Last month DC’s Wonder Woman title underwent its first major creative change, with a completely new incoming creative team of Meredith Finch, David Finch, Richard Friend, Sonia Oback and Dezi Sienty. The outgoing creative team, headlined by writer Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang, had enjoyed a long and successful run, but now it was time for change, and the change when it happened, proved to be a rather disappointing one. With a major shift in characterization and art, Wonder Woman #36 was a poor experience since there was little to recommend itself.
The issue had some major problems with it and they don’t seem to have gone away with this past week’s Wonder Woman #37. While I gave up on the previous creative team almost two years ago, I am still pretty confused by the entirely dark turn that the meta-story has taken, with the Amazons acting like entitled people who couldn’t care less about the outside world, and who want to pressure Diana to take care of Themiscyra before anything else. Not to mention the fact that Hippolyta is now assuredly dead in a rather pointless sequence, and there are some dark elements on the Amazons’ island home that seem to have some rather dark designs on its people.
At the risk of repeating myself, I gave up on the previous creative team’s run at a point when I thought that the story was descending into meaninglessness and just dragging itself out. I mean, that whole business with Zeus’ latest bastard seems to have gone for something like 20 issues or more, which is really messed up since it was one really long arc, and then there was the whole business with the First One, or whatever it was. I never bothered to go back really. With the new team, I thought things might get better, but last month’s issue showed that if anything, the story was dragging itself down even further than I’d thought possible.
One of the biggest changes with the new team is that Hippolyta is definitely dead. She died as Diana was born, clay, melt. Which just seems so pointless. Instead of having Diana search for a way to bring her mother back to the world of living, she is just completely disposed of and now Diana is the leader of a nation where her people don’t really care much for her or her choices. Just seems so damn odd to me. Especially when Diana doesn’t even grieve for her dead mother, being almost cold about the whole thing.
And then we see in the new issue that there are people messing about with dark sorcery on Themiscyra in an attempt to find a better leader for the Amazons than a wayward princess who isn’t even there most of the time. Now, I can kind of understand what writer Meredith Finch is going for here, but this all seems to fly in the face of who and what the Amazons have been. Instead of working towards a median solution, they are just writing her off and doing something that they are really not supposed to.
Compounding everything that Diana is completely clueless about Greek mythology in this issue, and that she leaves a battle on Themiscyra in the middle just because Cyborg calls on Justice League business. I am not really sure how else to say this, but right now Meredith Finch is doing too much harm on the title, even given the reveal at the end that kind of gives me some hope, but which might just turn out to be fool’s hope anyway. I really can’t believe that this storyline has been greenlit by DC editorial.
David Finch is the artist here, with Richard Friend on inks, Sonia Oback on letters and Dezi Sienty on the letters with David, Richard and Sonia on the cover art. The art, I’m sorry to say, isn’t an improvement over last month either. Diana still fluctuates between looking like a collegiate and looking like a high school girl. She has spinebreaker poses and she looks silly in her Amazon battledress. And the soft reveal of the villains doesn’t really work either because… well, let’s just say that there’s too much shadow and the whole conspiring with dark powers thing is really dated here.
Another disappointing issue that is really testing my limits on whether I’m going to stick with the new arc.