Well hey there, fellow fans of fantastic fiction, and welcome to yet another cool, compelling and creatively compulsory – Comic Cover Of The Week. The star of this week’s post is none other than Canadian artist supreme, the great Yanick Paquette and his rather stunning JG Jones homage for this months Wonder Woman #790.
JG Jones much loved cover classic was the first image that greeted Wondy fans when they got their fevered mitts on the fantastic 2002 Greg Rucka penned graphic novel – Wonder Woman: The Hiketeia. The Hiketeia was a standalone story by Greg Rucka and JG Jones that weaved the tale of a young woman named – Danny Welles invoking the ancestral rite of “The Hiketeia” which found Diana honour bound to protect and care for Danny by ancient Amazon tradition.
But, when Wonder Woman learns that Danny has sought out and killed the drug dealers who murdered her sister, it casts her into a tumult of indecision, which gets even worse when that curmudgeonly creature of the night – The Batman – turns up to bring Danny to justice. Wonder Woman is now faced with breaking her sacred oath to protect Danny or turning her back on injustice.
Though, ol’ Batsy made a huuuuge mistake when he came gunning for Wonder Woman, as he notoriously gets a bit too big for his Bat-boots, and Wondy unceremoniously puts him in his place – face deep in the mud! Moral of this tale – don’t upset the overtly powerful, millennia old demi-god, even if you are The Batman!
Wonder Woman #790 Is Available From Your Local Comic-Book Emporium Right Now!
Wonder Woman’s fondness for ice cream has become a much loved meme for DC Comics and Wondy fans for many years now, and was even featured as a rather lovely easter egg in the 2017 Gal Gadot live action movie.
It’s origin though only dates back to 2011, with the first Justice League story that emerged during DC Comics’ New 52 reboot. Written by Geoff Johns and spectacularly pencilled by the great Jim Lee, Diana is introduced to the cool, creamy snack by a young girl called Raquel, who proclaims it as “the world’s greatest food” Wondy most certainly agrees…
Wonder Woman Is Copyright: DC Comics.
Warm your heart and embrace your inner Amazon with these absolutely gorgeous paintings of Wonder Woman courtesy of the spectacular Steve Rude!
Wonder Woman is copyright: DC Comics.
Welcome, fellow agents of Precinct1313, to our ebullient eighth anniversary! That’s right, the majestic mansion of mystery first materialised unto this plane of existence in 2014, it’s mission (which we absolutely chose to accept) was to provide you with some decidedly delectable DC Comics documentation, whilst behind the scenes we continued to map out the convoluted corridors, herculean hallways and colossal comic crypts that compose this recondite residence.
Shortly, as is our tradition, we shall be making our merry way down to the Precinct’s fabled – Great Halls Of Quaffing – to celebrate in style, along the way though, we shall take a short excursion and visit the abstruse anomaly known as the – Scrying Chamber – whence sits, upon a single stone table, a stygian black crystal ball. So why not join me, fellow fans of fantastic fiction, as we stare deep into its sanguine depths and re-live some of our favourite posts from the past eight enthralling years…
World’s Finest – Interview Series
A mainstay of of the Precinct over the years (and my absolute favourite posts to write) was the – Worlds’ Finest: Interview – series, where each episode we would invite our most treasured – Superheroes, SuperVillains, Costumed Crimefighters, Dimension Dwelling Demons, and, of course, Super-Pets to answer a quotient of quintessentialy quirky questions about life, the universe and cake (’cause everyone loves cake!)
Classic characters such as – Circe, Harley Quinn, and Cheetah have darkened the Precinct’s media studio, and have – harassed, bludgeoned, nibbled and vexed our poor hapless interviewer, with his deadly denouement happening at a final, fatal interview with Judge Death, almost two years past. I’m very happy to announce the imminent return of World’s Finest and, also, our original interviewer! thanks to Ra’s al Ghul’s much appreciated offer to plonk him in his Lazarus pit! So keep your eyes peeled for World’s Finest: Series 2, which will include interviews with the likes of Rorschach, Zatanna, and The Scarecrow!
Ace, Krypto and Streaky Too!
One of our more recent posts, and one that was without a doubt absolutely massive fun to write was this post dedicated to the awesomely adorable animals that populate the DC Universe. These super-powered pets include such dynamic delights as – flying felines, detective deducing dogs and, yep, even a Bat-Cow!! You can peruse (and pet) this perky post – Right Here.
Wonder Woman: Tempest Tossed
As you’re all probably bored of hearing right now , ’cause we never, ever shut up about it (and never shall!) we love Wondy here in Precinct1313, she is our favourite comic book creation of all time! And just recently the glorious gods of Olympus once more bestowed upon us mere mortals yet another thrilling tale of the Themysciran Titan with the fabulous Laurie Halse Anderson penned opus – Tempest Tossed – a sublime celebration of the wondrous one, and you can read our rapturous review of this titanic tome – Right Here.
The Bat Loves The Cat
The Bat most assuredly does love the cat, in fact they’ve been dancing around each other emotionally for the past eight decades! Yep, that’s eighty years of perfect passion procrastination! No character has had a more emotive impact on the Dark Knight’s melancholic life than sultry Selina Kyle aka -Catwoman! Why not re-live their tender tale of romance – Right Here.
Phew, thanks for sticking with us as we shared some of our personal favourite posts we have submitted to the WordPress world over the past eight years, and as we near the great Halls of Quaffing for mucho merriment, allow me to say a massive THANK YOU to all of the Precinct’s followers, readers and fellow bloggers… it is YOU that makes this joyous journey worthwhile.
Oh, And As Ever – Make Mine DC!
The legendary artist/writer George Perez sadly passed away on May 6 with complications arising from pancreatic cancer. This devastating news actually hit me quite hard as it was George’s Wonder Woman comics run in the eighties that first introduced me to the Themysciran Titan, and ultimately made me fall in love with the character.
George Perez is one of the most popular and acclaimed artists of the past half century, with his extensive run on Wonder Woman in the 1980’s being a defining moment not just in his own artistic career but also for the character herself. His reboot of Diana began with the 1987 issued – Wonder Woman #1, George was the main artist and plotted the series for its first two year run, then went on to write it for a further three, with his take on Wondy and her pantheon of allies and villains hailed as the greatest and most significant version of the characters since the original creation team of William Marston and Harry Peter in the 1940’s.
In 1980, George alongside fellow comic-book legend, Marv Wolfman, launched – The New Teen Titans, rebooting the classic sixties series and creating new characters to add to the roster of the team of teen sidekicks – Starfire, Raven and Cyborg, and also anti-hero mercenary – Deathstroke. It was also during this run that Dick Grayson finally stepped out of The Batman’s shadow and shed his Robin persona to become the peerlessly popular Nightwing.
George was born in New York City in June 1954, and was always destined to be an artist and started drawing from the tender age of five years old. At the age of twenty he took a job as a studio assistant at Marvel Comics, with his first published work appearing in Astonishing Tales #25 in 1974. George continued to work for Marvel until 1980 when he moved over to DC Comics, with his first artistic endeavour drawing the Flash back up tale – Firestorm. In 1985 after close to five years working on The New Teen Titans, he started work on DC’s massive crossover event – Crisis On Infinite Earths, the criss-crossing maxi-series that would end up altering the DC Universe dramatically for years to come, when this came to an end George went on to his career defining run On Wonder Woman and cemented his place in Comic-Book history.
Thank you George for all the joy and wonderment you have brought to me personally throughout your astonishing career, without you I may never have fallen in love with the many characters I hold dear today, most especially Wonder Woman, it was your iconic run that endeared Diana to me more than any character previous to her and for this reason alone, you will always be my most beloved comic creator of all time, rest in peace good sir.
Our Thoughts Go Out To George’s Family And Friends At This Sad Time.
Suffering Sappho! it’s lovely to see you down here in the Precinct’s legendary – Ancient Amazon Archives – my astonishing amazonian associates, and just why have we convened within these hallowed Hellenic halls you may ask, well, to celebrate the international icon known as Wonder Woman of course, and the fantastic artistic auteurs who have, over the decades, brought us some of the most vivid, bold and downright sensational comic cover visions of the wondrous one.
And our first step forward unto this opulent odyssey is with brilliant Brit – Brian Bolland – whose 90’s run on Wonder Woman covers was not only award winning, but also contains some of my personal favourite Wondy covers of all time
The great Brian Bolland is a British comic-book artist/writer who began his illustrious illustrative career in 1977 with the eternally popular British anthology comic – 2000AD. It was here that Brian cut his artistic teeth on seminal characters such as Judge Dredd where his artwork shone in thrilling tales like – The Dark Judge saga, Block Mania and The Cursed Earth.
Brian was one of the very first Brit artists to be snapped up by DC Comics in the 1980’s in what’s come to be known as the “The British Invasion Of Comics” which in turn transformed the comic-book industry at the time. His most notable and popular work to come out of his collaboration with DC is without a doubt the Batman one shot – The Killing Joke – which he worked on alongside other fellow Brit creators, writer – Alan Moore and artist – John Higgins. For me though, it will always be his peerless run on Wonder Woman’s 90’s comic series, his compelling covers were always gorgeously composed works of detailed art that, through one solitary cover image alone, always managed to ably convey the titanic tale awaiting to be discovered within. So let’s indulge ourselves with a small sampling of Brian’s thrilling take on the Themysciran Titan…
Great Hera! thanks so much for joining us on this fabled foray into the vivacious visuals of Wonder Woman courtesy of the bodacious and brilliant Brian Bolland! Until next time, wondrous ones!
By the glorious gods of Gaea! DC Comics newest entry in their mature Black Label line is an absolutely astounding piece of art from two of the comic-book industries greatest talents, writer – Kelly Sue DeConnick and the superlative artistic talent that is Phil Jimenez, who has spent close to three years perfecting the glorious renderings contained within this exalted manuscript.
Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons’ first issue recounts and adapts the captivating creation of DC Comics’ Amazons, the immortal race of warrior women tasked by the Greek gods with the protection and guidance of Humankind. Borrowing heavily from one of Wonder Woman’s most compelling and predominant contributors – glorious George Perez, whose work on the Themysciran Titan’s 1980’s adventures is still significant in it’s impact on the characters growth in the time since, with much of his benefaction still seen as canon to this day, in fact his beloved work on Princess Diana is seen by most fans as the single greatest take on the character since her original creative team – William Marston and Harry G. Peter, ushered her into existence way back in the early 1940’s.
Wonder Woman Historia contains, absolutely, the greatest output of beautiful imagery I have ever encountered from talented artist Phil Jimenez, who has been a lifelong fan of Diana, and whose artistic output was heavily influenced by Perez, in fact Phil was the artist/writer for Wondy’s ongoing monthly series throughout the period of 2000 – 2003, and is also seen as one of her biggest ever influences. His work here is a symphonic synergy of magnificent pencils backed ably by the expertise of colourists – Arif Prianto, Hi-Fi, and Romulo Fajardo Jr.
Historia’s superlative scribe -Kelly Sue DeConnick is another phenomenal talent brought on board to recount the revered history of comicdom’s most beloved fictional females, the Eisner award winning writer is the perfect choice to accompany Jimenez on this astounding odyssey into the atavistic past of the ancestral Amazon race. Together they weave a comic book that stands heads and shoulders above it’s peers, and will almost certainly go down in history as one of the greatest takes on Diana’s beloved sisters.
Millienia ago, Queen Hera and the goddesses of the Olympian pantheon grew greatly dissatisfied with their male counterparts, and, far from their sight, put a plan into action. A new society was born, one never seen before on Earth, capable of wondrous and terrible things… but their existence would not stay secret for long. When a despairing woman named Hippolyta crossed the path of the Amazons, a series of events was set in motion that would lead to an outright war in the heavenly realms… but also usher in the creation of Earth’s greatest guardian!
Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons #1 is available from your local comic-book emporium right now, and comes highly recommended by this particular Wondy fanatic, Kelly Sue Deconnick constructs an emotional and tumultuous tale recounting the introduction of the immortal Amazons, and Phil Jimenez’s absolutely gorgeous art is a delight to behold, you can certainly see that those three years he spent rendering these immaculate images were worth every single month, as this is literally one of the most exquisite comics I have ever encountered!!
Welcome fellow fans of fantastic fiction to another charming collation of comic cover collectables, and lo, once more do we set foot in the glorious realm that is the Wonder Woman: Black and Gold series, an awesome anthology album dedicated to telling thrilling tales set deep within the amazing Amazon’s long standing mythos.
I have to say, the WW Black and Gold limited series is truly a gift from the glorious Greek gods themselves, with each and every cover seemingly handed down from Olympus itself, thus are their splendour and magnificence. And Black and Gold #5 is no slouch in this superlative series, with a fantastically comical and quirky comic cover take of the venerable Themysciran Princess.
Prepare yourselves, my astonishing Amazonian associates, to be whisked away with four fantastic fables commencing with – an astonishing Amazon fairy tale, then travel back in time to World War II, get swept up in a nautical ghost story, and finally blasted by a bitter space princess! Sanya Anwar, Christian Alamy, Kurt Busiek, Josie Campbell and more once again bring their prodigious talents to this stunning series with thrilling tales that run the gamut of comedy, horror and mythology, making this illustrious issue yet another must buy!
Wonder Woman: Black and Gold #5 Is Available From Your Local Comic-Book Emporium Right Now!
Hola and welcome, my absolutely astounding Amazon associates, to the 80th anniversary of the Themysciran Titan known as – Wonder Woman! That’s right, William Moulton Marston and Harry G. Peter’s groundbreaking fictional female first appeared in print exactly eight decades ago to this day, in the October 1941 issue of Sensation Comics #08.
If you’ve been a follower of the Precinct for awhile now, you more than likely know our affinity and adoration for Diana, in fact near forty percent of the post output here has been about the wondrous one’s myriad adventures. We have regaled you, dear reader, with comic and graphic novel reviews, psychological breakdowns of Diana’s mantra and impact, not only in the world of comics but also in real life situations of feminism, emancipation and acceptance, not to mention in-depth looks at her many allies, and foes, biographies of her creators, and the sundry stunning writers and artists who have depicted her over the decades.
Wonder Woman is THE most important fictional female character ever committed to print, a shining beacon of hope and bastion of empowerment and equality, in the popular world of the superhero, she is the anomaly, relying on forgiveness, love and acceptance, rather than just the fist. That said, she is also a three millennium old Amazon warrior, who has been training, alongside her immortal sisters, in martial mastery since her illustrious and divine creation by a pantheon of Greek gods, so, if she needs to kick arse, let’s just say, very few can stand before her might.
So, in celebration of Wondy’s eighty year reign, we would love to share with you a selection of our favourite Precinct1313 Wonder Woman posts from throughout the past eight years of this blog’s existence, that regale our love and admiration of the scintillating scion of the sublime. Enjoy, and… Happy 80th Anniversary Diana, we love ya!
Wonder Woman: The True Amazon
Eisner Award winning writer/artist – Jill Thompson’s perfect parable of Diana’s earlier years is an alluring and sometimes provocative take on the Themysciran Titan, the storytelling contained within this terrific tome has a level of true emotional depth oft unfound in the medium, and you can re-visit our 2016 review – Right Here.
The legendary pairing of the Themysciran Princess and sullen eyed Cimmerian – Conan the Barbarian is equalled in this titanic tale by the mythical mixing of it’s superstar creators – Gail Simone and Aaron Lopresti. Simone’s slow but epic build up in the story allows us to richly immerse ourselves into Conan’s savage and tempestuous reality, of which you too can experience if you visit our glowing review from 2020 – Right Here!
Wonder Woman: Rebirth
Greg Rucka, Liam Sharp and Nicola Scott’s Rebirth series was a phenomenon both visually and in it’s stellar story-telling, and world building, and has ended up with the distinction of being one of my absolute favourite ever takes on Gaea’s glorious gal, and you can find out why when you re-visit our 2016 post – Right Here.
Why We Love Wonder Woman
A more recent post from July 2021, where we spend time reflecting on the core attributes about Zeus’ favoured daughter that initially attracted us to the classic character, and why we still hold her in such reverence. Why not wend your way over to this particularly poignant post – Right Here!
Wonder Woman: Tempest Tossed
Celebrated author – Laurie Halse Anderson and illustrator – Leila Del Luca provided a fresh and funky new take on Diana’s early upbringing on Paradise Island. A superb coming of age drama that’s not afraid to delve into the darker recesses of humankind, but is ultimately a tale of family, friends, love and emancipation. Indulge your senses in our review – Right Here.
Diana – Princess Of The Amazons
Diana: Princess of the Amazons tells the tale of the wondrous one many years before she became the icon known as Wonder Woman. An eleven year old girl growing up on the idyllic paradise island of Themyscira. This fabulous fable is an uplifting tale about dealing with the inevitable growing pains that everyone ultimately experiences on their emotional journey into adulthood. A young adult novel that can be enjoyed by all ages, and you can start your very own voyage into this wildly wonderful world – Right Here!
Happy 80th Anniversary Diana! Just 20 More Years To The Centenary!!
Hola, my absolutely astonishing amazonian associates, and with just two short weeks left until the 80th celestial celebration of the scintillating scion of the sublime known as Wonder Woman begins (October 21 – Wondy fact fans!) DC Comics have unleashed a 100 page super spectacular dedicated to the glorious reign of the Themysciran Titan. Does this titanic tome live up to it’s eight decade premise, and should you rush off to your local comic-book emporium to snafu a copy tout-suite? Well, the simple answer would be a resolute YES, but let’s dive a little deeper shall we…
Diana’s dazzling and dynamic debut was in the 1941 issue of Sensation Comics #8, and from that humble beginning we have since been regaled with eight excellent decades of her ongoing odyssey for emancipation, liberation and love. You see, Wondy’s rich heritage is tied to her unique ability to empathise and forgive, traits that aren’t necessarily intrinsic to the preponderance of costumed clad heroes, who tend to rely on the fist. Wonder Woman was cut from an altogether different cloth, preferring to extend a hand in friendship, rather than raise a fist in anger.
The Wonder Woman: 80th Anniversary Super Spectacular celebrates these astounding attributes with a 100 page awe-inspiring anthology featuring nine stunning stories that run the gamut of her hallowed Hellenic history, from the glorious Golden Age, through Silver and Bronze eras right up to her modern day adventures, there’s a thrilling and timely tale for whichever variant of Diana is your personal fave, residing within these resplendent pages of this awesome album!
Each of the nine stories presented in the anthology represent a different facet and perspective on Diana’s oeuvre, from the books opening chapter – In Memoriam – by Michael Conrad, Becky Cloonan and Jim Cheung, which explores the amazing amazon from lifelong compeer and beau – Steve Trevor’s perspective, as he regales her accomplishments to friend and confidante – Etta Candy.
Personal favourite of the terrific tales on offer would have to be – Better Angels – by Vita Ayala and Isaac Goodheart with a sensational story that features the felonious furry feline – Cheetah. This chapter feels like it’s been ripped straight from the late eighties/early nineties run of comics, certainly in character design and costumes, with what starts as a battle of wits and brawn between the two eternal nemeses ultimately concludes with a morally uplifting ending that beautifully conveys Wonder Woman’s ability to inspire anyone to do the right thing… even ravenously rabid rival – Cheetah.
There’s also a compelling compendium of comic cover collectables available to peruse and purchase, each one representing a different era of her radiant reign, showcasing her past, present and future to commemorate her enduring legacy. Being a huge fan of Diana’s original outfit (golden eagle top and blue and white star spangled skirt) I, of course went with the Gold and Silver age variants, but there is, most assuredly, a cover out there for every single fan of Gaea’s glorious gal.
The Wonder Woman: 80th Anniversary Super Spectacular absolutely lives up to Diana’s eighty year legacy, with a glorious gathering of scintillating scribes and astonishing artists, this commemorative comic is a must buy to all fans of the astounding Amazon. Plus, if you’ve never indulged in a Wonder Woman comic-book experience before (tell me that ain’t so…) then this is also a fantastic place to acquaint yourself with the single greatest fictional female in comicdom history… don your red boots, grab your golden lasso, jump into your invisible jet and speed your way down your local comic-book emporium and grab a piece of comic-book history, by the horns of the mighty Minotaur, you will not regret it!
Welcome once more, fellow fans of fantastic fiction, to another cool and compelling comic-cover compendium, and hoo-boy is there a herculean host of astounding art available this week at your local comic-book emporium, so many in fact that we were literally unable to purchase just one, so here for your delightful delectation are this week’s outstanding oeuvre on offer…
Red Sonja #1
Dynamite Comics’ she devil with a sword returns in a fantastic new Red Sonja series by Mirka Andolfo and artist Giuseppe Cafaro. This new chapter in the embattled life of Sonja begins in a village ravaged by fire, set by members of the dread Three Eyed Shezem. When Sonja arrives, the only survivor is a young child with curious white tattoos, this child will become Sonja’s travel companion on a journey through chilling ice fjords and imposing forests.
Stunning Italian writer/artist Mirka Andolfo brings her formidable skills to the harsh and barbarous world of Red Sonja, ably backed up by the incredible talents of Giuseppe Cafaro, whose impressive art shines from panel to panel like Sonja’s seminal silver armour in the undying flames of battle!
Wonder Woman: Black and Gold #3
The Wonder Woman: Black and Gold mini-series has so far wrought a magnificent myriad of absolutely fabulous comic covers from some of the greatest talents working in comics today. Each and every piece of art from this sublime series has been astonishing, with the fallout for this particular fan of the Themysciran Titan being that I have zero willpower and am thus compelled to buy each and every one I can lay my fanatical fingers upon (seriously, it’s so bad, my poor ol’ wallet has booked itself into therapy!)
This classic continuing celebration of the wondrous one is a must buy for fans, with the above dynamic duo of delectable designs brought to you by artistic auteurs – Jae Lee and Joshua Middleton.
Harley Quinn Annual 2021
The crazy clowness of crime returns in an astonishing annual that contains all the mirth and majestic mayhem that you’d expect from the psychedelic psychopath of print. This forty eight page finagling fable is brought to you by writer – Stephanie Phillips and artist – David Lafuente, who also supplies one of the classic covers above, alongside the vaunted variant by dynamic Derrick Chew.
This irascible issue finds our hapless hero bound and captured by Gotham’s newest SuperVillain – Keepsake, who kidnapped ol’ Harl in an attempt to convince her to be his partner in crime to overthrow and ultimately subjugate the people of Gotham. It’s going to take a titanic team up of Harley’s newest sidekick – Kevin, and undead rhyming ghoul – Solomon Grundy to save the hellacious hellcat from the devious designs of Keepsake.
These Classic Covers Are Available At Your Local Comic-Book Emporium Right Now! Which Of The Above Peerless Paintings In Print Is Your Favourite? Why Not Sound Off In The Comments Below…
“Oh… hi there, it’s great to see you, I hope you didn’t have a particularly hard time finding your way down here, the majestic mansion of mystery known as Precinct1313 certainly is a notoriously convoluted place… infinite in fact. So kudos for locating this particular annex. Usually, of course, the Precinct’s resident Carrion Crow Of Woe – Eldritch would have guided you here, but, he’s been feeling rather nonplussed since his recent encounter with Supergirl’s cat Streaky, so he is on a rather lengthy corvidae sabbatical right now… “
Though, as long as you followed my implicit instructions, it wasn’t necessarily a huge task to navigate – turn left at the Movie Mausoleum, head directly forward until you reach the Comic Crypts and then turn right and head into the boundless Ancient Amazon Archives, whereupon you will find an additional wing that leads ceremoniously unto the art gallery of the atavistic Greek gods themselves. A small part of which contains an extensive exhibition of malice and enmity, of beings whose one purpose in life is to oppose that which is truth, hope and love… the aspirations that ultimately transform into a celestial persona known as Wonder Woman.
Now, it’s well known throughout comic-book circles that Gotham’s grim guardian – The Batman has the greatest and most eclectic gallery of foes, and without a doubt the most famous of all SuperVillains reside within their ranks, even non comic-book fans have heard of the likes of the Penguin, Riddler, Two Face, and of course the medium’s most memorable and malevolently maniacal nemesis – The Joker.
With that said, the Themysciran Titan also possesses a wild array of distinctive adversaries to challenge her ongoing mission of peace, though maybe lesser known outside of comicdom, they are still most certainly as iconic and maliciously menacing as Batsy’s archive of antagonists.
Silver Swans, Gods Of War, Cheetahs, Psycho Doctors and malevolent Witches, Wonder Woman’s eclectic cast of foes really are as wild and diverse as the Caped Crusader’s… in fact, when you really delve headlong into their malign and pernicious psyche they are a hell of a lot more distinct and disparate than almost any enemies the pointy eared vigilante has in his antagonistic ranks.
ARES – GOD OF WAR
Of course, with Ares having been the prime villain in the 2017 Wonder Woman film he has rocketed up the ranks of Diana’s nemeses, though, if you have been a fan of Ms Prince’s comic for many a year (or literally decades, a la moi) then he has always been one of her most enduring and dangerous foes.
In Greek mythology, Ares is the son of Zeus and Hera and one of the twelve Olympian Gods. Designated as the God of War, Ares revels in the savagery and bloodletting of eternal human combat from whence he derives his power. In the Wonder Woman mythos, Ares (in the post crisis DC Universe) was Diana’s greatest enemy, it was through the actions of this barbaric god that Diana left her home of Themyscira so she could resist Ares’ threat on human kind, as he poised to unleash World War III upon the planet. Ares mercilessly opposed the creation of the Amazon race, who were championed by his own half sister – Artemis, who chose to preach the peaceful idylls of the earth goddess Gaea to the fledgling Amazon race, much to the chagrin of Ares who vowed to corrupt and destroy the immortal sisterhood.
My personal favourite Wonder Woman villain of all time is most assuredly Diana’s principal nemesis – The Cheetah, but did you know that the current holder of that appellation, one Barbara Ann Minerva, is actually just one of many that have held that titular title over the years? no? well read on fellow fans of ferocious felines.
Making her first ever appearance in Wonder Woman #6 was the original variant of the capricious cat – Priscilla Rich, created by the awesome alumni of William Moulton Marston and Harry G. Peter way back in 1943. This golden age version of Cheetah was a spoilt rich girl with an inferiority complex and split personality, who when shown up by Wonder Woman at a charity event, attempted yet failed to take the life of Diana. Later, falling into the mire of her dissociative identity disorder, Priscilla donned a colourful costume and became the first Cheetah.
Cheetah 2.0 was actually Priscilla’s very own niece – Debbie Domaine, who was very much removed from her aunt personality wise, being an ecology activist and fast friend with Wonder Woman herself. After Priscilla passes away, Debbie was kidnapped by the cult of Kobra, her aunt’s former villainous identity is revealed and through torture and insidious indoctrination, Debbie became the new embodiment of Cheetah.
Currently chowing down on hapless humans and ruining Wondy’s day is Barbara Ann Minerva – former British archaeologist and heiress. Babs inherited her predatory powers from the ancient plant god – Urzkartaga, who, trapped for aeons in the Urzari jungle sought a champion to free him of his imprisonment and herald his way to ultimately raise an army and conquer the known world – this avaricious avatar ended up being Babs Minerva. First appearing in Wonder Woman (volume 2) #170, Babs continues to create chaos for the Themysciran Titan to this day, and recently was the main villain in the celluloid classic that is Wonder Woman 1984. (We also interviewed her a couple of years back – right here)
Witch-Goddess – Circe is next in our iniquitous inventory of villainy, first ushered unto the DC Universe in the 1949 issue of Wonder Woman #37, this original (pre-crisis) version of the character, created by Robert Kanigher and Harry G. Peter was a centuries old sorceress who acquired her immortality from a rare elixir named Vitae, and was eventually banished to an uninhabited island in space known as Sorca, for her crimes against the Amazon race.
Post the DC Comics shake up of their universe in the Crisis storyline, Circe’s previous history was re-written by the great George Perez, though the core of her characterisation remained similar. In this revision of her mythos, Circe is the daughter of the Greek Titans – Hyperion and Perseis and is an immortal sorceress and former princess of the isle of Colchis (legendary resting place of the Golden Fleece) An advocate of the goddess – Hecate for millennia, her powers are myriad including the ability to change and reform reality and matter, she can control minds and raise the dead to fight for her, on top of the more mundane and everyday powers (at least in the comic-book world) of flight and strength. We also interviewed the malefic Circe a few years back – Right Here, though our poor hapless interviewer would really rather forget his calamitous conference with the witchy wonder!
Like felonious feline – Cheetah, the capricious cygnet known as Silver Swan has been inhabited by three very different persona over the decades. A trio of women have inherited the majestic yet melancholic moniker of The Silver Swan, beginning with the tragic tale of Helen Alexandros. Helen was a talented ballet dancer, who oft found herself bereft of balletic opportunities because (or so she believed) of her average looks and physique. Striking a pact with Ares for angelic beauty, Helen was gifted the exquisite form she so desired on the proviso that she destoyed the Amazon champion, Wonder Woman. Mystically enhanced by Ares, she became the Silver Swan, and was granted the powers of flight, super strength and the capacity to unleash powerful sonic blasts using her voice.
Second in line to ruffle her feathers at Diana was Valerie Beaudry, a lonely and dejected personality with low self esteem and severe social anxiety problems. In fact her only connection to societal structure came in the form of a pen pal – Henry Armbruster, industrial head of Armbruster International. Upon meeting for the first time, Henry exploited Valerie’s longing for acceptance and friendship by choosing her for his secretive Silver Swan project. Through experimentation, Valerie emerged as the new face of the Silver Swan, retaining all the powers of the previous Alexandros avian variant. With the succour of wonder Woman, Valerie gradually broke free from the manipulative control of Armbruster, and in due course became an agent of justice, initially joining the meta-human team – The Captains of Industry, and a brief stint in The Suicide Squad.
The swan song of this group of volatile volitants and current holder of the sonic scream is Vanessa Kapatelis, a former adherent and eventual friend of Diana. Yet, Vanessa’s friendship with Wondy and her inherent insecurities were perniciously preyed upon by Witch-Goddess – Circe, who utilised Vanessa’s diffident personality and slowly turned her against the Amazon princess. With the assistance of the diabolical Doctor Psycho, Circe conditioned and transformed the insecure former friend of Diana into the latest form of the Silver Swan. Even after Wonder Woman defeated Circe and released Vanessa from her thrall, her unjustified torment continued as she was summarily kidnapped from recovery at a Buenos Aries hospital by deceitful pharmaceutical mogul – Veronica Cale. Cale modified Vanessa through cybernetic implants and sent her out, once more, to fight her former friend, Diana. With her eventual defeat again at the hands of Wonder Woman, Vanessa retreated to the paradise isle of Themyscira for rehabilitation and solace.
Phew! and that, my astounding Amazonian associates is just the literal tip of the proverbial iceberg when it comes to the astonishing Amazon’s array of aggressive antagonists, I mean I could go on (an on) but this post is already reaching near encyclopedic proportions! Yet, with Wonder Woman’s 80th anniversary on the near horizon (October 21, Wondy fact fans) you can be sure that there’ll be plenty more posts emanating from the Precinct’s Ancient Amazon Archives, celebrating not just our favourite Hellenic herald but also her nearest and not so dearest…
Suffering Sappho! DC Comics titanic twelve tome testament to the Themysciran Titan will include brand new series launches, anthology specials, free comics and more…
That’s right, my astonishing Amazon affiliates, DC Comics, the bastion of superlative superheroes, will be honouring Diana’s long lasting legacy as the world’s foremost female freedom fighter with an absolutely astounding array of anthologies and albums commencing on October 21 with a 100 page super spectacular featuring thrilling tales of the Themysciran Titan’s timeless acts of hope and empowerment.This terrific tome is brought to you by acclaimed auteurs such as – Amy Reeder, Becky Cloonan, Jim Lee, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Laura Braga and many, many more. The collectable comic will also feature a veritable virtuoso of variant covers that spotlight Wondy across her many different incredible incarnations throughout the Gold, Silver, and Bronze ages of comicdom.
Wonderful Women Of The World brings together a perfect plethora of talented artists and writers to celebrate the many international female role models across the globe. With Wondy standing for truth, justice and equality, she has been a superlative source of inspiration to real life pioneers in the world of activism, science, sport, and diplomacy and this new title will include visionaries such as – Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Greta Thunberg, Serena Williams and Malala Yousafzai amongst others. With a colossal cover by the fantastic Nicola Scott, and spearheaded by best selling author – Laurie Halse Anderson, this terrific title will be available to purchase on September 28.
Of all the titles so far announced, the one I’m personally most hyped for is the Phil Jimenez and Kelly Sue DeConnick collaboration – Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons. Millennia ago, Queen Hera and the goddesses of the Olympian pantheon grew greatly dissatisfied with their male counterparts, and far from their sight, put a plan into action. A new society was born, one never before seen on Earth, capable of wondrous but also terrible things, yet their existence would not stay secret for long. When a woman in despair, named Hippolyta crosses the Amazons path, a series of events is set in motion that will ultimately lead to an outright war in Olympus, and the creation of Earth’s greatest guardian! Phil Jimenez is one of my absolute favourite WW artists/writers of all time, and his work on this first issue is looking sumptuous and spectacular! Wonder Woman Historia unleashes on October 19.
From October 5th you can follow in the fantastic footsteps of Nubia and the Amazons. Spiralling out of the thrilling Infinite Frontier storyline, this marvellous mini-series by Vita Ayala, Stephanie Williams and Alitha Martinez finds Nubia embracing the role of Queen of Themyscira, but with this prestigious position comes climactic challenges! With the unexpected arrival of new Amazons, Nubia is forced to confront her past and forge a new path forward for her beloved sisters. Though, little does she know, that a great evil grows beneath the idyllic island of Themyscira, and it’s now up to the former guardian of Doom’s Doorway to unite the tribe before their perfect paradise is lost, forever!
Phew! and that’s just a few of the myriad titles available to celebrate Wondy’s eightieth anniversary, so why not join us in October, oh fellow fans of fantastic female fiction, where we shall once again bask in the alluring beauty of the legendary isle of the immortals and their harmonious Hellenic herald – Wonder Woman!
It is 1941, and eminent psychology professor and inventor, William Moulton Marston, radically shakes up the male dominated market of Superhero comics with his charismatic and compelling creation – Wonder Woman, unleashed in the progressive pages of All Star Comics #8, Diana was an instant hit, and less than a year later the seminal character received her very own ongoing comic-book series, which is still being published monthly to this day, almost eight decades on from her groundbreaking inception.
It is 1982, and a nine year old Batman fanatic opens his eyes to a whole new and enlightening world outside of the grimy, corrupt streets of Gotham City, transcending the grim, driven, dark angel of justice known as The Batman, and accepting into his other (comic book) reality a much more virtuous and progressive character. A simple gift from his mum would ultimately turn into a lifelong (but wholesome) obsession, with Wonder Woman helping to not only sate a young imagination with fantastic tales of heroism, mythological monsters and warrior women, but ultimately also help guide his future precepts, and tenets.
I, of course, am that nine year old Batfan, and though the above statement of receiving guidance from a fictional character on moral precepts may sound corny, it’s also true! You see, even though much of our growth mentally and morally is instigated through parentage, friendships and schooling, we are also heavily influenced by (especially now) the fictional worlds we reside in, be that video-games, novels, movies and, of course comic-books.
My comic-book upbringing, strangely, mirrors that of my actual upbringing, and, no, that does not mean my dad ran around in tights, a pointy eared mask and fought crime, but he did share similarities to the caped crusader. He was a driven, but kind man, a member of the British parachute regiment who received the military cross for his act of heroism in rescuing injured members of his squad from a minefield, like the Batman, he was a hero that I looked up to. My mum, again has always been a kind and gentle soul with a love of animals and people, whom has never a bad word to say about anyone, she is also a feminist and rights activist, she also is my hero. Batsy and Wondy have always felt like perfect fictional counterparts to my parents, and that connection between real world and fiction has what’s really led to comic-books holding a special place in my essence.
My adoration of the Themysciran Titan not only derives from my affection for comic-books and a long-standing fascination of Greek mythology, but also my love of strong women in all forms of narrative fiction, and reality, in fact I have always preferred kick-arse female fighters in my video-games and movies and most certainly comics. I have over the years here in the Precinct written about the female influences in my life, my love of martial arts films stems mostly from my youth and watching fantastic fighting female furies like Moon Lee and Cynthia Rothrock reverse the tropes and kick everyone’s arses in film, and don’t get me started on the myriad female superheroes outside of Diana that I adore.
Ultimately though, I look up to Wonder Woman because she stands for everything I personally believe in, social justice, diversity and equity. Fairness, equality and emancipation are tenets that we should all aspire to, and Wonder Woman was, is, and always shall be a golden beacon of hope held up to shine her light on the philosophical theory of a fair and equal society. Long may she reign!
Felicitations fellow fans of fantastic female fiction, and welcome to another efficacious and ebullient episode of Precinct1313 Recommends, and ‘Suffering Sappho’ this impeccable instalment is most assuredly a gift from the glorious gods of Olympus themselves as they deliver a dynamic and dazzling design designation deity in the form of Diana – Princess of Themyscira, with Wonder Woman: Black And Gold.
In honour of hallowed Hellenic herald – Wonder Woman’s upcoming 80th anniversary, DC Comics have commissioned this superb and scintillating six issue mini-series, an astounding anthology album embellished in magnificent monochromatic hues of gold and black! This astonishing analect comprises tenacious tales of the Themysciran Titan by comic-book alums – John Arcudi, Nadia Shammas, AJ Mendez, Becky Cloonan, Amy Reeder, Ming Doyle, Ramona Fradon, Joshua Middleton, Ryan Sook, Warren Louw, David Mack Jen Bartel, Morgan Beem, Sandra Hope and Carla Cohen… phew! a classic and compelling cadre of charismatic comic creatives!
Featuring five fabulous fables that run the glorious gamut of Diana’s eight decade history – John Arcudi and Ryan Sook combine to weave a thrilling tale of Diana’s illustrious immortality, while Becky Cloonan imparts an indomitable account of Wondy’s most valuable weapon against the darkness of man’s world. Amazing Amy Reeder transports us back to the Golden Age of comics for a riotous and rambunctious romp with edacious Etta Candy, then AJ Mendez and Ming Doyle whisk us away to Themyscira for a terse and tense family reunion and finally, Nadia Shammas and Morgan Beem present a prescient parable of Diana’s past failures returning to haunt her.