Crimespree on Comics: WONDER WOMAN Vols. 1 & 2

WONDER WOMAN Vols. 1 & 2
DC Comics

Writer:  Brian Azzarello
Artist Cliff Chiang

Let me begin this by saying I am in no way a Wonder Woman fan.  In the brief bits I had been introduced to in the past, I found the character laughable at best.  A woman with magic bracelets, an invisible plane, truth-inducing lasso, and a skimpy costume?  Yawn.  Next please.  Then, all of a sudden, I was handed the latest Wonder Woman books.  I looked with no small amount of hesitation, but obeyed when I was told to read them.

Thank God I listened.  These were easily two of the most dynamic, brilliant, beautiful, and enthralling trades I have read in a long time.  In Azzarello’s hands, Diana becomes a powerful warrior princess, up to any challenge thrown at her.  Chiang’s gorgeous design makes each page so amazingly lively, you almost feel like ducking as arrows are loosed on the page.  The combination of the two creates something both intoxicating and irresistible.

I find it difficult to do too much of a summary without spoiling any of the amazing plot twists in store for the reader, but I will do my best.  The Greek gods of myth are not myth.  They are real.  They are dangerous.  They walk among us.  When it is discovered that a mortal woman is carrying a child of Zeus, Hera, his notoriously vengeful wife, decides that neither the child nor the mother can live.  The only thing that stands in the way of the wrath of Olympus is an Amazonian warrior princess known as Diana to some and Wonder Woman to most.  The only question is whether she can protect one person against the overwhelming forces of the Pantheon of gods that have her in their sight.

Steeped in mythology and with non-stop action, WONDER WOMAN is sure to be one of the most beloved of DC’s New 52.  Chiang’s beautiful and gritty designs make it impossible for the reader to look away long after reading Azzarello’s brilliant dialogue.  The inventive reimagining of Diana makes her a formidable heroine for the modern age who isn’t afraid to put the villains down like rabid dogs.  Shocking, intelligent, beautiful, explosive, grim, and entrancing, I have no problem admitting I was wrong to sneer at WONDER WOMAN.  I have rarely been so happy to be proven wrong.  This is a brilliant book and I hope that both Chiang and Azzarello are on it for a long time.  As long as they are writing and drawing it, you can be sure I’ll be reading it.

-Bryan VanMeter