Thursday, February 19, 2015

Superman/Wonder Woman #16 Review

Written by: Peter J. Tomasi
Art by: Doug Mahnke and Ed Benes
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: February 18, 2015

Get Over It

Superman/Wonder Woman was one of my favorite books when it first came out.  I loved seeing DC's power couple dealing with global threats while trying to also deal with a blossoming relationship. Charles Soule did such a great job giving fans a unique story while never ignoring what was going on in either of the heroes solo books.  Then things started going downhill.  I know what you're thinking..."Jim's going to pile on about how Peter J. Tomasi ruined everything", but that's not the case.  The book was showing cracks way before Tomasi even began ruining Wonder Woman.  No, I actually blame the Doomed event for starting the demise.  The crossover heavy story derailed this book and knocked it down a few pegs on my best of list.  Then Tomasi showed up...yea, I'm about to pile on.  If his goal was to make Wonder Woman a blood thirsty jerk then mission accomplished.  To add insult to injury, the first arc has one of the lamest villains in DC history...Magog.  Magog?!?! The last couple of issues have really hit rock bottom, but I'm here to tell you that this issue is better.  How much better?  Let's take a long walk and talk about it, shall we?

If you weren't sure why Magog is a hate filled dick, the first couple of pages will fill you in again.  I actually like his origin because it at least explains why he hates Superman and Wonder Woman. Sure, it doesn't make much sense in the grand scheme of things, but I can look past that and chalk it up to him being a little boy and Circe.

Yes, Circe is in the house and is reveling in being the Big Bad.  She hates Wonder Woman because of what her mother, Hippolyta, did to her, but also because Wonder Woman has been acting so poorly since becoming the God of War.  At least someone else noticed.  Tomasi uses Circe to expand on some of the awesome Brian Azzarello Wonder Woman mythos and while I like the effort, the end result feels a little bit strange.  Say it with me...Ani-Men.

While this is going on, Magog and Superman are battling it out.  Actually, Magog is doing most of the battling while Superman continues to hold the bridge that everyone is on together.  He does get a few heat vision shots in and amazingly, it seems like enough.

After Circe captures Wonder Woman and teleports away, Superman accidental joins them.  Tomasi gives a better explanation of these Ani-Men (Animal-Men...get it?!?  I don't, but I'm getting there) and then the issue ends with what may be the most Super version of one ever about to attack Wonder Woman.  I won't say that the cliffhanger is stellar, but it's more interesting than Magog and will really test Wonder Woman's devotion to Superman.

Two other things of interest...Tomasi introduces a mysterious behind the scenes villain who I am already interested in and Magog gets hauled away by Argus.  I don't know if we'll continue seeing him and I really don't care.  Off to the Circus with you, buddy.

This issue does one thing really focuses on Wonder Woman.  This book has often times left her behind to focus on Superman, but not here.  She also doesn't come off as bad as she has in the past couple of issues.  Maybe it's because she is facing a bigger evil or maybe Tomasi is changing his ways.  I'd like to think it's the later.  I also like seeing a shoutout to Brian Azzarello's awesome Wonder Woman run.  However, I'm not sold on the whole Ani-Men stuff.  It just feels silly.  Overall, this was an okay issue, but one of the better of Tomasi's run so far.  Take that however way you want.

Doug Mahnke handles the majority of the art and it is really good.  Sure, the multiple inkers make things less consistent than they should be, but I still liked looking at the pretty pictures.  Mahnke's character work is good, but the action scenes raise it up a level.

Bits and Pieces:

This issue is far from great, but at least it shows some promise going forward.  This Wonder Woman heavy issue introduces a stronger villain and a decent cliffhanger.  The art was above average, but in the end, the issue feels like it's in neutral to fit the time frame for the finale next month.

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  1. Its weird how tomasi wrote the fantastic green lantern corps and batman and robin and at the same time he also wrote arkham war and superman/wonder woman which sucks

    1. yea, this happened with me when I got Lobo to review...every other book Cullen Bunn does is great...except the one I get. It's my lot in life, I guess.


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