Friday, September 2, 2016

Wonder Woman ’77 Chapter 25 Review and **SPOILERS**


Oh Danny Blue, the Fights, the Fights Are Calling

Written By: Trina Robbins
Art By: Tess Fowler, Jen Manley Lee
Lettered By: Wes Abbott
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: September 1, 2016


Hold up. Did you see who wrote this chapter of Wonder Woman ’77? Trina Robbins. Trina Effing Robbins. Who is she? Why, she’s only one of the artists that spearheaded the Underground Comix movement of the late 1960s and 70s, as well as having a pretty keen (though short) run on Wonder Woman herself in 1986. And Tess Fowler is a super-talented artist that most recently was doing a bang-up job on Rat Queens…until something weird happened and she wasn’t? And then the book was cancelled? I dunno about that, but I do know that these two talents on one book has the potential to be comics dynamite. So is this chapter explosive enough to blow your hands off and leave you permanently disfigured? Or is it more like one of those sperm-shaped snap bombs that are mildly annoying but cause no real damage? Read on to find out!

Explain It!

Agent Diana Prince and Ambassador Kirkwood have flown to Chovania, which is not a real country, for the Youth Festival for Peace, which is not a real festival. In fact, it sounds like a total ruse. “Oh, please make sure to attend the Puppies’ Party for Donuts where we totally won’t try to kidnap and enslave you.” The U.S. Ambassador is in Chovania because it is an outpost of Democracy bordered by Communist Bulgovia, and the U.S. just really liked to antagonize the Communists. Bulgovia is run by President-for-life Antonin Crepescu, which is really a dumb title for a ruthless dictator. Kirkwood is to show support for Chovania and also complain about its accommodations. Disgusted at the lack of bottled water, Agent Prince volunteers to go grab a case from some festival supply that must be endless. Was bottled water even a thing back in 1977? I guess there was Evian and Pellegrino and stuff…I mean, there were water coolers around but it still rang a little odd to me.

Diana comes to a door with a star on it, and thinks, “This must be the room,” because of course a star on a door is a universal sign for “bottled water inside.” As she touches a decidedly gigantic doorknob, two women run out in cinched t-shirts with cats drawn on them, all smiles and sorries as Diana is brushed back. Inside the water bottle room is Danny Blue, star of the Youth Festival for Peace, strumming away on an acoustic guitar and probably feeling the afterglow from the awesome sex he just had with those two women. Diana grabs a case of water, but then a bunch of ski-mask wearing fellows with guns bust in the room and knock Agent Prince to the ground! They grab Danny Blue and make off with him, noting that they were told not to hurt him. Of course, Diana was just playing ‘possum, and when they leave the room, she awkwardly spins into Wonder Woman and runs after the speeding car.

Danny Blue is…in Bulgovia, I suppose, and shoved into a sparse room with bars on the window but two chairs within—one that looks like a recliner and the other looks like a kitchen chair. Wonder Woman enters the scene and gets the drop on these Bulgovian kidnappers, and Danny Blue joins the fray by smashing the kitchen chair over one of their heads! I wondered what that chair was for. Danny asks Wonder Woman what she’s doing there, and she says she’s there for the water, effectively revealing her identity to a total stranger. As he swears he’ll never tell, Wonder Woman busts them both out of the Bulgovian prison and, for no really good reason, wander into a cave. Inside this cave is President-for-life Crepescu, just sort of sitting in this room carved out of rock with two people flanking him. There’s a bit of a scuffle, but then Crepescu orders his guards to throw down their rifles and tells Danny and Diana that he means them no harm. He leads them to a doorway with flowers lentil, and within is his dying, cancerous daughter. Her last wish is to have Danny Blue sing to her, which he does. Hey, how about seeing the sun and not living in a weird Bulgovian cave, are you interested in that? Ultimately, Crepescu gets ‘em back to the festival on time, and Wonder Woman even steals some stage time, that glory hog.

Huh. The story is okay, but nothing really memorable or interesting. I suppose there’s some Cold War stuff going on, but it really seems like a generic tale of Who Gives a Fuck. The art was really disappointing, I’ve known Tess Fowler’s art to be excellent but it looks really sloppy here. At times downright crummy. I am often tooting the horn for this series, but this chapter is really nothing to get excited about. It’s only a buck, but there are better things on which to spend a dollar.

Bits and Pieces:

A pretty disappointing chapter of Wonder Woman '77 with a bland story and fairly crummy artwork at points. I'm usually loving this series, but this bit can be dismissed.

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