Wonder Woman #41
Wonder Woman #41, by writer James Robinson, and artist Stephen Segovia, kicks off the “Amazons Attacked” arc, and, although there are a couple of intriguing scenes that will leave you wanting more, it’s mostly a downbeat issue revolving around Diana and Steve Trevor recounting their day to each other. This leads to a bit of a disjointed feel to the overall book, as it just breezes through most of its own contents to get to a mildly surprising ending.
As stated before, this issue does manage to muster some excitement, particularly in its first scene, where Darkseid, recently restored to full power after killing Zeus and several other of Diana’s family, is in the midst of building a nefarious device that involves stolen relics from around the world. Darkseid is scary enough on reputation alone, but Robinson writes him with an unforgiving ruthlessness that clearly illustrates how he has earned that reputation over the years. The Apokoliptian despot only kills one person in this sequence, but everyone around him fears for their lives.
Unfortunately, the rest of the issues devolves into Wonder Woman and Steve lazily giving vague details about how their day went. Wonder Woman casually mentions fighting three different people in Washington D.C., and that they are surely all connected, and Steve briefly talks about fighting Darkseid’s Female Furies while on the trail of the relics the villain so badly covets. None of their stories are particularly interesting, and not enough detail is given about any of the situations to draw you into the possible future importance of either of these plot points. They’re just laid out by Robinson, as if they don’t matter at all. Even when longtime Wonder Woman arch-nemesis Veronica Cale is revealed to be the mastermind behind the D.C. attacks, she says she merely did it because she enjoys the challenge, and then both women go on their way, as if they are bored by their own storyline. Maybe if there had been more room to flesh out the events of the issue, or the characters that Diana was attacked by, Robinson could have pulled off the narrative device he went with, but as it is, it just feels like he half-heartedly crammed an entire story arc into one issue.
The art by Stephen Segovia in this issue is adequate, telling a clear and concise story, but there is nothing dazzling to his work. He would probably be better suited for a street level book, like Batman or Nightwing. He does do a fantastic job on the final, full page reveal of a surprise character, though. The colors by Romulo Fajardo Jr. are similarly lackluster, often being dark or muddy throughout the book. Again, this would not be a problem on another series, but Wonder Woman should be a good deal brighter and lighter in tone.
All in all, this issue was a sleepy tale of Diana and Steve unwinding at the end of their day, with little to nothing happening to move the story along. It’s hardly the way anyone would have hoped the next big Wonder Woman story arc would begin, but given the opening scene with Darkseid, and the eyebrow-lifting note the book ends on, it is hopeful that this is just the extreme tip of the iceberg, with much more excitement to come.