DC Comics. Written by Charles Soule. Art by Tony S Daniel, Matt Batt Banning. Cover by Tony S Daniel.
Beginning a bold new series that details the relationship between The Man of Steel and the Warrior Princess as rising star writer Charles Soule is joined by fan favorite artist Tony S. Daniel to tell the tale of a romance that will shake the stars themselves. These two super-beings love each other, but not everyone shares their joy. Some fear it, some test it—and some will try to kill for it. Some say love is a battlefield, but where Superman and Wonder Woman are concerned it spells Doomsday!
I have to admit going into this issue my expectations were extremely low. How could they be anything else when the creators were going around describing the story as “boning and flying.” I love Wonder Woman – a lot – she is an icon and hero and it was so disappointing to hear that she was finally getting a second book, only to be reduced to someone else’s girlfriend.
So I was all prepared to write this review about how Wonder Woman got the shaft and was underwritten but it actually wasn’t that bad. She was strong, very much in control and refused to be left behind. It really does seem like Soule tried to represent her in her full glory. However what did happen was that in an effort not to make Wonder Woman passive and secondary they turned Superman into an awkward penguin. He always seemed so nervous and insecure and I just wanted to reach into the comic and remind him that he is Superman! If I had no previous knowledge of Superman, I would have a hard time believing that this guy was the most powerful man on Earth.
I actually feel for Soule quite a bit here. I’ve heard good things about his work outside of this series, but this just felt like he was forced to follow a very specific script and it didn’t flow quite as naturally as one might hope. The scenarios felt forced and raised a lot of questions (like the Justice League called Superman because he’s “good with storms.” But wouldn’t they actually have called Aquaman or as Wonder Woman points out, the daughter of Zeus?). I think it is very poor planning to try and force a story around an idea. Some things just don’t work and characterization suffers for it.
There are other things that just didn’t make sense as well. Wonder Woman holds a plane in the air, grabs the passengers out before it ultimately explodes but then hands them off to Superman with a quip about how “he’s better at flying anyway.” Or when she tells him he’s like crude weapon with no fighting skills? Their relationship just doesn’t feel natural. I truly do not understand why they can’t just be a super awesome fighting team like Batman and Superman without the romantic element. I think this book would be better for it.
Overall I did enjoy the artwork. I thought Daniel’s depiction of Wonder Woman in particular was well done. She actually looked strong and powerful. And her bustier seemed like it would stay up (which is always something I look for). It wasn’t the most innovative or original artwork but it did the job.
Sidenote: despite my annoyance with this issue there was one panel that did make me giggle: