Did you read New 52 Wonder Woman by Brian Azzarello? If you did not, you should have. In fact, you should stop reading this, go find it, read it and then come back to this for added context. During the early days of the New 52 Azzarello’s version of WW stood out in a DC reboot that was struggling to find its legs. He painted a fresh picture of Wonder Woman and her supporting characters. His take on Greek Mythology was also fairly unique and it was very entertaining. He crafted a story that was easy to dive into with dialogue that wasn’t overbearing or cliché in presentation. It was said by many to be Wonder Woman’s defining work and it is well worth the read. After he left the book, Wonder Woman went from good to average to meh, but that’s to be expected with any long running series. But other writers attempted to build on what Azzarello had done because that’s what you do after a good run.
Fast forward to Rebirth Wonder Woman written by Greg Rucka, who has written for Wonder Woman before. It doesn't totally suck, click-bait headline aside. But here begins the total and complete unraveling of everything Brian Azzarello constructed. It’s not bad in its presentation, although it is somewhat slow. The real problem comes in its clear lack of respect for the previous work. I know that DC has given many fans what they wanted with Rebirth supposedly signifying returning characters their core. My response to that is…if it is not broke, don’t fix it. Wonder Woman wasn’t broken, everything that made her who she was, everything that made her a great character was there and more so. Everything that was unique and different about Brian Azzarello’s run is gone; the backstory, the new mythology, the possibility to explore her role as Goddess of War and her New 52 history…all gone. The blending of Post Crisis Superman’s history with New 52 Superman’s history along with Rucka’s erasing of Wonder Woman’s New 52 history means that her relationship with Clark never happened as well. That was a mixed bag with fans but I was a fan of it. But that I could live with, it’s everything else that I think is a mistake. There was a better way to go about tying Wonder Woman into the Rebirth phenomenon but ignoring Brian Azzarello’s work wasn’t it.
Ultimately, my opinion will chalked up to another a longer list of comic book fans who don’t like change. To certain extent that is true. I don’t like pointless change that completely took away a new, rich and well-constructed history that wasn’t that old to begin with. It’s like if Marvel decided to just reboot the entire history of the MCU after a successful phase 2. Greg Rucka is leaving the book but the damage has been done for the moment and eventually, I’ll get over this. We will get some new Wonder Woman stories that are good to great, but I’ll always feel like they allowed Azzarello’s run to be stepped on. It’s comics and this sort of thing happens, and absolutely I’m certain there was no malice involved. However, just because it happens doesn’t mean it always should.