By James D. Robinson, Stephen Segovia, Romulo Fajardo Jr., Saida Temofonte
If you liked DC’s last event, Metal, then Wonder Woman #46 is right up your alley. It begins a new arc for the series entitled ‘The Dark Gods’, and has a thrilling last second surprise for Diana. The premise, despite being familiar, has a fresh take to it as well as a sense of urgency throughout. It’s a quick read because of this pacing, but well worth it. For someone who hasn’t been keeping up with the title, it’s unclear at a few points whether or not characters are referencing events in past issues or foreshadowing what might come. In the moment, it’s a bit of a speed bump, but overall these go relatively unnoticed, especially considering the climax of the issue. Segovia illustrates Wonder Woman skillfully, and when he and Fajardo Jr.’s colors really work together, it’s some of DC’s top stuff.
Diana’s fight scenes show off her power and agility elegantly. Segovia treats her like the force she really is thanks to swooping action lines and shadows on one of comics’ most ripped back muscles. When Wonder Woman goes all in, the artists use thick, sometimes smudged inks to help drive the message of her abilities home, and it works. Overall, Segovia’s figures are reminiscent of some of Mikel Janin’s work in its realism. What really separates the two is Segovia’s more traditional art. It has lots of depth without the 3D effect, which looks really robust on the powerhouse characters in this issue.
Wonder Woman #46 has a refreshing panel layout when it comes to big two books as well. It varies just enough to be subtle, but still accents important moments. We see a lot of play with gutters, specifically whether to use them or not, and it helps to contrast what’s going on from one panel to the next.
Robinson’s story for this issue is a fun one. As mentioned before, it takes a little while to warm up, especially for readers new to this Rebirth run. Once it’s going though, this issue is promising. We see Wonder Woman face down with Cheetah, and because of Robinson’s plot work, it’s more than just any fight with a villain. The fact that Cheetah was once her friend comes into play nicely throughout, and it helps humanize her. Other than that, we see Robinson place what seems to be a myriad of future plot points. These can feel both exciting and confusing, depending on the reader’s familiarity.
Wonder Woman #46 seems like the beginning of an arc for readers with at least some familiarity with the character. What the team puts forward here has the trappings for an exciting arc focusing on the divine aspects of Wonder Woman. It fits right in with the events of Metal and No Justice as well, which really makes this book feel cohesive with the rest of the universe. Throw in the killer artwork from Segovia and Fajardo Jr., and this issue is well recommended.