Posts Tagged ‘Yvel Guichet’

Aquaman Annual #2 Review OR The Wonder Woman And Mera Team Up Steals The Show

July 31, 2014

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Wonder Woman not only co-starred in yesterday’s Aquaman Annual #2, she was actually in the book more than Aquaman himself. The issue began with Diana and Arthur investigating a castle in France to track down the giant-born, a group of powerful monsters disguised as humans. The story was fine, but somewhat underwhelming. There were a lot of references to past events and characters in Aquaman, which I am not at all up on, but that’s my problem and not all the fault of the book.

What didn’t quite work for me was the somewhat adversarial relationship between Diana and Arthur. For Justice League teammates, they didn’t get along very well. Their styles were very different, with Aquaman holding back while Wonder Woman wanted to go at the monsters full tilt, and this caused some tension. There was also a lot of distrust, and while under the thrall of one of the monsters they revealed the core of their problems: Wonder Woman thinks that Aquaman doesn’t care enough about the surface world and Aquaman sees Wonder Woman as a murdering goddess who thinks herself above humanity. They reconciled when the brawling was done, of course, with both understanding that they truly didn’t mean what they said while enchanted, but there seemed to be a bit of a core of honesty in their critiques of each other.

The fighting in the story was pretty fun, but Wonder Woman and Aquaman were sidelined for a lot of it due to a long, heroless introduction and then several pages where they’d been turned into stone. They were a good time when they were on the page, but that was only about half the story. When I got to the end, I was a little bit disappointed with the book.

Then I turned the page and there was another story! This time, Wonder Woman teamed up with Mera, and it was awesome the whole way through. Mera’s regal warrior mentality meshed well with Wonder Woman, and after the monsters refused their offers of diplomacy and mercy, both women realized that the creatures they faced were cruel monsters who needed to be destroyed. And so they did just that.

The ensuing brawl was well choreographed and exciting. Mera conjured water sharks to attack the monsters while Wonder Woman flipped her way through the horde, taking down creatures left and right. The finishing move was especially great. I loved the plan of Wonder Woman diving down to the bottom of the ocean to smash through to the lava below and Mera removing all the water under the creatures so they fell into the volcanic abyss. It was all sorts of cool.

But what really sold me on this story was the chemistry between Wonder Woman and Mera. With the Aquaman story, even though they knew each other well it all felt a little stiff and awkward, even before they revealed their deep, dark opinions of each other. Their battle styles weren’t complimentary, and the whole team-up seemed out of sync. With Mera, Wonder Woman didn’t know her well at all, yet they instantly connected and were on the same page, fighting side by side and working together with ease. It was an effortless partnership, and their instant camaraderie made the story a real pleasure to read.

Jeff Parker’s writing was solid throughout, though again I enjoyed what he did with the second story much more than the first. Superhero conflicts aside, the leadoff story was a bit too heavy on exposition and side characters for me. Yvel Guichet, Jason Gorder, and Wayne Faucher drew the first story, and I thought the art was decent. The monsters were gruesome and cool, and both heroes looked about right.

Alvaro Martinez and Raul Fernandez drew the second story, and they captured Wonder Woman and Mera very nicely. They also depicted the action and the finishing move in an  exciting way that flowed well and was easy to follow, and throughout the story they elegantly displayed the strength and power of both heroes.

Overall, I’d definitely recommend this comic, especially if you’re a Wonder Woman fan. She’s the real star of the book; Aquaman and Mera each get half the issue, but Wonder Woman is in the entire thing. Aquaman Annual #2 is in comic shops and online now, and while it’s priced at $4.99 the page count is much higher and you get almost twice the story of a regular comic book.

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Aquaman Annual #2 Preview, Guest Starring Wonder Woman

July 29, 2014

July’s been a busy month for Wonder Woman, and she’s closing out the month by co-starring in Aquaman Annual #2 written by Jeff Parker with art by Yvel Guichet, Jason Gorder, and Wayne Faucher. Comic Book Resources has a preview of the issue, so let’s take a look:

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There’s not much Wonder Woman or Aquaman in these few pages, but don’t worry. Jeff Parker said on Twitter that “this issue’s title is ‘Aquaman and Wonder Woman Beat Down Monsters,’” so they should definitely be in the rest of the book, busting up dopey bad guys foolish enough to tangle with them.

I’m excited to check out this issue because Parker’s been doing a lot of great work lately. His Batman ’66 comics in particular have been fantastic and hilarious, and from what I’ve read of his other stuff he seems to bring a somewhat lighter tone than what we’re used to in the dark, serious New 52. An issue full of Wonder Woman and Aquaman fighting monsters is 100% up my alley, and I think it will be a fun read.

Look for the Aquaman Annual #2 in comic shops everywhere and online tomorrow. I might have a review of it in the next couple days if I have any interesting thoughts while reading it, so keep an eye out for that as well.

Wonder Woman’s Many July 2014 Solicits OR The Usual Fun, Plus Annuals And Scooby-Doo

April 23, 2014

Wonder Woman has got a very busy July ahead of her. There’s her own series, of course, plus the team-up book with Superman, an annual for the Superman book, a guest spot in an Aquaman annual, AND a super cool Scooby-Doo team-up. The gal is all over the place.

Let’s start with her own series first:

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WONDER WOMAN #33
Written by BRIAN AZZARELLO
Art and cover by CLIFF CHIANG
BATMAN 75 variant cover
On sale JULY 16 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
It’s the beginning of the end as writer Brian Azzarello and artist Cliff Chiang kick off the astonishing finale of their epic run! Olympus must fall, and its rightful ruler must be restored – but in Diana’s depraved family of demigods and gods, who can be trusted to rule with decency and justice?

If things go like they have for the past two years, Wonder Woman’s yearlong arc should wrap up in August, and that could make this possibly the penultimate issue of Azzarello and Chiang’s run. In typical fashion, we’re not getting a lot of hints from the solicit and the cover, while gorgeous, isn’t giving us much information either. We’re moving toward the inevitable final conflict with the First Born and a new Olympian ruler, and I guess we’ll just have to pick up the book to see what happens.

Now onto Superman/Wonder Woman:

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SUPERMAN/WONDER WOMAN #10
Written by CHARLES SOULE
Art by TONY S. DANIEL and MATT BANNING
Cover by TONY S. DANIEL
BATMAN 75 variant cover
On sale JULY 9 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
Twelfth level intellect Lois Lane uses all her new Psi Power against the God of War, Diana, in the ultimate showdown! And Superman must go up against the new Cyborg Superman as an invading armada arrives in space!

So yeah, that sound you just heard was me sighing heavily. It was so loud and heartfelt that you all could hear it even though it was coming all the way from Canada. Wonder Woman fighting Lois Lane over Superman; that’s a new one. Also, what is up with Lois? Is she Brainiac now? Lois being taken over by a bad guy is also a startling new and innovative idea. Siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh.

Anyway, there’s no mention of the “Doomed” crossover in this solicit, but that does look like Doomsday in the background so I assume it has something to do with all of that jazz. On the one hand, I’m always glad to see Lois Lane, but on the other hand, this sounds sort of terrible.

But wait, there’s more! Superman/Wonder Woman has its first annual in July:

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SUPERMAN/WONDER WOMAN ANNUAL #1
Written by CHARLES SOULE
Art and cover by ED BENES
On sale JULY 30 • 48 pg, FC, $4.99 US • RATED T
Only an Annual could contain this chapter of “SUPERMAN: DOOMED”! It’s an all-out assault by the heroes of Earth (superpowered and not) on the God of War, Wonder Woman, who’s leading the charge against all manner of alien attackers. The monstrous Superman smashes through everything friend or foe as his de-evolution reaches a critical stage. It all leads to their best hope: the Phantom Zone?!

I’m curious as to why the solicits are hitting so hard on the God of War thing this month. Wonder Woman must be going to town busting up people in a warlike manner in this “Doomed” story. Anyway, all of the excitement continues here in an issue that costs an extra buck, though I suppose you’re getting 50% more book. That’s not a bad deal.

Ed Benes is drawing the annual, which could go either way. Benes goes into T&A territory often, but I think that when he reins that in he’s actually a pretty good artist. I’ve liked a lot of his less brokeback stuff.

Wonder Woman’s visiting another annual as well. July is going to be expensive!

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AQUAMAN ANNUAL #2
Written by JEFF PARKER
Art and cover by YVEL GUICHET and JASON GORDER
On sale JULY 30 • 48 pg, FC, $4.99 US • RATED T
During his battle with Hercules, Aquaman unleashed an ancient evil from the days of the Greeks — so he’s called in Wonder Woman to help him clean up the mess! You can be sure the Queen of the Amazons and the King of Atlantis have plenty to talk about…if they can hear each other over the bloodcurdling screams of the Giant-Born!

I haven’t been following the New 52 Aquaman very closely, but I’m excited to read Jeff Parker writing Wonder Woman. I’ve enjoyed a lot of his stuff, and I’m betting he’ll have a good take on her. Wonder Woman and Aquaman teaming up for an underwater mythological battle is a story I can definitely get behind. I’m looking forward to this one.

And finally, what should be the most anticipated book of July:

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SCOOBY-DOO TEAM-UP #5
Written by SHOLLY FISCH
Art and cover by DARIO BRIZUELA
On sale JULY 2 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED E
Wonder Woman’s homeland is under attack by mythological monsters that vanish into thin air before the Amazon warriors can fight back! Scooby, Wonder Woman and the gang must work together to solve this mystery…assuming Daphne and Velma complete their Amazon training in time!

If this is the actual cover, I’m going to be a little disappointed. But regardless, this should be FANTASTIC. A Wonder Woman/Scooby-Doo team-up sounds like an absolute blast. My current 28 year old self and my past 10 year old self are high-fiving so hard right now. I really hope that the monsters on Paradise Island turn out to be dudes in masks, because that would be so hilarious. Perhaps a corrupt land developer who’s trying to scare away the Amazons so he can turn Paradise Island into a resort? That would be so fun. Whatever they do with the book, I’m crazy excited to read it.

July is going to be a five-week month, and we’ll be able to get a Wonder Woman-starring comic every single week but the fourth one. That’s a fun change of pace. I could get used to having more than one and a half Wonder Woman comics every month. Plus, there’s something for everyone, from mythological enthusiasts to Superman shippers to undersea fans to kids and the young at heart. July should be a good time.


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