With Tony S. Daniel departing Superman/Wonder Woman for a new Deathstroke title, I assumed that we’d get an announcement about a new artist for the series sometime soon. Instead, we got a whole new creative team. Writer Charles Soule is leaving the book as well, and Peter Tomasi and Doug Mahnke are taking over the title in November.
Tomasi is probably best known for his current run on Batman and Robin, which has received solid reviews, but he also had a very good run on Green Lantern Corps and was an editor at DC before he turned to writing. Mahnke’s illustrated several top DC books, including Green Lantern, Justice League, Final Crisis, and many more. For the past few years, he’s been the go-to guy to fill in for high profile DC books when the assigned artist is running a bit behind.
“I want to stare hard into the heart of both of these characters and their true love and see what that love means to us, the DC Universe and the people of Earth,” Tomasi says. “Does it pose a danger or a threat? If two people like that are together and in love, where is the drama in that, and what repercussions does it have?”
The initial villains for the run will be Atomic Skull and Major Disaster, but Tomasi states that:
“Something wicked this way comes,” he says. “It’s really the initial salvo, and we’ll see these characters are the shock troops — they’re hitting the front line first, and there’s a lot bigger stuff behind them.”
I’m very excited to have a new creative team on the book. I haven’t been a big fan of Soule and Daniel’s run, in part because I don’t care for this relationship but also because I didn’t think either creator handled it particularly well. Wonder Woman’s role was minimal and often limited to blathering about her relationship, and the book focused largely on Superman’s villains before putting the full focus on the Man of Steel with the “Doomed” crossover with Action Comics. Soule and Daniel had the odd habit of putting very little on each page; the book was full of splash pages, plus several pages with two or three panels, all with barely any text. It made for a quick and unsatisfying read. Daniel’s art had flashes of greatness, but with so few panels he didn’t actually draw all that much, and it took him a while to get a decent handle on Wonder Woman. Even then, he had a tendency to objectify the character somewhat.
So yes, I am very ready for some new creators. My problems with the relationship itself remain, but perhaps Tomasi and Mahnke will have a different spin on it. I’ve enjoyed Tomasi’s work over the years, though I’m not a huge fan of Mahnke. I find his characters look harsh, and his Superman is particularly menacing, but on the plus side his Wonder Woman on the cover above is probably my favourite version of her that I’ve seen him do. That’s a very positive sign.
Tomasi and Mahnke start in Superman/Wonder Woman #13, out this November, and I for one am very happy to see a change. Hopefully it’s one for the better. Frankly, as a Wonder Woman fan, I don’t see how the book could get much worse.