Review: Wonder Woman: Black & Gold #1
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Colors: See Graphic Below
Letters: See Graphic Below
Reviewed by: Carl Bryan
Wonder Woman: Black & Gold #1 – Just in time for Wonder Woman’s 80th anniversary, DC Comics proudly presents a new anthology series starring the Amazon Princess embellished in the the color of her famous lasso.
You won’t want to miss this thrilling series celebrating the woman who inspires us all…and that’s the truth!
Kicking things off, John Arcudi (B.P.R.D.) and Ryan Sook (Legion of Super-Heroes) reunite to show us the grace immortality grants a hero.
Becky Cloonan (Wonder Woman) weaves a spine-tingling tale of Diana’s most precious weapon against the darkness.
Then, Amy Reeder (Amethyst) takes us back to the Golden Age for a fun romp co-starring Etta Candy. AJ Mendez and Ming Doyle (Constantine: The Hellblazer) travel to Themyscira for a tense family reunion.
And finally, Nadia Shammas and Morgan Beem (Swamp Thing: Twin Branches) show us a story of Diana’s past failures coming back to haunt her.
Having reviewed Batman: Black & White and Superman: Red & Blue, I really wanted DC to make sure they provided the same, if not better, treatment of Diana Prince. Arguably the most powerful of The Trinity, I really appreciated that it was Red & Blue but for her, as well as the eye being drawn upon gold…pure gold.
DC is putting together a great run in accentuating both artists and authors in their treatment of their heroes in this format. It is a chance for readers to have a better glimpse into the imagined lives of these characters. We think we know it all, but through the golden lenses of these collectives authors and artists, we get some new stories that contribute to all things Princess Diana!
AJ Mendez’ “Mother Daughter” provides a great tale of Diana simply coming home for a visit. The mother daughter tether is strong with Diana and Hippolyta. Quips back and forth resonate as Hipployta has a cold that Diana contracts as well when visiting. We find out that too much separation can be sickening, but too much time can be drowning. What a great commentary on adult children relationships!
Nadia Shammas’ tale of Diana confronting Circe in “What Doesn’t Kill You” grabs your attention in both script and art! Misunderstandings or misinterpretations about the past…different lenses. It’s a reminder that Diana has conflict with every day villains as well as those in mythology and in the dark.
John Arcudi’s “I’m Ageless” provides Batman an explanation about Diana’s motives. Questioning why she constantly defends human lives when “we” are just a blip on her radar as she is purported to be hundreds of years old. The flashbacks, the reasoning, the explanations are stellar and inspiring. And Bruce eats a little crow as well.
Amy Reeder’s “Golden Age” is a throwback tale that includes bullets, bracelets and “broads” (yes…that vernacular was used way back when) and a penchant for reward in fries and milkshakes.
Becky Cloonan’s “The Wager” is the best story in the lot as it involves the origin of the Golden Lasso, a guilty conscience, a surprise guest star and a revelation about Diana that we all knew was true. No Pinocchio penchants here!
This began with Batman: Black & White, followed by Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red. It now continues with Superman: Red & Blue. Now, it is going further with Wonder Woman: Black & Gold, so why don’t we get some others, like Green Lantern: Green & White or maybe something like Booster & Beetle: Blue & Gold… so many playgrounds for a host of authors and artists!
You have to know going in that each story is like a playground for both author and artists. Some stories will be poignant and will cause you pause. Some will not be your cup of tea as you see the human side of Diana versus the hero side of Wonder Woman. Either way, the reader gets to explore sides of Diana that we did not know existed as we get a variety of takes on his character from numerous authors!
While the Black and White is Batman’s playground, and Red and Blue fits our Big Blue Boy Scout just fine, the gold is a perfect setting for Wonder Woman! When you think you have heard every angle to these heroes, these book provide just more evidence that they, and the many timelines they touch, can go forever.
This playground has been great for both Batman and Superman, and seems like it will do wonders (pun intended) for this Amazonian Princess. I appreciate that DC is providing more insight into these characters for authors and artists alike.