Written by Meredith Finch
Pencils by David Finch
Published by DC Comics
Coming off from the start of a brand new story arc and creative team, ‘Wonder Woman’ #37 is very lacking in story and has fluff for artwork.
The opening arc continues as Wonder Woman feels that she’s torn between her many responsibilities. Not only does Diana have to fight injustice as Wonder Woman, but must rule the the Amazons as their new queen and serve as the new God of War. The conflict between these three responsibilities is posed as the central theme of this issue. However, very little of it is explored. Including the last issue, it seems the only responsibilities Diana has as Wonder Woman are those as a member of the Justice League. She lacks any personal villains to call her own, so instead it’s the League whom come calling to remind her that things are going on in the world. As the God of War, Diana’s duties are even more baffling as what entails being the God of War isn’t established at all. The only role which Diana is cast here is as the leader of the Amazons, who spend all their time telling Diana how bad a leader she is. This is even stranger as the actual duties the Queen of Themyscira has are left vague at best. The Amazons are rarely portrayed as ever needing a leader outside of when they’re acting as an army. Aside from hanging around columns, it does look like the Amazons do all that much to warrant central leadership. Instead, Diana’s sisters seem ready to dethrone her just because she’s not clocking in enough hours with them.
The primary villain, who does in fact have a very good design, has no relationship to Wonder Woman. The apparent antagonist for this arc seem to be a shadowy sorceress with a scheme involving taking the throne of Themyscira. That’s not a bad idea for a villain, however that leaves any kind of apparent conflict for Diana to face. A common technique among many other writers is simply to throw in a minor villain to keep the action with the hero engaging. The closest this issue gets is to a set of mechanical birds that show up every once in a while. It’s clear that Meredith Finch is a bit inexperienced with handling such a major part DC Comics’ lineup but this feels very amateur and detached.
David Finch’s art, which able to capture the few energetic fight scenes that occur in this book, doesn’t do much. His face for Wonder Woman still looks comically young, as if Diana is fifteen or so and he lacks variety in women’s faces. There’s a particularly humorous moment where an Amazon asks where Wonder Woman is while at the same time looking like Diana’s doppelganger. While his artwork doesn’t go off into full fan service mode, there are a number of twisted spines and posterior shots. Finch also falls flat when delivering slower emotional scenes. Where there’s no fighting to be had, his characters start making open ended expressions of ambiguous meaning. Overall, it’s a poor fit to this issue.
‘Wonder Woman’ #37 is a slow start up to this new arc for Diana of Themyscira. When trying to feel conflicted and intimate, it comes off distilled and detached. This storyline could really use with some built up towards the villains beyond evil doers doing evil unbeknownst to Wonder Woman. The only major highlight of the issue is the return of none other than Donna Troy, a character whose presence has been sorely missed since the start of the New 52 and who will hopefully add some much needed emotional depth to this tale. However it does stumble right out of the gate as her first appearance is heavy on the fan service.
Whether ‘Wonder Woman’ will lift itself up or keep on with a monotone pace is anyone’s guess as it will likely be determined by the next issue. As it is now, it feels mostly skippable.