SHOWCASE PRESENTS WONDER WOMAN Vol.2 continues the Robert Kanigher/Ross Andru/Mike Esposito run on the book (cover by Andru and Esposito, rights with current holder), following the same style and tone as the first collection. The big change is that having introducing Diana’s teen self, Wonder Girl, Kanigher now not only adds “Wonder Tot” (the equivalent to Kal-El as Superbaby) but by having Hippolyta splice home movies together, allowed all three eras to fight together as the Wonder Family. This is fun, though as with the first book, not for all taste.
WONDER WOMAN: Love and Murder got a lot of press because it was Serious Novelist Jodi Picault writing (and only the third woman to write WW). Her five issue run took place when Wonder Woman had adopted a secret identity as federal agent Diana Prince, so Picoult’s idea of having Diana discover what it’s like to live as an ordinary human has some potential. Unfortunately it’s squeezed together between Big Events (resolving plot threads from Infinite Crisis and setting up for Amazons Attack!) which seems to have tied Picoult’s hands. But that said, Picoult doesn’t seem to have any idea what she’s doing: the emotional arcs don’t go anywhere, and Circe keeps running around spouting cryptic advice and plotting … well, I’ve really no idea what she’s supposed to be doing. Whether this would have paid off if Picoult had stuck around, I know not (I have no idea if she was jumped or got pushed off the book) but as is, something of a mess.
WONDER WOMAN: Land of the Dead is the sequel to Greg Rucka’s Eyes of the Gorgon collection as Diana teams up with Flash (the crossover part is written by Geoff Johns) against their respective arch-enemies, battling despite the loss of her eyes in the previous book. From there it’s on to the underworld, where Athena wants her and Wonder Girl (not the younger-self version) to rescue Hermes from Hades’ clutches. As I said of the previous volume, this fuses the Olympian and mortal worlds much better than the New 52 version; I could have done without Johns’ creation Reverse Flash showing up though, because I don’t like him much. And good though this is, it does give me a certain affection for the era (as in the Showcase collection) when super-heroes could just fight crime, then go home without it all being part of some huge arc).