Friday, January 8, 2010

Comic Book Review: Wonder Woman #39

Book Information
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Aaron Lopresti & Matt Ryan
Cover by Aaron Lopresti

Wonder Woman undergoes some major changes within her world and her personality.  With a massive attack by an aquatic monster, released by the traitorous Alkyone, and Zeus trying to maintain his proclaimed rulership of Themyscira, Wonder Woman must now fight back her rightful place as Wonder Woman and win back the respect of her fellow amazons.  Plus!  We finally learn the strange reason for Wonder Woman’s lighting producing abilities.
My Thoughts
It’s obvious that Gail Simone’s purpose from the get-go was to establish Wonder Woman in a much more relevant and powerful light within the DC Universe.  Having redefined many of the characters in Wonder Woman’s life, such as Zeus and Hippolyta, and giving Wonder Woman and much more dominant place within DC, Wonder Woman has finally been placed upon a pedestal that is deserving of the long winded DC heavy hitters.

The story begins with Wonder Woman fighting off the monster unleashed by the scheming Amazonian warrior, Alkyone, who claimed Diana to be the offspring of the satanic beast.  This was rather strange, yet interesting even though I’m not sure I fully understood the reasoning behind that claim.  I had always been under the impression that Wonder Woman was not conceived, but made from the very sands of Themyscira.  This aspect of the storyline seemed rather contrived and out of place, especially since it didn’t seem to affect the Amazonian Princess or Hippolyta in the least.

Aside from that rather confusing and unnecessary part of the story, the plot progresses positively and left us with even more to look forward too later this month!  I’m actually quite sad Alkyone was killed; she was such an interesting villainess who truly believed this new path she was leading the Amazons down was the correct path that would only benefit her people, bringing the two separated colonies together in peace.  Of course, knowing DC and their powers of resurrection, they may bring her back to once again to challenge Wonder Woman.

The main storyline focused on the relationship of Zeus and Achilles with the rest of the Island of Themyscira.  To watch Hippolyta herself rise up against Zeus was an incredible sight to see.  Maybe you feel I’m being silly and rolling you’re eyes at me, but in the face of a God who controls the power of lighting and could vaporize me in an instant, I’m not so sure I could hold my ground and fight back.  But I’m sure we all can relate to the difficulty of standing up against the religious powers of America and how scary it can be.  But an even more powerful, and humbling sight was Zeus finally find himself powerless against the Amazons.  Here we have the womanizing and egotistical Zeus saying he is powerless and confused about what was happening.  I found it very…to put in his own words…mortal.

The pregnancy overhaul continues to shock and amaze me.  Next month should be interesting as this new story arc descends upon us and begin to explain what Ares’ dastardly plan actually is.  I have my theories, but I should never jump the gun when it comes to Gail Simone.  Now, even though the power of lighting within Diana’s bracelets has been made a permanent characteristic of Wonder Woman (kind of corny and ridiculous if you ask me!) I still look forward to how it assists or hurts Wonder Woman’s life as a hero.

Poor art and composition is NOT a defining feature of Lopresti’s artwork.  Month after month I praise Lopresti as an artist to the same degree with Simone as a writer.  There is nothing but strong figures, incredible compositions and beautiful scenery, which is a consistent feature of Lopresti’s artwork.  Not only that, but he knows exactly how to compliment Simone’s story telling better than any artist in the business.  Lopresti is THE Wonder Woman artist and DC would be stupid to enlist the artistic talents of anyone other than Lopresti when it comes to Wonder Woman.

And above average issue.  It contained a powerful storyline which is propelling us into a new storyline with a lot of potential.

Rating: 8.5 out of 10 stars

Next Issue Coming January 27, 2010
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan
Cover by Aaron Lopresti

Wonder Woman faces The Crows! Five mysterious young men with a dark and terrible secret have arrived on Paradise Island with one mission: To kill Wonder Woman!

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