Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Wonder Woman, Volume 2: Year One Review (Greg Rucka, Nicola Scott)

As Greg Rucka was writing two Wonder Woman storylines simultaneously, probably to keep the same artist for the duration of each arc, allowing them extra time to draw the issues while also sticking to DC’s double-shipping schedule, his second Wonder Woman Rebirth book doesn’t follow on from the first - instead it’s a retelling of her origin. For the umpteenth time. Sigh. While the title “Year One” references the classic Batman book of the same name, Wonder Woman: Year One is unfortunately nowhere near the same quality. 

Wonder Woman and the Amazons live on Themyscira, la la la, female paradise, etc. Then Steve Trevor crashes his plane near the island and Princess Diana learns of the outside world. Stevie boy gets healed up, Diana proves herself to be Champion of the Amazons, and the two head back to our world where she develops her powers and becomes Wonder Woman. In other words, the usual by-the-numbers story!

I don’t know what DC are thinking when they commission books like this. Last year we had two high-profile Wonder Woman origin books (both of which were better than this one): Grant Morrison/Yanick Paquette’s Wonder Woman: Earth One and Jill Thompson’s Wonder Woman: The True Amazon. So Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott’s Year One makes the third Wonder Woman origin in just over twelve months! How many origin retellings do we need?! And you know the Wonder Woman movie is gonna be more of the same – bah! 

Scott’s artwork was high quality as always and the sniper shootout in the mall was an interesting scene but for the most part I was immensely bored reading this. Standard characterisations – check, dreary exposition galore – check, arbitrary villain - check, rushed, lame final fight – check; Wonder Woman: Year One is an uninspired, unexceptional, uninsightful and unnecessary re-tread of Diana’s origin. Maybe those readers who’ve never read her origin before will get more out of this book but Earth One and The True Amazon do the job far better anyway - check those out instead of this tedium.

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