Comic Book Review: Wonder Woman #1

All right, first off let me give a general disclaimer. I am a huge comic fan and have read many titles. But, that certainly does not mean I have read all the title every printed by Marvel and DC. I have never read a single Wonder Woman comic book in my entire life. So, all I know about Wonder Woman is general information from other titles like the JLA or mini-series that she stars in like OMAC. Therefore, I know very little about Wonder Woman’s continuity and history. Therefore, I will be judging Wonder Woman #1 from the perspective of a brand new reader totally free from Wonder Woman’s lengthy past. I mainly picked up Wonder Woman #1 just out of curiosity. I liked Heinberg’s writing from the O.C. And I love Terry Dodson’s art. With all of that in mind, let’s head on to the review.

Creative Team
Writer: Allan Heinberg
Penciler: Terry Dodson
Inker: Rachel Dodson

Art Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10.
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10.
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10.

Synopsis: The issue starts with the new Wonder Woman talking about how she is an Amazon and a champion of the Gods sent to fight for peace on this planet. Her name is Donna Troy and she is the new Wonder Woman. (I think we all knew that Donna would be the new Wonder Woman to start.) Donna’s outfit is not the traditional Wonder Woman outfit. It is actually some rather ugly looking armored version with a little skirt complete with cape and sword. Donna arrives at a museum housing the artifacts that used to be in the Themysciran Embassy. Sarge Steel, the Director of the Department of Metahuman Affairs is outside the museum with a S.W.A.T. team with him. Steel tells Donna that the terrorists inside the museum are holding the Deputy Secretary of Defense, Steve Trevor, captive. The Terrorists are demanding for Wonder Woman to come out of hiding and be held accountable for her crimes. Steel tells Donna that he doesn’t need her; he needs the real Wonder Woman. Steel says that the Terrorists want Diana. Donna comments, “Too bad. They are getting Wonder Woman.”

Donna enters the museum and thinks about her past. That she grew up the younger sister of Wonder Woman. That she followed in Diana’s footsteps and became Wonder Girl. Then she became simply Donna Troy. Donna then recalls how Diana killed Maxwell Lord. Then in the wake of the subsequent controversy, Diana walked away from her life as Wonder Woman and passed the mantle on to Donna. Donna questions whether she can live up to the job of being Wonder Woman.

Donna finds Steve Trevor and unties him. Donna is suddenly attacked by a Cheetah. Minerva, the Cheetah, then appears with two more cheetahs by her side. Cheetah says that she is human again and intends to stay that way. Cheetah then asks Donna “Where is Diana?” Donna refuses to answer. Cheetah grabs Donna’s golden lasso and wraps it around Donna’s neck. (Jeez, is it that easy to steal Wonder Woman’s golden lasso?) Cheetah asks Donna again where is Diana. Donna doesn’t know. Cheetah retorts that Diana didn’t even trust her own sister enough to tell her where she was going. Cheetah claims that Donna is of no use to her and orders her cheetahs to kill Donna. Giganta suddenly appears and says “Not yet.” and grabs Donna and Steve. Giganta then asks Donna “Where is Wonder Woman?” (No seriously, she has already been asked that twice and while under the power of the golden lasso. Move on.) Donna says “Right here.” And uses one of her star shaped earrings and stabs Giganta’s hand with it. Giganta instinctively lets Donna and Steve go. Donna flies off with Steve. Donna drops Steve off in a safe spot and flies back to battle Giganta. And it is officially a braaaaaawwwl!! Donna takes out Giganta and then Wonder Woman suddenly arrives and starts to lay a serious smack down on Cheetah. Wonder Woman says that the only way to deal with the Cheetah is to rid her of her immortality once and for all. Wonder Woman starts to choke Cheetah to death. Donna tells Wonder Woman to stop. Wonder Woman swats Donna away. Donna flies back and smashes into Wonder Woman telling her that Diana will never kill anyone again. Wonder Woman tells Donna not to challenge her. That she is no Wonder Woman and that Diana is stronger and faster than her. Wonder Woman then beats Donna like a rented mule and ends up taking her sword and stabbing Donna through the chest with it. Donna mumbles “You’re not Wonder Woman.” We then see Dr. Psycho standing over Donna with the image of Wonder Woman fading behind him. Dr. Psycho answers back “With all due respect…Neither are you.” (Oooh! Burn!) Giganta and Cheetah are standing next to Dr. Psycho. Dr. Psycho tells them that he is inside Donna’s head and that she and Steve Trevor will lead them to the real Wonder Woman. Cheetah then asks where is Steve Trevor?

We then see “Steve Trevor” shut down his holographic disguise and it is really Nemesis. Nemesis tells Sarge Steel that he lost Donna but that he will find her. Sarge Steel tells Nemesis that he won’t be doing it alone. Steel tells Nemesis to meet his new partner. We then get a one page splash shot of “Agent Diana Prince.” There stands Diana in a white jumpsuit with her hair in a bun and glasses on. (Wait, they don’t know that she is Wonder Woman. They have the same name. She is a big Amazon. They look the same. Do glasses and wearing her hair in a bun really throw people off?) End of issue.

The Good: Well, that was a rather entertaining issue! I have to admit that I enjoyed it. The opening entrance of Donna Troy as the new Wonder Woman was well done as was her dialogue with Sarge Steel.

I liked the quick re-cap of Donna’s history and what happened with Diana with Maxell Lord. It was done with a minimum amount of panels. I also like how Heinberg has Donna full of trepidation with regard to being the new Wonder Woman. Donna is a great character. I have always loved her back when she was Wonder Girl in the Teen Titans. It is neat seeing her as Wonder Woman and dealing with the typical insecurities when faced with the heavy duties and obligations that being Wonder Woman entails.

The brawl between Donna and Giganta and Cheetah was well done. The best was Heinberg’s trademark witty dialogue between “Steve Trevor” and Donna during this scene. That is what makes Heinberg’s writing so enjoyable. He is a master at sly and entertaining dialogue.

The scene with Wonder Woman versus Donna was excellent! I was sitting there stunned that Diana would again try to kill a villain. Once Diana started pounding on Donna, you knew that something was not right. And it wasn’t. Intro Dr. Psycho. That was a very well done fight scene with a cool twist. Plus, Dr. Psycho’s little sarcastic dig on Donna about not being Wonder Woman was a perfect ending to that scene.

It was interesting to see that “Steve Trevor” was really just Nemesis in disguise. And, of course, the big hook at the ending is that Nemesis’ new partner is none other than Diana Prince. I love that the Diana Prince persona is back. If I’m not mistaken, when Wonder Woman was radically retconned after Crisis on Infinite Earths, the Diana Prince alias was totally junked. I’m glad to see that Infinite Crisis has brought back this aspect of Wonder Woman. Wonder Woman has a great and long history and I never liked that the original Crisis just threw all of it in the garbage. I’m glad to see some of Wonder Woman’s history being brought back.

Allan Heinberg is a good writer. That doesn’t mean that everything he does is my cup of tea. I liked his writing on the O.C., but I just couldn’t get into his Young Avengers title. Heinberg’s biggest strength is his funny and natural flowing dialogue. It makes a comic book very fun to read.

Heinberg also is able to create entertaining storylines that have a nice pace. I never expect Heinberg to deliver anything serious like the Ultimates, Kingdom Come or the Watchmen. And that is ok. Just like you don’t always need some amazing serious drama on TV. Sometimes, you just want to be entertained so you watch the O.C. Sometimes, I just want to be entertained when I read a comic book and Heinberg delivers in that category.

It is clear that Heinberg really loves the Wonder Woman’s character and I think Heinberg is an excellent choice to be the writer to kick start Wonder Woman in this New Earth.

Of course, I love Terry Dodson’s artwork. He draws an excellent Donna and a drop dead gorgeous Wonder Woman. Dodson’s art makes this a beautiful comic book to look at. Dodson’s great art compliments Heinberg’s strong writing to make Wonder Woman #1 a very entertaining comic book to read.

The Bad: I don’t have any real complaints. As long as Donna is simply a temporary Wonder Woman then I’m ok. If Donna is the permanent new Wonder Woman then I’m not so thrilled.

The only other minor complaint is just how stupid are people in the DC Universe? How does everyone not stare at Diana Prince and say “Wow, there is Wonder Woman with her hair in a bun and wearing glasses!”

Overall: Wonder Woman #1 was a very fun and entertaining read. The ending hooked me enough that I’m going to pick up Wonder Woman #2. This title is still not on my permanent pull sheet, but it is good enough that I’ll give it my standard six issues that I give most new titles to see if it can earn a spot on the Revolution’s permanent pull list. As a brand new reader of Wonder Woman, I can easily recommend this title to anyone out there who is like me and has never had an interest in Wonder Woman or has never read one of her comics before. Give Wonder Woman #1 a try. You may just like it.