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Wonder Woman #36

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By Meredith Finch, David Finch, Richard Friend, Sonia Oback

Let’s get this out of the way right now: Azzarello’s run on Wonder Woman was fantastic. Out of all of the changes to happen in the New 52, Wonder Woman benefitted the most. However, let’s not talk about that. We should start fresh and not compare the new run with previous work. It deserves a chance to breathe and if the first issue is anything to go by, it may get better as it continues.

Right out of the gate, Meredith Finch presents a version of Wonder Woman that is at a crossroads. While she’s still a strong individual, she is heavily burdened by responsibility and self-doubt. Some fans may not like this depiction of WW, but if you give it time to sink in, she’s actually very charming this way. It’s nice to have a Wonder Woman that’s willing to wear her heart on her sleeve from time to time.

Even though Wonder Woman and her current predicament feel refreshing, the issue’s story can occasionally suffer from a lack of subtlety. Snyder and Capullo’s Batman is so great because they plant little seeds that may not be obvious at first glance. This issue has none of that and gives us messages that are very ham-fisted. Themes need to be more like Watchmen and less like a Pixar film. Even if these elements were thrown out and it became nothing more than dumb superhero fun, there’s certainly enough here to succeed.

David Finch’s artwork is wonderful, even if it occasionally throws you off. Wonder Woman looks goofy on a few pages and comes off more like a fourteen-year-old cosplayer, as opposed to a god of war and queen of a whole realm. Other than that, sign me up. You need to see this guy’s Swamp Thing. Holland hasn’t been this badass since Yanick Paquette was on Swampy’s solo title.

Despite the annoyingly obvious themes, this run is still worth sticking around for. Wonder Woman is in a very interesting place and Meredith Finch has shown us she knows what makes a character like Diana interesting. Going forward, we’ll keep an eye on this title to see where things go from here.

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