Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #2 Review


It's over, Johnny. IT'S OVER!

Written By: Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad


Art By: Jen Bartel
Letters By: Pat Brosseau
Cover Art By: Jen Bartel
Cover Price: $5.99
Release Date: February 16, 2021

Nubia - Backup Story

Written By: L.L. McKinney

Art By: Alitha Martinex, Mark Morales
Colors By: Emilio Lopez
Letters By: Becca Carey

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #2 concludes this possible version of Diana's future with the end of all life, a visit from a "spectral" friend, and the beginning of Star Trek '66 (?).

Meanwhile, Nubia gains insight into forgotten corners of her origins when Grail's plan comes together with the help of an old Wonder Woman enemy.

It's over. I have nothing clever to say about this book. It's Future State.

Was It Good?

No. To the creative team's credit, the art in this issue is better than issue #1 but for one obvious reason - most of the scenes in the main story are static poses. That appears to be the key. The artists can make beautiful portraiture and simple posing scenes, but the whole thing falls apart during any fights, dynamic action, organic integration with the scenery.

In a bizarre turn, the main story took a considerable downturn from the previous issue. Lots of inner monologues and self-reflection but not much else. And some of the plot threads opened in the first issue never get addressed.

The Nubia backup story is a better entry than the main story. Better art, cleaner narrative. You could imagine Nubia's adventures continuing when Future State is done.



What's It About?

[SPOILERS AHEAD]

We begin with Immortal Wonder Woman flying through dead space, flying away from The Nothi... err The Undoing as it tries to consume the last life left in the Universe. Diana searches for a sign that someone, anyone, is still left, and she believes she finds it when she finds the broken globe of the Daily Planet floating through space.

We're hundreds to thousands of years in the future, and an insatiable cloud of soulless destruction has consumed all life throughout existence, yet a large section of the Daily Planet's globe is floating in space as a sign to comfort Diana. Sure, let's go with that.

With newly inspired hope, Diana flies around in the void of space looking for life. The Undoing catches up with her but she manages to slash it back with her magic lasso where there's no gravity to make such an action possible. While she wanders, Diana takes a moment to remember Earth's last moments.

In a flashback to issue #1's cliffhanger, Diana continues to watch the fight between Superman and Darkseid. She intervenes enough to give Superman some breathing room. He then grabs Darkseid and flies both of them into the Sun, leaving his cape behind for Diana as a memento.

If Superman draws all his power from the Sun, why does it kill him? Why would Darkseid and Superman flying into the Sun cause it to blow up? Why does an exploding star not instantly wipe out the entire solar system, taking all the planets and Diana with it? What did Swamp Thing give Diana at the end of issue #1 as his parting gift before dying?

None of this makes sense. None of this gets addressed. It's just random nonsense.



Diana eventually spots an abandoned Brainiac ship carrying the only other life left -- The Spectre. Spectre bemoans not having a purpose or reason to stick around since there's no life left to avenge. Diana agrees and they say goodbye for the last time. Diana then wraps her lasso around him and orders him to submit, destroying him. How does that work? I don't know and it doesn't matter.

Accepting her fate as the last life anywhere, Diana allows the Undoing to consume her. As she ponders her last moments, she decides to fight to the very last. Her bracers magically start glowing, and she clashes them together to wipe out the Undoing and herself.

In an odd turn of genres, the last scenes show the resulting explosion giving light and life to the Universe again in two pages that look like the artists used art, fonts, and styles directly from Star Trek: The Original Series.

Kudos to the writers and artists for trying something different, but the art and writing need to come up several levels to be worth a $5.99 cover price.



Nubia - Backup Story

Immediately picking up from the end of the last backup, Nubia wakes up in what looks like an African savanna. She's held in chains in front of a tech panel run by Grail with the majority of the pieces to the key. (yes, it's as on the nose as it sounds). Grail activates the console and opens a brief portal that brings back... Circe, looking like she just escaped a 90s college study group.

Circe's return from banishment is short-lived, however, and Grail explains she can't stay without the completed key. They make a deal to get the last piece, Nubia's crown, if Grail can keep the completed key and Circe can stay permanently.

Circe attempts to take the crown from Nubia's head but the magic that was used to form it fights back and Circe's magic is defeated. The crown activates Nubia's latent Wonder Woman strength, and she breaks free from her chains. Nubia knocks out both Circe and Grail. Circe disappears back into her interdimensional prison, and Grail escapes.



Back at the Ebony Web, Aunt Nanci's club, they talk about the power of the crown and exchange playful jabs about Aunt Nanci's lack of full disclosure about Nubia's origins. Nubia leaves to start her life again with a newfound sense of purpose.

There are a few minor plot holes in the backup and Circe's look is very much not in character, but the backup is an overall better story than the main.

Bits & Pieces:

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #2, suffers from art ill-suited for action and storytelling that disregards sense. It would be best for everyone involved if this Future State entry was put back in the drawer it was pulled from. If there's any saving grace, the Nubia story has some potential going forward.

4.5/10



3 comments:

  1. You know, I figured the Immortal Wonder Woman story might pick up in its last issue. But wow! This sounds so nonsensical and just kills the cool idea of Wonder Woman leading a fight to the bitter end at the end of the Universe. So many cool things you could do with that. Plus, the Nubia story just makes me hope the Infinite Frontier rumor is false and Nubia will be the next Wonder Woman, but I'm not holding my breath.

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