by diana_fan » Sun Jul 13, 2008 10:39 am
So the Amazing Amazon saw her own title ship this last week, as well as Trinity, and more or less cameo appearances in both JSoA and Final Crisis: Requiem. How did it go?
Final Crisis: Requiem
Peter J. Tomasi, Doug Mahnke, Christian Alamy
This was a terrific book, a great send-off, and had splendid art. But Diana's role was basically just to be Wonder Woman in a few panels, to establish that importance of the event. Just a cameo, in other words. Doug Mahnke did draw her beautifully, though.
Justice Society of America #17
Geoff Johns, Alex Ross, Fernando Pasarin, Prentice Rollins
OK, this is something I don't find myself saying very often: Geoff Johns wrote Diana well. Johns is one of my favorite writers, and just is on fire on so many books right now, but his track record writing the Themysciran Princess is just atrocious. For whatever reason, he simply doesn't get the character.
Here, however, in her small, cameo-esque role, she seems like the Diana from her own title. Granted, she only has a few lines, and a tiny appearance, but that's been enough for Geoff to trash her before. So I was thrilled that she came off well.
Kurt Busiek, Mark Bagley, Art Thibert, Fabian Nicieza, Scott McDaniel, Andy Owens
"And her mission ... It's different from Superman's. Where e fights to guard us, she seeks to guide us, to show us a better way."
As per the usual, Kurt Busiek's characterization is spot on. He understands, and apparently really likes, these three characters. And it shows with Rita's assessment of Wonder Woman.
"She fights a war to show us that it can be fought. A war for hope, for equality, for the freedom to stand, to speak, and be heard.
"A war for justice."
That's Wonder Woman in a nutshell. Picking up right where Greg Rucka left off (the best contemporary run, IMO). Classic, spot-on characterization.
Interestingly, earlier in the issue, Diana nearly echoes Rita's assessment of the Trinity. She also shows that she is not only smart and insightful, but not afraid of either her emotions or of analysis by others.
Diana's past romantic feelings for Superman and Batman are acknowledged. But, both Superman and Batman feel that Diana distances herself from humanity. Her nearly naive "I ... don' mean to ..." response is as endearing on the part of the character as it is astute on the part of the writer.
Overall, Trinity has proven to be a good showcase for the Amazing Amazon. And Mark Bagley can draw Diana as long as he wants to, as far as I'm concerned. I'm really enjoying his art throughout this book. But his Wonder Woman is fantastic.
Wonder Woman #22
Gail Simone, Aaron Lopresti, Matt Ryan
The main course. "The Ends of the Earth, Part 3" sees what Diana could be, what she has the potential to be, when stripped of what makes her truly human. Heads on pikes, suitors bowed before her, Diana is majestic and not a little scary. Even her mother, the strong and powerful Hippolyte, is obsequious in her presence.
Diana is losing herself, losing what it means to be herself.
As the story progresses, we see more of the darker Diana. One who is cruel in word and deed, but still acts with a sense of Justice. And, of course, this being written by the uber-talented Gail Simone, Wondy not only can beat you to a pulp, she can cut you apart with words, as well.
She's, frankly, a little scary in this issue. And it works perfectly in the story, setting up the finale next month. Gail Simone has just taken over this book with a verve that is sensational.
Which brings me to Aaron Lopresti's awe-inspiring art. He's pretty much, flat-out the perfect artist for this title. Panel after panel is just luscious and full. The detail in his art is outstanding, and the way he draws Wonder Woman is amazing. She hasn't looked this good in ages, and her book certainly hasn't looked as beautiful or as interesting in ... well, since Phil Jimenez left.
There are a couple of panels where the pencils are left un-inked, and it's stunning, recalling Mike Grell's various approaches in his Green Arrow work. I do feel as though the inking is a bit heavy throughout the book, however. And the pencil-only panels really serve to re-enforce this.
I do hope that Gail and Aaron stay on this title forever, honestly. They are a perfect team.
All 'n all?
Overall, it was a good week to be a Wonder Woman fan. She was treated with dignity and respect throughout her appearances, and her own title shone with a brilliance that was lacking during its re-launch period.
NEXT WEEK: Trinity, and probably Dreamwar. Though, I have no idea what's going on that book, frankly.