Wonder Woman – Volume 1 – 328


Wonder Woman – Volume 1 – 328

General Info

Issue No:
328
On Sale Date:
August 1985
Cover Date:
December 1985
Era:
Bronze Age
Story Title:
To Everything A Season...

Creative Team

Cover Artist:
Joe Brozowski, Dick Giordano
Writer:
Mindy Newell
Penciller:
Don Heck
Inker:
Pablo Marcos
Letterer:
Helen Vesik
Colourist:
Shelly Eiber
Editor:
Alan Gold

Characters

Main:
Wonder Woman (Diana Prince), Steve Trevor, Etta Candy, General Darnell
Heroes:
N/A
Villains:
N/A
Olympians:
Demeter, Kore, Hermes, Zeus, Aphrodite
Amazons:
Hippolyta, Paula (von Gunther), Antiope, Lysippe, Orthia
Other:
Major Keith Griggs, Captain Montez, Lieutenant Lauren Haley, Sofia Constantinas, Howard Huckaby, Senator Covington, Delilah
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Comments

This issue’s plot line has a very haphazard and rushed feel to it, jumping from location to location. By now the Title’s fate had been sealed and DC had already decided to ‘kill’ Wonder Woman off as part of the “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover event.

With only one more issue to go of the existing run it is apparent they are trying to tie up as many of the loose plot ends as possible, but because some of these story lines had been running for some time their conclusion comes across as extremely rushed and abrupt in my opinion.

This issue is also noteworthy for two additional reasons. Firstly, because Wonder Woman hardly even features in the issue and secondly, because Diana is finally forced to reveal her secret identity to her friends, although given the significance of such an event it is simply covered in just a couple of panels!

Synopsis

A massive storm batters the Eastern Seaboard of the United Stated forcing people to huddle inshore in civil defence shelters. Through this wind and rain in Washington DC, Steve Trevor races across the street into the Pentagon. As he enters the office he apologises for being late to Keith, Etta and Lauren. The President has apparently ordered them to stand at “Defcon One” and General Darnell had wanted them all to be here at 0730 sharp. Etta advises that Diana will be along any minute as they debate the reason for the meeting.

Keith says that he doubts the Russians are behind the screwy weather no matter what the P.R. men say, so he feels the reason for the meeting is probably more likely to be about Tropidor. Steve asks him what on earth happened down there and Keith recounts the events after their encounter with the Aztec God…

He and Lauren, together with the reporter Gene Lewis, had made their way back into town in a car to the rendezvous point as arranged. The ruined streets were lined with rubble and dead bodies and progress in the vehicle was difficult. Handing Lauren a rifle to protect herself, Keith had told her that he and Lewis were going to do some scouting around. The two men then made their way along the street checking for signs of life as they went.

Suddenly an old crone had called after them and beckoned them to follow her to their friend Montez. The two men followed her into a cave and she lead them to a throne room where Montez sat, wide eyed and open mouthed like a zombie.  She told them that he had opened the door to chaos, summoning the “hidden” one. The trickster had then devoured his soul and now both of them had gone…

Meanwhile, across town, General Darnell is shaving in front of a mirror. He muses that the howling winds outside sound like the end of the world and in effect it is for him. Still, he intends to go out with glory when Covington finishes his career for good. Glory? That seems like an old fashioned value right now. He thinks back to when he was a kid and wanted to join the Army Corps after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Was it really forty four years ago?

Elsewhere, on Paradise Island inside the Senate, the Amazons have gathered to hear Antiope and Paula address them. The crowd demands to know where Hippolyta is and Antiope begs them to not become unruly. Paula asks that they show the queen the respect she deserves on her arrival. As the Amazon Queen enters the chamber with Sofia at her side, she is advised by the young girl to turn back as the mob looks angry. But Hippolyta tells her this is the Senate and there is nothing to fear here. She then faces Antiope and Paula and asks why she has been summoned? Paula kneels before her and asks her to remember that they are all her loyal and loving friends, but Antiope tells her to get to her feet and tells her not to grovel before someone no longer fit to claim her loyalty. Paula replies that she will not be told how to show her love. Antiope then asks if the scientist is now having second thoughts and the Senate cry out for her not to weaken her resolve.

Enraged, Sofia punches Antiope accusing her of being a Judas and the guards have to restrain her. Hippolyta orders Sofia to be released at once and the guards look at first the queen and then Antiope for guidance. Antiope orders them to confine Sofia to her quarters while she decides what fate  should befall the girl. The Amazon queen demands to know what is going on and Antiope replies that Hippolyta must surrender her symbols of power to her, as the Senate has ruled. An astonished queen looks at Paula asking whether this is indeed true? Her sheepish friend replies that two nights ago the Senate met in secret on Science Island and favoured her to succeed Hippolyta but she had declined. Antiope then continues that she however gladly accepted the role to be a worthy ruler, not one who meddles with Man’s World or disturbed outsiders like Sofia. Even Hippolyta’s own daughter has disowned her! The Amazon Queen responds that Antiope is being less than honest as it is ruthless ambition that drives her motives. She is queen as the Goddesses have ruled and only the Goddesses may wrest that power from her!

Suddenly there is a blinding light and the Earth Mother Demeter materialises in front of them dressed in battle armour. The Goddess tells them that a battle looms that if they lose, all will be lost in the realms of God and mortal. With another flash the Amazons find themselves suddenly decked out in mystical armour. Demeter advises them that the sorcery that imbues their weapons will not last long as Olympus is sorely taxed, depending on the Amazons’ courage and heart above all else! Just then the ground begins to shake and crack and dark shadow demons burst through the floor battling another warrior woman. Demeter recognises her daughter, Kore, who tells her mother that Tartarus has fallen and the shade world is no more! As the shadow demons pour up through the opening, the Amazons and Goddesses take battle formation but soon find themselves outnumbered and surrounded by the attacking hordes…

Back in Washington General Darnell is being driven in a staff car to Capitol Hill. Again he thinks back to his younger years when he was a trainee pilot showing off in a bi-plane. His stunts used to get him into trouble and he was told off for being a lone wolf, reminded time and again that combat flying depends on staying with the pack. He had later seen eight of his group die fighting in Burma, making him more determined to survive. He got a promotion soon enough and was dubbed the “hotshot” squadron leader, enjoying all the attention that garnered, especially from the women. One girl in particular caught his eye and he became besotted with the Asian beauty whose name was Delilah. However, although he was introduced to her family and made pleasantries he never really trusted her father…

Meanwhile not far away in the Pentagon, Diana finally arrives at the office and apologises for being late. Just as she asks them what they think the reason for the meeting is, there is a flash of light and Hermes the Messenger God materialises before their eyes! He tells the Princess that he has been sent to take her home and as she stammers for words he adds that there is no time for masquerades. Her mother has need of her and Zeus himself commands her presence by his side! With that, Diana realises she has no choice and before a stunned office transforms into Wonder Woman! Steve is lost for words and Keith cannot believe he had tried to put the moves on her!

Wonder Woman tells the God she is ready to depart but before he can reply there is a rumble and armed Soldiers of Quard jump down through a hole in the ceiling. Keith orders Etta to go and get reinforcements as Hermes and Wonder Woman do battle with the attackers. Seconds later security guards arrive to find the soldiers lying on the floor unconscious. As the attackers are taken into custody, Steve asks Etta where Wonder Woman went and she replies that she and Hermes just flew away…

On Paradise Island, the Amazons are falling one by one. Hippolyta finds herself in a stranglehold and just manages to break free, using her sword to fell her attacker. Despite their weapons she realises that the Amazons are losing and her sisters are everywhere, in agony and dying. As she battles another advancing demon Sofia sees a second monster advancing behind the queen unseen. She shouts a warning but cannot be heard. Antiope leaps to her queen’s aide but is killed by the beast. Seeing Antiope die, Hippolyta slays the creature and asks the gods when the killing will end?

The rain continues to pour in Washington DC as the General’s car arrives at its destination. He is met by Howard who leads him into Covington’s Office. The Senator is sitting at his desk and hopes the General realises that the privileges of rank will not follow him into prison. Darnell replies that he has decided to give the Senator his victory on a Silver Platter. Covington replies that while that may be a noble gesture it is too late. Darnell reiterates that if he wants a scapegoat then Darnell is it, but for Covington to leave his staff and Wonder Woman out of it. Just then a female voice interrupts, saying that they want things to be as ugly as possible – humiliating and devastating. Darnell turns to see an asian woman step from the shadows and he recognises her as Delilah!

She explains that she has not forgotten the forty years that have passed since they had last seen each other. She remembers how he had shared meals at her father’s table but then betrayed him, abusing her father’s trust and striking against him. Darnell’s squadron destroyed his wealth and power and his spying lead the Partisans to her father’s hiding place where he was tried and hanged. It is true her father’s warehouses had served the needs of the Japanese but so what if he was a Collaborator? Wisdom dictated that course – he had responsibilities – many lives under his wing. Still, although the Japanese could not help her father they did not desert her. She was hidden in many outposts of the Pacific and learned the true nature of life – and men. As the war ended she fled to the Americas, a haven for the corrupt and the ruthless. She was at home in that world and slowly created an empire of her own – “Argenco”, vast and exploitive complete with its own savage army and spies everywhere. Through them she learned of Darnell’s indiscretion shipping contraband arms. She adds that it is not good business to step on a competitor’s toes too hard as they will notice and come after you – just as she has come after Darnell! This is not just business though – it is personal

On an island once called Paradise, the Amazons are dying. The shadow men have now combined into a giant and just as the women are losing heart Hermes and Wonder Woman appear in the skies above. The God swoops down to attack the creature but it burns him with its touch. Realising the desperateness of the situation if even a God is vulnerable to its touch, Wonder Woman decides they need a weapon. In the distance she can see Science Island is in flames and the Purple ray is firing into the sky randomly. She reasons that the ray is a life restorer but perhaps to that ungodly thing, inimical to all that lives, the ray will deal destruction. With that she lifts the device and aims it squarely at the creature. With a roar the creature disintegrates before the grateful eyes of the cheering Amazons.

But Hippolyta does not see a victory and tells them that this is merely a setback to their enemy. Swords and shields will not save their world. Sofia tries to tell the Queen that they have won and that Diana has returned to stand by her side, but Hippolyta replies that her daughter has returned to die. Sofia cannot believe her ears as the queen adds “It is over! Death is everywhere!”. Paula tries to reason with her friend, saying that it was once the same in ancient Athens and that Hippolyta has ever been ready to do battle when no other hope remained. But the queen replies that those prehistoric battlegrounds are overgrown with weeds again. Aphrodite answered their prayers for peace by creating Paradise Island, but now the dream is over. With that she puts her head in her hands…

Back in Covington’s office, Delilah is also telling Darnell that it is over. As he replies that it is over but not the way she thinks, he is interrupted by Howard who advises that the Pentagon is under attack! Darnell tells Covington that he will be back and exits followed by a concerned Howard, who wants to ensure Etta is OK.

Unknown to them, the attackers have already been captured and are under guard. Etta tells the others that as things seem to have calmed down, perhaps they should listen to the tape that Darnell had prepared for them? Realising she has been keeping the tape a secret all this time, they go into his office and she presses the play button on the recorder. Darnell’s’ voice comes out of the speaker, saying he owes them all an apology.

As Darnell and Howard make their way as fast as possible across town to the Pentagon, the General’s message continues as he explains that Etta was only following his orders and he takes fullresponsibility. He thought he knew better than Congress and the Commander in Chief and had believed Montez to be the lesser of two evils in the Tropidor conflict. He has always been known to fly solo and do things his way and this time instead of bringing him glory it has landed him in hot water. He tells Steve that he will have to pick up the pieces once Darnell has resigned and wishes the team good luck. As the message ends Howard and Darnell enter the office…

On Paradise Island a priestess leads the Amazons in chanting their prayers, for they who had forsaken the world of men may soon die alongside that world they left. As Diana listens, she thinks to herself that her mother gives up too quickly. She is as powerful a warrior as Diana, but the queen’s subjects follow her to the end. And even now at the end of everything they hold sacred, the feud between mother and daughter continues and they cannot make peace…

High up in Olympus, the Gods look down on the assembled Amazons in the temple. Zeus tells Aphrodite that if her Amazons refuse to fight, then Olympus will have to struggle alone. But without them, he foresees the Gods’ battle to save themselves and their world will be hopelessly short!