whenever someone’s got a spare moment or two or feels a bit desperate. Zeus is back and not a total dick. Jason’s back and not a total dick, plus he’s well tooled up for a fight. Hippolyta got to show off, kick arse and be a good mum. Diana has actually managed to win a few fights for a change, including one with Darkseid (that’s a good Big Boss takedown to have on your CV), although largely through kicking and punching – but that’s about the best comic book shorthand for “top strategic fighter and martial artist” we can hope for. Darkseid’s on holiday. Even Grail and Ares are around and who knows what will happen there.
It’s taken a while, but Robinson has actually done some thing… interesting. Well I never. I mean it’s not exactly peak Alan Moore, but it could be worse.
Justice League #43
What does Diana do?
Have a mental fight with death. Punch Deathstroke. Help some more black kids at random intervals.
Ending a once promising storyline with all the forced speed of someone told he’s got to get everything done before the next big DC event he’d not been told about until a couple of weeks ago, Christopher Priest winds everything up in an unsatisfactorily way. Pretty much everything the Fans did petered out and it’s all come down to Cyborg telling everyone to shrug their shoulders at not being able to change human nature. Which doesn’t please Diana much.
However, as far as she’s concerned, most of the issue is her having a dream fight with Thanatos, DC’s god of death (apparently). Which she wins through love, of course. Although I’m not quite sure what it’s all supposed to mean.
“A man so haunted by his past.” What’s that now? Thanatos is a man haunted by his past? Did I miss something – this is apparently his only ever appearance in a DC comic ever – or is she talking about someone else?
The observant will notice as well that Thanatos describes Diana as both a goddess of war and a war goddess. If he means that literally, he’s not been sent the Rebirth universe memo; he also shouldn’t be accusing her of ‘hubris’ (the false pride that one is as good as a god that inevitably leads to the gods smiting you to teach you a lesson), seeing as she is a goddess. So maybe it’s a euphemism. Or not Thanatos. Or something.
All in all, a storyline that feels like it’s written by someone who has a vague idea about Diana, but only a garbled series of Chinese whispers about what she can do, which led to her being used pretty badly. Still, next month, she’s going to be leading a weekly Justice League of her own, so fingers crossed for that.
The Trinity defeats Deimos. Steve Trevor gets turned back into a man.
It’s James Robinson again and unsurprisingly, he sticks to the same idea as in this week’s Wonder Woman by having Diana defeat her opponent… through love.
Oh yes, and by twatting Deimos with her shield.
To be fair, there’s a bit more to it than that, with Deimos “reversing” her and Superman’s powers. What do you think that means? Does she become very slow? Does she live for a very short period of time? Does she fly downwards instead of upwards?
(Of course, it would help to know exactly what her powers are…)
However, oddly, one thing it definitely does mean is that the Lasso of Truth becomes the Lasso of Lies. That would mean that the lasso is actually an extension of Diana’s powers, rather than intrinsically capable of forcing the truth from people, which is something Greg Rucka once discussed but never put into his Rebirth storyline.
Still, that nonsense aside, not a bad issue for Diana as she also does quite well in a fight again, while Batman and Superman stand around impotently. Maybe Robinson has had a change of heart?
But that’s the end. No more Trinity after this. I can’t say I’ll miss it – while it was good to have another title featuring Diana, no writer ever really knew what to do with her, plots were massively drawn out and it was never that much fun. On top of that, it was a poor substitute indeed for Superman/Wonder Woman under Charles Soule’s pen.
I wonder if anything will come along to replace it.
The Brave and the Bold #3
Batman and Diana go investigating in Tir Na Nog. No, not that one:
I’m going to run counter to the prevailing opinion that The Brave and the Bold is really good and say I’m a bit disappointed by this. This isn’t “Diana’s strengths married with Batman’s strengths”. This is “Diana asks Batman a lot of questions and he monologues at her”.
The one thing that Diana should be good at is dealing with the magical realms, gods and magic. Instead, it’s largely Batman who’s the leader and source of wisdom. It’s Batman who finds out they’re being followed, using his knowledge of magic, gleaned from an Irish nanny:
It’s Batman who realises the realm is sad, while Diana is reduced to feeling sad and hoping Batman can come up with a plan.
Which is a shame. We’re halfway through the story already and while Batman’s skills have been in high demand, Diana has largely had her skillset undermined (no one trusts her Lasso, for example, and she shouldn’t have any trouble taking on something that can punch Batman but still leave him standing afterwards). There’s nothing so far that’s really needed her.
But we’ve still a ways to go, Diana’s had some moments at least and the artwork is phenomenal, of course. Let’s see what happens in the second half.