Welcome back to DC Rebirth One Year Later, where we look at DC books that are part of DC Comics’ Rebirth initiative one year after it began. And with this one, we’re looking at what quickly became one of the most anticipated books of the initiative after the creative team was announced: None other than the solo book of the Spirit of Truth and savior of the DC Extended Universe, Wonder Woman.
Once again, SPOILERS for anyone not caught up on the book, so turn back if you don’t wanna know what’s been going on without reading the book yourself. So, first off, I just wanna make clear that this book is SO cathartic for anyone who hated the New 52 Wonder Woman book. If you liked that book, and I know there were those who did, then I’m sorry, this book is probably not for you. But if you’ve been waiting for a return-to-form Wonder Woman, this is for you. And the decision to bring Greg Rucka back to write the book was a great choice by DC. Granted, I would’ve liked to see Gail Simone return to the book, but in hindsight, when it came to telling the opening stories of this book, Rucka was probably the better option. Hopefully, The Simone will return at a later point. Although, if you’ve been waiting for that moment as well, you might be interested to know that Gail Simone will be writing a Wonder Woman/Conan crossover book in the future, so there’s that.
So, again, this is very much return-to-form for Wonder Woman. During the events of Justice League’s Darkseid War, Diana learned that she had been deceived in regards to a great many things as it pertains to her past, which is further proven upon putting herself in the Lasso of Truth. To make a 24 (going on 25) issue story short, Diana never returned to Themyscira upon leaving it with Steve Trevor. The one we’ve seen her come back to in the New 52 is a fake, as have been the incarnations of the Greek Gods she’s encountered during that time. How and why this happened is still a little unclear, although I’m assuming this will be fully explained in #25 next week. What will also likely be explained is the true nature of Diana’s origins. The implication SEEMS to be that she was made from clay, but then how do you explain her apparent twin brother Jason (part of the revelation made in Darkseid War) being born on the same day, unless they were both made from clay? And what about the true nature of the fakes and their existence? They can’t simply be illusions, since Steve sees them too, and they created Donna Troy in the new continuity, and she’s very much real, but I’ll get into that when I talk about Titans.
Some people might see that as a cheap method of setting things back to the status quo, by implying that everything that’s happened with Wonder Woman in the New 52 no longer counts. I disagree. Other than the apparent retcon of her relationship with Superman due to events in his books (which I’ll get to when I talk about them), a lot of those stories still happened. The fact that she was interacting with people who weren’t necessarily real or genuine does not negate that fact. For better or worse, those events and how she handled them are a part of her history and contribute to her character development.
Wonder Woman, however, is not the only character being taken back to their core elements. Steve Trevor is back to his awesome-yet-constantly-needing-to-be-saved-by-Wonder-Woman self, and is reasserted as Diana’s primary love interest. Personally, I tend to prefer the idea that they USED to date, and that relationship helped better them as people before becoming just friends, but I can deal with them in a relationship far sooner than her and Superman. Etta Candy is sporting a new look wherein she’s still African-American like her New 52 self, but is also thicker and curvier. Also, she’s a hell of a lot more fun to read, which is a big point of interest for me, because I love when Etta Candy is a delight. Barbara Minerva’s backstory is made sympathetic again, and the tragedy of her transformation seems even more-so as it’s implied (if not outright stated) that she and Etta might have had feelings for each other. I DO have a bit of a nitpick in that I wish her design included the long red hair and a string bikini, perhaps similar to how she looks in Injustice 2 perhaps, but I at least get what they were doing with this look. The Amazons are also all brought back to their awesome selves, and it seems the idea of Hippolyta and Phillipus as a possible couple might be coming back, which is VERY appreciated. A lot of Diana’s rogues make returns, like Doctor Poison and Doctor Cyber, all of whom are appreciated. And then there’s Veronica Cale, and holy shit, does she work GREAT as one of the primary antagonists of this book. She’s just sympathetic enough in her character and the things that happen directly to her that you can at least understand some of the things she does, but man oh man, does she do some fucked up stuff to Diana and pretty much everyone who gets caught between them. There’s even a scene where she manages to get a leg up over Bruce Wayne and Lex Luthor at an auction (long story for those who haven’t seen it), and it is glorious.
One thing that was a bit odd in terms of how this book has unfolded is that, because Wonder Woman was one of the books that would be released twice a month, Rucka was telling two different stories in the same book, with current events being told in the odd numbered issues, and past events being told in the even numbered issues. And while the end of each issue made clear which future issue would continue which story, it could prove confusing for anyone going into the book late and not knowing that. My advice? Wait for the trades to come out, since they collect the specific stories. And while it was released second, start with the Year One storyline, since it better explains everything. Plus, it’s probably my favourite arc of the book. Why? Wonder Woman’s origin story with Greg Rucka as the writer and Nicola Scott as the artist. That combination is, for a lack of a better term, wonderful.
…*sighs* But, now we gotta talk about where this book is going, and that’s where things get a bit murkier. If you haven’t read the most recent solicits from DC, it seems that James Robinson will be taking over as writer of the book in September, and that the first arc of his run will specifically be about Jason, the apparent twin brother of Wonder Woman. So, basically, we’re getting a Wonder Woman book…that is not actually ABOUT Wonder Woman, but a man. Granted, I fully expected the book would eventually get into explaining the existence of Diana’s brother, but if what we’ve heard and read about Robinson’s story is correct, then he is basically the star of this story, not Wonder Woman. This is more than a little problematic for many fans, for a few reasons. Even ignoring the fact that this is kind of a slap in the faces of the more feminist comic book fans, and Wonder Woman IS a feminist icon, so that IS a legitimate problem, I don’t care what anyone says, what the hell kind of sense does it make to have a book where the title character is not the MAIN character? I can only hope this arc doesn’t last long, because otherwise, there’s probably gonna be a SERIOUS drop in the book’s sales.
Other than that, though, where does the book go? Well, a lot of that is probably gonna depend on the outcome of next week’s issue, which will be Greg Rucka’s last on the book. Afterward, Shea Fontana will be getting a quick run on the book before Robinson takes over. After all that, though? Who knows. Hopefully, like I said, the Jason arc won’t last long, and then maybe we can eventually get Gail Simone back on the book. It just feels like it’s time, and we know she can write some awesome Wonder Woman stories. Even if it’s only for a little while, it’d still be appreciated.
Anyway, that’s pretty much all I have to say about the book so far, at least as a more general look at it. I MIGHT decide to give a more in-depth look at Wonder Woman: Year One someday down the road, though. For now, leave your own thoughts on the DC Rebirth Wonder Woman book before, and next, what say we round out the Trinity by going up, up, and away? ^_^ Ja né!
Well, I went to see Wonder Woman yesterday as part of my birthday present. And honestly, I can say it’s one of the best experiences in the theater I’ve had in quite some time, and is easily the best DC movie I’ve seen since The Dark Knight. In fact, I was on the fence as to whether I wanted to admit this publicly or not, but…
…Yeah, I like this film better than The Dark Knight. I know that might cause disbelief in some, but I can’t help it, it’s how I feel. As such, this is gonna be a little different. I was gonna put the word “review” in the title, but honestly, there’s not a lot I’m going to be reviewing with this, especially since I want people to go see it themselves. Actually, there’re just a few points I wanna make about it, including one that’s not even really an issue with the movie…but I’ll get to that later.
So, first things first: Goddammit, does Gal Gadot nail this character. Diana in this movie is beautiful, smart, strong, and sexy. She is compassionate to a fault, yet a powerful and deadly warrior to all who cross her and leave her no other options but to fight. And to anyone confused about that, allow me to explain: Wonder Woman technically does not have a no-kill rule as Superman and Batman are SUPPOSED to. However, her willingness to kill is born out of her compassion. It’s a matter of “This person is leaving me no other choice but to do nothing, and innocents will die if I choose to do so, so if I have to take on the burden of killing someone to protect the innocent, then so be it”. And in all-out war, it’s a little easier to understand that mindset. She’s naive about how the world off her island works, but that’s understandable for obvious reasons, and in the end, she learns to accept and love humanity for both the good and the bad.
I’m still a little sour about the fact that, just like in the New 52, it turns out Diana being sculpted from clay is a lie and that she’s actually the daughter of Zeus. However, here’s the thing you need to understand about that: The lie actually makes a bit more sense here, both in why it was told and how it was revealed. Honestly, my problem was never really with Wonder Woman being a demigoddess. My problem was with the hows and whys of that change, as well as what it did to her as a character, and how it made her supporting cast look in retrospect. Here, though, it doesn’t really change much of who Wonder Woman is, and the lie is only perpetrated by Hippolyta to protect her. So it works better than it did in the comics. Would I have preferred her original origins be kept intact? Yes, but again, it still works as is, so I can’t be TOO sour about it.
One thing I actually wasn’t so bothered by, but have kind of become a little bothered by, is the race change to Doctor Poison. If you don’t know, Doctor Poison in the comics is Japanese. In fact, she was a princess in disguise, and was a character with her own agency. Here, she’s played by a Spanish woman, and it’s revealed that at least one or two of her breakthroughs in chemistry were inspired by Ares. So, yeah, that’s a problem. However, on the flip side…Look, I’m just gonna admit this: I barely knew who she was going into this movie. And that’s mainly because a lot of Wonder Woman’s rogues gallery usually get pushed aside for Cheetah, Ares, and Circe, with the occasional Veronica Cale and Giganta. I’ve heard she’s actually appeared in Wonder Woman’s new solo title, but I’m still reading through that. So one reason it actually doesn’t bother me as much as it probably should that they changed Doctor Poison so much is because now, with her appearance in this movie, I’m inspired to do my research and find out more about her. Still, it probably would’ve been better to just do the character more correctly in the first place.
I’ve pointed out to my friends in the past that I wasn’t sure if I really considered Wonder Woman’s theme in Batman v Superman to be the most fitting for the character, but I still liked it. The reason I liked it, primarily in BvS, was because it was the only freaking song in that entire Goddamn movie that got me amped for ANYTHING going on in it. But, again, wasn’t sure how well it fit the character. Hearing it again, along with some of the remixes present in this movie… … …Yeah. Yeah, I just have to accept the fact that this is this Wonder Woman’s theme song, and that I really do love this song. lol
And I suppose I should bring up a bit of an elephant in the room as it pertains to this movie. Specifically, as it turns out, Erich Ludendorff is actually a real person. And, it probably won’t shock anyone to hear that he did not die in 1918 via a sword running through him on a roof. In fact, he died of liver cancer in 1937. And, he was among those who specifically suggested the armistice in the first place. So, yeah, the movie obviously takes more than a couple of liberties with history.
But yeah, you might have noticed that all the downsides I’ve mentioned about this movie are all pretty much nitpicks. That’s because there’s really nothing about this movie that ruins it in any way, shape, or form. Really, the biggest issue I have isn’t even with the movie, but rather the studio. And if you’ve looked on comic book news sites, you probably already know this, but if you don’t, let me just explain this right now: There is a scene where Wonder Woman is going through the trenches with Steve Trevor and his team at No Man’s Land, and the whole way there, Diana is seeing the suffering the war is causing. Men, women, children, animals, all are harmed in some way, shape, or form by this war, and all the while she’s told there’s nothing she can do about it, that No Man’s Land can’t be crossed. So what does she do? She strips out of the clothes Steve got her down to her armor, and just WALKS across No Man’s Land, deflecting bullets, until she gets into a run and finally hunkers down behind her shield as the Germans start laying down fire from their multiple machine guns. This is so much gunfire that it’s left even her immobile…but that’s the point. By taking their fire upon herself, it gives Steve and the other soldiers a chance to charge the grounds and take down the Germans keeping them at bay.
So why am I bringing this scene up in such detail above all others? Well, for two reasons. One, it’s the most memorable and important scene in the movie to many who saw it, and I’ll explain why in a sec. The second is because, according to Patty Jenkins, that sequence of events almost didn’t make it into the film’s theatrical release. In her own words, “I think that in superhero movies, they fight other people, they fight villains. So when I started to really hunker in on the significance of No Man’s Land, there were a couple people who were deeply confused, wondering, like, ‘Well, what is she going to do? How many bullets can she fight?’ And I kept saying, ‘It’s not about that. This is a different scene than that. This is a scene about her becoming Wonder Woman.’”…If I may be allowed to go off on a tangent here…WHAT. THE. HELL, WB?! She had to CONVINCE the studio it needed to be in. Why didn’t they understand from the beginning how important this was? This is why I think they’ve failed with these movies up until this point, and why this scene is so important: Not only is it a scene showing Wonder Woman doing what needs to be done for her to accomplish her goals, but that one act completely turns the tide, and so Wonder Woman’s actions inspire others to do what they must. THAT is the point of DC superheroes, Superman especially: To inspire. To show the world how to save themselves. Ultimately, it comes down to something a vampire once said:
THAT’S what DC superheroes are supposed to be! Hell, it’s not even just superheroes. Even Poison Ivy, someone who is really more of an anti-hero and, even at her best, cares very little for humanity, does what she can to stop people from destroying the world, and will protect the people she DOES care for to the death. Wonder Woman is in this movie is someone who is out to save humanity, and in the end does so regardless of how bad we can be, because of how good we can be. Her actions inspire us to be better. THAT’S what Superman was once upon a time in movies. Even Batman, as tortured and clearly human as he was, could be seen as an inspiration for how a man can take that torment and darkness and turn it into something positive for humanity. Granted, it also helps a lot that he’s filthy stinking rich, but you can still see the building blocks there for how a person can take the worst of themselves and do something good with it. And I hope to God that this is the direction they take from now on, and that they don’t try to ignore the critical success that this movie has made. Hell, I’m pretty sure they’ve already learned their lesson, since despite resisting that scene, they’ve put snippets of it in every trailer I’ve seen for the movie thus far. And if they have, MAJOR kudos to them. You were late to the party, but at least you made it. And, with any luck, Justice League will be all of what made this movie great and MORE.
Oh, and lastly, I wanted to make something clear. I know I’ve given Zack Snyder a lot of hell for these movies. But, let us not forget that he was a producer on THIS film as well. He deserves credit for it, the same as his wife Deborah who was also a producer for it, the same as Patty Jenkins for directing, the same as Gal Gadot for physically bringing the character to life, the same as Chris Pine for Steve Trevor, Lucy Davis for Etta Candy, and everyone else in this movie for their performances (seriously, I can’t think of one bad performance in this movie), and the same as Geoff Johns and everyone else who worked on this movie. And, on a more personal note, I just wanted to give my most sincere condolences to Zack and Deborah for the loss of their daughter. No matter what anyone has to say about them for how they perform at their jobs, we can all agree that no parent should ever have to go through what these two have. And that’s all I have to say on the subject.
Bottom line, Wonder Woman is a great film, and if you haven’t seen it, for the love of God, it’s well worth the price of admission to go see it in theaters. And if you HAVE seen the film, let me know what you thought of it in the comments below. Play us out, 331Erock.
So, I thought I’d give an update on what I’m doing with my Wonder Woman fanfic that I’m writing for National Novel Writing Month. I’ve posted a few here and there on Twitter, but I thought I’d give a bigger one here, plus a special sneak preview of the fanfic! So, let’s get the ball rolling.
So, first and foremost, at the time of writing this article, I have written 12,789 words so far. So I am a little behind, but I will catch up, I’m not too worried about that. Still plenty of time to get caught up, and it actually helps a bit that I currently have little to no life. lol Anyway, for those that don’t know about the subject matter, here’s a trailer I did on YouTube for the fic…
All images belong to DC Comics, and the music is Those Chosen By The Planet – Remastered, originally by Nobuo Uematsu, and the Wonder Woman theme, performed by The Boomsters. Anyway, here’s the synopsis that you can read on my novel’s page on NaNoWriMo…
Diana of Themyscira, daughter of Hippolyta, and princess of the Amazons. She was granted life by the Greek Gods of Olympus themselves, and gifted with abilities that made her the greatest of her people. Now, she is an ambassador to the world of men, and a champion of equality, truth, and justice. She is Wonder Woman.
However, she’s rapidly running out of time, as a vision from approximately two weeks in the future tells the tale of a zombie apocalypse that is set to begin in Washington, D.C. Sure enough, the dead are beginning to rise again, from zombies of the worst men the world has ever produced, to undead beasts stitched together as crude, nightmarish creatures. If the events of her vision come to pass, there’s nothing she can do to save the capital of the United States. Thus, Wonder Woman must find the cause of the apocalypse and stop it before it happens, or the land of the free will fall.
So yeah, it’s technically another zombie apocalypse story…sort of. Where it’s different is that most zombie stories take place during or after the zombie apocalypse. This is about Wonder Woman trying to stop the zombie apocalypse before it happens, which will include an actual time and date at the beginning of chapters and after break lines to reference the ticking clock leading to the events of her vision. And for those wondering how Wonder Woman fits into a zombie apocalypse story, it’s very simple: Her sources. She has regular contact with people who work with the government, she can speak with the Greek Gods, she’s even been to the underworld to talk with Hades, which is where the souls of the dead go. So really, when you think about it in those terms, she’d actually be one of the first DC superheroes to respond to a plague of zombies.
As for other characters aside from Wonder Woman that will be appearing, as you could gather from the trailer, antagonists will include Grundy, Giganta, and Captain Nazi. As I alluded to on Twitter, Adolf Hitler and Josef Mengele will be brought back as zombies, as it’s all part of Captain Nazi’s plan. Given that this is a zombie story involving DC Comics characters, you can probably guess who one of the major villains is. Steve Trevor and Etta Candy will be giving aid to Diana by giving her information through their government connections. Hades will be begrudgingly helping Wonder Woman, as it’s the only way to regain control of the underworld (seeing as how looking over said underworld is kind of his job, and if the souls of the dead stop going there, he’s kinda screwed). Hippolyta will be making appearances, as will Artemis and Philippus. By the way, seeing as how Gail Simone wanted to have those two get married in the comics, and Dan Didio was actually on board with it (Yeah, I know o.O), Artemis and Philippus will be a married couple in my fic. Superman and Batman aren’t so much in the story as they are alluded to a few times, though I have considered having them appear in nightmare fuel visions (by the way, I have considered making this a Rated M story for FanFiction.net, just so you know). And there will be other characters who pop in from time to time, but I think I’ll keep them to myself for now. ^_^
Anyway, with that all out of the way, here’s a sneak preview of what’s to come. Just remember, I’m constantly making additions and revisions, so this might change by the time it’s ready to be posted, but here’s a look at Chapter 2 of Infinite DC – Wonder Woman.
Diana wanted so badly right now to have some sort of gag for her ‘companion’ as they approached the location of one of the few known gates to the underworld, hidden in the hills outside of Washington, cloaked by magic against anyone with the vision to see through it, or the knowledge of its presence. Adolf had not shut up the entire trip there, and while Wonder Woman had been blessed upon birth by Aphrodite with a near-endless amount of compassion, the former leader of the Nazi regime was testing it. A LOT.
“Peh, ‘warrior women’,” Hitler spat. “You are inferior beings created by pagan ‘Gods’. If you had been at war with my regime, we would have left you a bloody smear on your little island hideaway, which is the ONLY reason you still exist today, in the wake of our righteousness.”
“Yes, the Nazis were VERY righteous,” Wonder Woman replied sarcastically. “Which is why you’ve been rotting away in the deepest, darkest corner of Tartarus for the past 70 years or so.”
“Make no mistake, small Amazon,” Adolf growled, “I WILL have revenge for the indignities I’ve suffered in both my life and my afterlife, including on you.”
“First of all, I’m nearly twice your size,” Diana countered. “Second, revenge isn’t exactly befitting the supposedly righteous. Third, SHUT UP!”
“Or what?” Hitler mocked. “You’ll knock my head off my shoulders? I’m dead, what do I care? I’ll bite your feet clean off, and let you die from the infection!”
Diana scowled as the gate came into view. Normally, this gate would require a blood sacrifice in the light of the full moon to pass through. However, due to Wonder Woman’s status with the Gods, she was allowed free passage whenever she wanted. It wasn’t a problem with any of them for her to be allowed free entry, since the underworld wasn’t exactly a place she liked to traverse to regularly.
As she came within a few feet of the gate, however, the ground began to shake. It caused the ground to crack slightly, and Diana knew in her gut that this was NOT a tremor. She looked around for the cause as Hitler stumbled about clumsily. Picking the undead Nazi up, she found a stone slab and tied him to it with the Lasso of Truth.
“Hey!” Hitler yelled. “What do you think you’re doing?! I’m completely helpless here!”
Diana shrugged with a smirk. “You’re dead, what do you care, remember?”
Adolf was about to snap back, but soon found himself shrieking like a child as a giant monster burst out from the ground. It looked like a gigantic black spider with its eight legs replaced with at least a dozen massive, slime-covered tentacles, huge red butterfly wings attached to its back. It let out a loud, shaky shriek that sent chills all across Diana’s bones.
“Oh, it WOULD have tentacles,” Diana observed as the beast hovered off the ground. “And somewhere right now, Supergirl is giggling at me, I’m sure.”
Anyway, hope you enjoyed this brief preview of Infinite DC – Wonder Woman, and with any luck, I should be done in time for the end of November. Ja né!
- Wonder Woman, Inc. (comicsauthority.com)
- NaNoWriMo Tip #6: Don’t Think Like an Editor (Yet) (mediabistro.com)
- NaNoWriMo Update #1 (desireeacox.wordpress.com)
- NaNoWriMo Day 9: Writing Marathon 2013 (thesisterseternal.wordpress.com)
- 30 Questions To Ask Yourself During NaNoWriMo-Day 7 (aspiringwriter22.wordpress.com)
- NaNoWriMo 2013 – Still brainstorming (zanemckenzie.com)
- NaNoWriMo update: Stuck on Chapter 2 (clairevioletthropeexpress.wordpress.com)
- Lady Sif as Wonderwoman? Jaimie Alexander Confirms talks with DC. (cinematalkgraphy.wordpress.com)
- New Actresses Test for ‘Batman vs. Superman’…as Wonder Woman? (EXCLUSIVE) (variety.com)
- Wonder Woman fan trailer draws rave reviews (2andahalfnerds.com)