Posts Tagged ‘Future’s End’

Double Review: Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 And Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1

September 19, 2014

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This week, as part of DC Comic’s September “Futures End” event, we got a two-part story from writer Charles Soule that spanned Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 and Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1. It involved a lengthy dream and a time travelling Superman, and was set in a hypothetical future that exists only to give DC another weekly series that won’t at all matter or probably ever come up again once it’s done. In short, these two issues were a colossal waste of time. I’ll explain why momentarily, but first:

SPOILER ALERT!!

I am going to discuss significant plot details from these two issues!

Don’t read any further unless you’ve read the issues!

Unless you’re skipping the issues but are curious about what happened. I can understand that.

Let’s begin with Wonder Woman, where Wonder Woman was engaged in a war in some sort of mystical realm with an entity called Nemesis. Wonder Woman commanded legions of dead soldiers via her god of war powers, and had a council of generals that included Alexander the Great and Napoleon, the latter of which was traitor who was summarily dispatched. She rescued a trapped platoon, met with her council and killed the fake Napoleon, and then decided to go full berserker god of war and take the fight straight to Nemesis, at which point Superman showed up. That was the end of the issue.

So I opened Superman/Wonder Woman, and guess what? That whole adventure was just a dream. Nemesis had trapped Wonder Woman in Tartarus, where she was fighting demons as an apocalyptic battle played in her head. Superman, time-travelling for some reason, snapped her out of her fog and the two escaped Tartarus and returned to Paradise Island. Wonder Woman then defeated Nemesis by transforming into a white-clad god of peace. The end.

Both issues were aggressively bad. The Wonder Woman issue not only made very little sense, it was rendered immediately pointless by Superman/Wonder Woman. Nothing that happened in Wonder Woman mattered, at all. Not one bit. Which is sort of the theme of all of “Futures End”, I suppose, but still. It was a completely pointless issue to set up a similarly pointless issue of Superman/Wonder Woman that accomplished pretty much nothing but a costume change. Nemesis was defeated, sure, but Nemesis was only a threat so that this two-part story could exist. I have no idea if this time travelling Superman plays a role in the wider “Futures End” event or if god of peace Wonder Woman will have a significant role now, but as a two issue storyline this was just a mess.

The writing wasn’t good, as evidenced by the bizarre structure and poor storytelling, and the art didn’t help things either. The art in Wonder Woman was serviceable at times but generally dull, lifeless, and oddly coloured. The art in Superman/Wonder Woman was slapdash and unappealing. There was just nothing enjoyable going on in either book, from the covers through to the end.

And here’s the thing: I am absolutely fine with stories that are completely pointless and will never come up again, so long as they are good. On a whim, I picked up Batgirl: Futures End #1, Gail Simone’s final issue writing the character. It was set in this “Futures End” world that, again, will no longer matter at all once this storyline is over, and had a story that really had no bearing on anything outside of the book itself. And it was WEIRD. A Bane-inspired Barbara Gordon managed a troupe of Batgirls after her brother killing her husband sent her on a quest to infiltrate and learn from some of the world’s top criminals. But guess what? It was really, really good. Simone’s writing was sharp, hitting the emotions of the dark moments while bringing in humour and making all of the crazy goings on work somehow. And the art was fantastic; the book looked great, from the cover through the entire story. And while it’s as pointless and ephemeral as these Wonder Woman stories, it offered something fun for fans, namely Stephanie Brown in a Batgirl suit again and the long awaited return, however fleeting, of Cassandra Cain. It took what should be a throwaway issue and made it mean something, plus it was just a really good, enjoyable read.

Wonder Woman and Superman/Wonder Woman combined didn’t have a fraction of the heart, fun, or style that Batgirl had. In terms of craft, they were poor. In terms of entertainment, they barely registered. In terms of giving the fans some small thing to be excited about, they had nothing. They just felt like really bad filler.

Let’s end this review on a positive note, because I’ve been trashing these books pretty hard. I do like the god of peace outfit. The white with the gold accents looks sharp, I dig the tall boots, and it’s a look I’d be interested in seeing more of in some capacity elsewhere. I don’t know where or how, I just know that I like the costume. And if you’re going to have only one interesting page over the course of two issues, I suppose you may as well make it the last one so you can go out on a high note.

Apart from that one page, basically what I’m saying here is skip those two issue. And go do yourself a personal favour and pick up Batgirl: Futures End #1 because it is a delight. It’s a big, complete story in 20 pages with lots of fan favourite characters and great moments, and it’s a wonderful cap to Simone’s run on the book. It will bring you joy.

Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 Preview OR Now That Wonder Woman Issue Makes A Little More Sense

September 17, 2014

Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 is on sale today, along with Wonder Woman: Futures End #1, and Comic Book Resources has a peek at the book. The preview sheds a lot of light on the mysterious Wonder Woman preview I posted on Monday, but none of it yet sounds particularly interesting. Let’s take a look:

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So all of that craziness in the Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 preview was just a weird dream that Wonder Woman was having. That seems like a waste of an issue, though I haven’t read it yet. Perhaps there’s more to it.

It sounds like Wonder Woman and Superman’s relationship went south at some point between now and five years in the future, which is the one thing I like about this “Futures End” thing so far. However, Superman’s still got some feelings for Wonder Woman, so perhaps their love will be rekindled as they escape Tartarus together. We can only hope.

This issue was originally solicited to have art by Tom Raney, but instead Bart Sears has taken over the interiors and Raney has only drawn the cover. From what I’m seeing here, neither look particularly great, which is a shame. For all of its faults, Superman/Wonder Woman‘s usually had decent art. It seems silly of DC to throw a big event and then have lower tier artists draw most of it. That’s got to hurt the brand on some level.

Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 is available in comic shops and online today! I’ll be back on Friday with a combination review of both issues, seeing as they tie together (tomorrow will be the usual Sensation Comics review. Why Sensation Comics first? Because I like it better).

Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 Preview OR I Have No Idea What’s Happening Here

September 15, 2014

DC’s “Futures End” event is entering its third week, and I haven’t got a clue what’s going on because I don’t particularly care about a hypothetical future that’s not going to happen and that looks, quite frankly, generally bad. But this week we’re getting a double shot of Wonder Woman with both Wonder Woman and Superman/Wonder Woman coming out in a sort of two-parter written by Charles Soule, and I always read the Wonder Woman books.

We’ve got a preview of Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 from Man Cave Daily; I feel like I’ve complained about putting a Wonder Woman preview on a website called Man Cave Daily before, so I’ll spare you all the redundant tirade. Anyway, here’s a six page look at the book, available this Wednesday with a fancy motion cover:

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First things first, this is inarguably the most boring Wonder Woman costume of all time. It’s jeans and a tank top, drawn as dully and uninterestingly as possible. Moreover, the art seems out of sync with how we know Wonder Woman works. For example, when Wonder Woman manifests her swords we should get a cool, blue Kirby krackle, not flames. The art here is generally uninspiring.

Also, I don’t know what is happening here. I have no idea where or what Koronoor is, I don’t know why Wonder Woman is dressed so badly, I don’t know why she’s fighting alongside a Viking and a World War Two soldier, and I don’t know what those black monsters are. Based on the solicits, I assume the monsters work for Nemesis, the big bad of Wonder Woman’s Futures End arc, but other than that I am all sorts of lost. This may be my own fault, seeing as I’m not keeping up with any of the other books or the weekly series. But as a casual reader of this event, I’m very confused.

What’s worse, I’m not particularly interested in reading the rest of the issue. Six pages is a lot of space to grab a reader, and I am entirely ungrabbed. The art is bland, the writing is not at all helping me understand what is happening and why, and given that this is a story that will never actually happen in real continuity, everything about it is screaming “You don’t need to care about this!” I’ll get it anyway, of course. I’m a Wonder Woman enthusiast, occasionally to my own detriment. But this preview has had the opposite effect on me that a preview should ideally have.

Hopefully the rest of the book picks up from here and things start making sense soon. Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 is also out this week to shed further light on these mysterious circumstances. We don’t have a preview for that yet, but maybe that’ll come tomorrow. Both comics are available on Wednesday, as is the print version of Sensation Comics featuring Wonder Woman #2, so at least I’ve got one Wonder Woman book to look forward to.

Cover For Futures End: Superman/Wonder Woman #1

May 27, 2014

We saw the Futures End: Wonder Woman #1 cover a week or so ago, and now we’ve got the cover for Futures End: Superman/Wonder Woman #1. The covers consist of two images, which will morph back and forth with amazing, early 1990s technology. Tom Raney drew the Wonder Woman cover, and drew the Superman/Wonder Woman one as well. Let’s take a look:

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And here’s the solicit, with the creators added, to refresh your memory:

SUPERMAN/WONDER WOMAN: FUTURES END #1
Written by CHARLES SOULE
Art and cover by TOM RANEY
The battle between the God of War and Nemesis can only spell doom for humanity – but can Kal restore Diana to her senses before it’s too late?

I’m not entirely sure what’s going on with timeline of these Futures End books. I’ve seen several Superman covers where someone claiming to be Superman is wearing a mask, but here we’ve got a regular Superman who looks just like his present, New 52 incarnation. Wonder Woman, meanwhile, is all hopped up on her God of War powers, as we saw on the Wonder Woman cover as well. The books are all supposedly jumping five years ahead, but maybe there’s some wiggle room in there. Or there’s two Supermans flying around. We’ll find out in September, I suppose.

I’m still not enthused about a comic where Superman has to restore Diana to her senses, but I’m never enthused about this book so my reaction is par for the course. I remain curious about what form Nemesis will take, though. It’s a familiar name to Wonder Woman fans, the code came for Tom Tresser, Wonder Woman’s love interest and secret agent partner back before the second last revamp, but he’s certainly not powerful enough to merit a battle with the God of War. I assume this Nemesis is a new threat, something big and possibly mythological. Again, we’ll find out in September.

Cover And Creative Team For Wonder Woman: Futures End #1

May 16, 2014

A few weeks back we got the solicit for Wonder Woman: Futures End #1, the special issue that’s part of DC’s line-wide five year jump this September, but the details were sparse. We didn’t know who was writing or drawing it, or what the book would look like. My best bet was that Brian Azzarello would write the issue, given that he’s working on the Futures End weekly series, but that’s not the case.

First, here’s the cover for the book. It consists of two images, and one will turn into the other using that weird, tacky thing they do and charge an extra dollar for. So here’s part one:

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Which will morph into:

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That’s Tom Raney on the cover art, which is rather generic. After a few years of Cliff Chiang covers, this is a pretty big yawn for me.

Here’s the solicit for some context, along with the creative team:

WONDER WOMAN: FUTURES END #1
Written By CHARLES SOULE
Art by RAGS MORALES
Cover by TOM RANEY
Her humanity lost forever, Wonder Woman embraces her true nature as the God of War to battle the armies of Nemesis!

So Charles Soule, of Superman/Wonder Woman, is writing the book, along with art by Rags Morales, who was on the book briefly years ago when Greg Rucka was writing it. Soule is certainly familiar with Diana, though his take on her thus far has been little more than playing second fiddle to Superman. Morales was a fan favourite at DC a decade ago, but has been bouncing around a lot since then. Personally, I’m not really into his stuff, but he’s a capable artist.

Soule writing the book doesn’t mean that Azzarello’s run on Wonder Woman will end this August, though. While he and Chiang’s tenure is coming to a close soon, Azzarello confirmed on Twitter this afternoon that August won’t be their last issue. So we’ve got October at least, and possibly longer.

We also got the creative team for Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1, but no cover yet. Charles Soule is writing the book, while Tom Raney is on art and cover. Busy month for Soule and Raney!

Wonder Woman: Futures End #1 was originally solicited for September 17, but it’s been lumped with the Week Two cover releases, which should be out September 10, so the date may have changed. Perhaps it switched spots with Superman/Wonder Woman: Futures End #1. Either way, it’ll be out in September and if Wonder Woman is already on your pull list, I’m sure you’ll local shop will put one away for you.

Wonder Woman’s September 2014 “Future’s End” Solicits

April 22, 2014

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Every September since the New 52 relaunch, DC has done some sort of special event. In 2012, they did #0 issues, telling stories from the character’s past. In 2013, they did Villains Month, and rejiggered their entire line to have 52 villain-led titles. In 2014, DC is planning to have all of their titles jump ahead five years as a tie-in with their new weekly series, The New 52: Future’s End, which is set in the future and will launch in May.

Like with their Villains Month comics, DC is doing fancy 3D covers again. There was a whole mess with retailers last year who under-ordered covers, so they’re releasing a list of the comics several months early; as a comparison, the July 2014 covers will come out later today, so DC is going two months ahead of the game for their big September event.

We don’t have any art or creative teams yet, but we do have descriptions of each book so let’s take a look at what Wonder Woman will be up to five years in the future. First up, Wonder Woman:

WONDER WOMAN: FUTURES END #1
Advance solicit • On sale SEPTEMBER 17
32 pg, FC • RATED T
3-D Motion Edition: $3.99 US
2-D Standard Edition: $2.99 US
Her humanity lost forever, Wonder Woman embraces her true nature as the God of War to battle the armies of Nemesis!

Hey, the fancy cover will cost a dollar more. Awesome. That’s totally worth it for what appears to be early 90s technology.

But onto the comic itself. “Her humanity lost forever” is a terrible, terrible way to begin a description of a Wonder Woman comic. Wonder Woman is all about her humanity, so a book where she loses herself fully in her divine identity as the God of War doesn’t sound like a fun time at all. I like a Wonder Woman who is a superhero that helps people, which apparently is a difficult thing to get these days.

I have no idea who the armies of Nemesis are. Pre-New 52, Nemesis was a guy that Wonder Woman worked with as her secret agent alter ego, Diana Prince, and the two had a bit of a romance. I suspect this Nemesis is a much bigger deal, perhaps with mythological origins.

So Wonder Woman doesn’t sound great, but what about Superman/Wonder Woman?

SUPERMAN/WONDER WOMAN: FUTURES END #1
Advance solicit • On sale SEPTEMBER 10
32 pg, FC • RATED T
3-D Motion Edition: $3.99 US
2-D Standard Edition: $2.99 US
The battle between the God of War and Nemesis can only spell doom for humanity – but can Kal restore Diana to her senses before it’s too late?

So not only has Wonder Woman gone off the rails, starting a war that could destroy humanity, but Superman is going to come in and sort it all out? Come on. I feel like DC is just screwing with me sometimes. The last thing Wonder Woman needs right now is another story where a man comes by to sort her out because she’s gotten herself too deep into a bad situation. Also, I don’t want a Wonder Woman that needs to be “restored to her senses.” Just make her an awesome superhero for a change! It’s not that hard.

Anyway, I’m not particularly excited for either of these books. We’ll probably have cover art and creative teams in a couple of months, when the September solicits would usually come out, but until then enjoy these rather un-Wonder Womanlike solicits.


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