Art by: Rick Leonardi and Allen Passalaqua
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: July 8, 2015
The Doors of Perception
Before I get going, I have to blow off some steam on this series' daily release schedule. You're killing me guys! Sure, you all have to put out a little bit of effort with the writing a drawing part, but damn, you are making me work like a dog and for what? Actually, what I've been getting for my efforts is reading and reviewing one of the better, if not most fun, digital titles I've read in a long time. If you've followed our little site then you know that I am big on the DC Digital First line, so that is one of the biggest compliments I can give out. Enough about me and my workload, let's get on with the review of Gods and Monsters - Wonder Woman #2.
Time has passed a bit after last issue and Bekka is now in 1967 New York City where she is trying to find herself. J.M. DeMateis uses her as the narrator because she really has nobody else in her life. She has had some up and downs and New York presents more right away. I really like Bekka as a character. I don't think it's by mistake that she reminds me more of Big Barda than Wonder Woman, but her story has links to Diana's in more ways then one. A major god for a relative, thrust into a world she doesn't quite know...and after this issue, a common enemy. Yea, after saving a drugged out girl (it is the Summer of Love, remember), she meets Doctor Psycho.
While it's not the usual Doctor Psycho, he may be even scarier because he's...a Hippie! That's right, instead of controlling minds, he's bending them with mind altering drugs. You know, the kind that makes you think the Grateful Dead's music is great and that bell bottom jeans will never go out of style. Scary, I know. Doctor Psycho isn't the only hippie she meets. She falls for his friend, Guitar Joe, and they all head off to their commune to grow vegetables, sing songs and make crazy drugs.
I liked the lighter tone of this beginning. This series has been so dark that seeing Bekka happy threw me off a bit. It's like I was just waiting for the other shoe to fall...and then it did. At first it was just Guitar Joe's sexist beliefs (free advice: never trust a guy with Guitar as a first name, ladies!), but then Bekka finds out the true nature of Doctor Psycho's drug experiments. It's not a pretty sight, but it fits the character in a slightly off-kilter kind of way. While I expected a fight, DeMatteis throws us in a completely different direction. As far as cliffhangers go, this was a surprise.
While the issue did get darker by the end, this is still the lightest of the origin stories and I'm glad. Wonder Woman has always been about hope and DeMatteis shows us that's true even if Wonder Woman is from New Genesis and her name is Bekka. I can't wait to see how her story ends and also how she deals with those two dark bastards, Superman and Batman.
Rick Leonardi does a great job of presenting the late 60's vibe, but also holds his own when the issue goes dark. I have really enjoyed his art in this story and Allen Passalaqua's colors were great as well. The highlight for me this issue was the cliffhanger page, but I don't want to spoil it. It completely changes the tone of the book to something awesome.
Bits and Pieces:
Since this story is set further back in the past, it is naturally going to take a bit more setup than the Batman and Superman origins. Bekka is making her way towards the present, but the way the issue ends, she may be further away still. The art was great and I loved the introduction of Doctor Psycho. I really can't recommend this series enough and this issue is another winner.