DC Ruins Wonder Woman, Twice in One Day

The women of G3 stopped buying Wonder Woman months ago. But on occasion, I still read the issues in order to review them. Today, I read Wonder Woman #25 for that very reason (review forthcoming).

EDIT: Here’s that review.

***SPOILER WARNING***

The issue opens with Zola, Hera and Diana having coffee talk. In a flagrant “Fuck you!” to the Bechdel Test; first they compare notes about Hermes spying on them, then they expound upon how Apollo affected Hera and then Orion shows up to “save them” from Hermes’ watchful eye. The pixie-dream Strife punctuates the family gathering with an obvious attempt at subversion. Strife doing what Strife does, gives Diana a gift. It’s the helmet of the recently deceased Ares and we are presented with this gem of a panel … Continue reading

V. reviews Wonder Woman #20 and Fatale #14

Aside

Wonder Woman has been on my pull list for seven years straight. After reading Wonder Woman #20, I dropped it.

I don’t mention it in my review, but Diana was in only 8 of the 20 pages in this issue and she didn’t even make an appearance until page 5. When she does appear, her thunder is stolen almost as quickly as it appears.

I swear Brian Azzarello is mocking Wonder Woman fans.

I imagine him reading the bad reviews and angry tweets while stroking his beard and laughing maniacally. “You wanna talk shit about  me, eh? Watch what I do to your beloved princess.”

The thing is … Azzarello has done very little with the character apart from having her slapped on the assRucka’s Wonder Woman would have never been slapped on the ass.

My character loyalty has continued the support of this book for about a year too long. I refuse to endure another month of disappointment especially when there are many other female-led comics that are better.

Fatale is one of them. I reviewed that too.

Goodbye For Now, Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman welcomes you to my office.

Wonder Woman welcomes you to my office.

When people walk into my office for the first time, they immediately notice two things: My Beatles poster and a framed picture of Wonder Woman, illustrated by the incomparable George Perez, which occupies a place of honor on the bookshelf. She’s not just a character I’ve loved since childhood, but also a source of inspiration; a symbol of strength and inherent goodness. Wonder Woman is the reason I fell for superhero comics as a child, and I’ve been known to say that it would be a cold day in hell before I stopped buying her book.

That day arrived a few Wednesdays ago when I asked the owner of my LCS to drop Wonder Woman from my pull list. Continue reading

2012 Memorable Moment: Azzarello’s Amazons

For better or worse, comic fans knew that DC’s relaunch would bring changes to beloved characters. As Brian Azzarello took on the daunting task of writing Diana of Themyscira, Princess of the Amazons, he had a devoted fan base to appeal to. At first, he was fairly successful. I was sold.

In my defense, the beauty of Cliff Chiang’s art goes a long way. Also, despite Phil Hester’s admirable attempt at redeeming The Odyssey story line, that was not a hard act to follow. I may or may not have been a bit hungry for another writer on Wonder Woman.

I digress.

As Azzarello added more and more characters to the cast of Wonder Woman, the old gods started overshadowing our princess. Diana’s path was becoming foggy. So, it wasn’t quite clear how Azzarello was going to characterize the leading lady who was becoming more like a supporting actress in her own book. The story-shine of Zeus being her father was wearing off. So, Azzarello brought the thunder in another epic reveal in Wonder Woman #7. Continue reading

Thoughts on Azzarello’s Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman means a lot of things to a lot of people. She’s iconic and has permeated the collective consciousness in probably a million different ways depending on the person. So naturally, when Brian Azzarello comes along and changes every damn thing about her save her looks, it is most certainly going to make waves. In the instance of Wonder Woman #7 … he made tidal waves. I am definitely on Team Kelly when it comes to the horrific tradition the Amazons have apparently practiced for centuries, but that wasn’t enough for me to drop the book. Continue reading

Stream of Comicsness – Week of 01.18.2012

Not So Wonderful
Holy crow. Who has been singing the praises of Wonder Woman louder than me? Since issue #1, I have been going on about Cliff Chiang’s beautiful art, and how Brian Azzarello “gets” Diana. Maybe I was just blinded by the light (art). I stand by what I said about Chiang being damn near perfect on this book, but this month’s issue was not drawn by Chiang. So, Azzarello had to do the heavy lifting with the story, and that just did not happen. There is plenty of Greek Mythology. There is another half-breed offspring of Zeus unexpectedly popping in on Diana, Poseidon shows up and Hera is still pissed off. Quelle suprise! Azzarello is a good writer, but this issue falls flat without Chiang’s magic. Tony Akins is the fill in artist, and either DC chose him because he kind of sort of draws like Chiang, or he tried to draw like Chiang. Either way, it was not working for me. It wasn’t bad, but I wasn’t impressed. Akins draws a pretty mean sea monster splash page, but his Diana is all wonky in the face. The proportions seemed off with the other characters as well. Cliff Chiang is a tough act to follow. Continue reading

Friday Favorite: Wonder Woman

THAT is a warrior princess.

When we started doing Friday Favorites here at G3, the concept was more about featuring B-list characters that we loved. We wanted to shine a light where it isn’t always shining. But this Friday, I want to honor the leading lady of comics because she deserves it. More specifically, I’d like to honor Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang’s Wonder Woman. She is the Wonder Woman I have been waiting for. Continue reading

G3 Review: First Wave #1

Cover art by J.G. Jones

First Wave #1
Script: Brian Azzarello
Art: Rags Morales
Colors: Nei Ruffino
DC Comics
March 3, 2010

As a fledgling fangirl, I mostly read what others loaned me. In time, I learned what I liked and didn’t. Much of what I enjoy is of the Spandex persuasion and has a strong female presence. Thus, First Wave is not a typical read for me.  Had it not been for Rags Morales’ involvement, I wouldn’t have picked up the book at all. I’m such a fan of Rags’ art that I figured the comic would be worth it even if the story turned out to be a bore. I also approached First Wave knowing nothing about Doc Savage, his entourage, or The Spirit. So here’s my “Tabula Rasa” take on issue #1.

The art is the shining star of this issue. I always enjoy a JG Jones cover. The smooth lines and the sort of chalky, muted tones are nice touches that complement Jones’ take on the characters. It reminds me of Chris Van Allsburg, whose work I enjoyed so much as a kid. Rags’ interior art is amazing. During a quite amusing conversation between The Spirit and crooked cop Dolan, there’s this up-close panel of Dolan’s smirky face that I just stared at: The smoke coming off the just-used match, the shadow cast from the brim of his hat and pipe, and the distinct look of the character. It said so much more than the dialogue could — and that’s just one panel!

If you think of the art for a character-driven book in terms of movie casting, Rags is the best casting director in the studio. He manages to define all of the characters so that you got a feel for who they might turn out to be in this story. He has a real gift for drawing eyes, giving them depth and an almost photo-realistic intensity. I generally liked Ruffino’s colors, but at times, some of Rags’ detail work seemed lost to the coloring. But since the palette and contrasts were aesthetically pleasing as a package, perhaps that’s a fair trade-off.

Since I am not familiar with the characters in First Wave, I had to read the issue a couple times to absorb what was going on. It’s mostly a lot of seed planting, but no real forward motion. We see Dr. Littlejohn somewhere in the South American jungle fleeing from a killer robot. Doc Savage comes home from solitude to his father’s gravesite, only to find some serious shenanigans surrounding his “death.” A Russian guy, who I guess is the big baddie, reads a news report about Doc’s goings-on and has some opinions about the scene taking place in the jungle. The Spirit provides kooky commentary while following a lead on some criminal activity, only to find a fight and a few things unexpected.

I’m curious to see where the story goes, and I’m excited about some of the characters. We get a brief glimpse at Rima the Jungle Girl in this first issue. Based on a preview from Rag’s character notebook that I saw a while back, I love Rima’s look, and I’m looking forward to seeing what Azzarello does with her. She doesn’t have a great deal of established continuity, but in the hands of an able writer, that can be a great thing. There is a Black Canary yet to be revealed, which I have high hopes for. The Spirit was wildly entertaining, as he’s a special kind of crazy. I’ve always had an affinity for eccentric characters. Plus, I’m really digging Doc Savage, who’s all smart and bronzy. Yum.

Verdict: The first issue doesn’t offer a great deal of exposition, and I imagine it’ll take another issue or two before we get any. You might get more out of it if you are familiar with Doc and Spirit. The story was certainly not a bore. Azzarello managed to pique my interest, but Rags Morales is what made First Wave worth my $3.99.