Wonder Woman and her Amazon sisters are still in the Turkish desert, fleeing from bad guys. The Keres, creatures of myth, appear and send Diana to Tartarus. It’s hot down there, the Keres show up again, but some of the natives are friendly and soon she’s back in the real world. There, the bad guys’ boss, who killed Diana’s mother, challenges her to meet him alone. The Amazons bugger off, which is no great loss as they’re about as much use as a chocolate fireguard. Seriously, the Holliday Girls could slaughter this bunch without batting an eyelid.
So there you have it, part three of Odyssey, the story refitting Wonder Woman for today. A very dull day, apparently. Not much to it, really – most of the issue is the old trip to hell bit, in which we meet the usual suspects. Seemingly, the biggest torment there is banal dialogue (click to enlarge):
It’s a side trip which I can’t see moving the main story along, but it was interesting to see that this version of Diana is cheerier in Hell than on Earth (the first panel of the story sees her as the picture of pessimism and she doesn’t much improve). Her final words to one of the Amazons is ‘I’ll see you on the other side’, which seems to mean they’ll be reunited over the water, but likely mean she reckons they’ll all be dead soon. Bless.
As for feats of wonder, she shoots a gun at the ugly winged ladies, and does a bit of Third Grade tumbling.
There are one or two decent lines here from writer J Michael Straczynski, but a few decent lines don’t a great read make. The Hell trip is far too familiar and reads like filler, while the ‘real world’ sequences continue to show us a miserable, clueless Diana. I get that we’re on a (yawn) Hero’s Journey but shouldn’t that allow for reasons to cheer along the way?
Don Kramer pencils some of this issue. Eduardo Pansica and Allan Goldman handle the rest. There are inkers too, a colourist, a letterer … it’s all very professional but the book never soars.
As it is, I’m almost hoping this comic succumbs to the curse of lateness that somehow or other always seems to afflict Straczynski-scripted books (see Superman, The Brave and the Bold, The Twelve …). Even if we don’t get a cheery fill-in, I could go a month without despairing over Diana. Yes, of course I should just pack the book in for awhile, but I’m a cockeyed optimist. I can’t believe that a confident, good-humoured Wonder Woman isn’t going to pop up soon. A Wonder Woman who uses her unique weapons and skills – maybe even her brain – rather than a sword and gun. I’d hate to miss that.