Title: Wonder Woman: Rebirth, Issue #1
Author(s): Greg Ruka
Artist(s): Liam Sharp, Paulo Siqueira
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: June 8, 2016
Wonder Woman, Diana of Themyscira, ambassador of the amazons, peace bringer, war fighter, child of Zeus, God of War, the Spirit of Truth, and more, but what is she really? Thoughts lay heavy on Diana’s mind as she contemplates and questions the ever changing details of her birth. She uses the lasso of truth in order to confirm who she is. However, the divine tool ominously tells Diana that she has been deceived. Upon discovering this, she then goes out on a new mission, a journey of self-discovery to learn how and why her story keeps changing. Upon visiting Olympus, she is met with unfamiliar surroundings and hostility; it appears as though she may be onto something and higher powers may be involved.
If readers have ever felt frustrated over Wonder Woman’s alleged, rebooted origin in the New 52, then it would be cathartic reading this comic, because it feels as though Greg Ruka, best known for his work on Wonder Woman, is putting her origin into question. The idea of Diana finding out the truth behind her origins ties in very nicely to the overall event since, according to DC Universe: Rebirth issue 1, the DCNU’s history was purposefully changed. This journey of self-discovery may even factor into the event overall, perhaps even be a major plot point, and make Diana a major player in the event.
One striking moment, which is also what set her on her new journey of self-discovery, was seeing her use the Lasso of Truth on herself. However, instead of her speaking the truth, it appears as if the lasso itself was talking to her. The lasso has never done anything like this before, and suggests that fans may not know everything about the legendary lasso. It is indeed a unique way to begin Diana’s new quest and to expand the uniqueness of Diana’s arsenal. One flaw worth noting is that the word balloons are oddly positioned during that scene, so it is uncertain whether it was Diana speaking or the lasso.
The ending actually does have the potential to entice readers to come back, as the landscape of Olympus warps, it ominously suggests that there are indeed more powerful forces at work, preventing Diana from finding the truth. Either this is probably related to the Watchmen, as suggested in DC Universe: Rebirth, issue 1, or perhaps the gods of Olympus have not been so truthful in regards to Diana’s origin.
In terms of character, there is not much to say, the story primarily focuses on Diana. She starts off as uncertain about herself of her history and this is interesting considering that after discovering the details of her birth, she never questioned it, and it could have been assumed that she had accepted it ever since then. From a fan perspective, or at least one not pleased with her new origin, Ruka seems to be using Diana as a proxy for fans who were not pleased with her being the daughter of Zeus, and wishes to get a definite answer for the Spirit of Truth. It has always left an uncomfortable taste for readers to learn that the Spirit of Truth’s life was based around lies, and this comic might be able to mend that.
The comic is a bit awkwardly composed during the first fight, however, as the comic progressed it evened out and was well composed during the second fight. The art does excel in it’s usage of surroundings, in particular when Diana shattered them mirror in frustration, with bits of her current and pre-rebooted history, which it almost hearkens back to Superboy Prime punching reality. Another example would be the warped state of Olympus itself. The realm of the gods appears overgrown with vegetation and abandoned, save for the sentries, which gives it an ominous, unsettling feeling. This feeling is amplified when the landscape drastically changes and crumbles.
Like Action Comics: Rebirth, reveals a new outfit for the main hero, and Diana’s new outfit takes a lot of inspiration from her previous one, there are some slight differences, yet it still retains the classic look. The shape of the tiara is inverted, and appears thicker, her chest armor is now a more traditional gold and red, although there are no white stars, her leather Greek-Roman, blue leather skirt is a nice touch as well, and her boots are more fitted for battle with armored plated shin and knee guards. What is most surprising about her new outfit is that it has more detail, with the amount of creases along her armor, and the small embellishments on her bracelets are very unique and a somewhat intricate take on Wonder Woman’s armor. The armor does appear very similar to Wonder Woman’s costume in Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice, but whether that is deliberate or intentional is debatable. Regardless, the new, more detailed outfit is a welcomed change.
The book gets very interesting near the end as Diana sets out on her path of self-discovery, and it is made clear that there are divine powers at work, and is distorting the truth. Greg Ruka does a wonderful job working with what he has been given, and to anyone who is frustrated by Diana’s current origin, this book is indeed worth reading.
Wonder Woman on a quest of self discovery
Diana going off to discover the truth behind her birth and understand why her story keeps changing, feels very satisfying and cathartic as a story idea, especially for Wonder Woman fans and followers of Greg Ruka’s past work. The events in this comic may tie into the main Rebrith event, but if they are not, then perhaps the Olympian Gods might have something to do with this, which is indeed exciting.
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