Posts Tagged ‘Matthew Clark’

Wonder Woman’s December 2016 Covers and Solicits

September 20, 2016

December looks to be another fairly low key month on the Wonder Woman front. The recent deluge of new Wonder Woman collections and reprints has dried up for the second straight month, but we’ve got a few fun single issues to dig into, as well as some rad action figures. Let’s take a look at where Wonder Woman will be in December 2016, starting with her own monthly series:

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WONDER WOMAN #12
Written by GREG RUCKA
Art and cover by NICOLA SCOTT
Variant cover by JENNY FRISON
“YEAR ONE” part five! The threat is named, and now Wonder Woman and her new allies must rise to meet the coming darkness.
On sale DECEMBER 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

WONDER WOMAN #13
Written by GREG RUCKA
Art by MATTHEW CLARK
Cover by LIAM SHARP
Variant cover by JENNY FRISON
“BETWEEN THE LIES AND THE TRUTH”! Following the conclusion of “The Lies,” Steve Trevor must grapple with revelations about not only Wonder Woman, but himself as well!
On sale DECEMBER 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

Nicola Scott gets the cover here yet again, and I still don’t know why DC is refusing to put out two covers for their bi-monthly books. I like to see covers! They’re pretty and fun. At least we get a big reveal out of this one: The “threat” mentioned in the above solicit is clearly Ares, here drawn more in the style of George Perez than the New 52 incarnation who looked like Brian Azzarello. Ares has become a go-to character in Wonder Woman origin stories in the past couple of decades, and I’m curious to see what Rucka and Scott do with him.

Meanwhile, “The Lies” is wrapped up in the odd-numbered issues so we’ll get a special issue with guest artist Matthew Clark that’s focused on Steve Trevor. I don’t know that anyone was clamoring for a Steve Trevor special, but he’s been surprisingly likable and endearing in this run thus far so the issue could be a good time.

Onto Trinity #4:

TRINITY #4
Written by FRANCIS MANAPUL
Art and cover by CLAY MANN
Variant cover by BILL SIENKIEWICZ
“BETTER TOGETHER” part four! The trio’s tribulations have turned the Black Mercy’s gift into a world of nightmares that give birth to a horror that can only be called the White Mercy. And what scares Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman could destroy the world!
On sale DECEMBER 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

The cover in the solicits for this issue was the same cover we got last month, so either they’re swapping covers or this one isn’t done yet. Either way, I left it out. The Black Mercy storyline continues in December, and I’m curious to see how it goes. The first issue of the series debuts TOMORROW, which is exciting. My enthusiasm for the book is based solely on the gorgeous covers we’ve seen so far, so hopefully the story is fun too.

Wonder Woman’s also popping up in a holiday special:

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DC REBIRTH HOLIDAY SPECIAL #1
Written by PAUL DINI, JAMES TYNION IV, STEVE ORLANDO, VITA AYALA, CULLEN BUNN, TIM SEELEY, JAMES ASMUS, HEATH CORSON, K. PERKINS and others
Art by ROBBI RODRIGUEZ, GUSTAVO DUARTE and others
Cover by DUSTIN NGUYEN
DC’s biggest and brightest heroes celebrate the holidays in this new special! Don’t miss a Chanukah crisis for Batwoman, a Flash family Christmas, Wonder Woman interrupting John Constantine’s hellblazing pagan party and more—including the return of Detective Chimp! Today’s top talents bring you a very special holiday gift that’ll keep on giving through the New Year! And writer Paul Dini crafts a Harley holiday tale featuring DCU guests that bridges all the stories in the weirdest, wildest way.
ONE-SHOT • On sale DECEMBER 14 • 96 pg, FC, $9.99 US • RATED T

I like holiday specials, and a story where Wonder Woman interrupts John Constantine’s pagan party sounds like a hoot. The price is a little steep on this one, but there are some great writers and artists in the mix that might make this book worth checking out.

Finally, the December solicits feature a couple of Wonder Woman action figures that will hit stores in April 2017. We’ve got one based on that DC Comics Bombshells line that will be $28 US; it looks like a lot of fun:

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And another based on Ivan Reis’ design of Wonder Woman from his Justice League run for $45 US. Holy wow, that’s a lot:

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It’s a lovely figure, but already out of date what with the new “Rebirth” costume. Figures take a long time to make, and they change Wonder Woman’s costume every other week it seems. Still, it’s very cool, albeit mad pricey.

Look for all of these comics this December, and the action figures this April!

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Wonder Woman: Rebirth #1 Review: A Tale of Two Wonder Women?

June 8, 2016

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It’s finally here, gang. A much needed new direction for Wonder Woman. The New 52 version of the book had its ups and downs, but it’s been mostly downs lately. And it looks like Greg Rucka knows this. His first issue back writing Diana, with artists Matthew Clark and Liam Sharp, serves as a definite turnaround from what’s been going on for the past few years. What exactly is going on is a bit murky right now; the issue is more a tease of what’s to come than a statement of a new status quo. But it’s certainly very intriguing, and suggests that a lot of the past might not be quite what we thought it was. We’ll dig into it all momentarily, but first:

SPOILER ALERT!!

Look away if you don’t want to know what happens in this issue!

Wonder Woman is good again so go actually read it first before you read this review!

This “Rebirth” special presents two possible narratives for Wonder Woman’s history: The New 52 origin with a blonde Hippolyta hooking up with Zeus and terrible Amazons, and a brunette Hippolyta who crafted Diana out of clay and happy Amazons, which seems to be rooted in the pre-New 52 DC universe. DC’s big “Rebirth” introductory issue a couple of weeks back revealed that the New 52 universe isn’t actually a different world, but rather the previous universe with some tweaks and a lot of lost time. Wonder Woman seems to be realizing this here, and is confused by the dual memories she now has.

To sort out what’s really going on, Wonder Woman uses the lasso of truth to interrogate herself. It’s a clever move by Rucka, and a cool way to get at the heart of what’s happening. She doesn’t know exactly what’s up, but she does know that she’s been deceived, though she’s unsure who is behind it. When she smashes her mirror in frustration, we see a variety of scenes from her past, some of the New 52 and some of the previous universe, including the Medusa storyline from Rucka’s first run.

Wonder Woman then goes to Olympus for answers, but realizes it’s not the true Olympus. Hephaestus’ automatones attack her, and everything begins to break up in whirlpools of destruction around her. This might mark some massive changes for Wonder Woman moving forward. If Olympus, and thus perhaps the gods themselves, aren’t real, that’s a rather epic level of deception. And if the blonde Hippolyta and the New 52 Amazons aren’t her true family, where are her mother and the real Amazons? The creative team has certainly set themselves up with a lot to work through when the book officially launches in two weeks.

So right now, it looks like the entirety of her adventures in the New 52 Wonder Woman were with impostors and that something resembling the old DC universe is her true past. If this is how things play out, that’s a really smart way to bring back classic elements of the Wonder Woman mythos and return her to a more iconic depiction without invalidating the past five years. It seems that everything that happened to her has happened to her; they are events and people that she remembers. Wonder Woman lived it, but everything around her was a facade.

Presumably everything we saw outside of Wonder Woman took place as well, including her romantic relationship with Superman. He is, rather conveniently, dead now, allowing for a clean break from that part of her past. I’m curious to see how this might play out, whether Diana will grieve the loss or if uncovering the lies that surround her may lead her to reject the entirety of her recent years and start over fresh. Perhaps there’ll be a bit of both.

While this issue was mostly a tease for what’s to come, there was one moment that appeared to be a mission statement for this new run, a reassertion of who Wonder Woman really is. As Diana pondered over her true history, she picked up her God of War helmet and crushed it in her hands, almost absentmindedly. Of all of the elements of her New 52 origin to destroy, her status as the God of War is a telling, symbolic choice. It suggests a renunciation of the past few years, and all of the violence and darkness that’s come with it. Wonder Woman is a warrior, yes, but that’s just part of who she is. In his first comments on Wonder Woman after landing the gig, Rucka pointed out several times that his Wonder Woman will smile more, and undoing her role as the God of War further suggests that a more joyful path lies ahead.

Plus, it’s going to look great. Matthew Clark does a fine job on the bulk of the story, but Liam Sharp, who will be one of the regular artists on the book moving forward, takes over for the last few pages, and it’s lovely stuff. His Wonder Woman is powerful and regal, his linework is detailed and expressive, and he’s got some killer hair in the mix too. Laura Martin’s coloring is excellent as well, and I particularly loved the little sparkle that she put in Wonder Woman’s eyes on the final page. It’s little things like that that make me optimistic about this run.

So, things are in a state of flux right now. Wonder Woman’s New 52 life might’ve just been a series of lies, and the old Wonder Woman might be coming back. Or rather, her old world might be coming back, and it may be up to Wonder Woman herself to navigate what aspects of her new self to keep and what to leave behind should it return in full force. It’s a fascinating premise, and if it’s executed well it could be an interesting counterpart to the more typical cycle of full on reboots we’ve seen in superhero comics as of late.

I’m excited to find out what happens next, and luckily we won’t have to wait too long! Wonder Woman #1 comes out in two weeks with “The Lies”; drawn by Liam Sharp and set in the present, it examines the deceptions mentioned in this “Rebirth” special. Then on July 13 we’ve got Wonder Woman #2 and the start of “Year One”; drawn by Nicola Scott, it’s set in the past and digs into Wonder Woman’s early days and her true origins. The storylines will alternate from there. I’m really looking forward to it, and boy is it nice to be excited about Wonder Woman again!

Wonder Woman: Rebirth #1 Preview: The New Direction Begins!

June 7, 2016

I haven’t posted a preview of Wonder Woman in quite a while now. I used to post them every month, because I was excited to read each issue. Then I got less excited about the book, started to dread it each month, in fact, and just stopped with the previews all together. But now, I’m excited again! As part of DC’s “Rebirth” initiative, Wonder Woman is relaunching with a new creative team and a new direction.

I’m not yet sold on “Rebirth” as a whole; DC sort of feels like the boy who cried wolf now when it comes to relaunches that promise big things, and their kickoff special two weeks back didn’t do much for me. But what I am sold on is the new Wonder Woman creative team. Writer Greg Rucka is returning after a decade away from the character, and he seems excited to right the ship and present a more iconic take on the character. Artists Liam Sharp and Nicola Scott are both ridiculously talented, and are enouragingly keen to take on Wonder Woman and her world. The book could be good again, gang! All signs are pointing to a strong run for Wonder Woman.

And now we’ve got a preview of the Wonder Woman: Rebirth special that will launch this new direction tomorrow. Let’s take a look:

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Right off the bat, we’re digging into what I’m most curious about, Diana’s origin. The New 52 relaunch changed the classic clay creation into a Hippolyta/Zeus hookup, but this first page suggests some confusion. There appear to be two Hippolytas even, one brunette and one blonde. Perhaps the universe bending shenanigans that have been mentioned elsewhere might be utilized to bring back Wonder Woman’s classic origin? There’s a weird melding of the pre-New 52 and New 52 universes that’s going on right now that could lead to big changes for Wonder Woman.

I could speculate more, but I’d rather find out what’s up tomorrow when I read the issue. Instead of thinking it to death, I’m just going to enjoy the first issue of Wonder Woman that I’ve looked forward to in several years. THEN I’ll speculate it up like crazy, though we’ll only have to wait two weeks to find out what happens next, which is cool. Pricey, but cool, and a lot of fun if the book turns out as good as I hope it will be. Wonder Woman: Rebirth #1 will be available in comic shops and online TOMORROW. Pick it up!

Wonder Woman’s December 2015 Covers and Solicits

September 21, 2015

Let’s jump into the books straight away because Wonder Woman stars or appears prominently in about 843 different comics in December. Actually, now that I look at the list again, it’s 7. But still, it’s a lot of books! So let’s see what she’s doing to be up to during the festive season, starting with Wonder Woman #47:

decww47

WONDER WOMAN #47
Written by MEREDITH FINCH
Art by MIGUEL MENDONÇA
Cover by DAVID FINCH and JONATHAN GLAPION
Variant covers by AMANDA CONNER
On sale DECEMBER 30 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
As her duties as God of War draw Wonder Woman into battle, the Cheetah resurfaces to strike!

The Finches are still here, so that’s disappointing. But David’s got the month off for interior art. I’m not familiar with Miguel Mendonca, but it looks like a lot of his work has been done at Zenescope, which isn’t a terribly encouraging sign. But you never know; he could be great! We’ll find out in December.

Next up, Superman/Wonder Woman #24:

decsww24

SUPERMAN/WONDER WOMAN #24
Written by PETER J. TOMASI
Art by DOUG MAHNKE and JAIME MENDOZA
Cover by YANICK PAQUETTE
On sale DECEMBER 16 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
It’s the team-up you never expected, as Superman and Parasite take on those other energy suckers, the Pale Riders, to free Firestorm! Meanwhile, Wonder Woman fights an unstoppable behemoth that can contain—and consume—her powers!

Firestorm is still in the book? He just showed up last week. He must be sticking around for a while. I’m glad to see Superman and Wonder Woman on separate adventures this month. I’m totally on board for keeping them apart.

Superman/Wonder Woman has an annual out in December too:

decswwannual2

SUPERMAN/WONDER WOMAN ANNUAL #2
Written by KEITH CHAMPAGNE and PETER J. TOMASI
Art by YANICK PAQUETTE, CHRISCROSS, MATTHEW CLARK and others
Cover by YANICK PAQUETTE
On sale DECEMBER 30 • 48 pg, FC, $4.99 US • RATED T
Forged in the fires of battle, their union is one the world fears and hates—and some have tried to tear it asunder! Now witness the trials of the romance of Kal and Diana, and how it all came to be. See the first kiss and last breath of Superman and Wonder Woman in this epic tale that recounts the most dangerous love story of all.

Hooboy, this sounds awful. Highlights of one of the lamest romances of all time seems like a terrible idea for a comic. But Yanick Paquette is drawing some of it, so it should like nice, at least. I’m going to be so annoyed shelling out $5 for this.

Next up, Sensation Comics featuring Wonder Woman #17:

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SENSATION COMICS FEATURING WONDER WOMAN #17
Written by TRINA ROBBINS
Art by CHRIS GUGLIOTTI
Cover by ANNA DITTMAN
On sale DECEMBER 2 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T • DIGITAL FIRST • FINAL ISSUE
Diana’s compassion is tested when Dr. Barbara Minerva appears, begging for assistance as she seeks out the last remaining source of urzkatarga, the plant that supplies the serum that transforms her into the Cheetah. And if she can’t use it to replenish her supply, she’ll die. But when the Amazon princess/super-hero and the scientist/super-villain make their way to the “Island of Lost Souls,” they find more is at stake than expected!

The final issue!! I’m so upset. I know that these digital books never last that long so I expected that the ax would be falling on Sensation Comics soon, but I love this book! It’s Wonder Woman’s only decent regular showcase, and so many great stories have come out of it. I’m glad to see that Trina Robbins is writing the final installment. She’ll bring it, for sure, and end the book with a bang.

Now we move to some non-Wonder Woman books that feature her prominently, starting with Harley’s Little Black Book #1:

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HARLEY’S LITTLE BLACK BOOK #1
Written by AMANDA CONNER and JIMMY PALMIOTTI
Art by AMANDA CONNER and a bunch of people who owe her favors
Cover by AMANDA CONNER
Variant covers by J. SCOTT CAMPBELL
On sale DECEMBER 2 • 48 pg, FC, $4.99 US • RATED T+
It’s the sensational debut of a bimonthly, overstuffed, oversized team-up series in which Harley meets (and almost certainly annoys) the greatest heroes and villains of the DC Universe! First up? The incredible Wonder Woman! There’s a plot to assassinate Wondy, and Harley is convinced that only she could possibly stop it! (Hey, you want to tell her about all the other options? We tried.)

Harley Quinn’s got a new series and Wonder Woman is the first guest star! I don’t love them putting Wonder Woman in a tiny outfit on the cover, but the inside of the book will probably be fun. Harley Quinn is an odd but enjoyable book, and I’m sure this new title will carry on in the same vein. And Amanda Conner drawing Wonder Woman could be a good time.

Wonder Woman’s front and center on Justice League #47 as well:

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JUSTICE LEAGUE #47
Written by GEOFF JOHNS
Art and cover by JASON FABOK
Variant covers by JIM LEE
On sale DECEMBER 16 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
Super-star artist Jason Fabok returns as the second act of “DARKSEID WAR” begins! As the members of the Justice League struggle with their new Godhood abilities, Wonder Woman must turn to the beings that have fought the Anti-Monitor before: the Crime Syndicate! Plus, what secret does Grail hold that will change Diana’s world forever?

The Anti-Monitor is in this? I haven’t been following “Darkseid War” at all, though I’m looking forward to reading it when it’s collected because I really like how Jason Fabok draws Wonder Woman. Plus, Fourth World stuff is usually pretty fun. Isn’t Batman now Metron or something? The occasional tidbits I hear about this storyline always sound super weird, but sort of intriguingly so.

Finally, Donna Troy is stopping by to visit Titans Hunt #3:

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TITANS HUNT #3
Written by DAN ABNETT
Art by PAOLO SIQUEIRA
Cover by YANICK PAQUETTE
On sale DECEMBER 2 • 32 pg, FC, 3 of 12, $3.99 US RATED T
Haunted by a past they no longer recognize, Dick Grayson and Roy Harper hunt for the truth. Somehow, somewhere, there must be someone who can explain the memories that obsess them but don’t belong to them. Their search has unleashed the rage of Atlantis, but that’s nothing compared to the fury of the Amazonian outcast waiting for them in the shadows.

I’m not 100% on what the premise of this book is. Is it that the New 52 versions of the old Teen Titans are being haunted by memories of themselves in the old universe, or are the old universe Teen Titans back somehow? Whatever the case, Donna Troy’s in this one, wearing her rad new costume. And it sounds like she’s going to be angry because Amazons are always angry these days. Man, Yanick Paquette’s having a busy month!

Look for all of these titles this December in comics shops and online! Or ask Santa to bring them to you.


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