Wonder Woman – Volume 1 – 167


Wonder Woman – Volume 1 – 167

General Info

Issue No:
167
On Sale Date:
November 1966
Cover Date:
January 1967
Era:
Silver Age
Story Title:
The Secret of Tabu Mt.!
Strange Power of the Magic Lasso!

Creative Team

Cover Artist:
Ross Andru, Mike Esposito
Writer:
Robert Kanigher
Penciller:
Ross Andru
Inker:
Mike Esposito
Letterer:
N/A
Colourist:
N/A
Editor:
Robert Kanigher

Characters

Main:
Wonder Woman (Diana Prince), Steve Trevor
Heroes:
N/A
Villains:
N/A
Olympians:
N/A
Amazons:
N/A
Other:
Nurse Diana Prince, Bill
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Comments

I’m not sure whether it was a conscious effort on the part of Editor Robert Kanigher, but the character of Steve Trevor continues to become more and more irritating as each issue continues! He is portrayed as a love struck, chauvinistic, and egotistical buffoon and it begins to stretch credibility to the point of breaking that Wonder Woman continues to want to be with him! Indeed, his actions in the second story would probably have lead to the modern day version of Diana decking him!

Synopsis - First Story

Wonder Woman reflects on her chance meeting one day with a nurse called Diana Prince, that had allowed her to adopt a secret identity. The real Diana Prince had left for South America to be with her loved one allowing the Amazon Princess to take her place so that she too could be near her loved one Steve Trevor.

Thankfully no one has yet uncovered her dual identity. As Wonder Woman she battles thugs and ruthless gunmen and as Diana Prince she gets to spend quality time with Steve. She thus successfully leads her dual life, surprising villains when they least expect it but the arrival of a letter one day from the real Diana Prince casts a shadow over this other civilian guise she wears.

The letter reads that the real Diana wants to return home and re-take her place in order to forget her heartache. Apparently, her fiancé is missing on a forbidden solo mountain climb and she believes he will never return. Wonder Woman realises that without her secret identity, her ability to fight crime will be seriously impaired and she decides to try and help Diana find her fiancé so that she will remain in South America and let the Amazon Princess continue posing as her.

She summons her invisible plane and once aboard is soon speeding south towards the town where Diana is living. As she touches down she sees Diana weeping on a nearby bench and she approaches the distraught girl, offering her help. Diana tells the Amazon how Bill, her fiancée, has gone missing while climbing Tabu Mt. looking for lost minerals in order to make a fortune for both him and Diana. Wonder Woman then questions some of the local natives who tell her that it is death to go up the mountain and that the foreigner will never be seen again. Evil spirits have taken him away!

Wonder Woman tells Diana to wait while she goes up Tabu Mt. to investigate further. Superstitions never frighten an Amazon. And so the fearless Princess makes her way up the winding path which she assumes Bill would have taken but she is unaware that as she climbs ever higher, a group of savage warriors are watching her every move! Suddenly, from hidden recesses in the rocks they launch an attack throwing their axes at her. Wonder Woman deftly uses her bracelets to deflect the incoming weapons and sends them hurtling back at their throwers! She then removes her lasso and wraps it around the warriors and demands to know from them what has happened to Bill. They tell her that he is about to be sacrificed to the Gods of Tabu Mt. for daring to come up the sacred mountain.

Wonder Woman picks up the bound warriors and hefts them onto her back before continuing to make her way upwards. Just then though she is confronted by a wild cat which blocks her path. The Amazon Princess instantly drops her burden and grapples with the advancing cat before throwing it over the ledge. But during the commotion she has let go of the lasso and freeing themselves, the warriors take the opportunity to ensnare Wonder Woman with her own weapon. Enjoying the fact that she is now compelled to obey their every command, they order her to walk the rest of the way up on her hands. Helplessly Wonder Woman obeys and soon the warriors lead their prisoner to the summit where a huge statue atop an Inca pyramid resides. In the cupped hands of the large statue lays Bill.

As Wonder Woman is lead up the steps she is told she must face the same trials as Bill faces. As she approaches him she fears the moment when Bill will reveal her secret identity, but to her relief he believes it is his lover, the real Diana Prince. The Amazon Princess then fearlessly addresses the leader of the warriors, asking what happens if she successfully undergoes the trials? He replies that she will be freed together with Bill, but that nobody has ever survived the trials. Bill desperately pleads with Wonder Woman not to offer herself as a sacrifice ahead of him but she insists, stating that she will prove the power of the Gods of this mountain is just superstition to terrify the ignorant people.

And so the Amazon Princess is lead to a wide abyss where she is told that no one has ever leaped it, and lived! She confidently throws herself into the void but suddenly finds that there are no air currents for her to glide upon as they are all down drafts! As she starts to plunge she stretches with all her effort and manages to just grab the far ledge in time. With a daring back flip she flies back across the abyss and lands in front of the surprised warrior chief.

For the next trial she is told to pass along the flaming pathway. Wonder Woman surveys the burning coals before diving above the flaming bed with eye blurring speed. She uses the hot up drafts to glide over the pathway without being singed. The chief orders her to return back along the path and she does so, but whirling around this time as she goes. She collides with the startled chief who drops the lasso. Just then all heads look upwards as they hear a roar and boulders begin to tumble down the mountainside towards them all. The chief points to them saying that she has angered the gods but she replies it is superstitious nonsense and that it is simply an avalanche. As the huge rocks hurtle down she punches them into tiny fragments.

Finally, when the last of the boulders has been destroyed the chief tells her that her magic is mightier than the Gods of Tabu Mt. She has saved them and they will now grant her any wish. And so soon she and Bill have been freed and make their way back down the path. Bill says that he cannot believe Diana could perform such feats – it is as if she is a different person! She realises that she has to bring him back to his Diana without him thinking she is Wonder Woman.

As they near the village she tells Bill that after all her exertions she would like to change into something comfortable and she races ahead, shouting back that she will meet him at the bench in the village. Wonder Woman then sprints to where the real Diana still sobs on the bench and she tells the girl that Bill is safe! He has also discovered rare minerals on the mountain that will make the two of them rich. However, he thinks it is her that rescued him and not the real Wonder Woman. She therefore has to make him believe that in order for the Amazon’s secret to be kept safe.

A few moments later Wonder Woman watches Bill arrives from her hidden vantage point. He embraces the real Diana Prince and asks her how she had managed to perform such incredible feats? She smiles and replies that love made her stronger!

With her secret safe, Wonder Woman boards her plane and flies home, thinking to herself that what Diana told Bill was true…love can make an Amazon out of anybody!

Synopsis - Second Story

Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor are sitting on a beach relaxing and for the thousandth time, he asks her to marry him. As always, she replies that she cannot do that until her services are no longer needed to battle crime and injustice and asks him to be patient.

At that moment they see in the skies an airliner with engine trouble begin to plummet towards earth. Wonder Woman leaps to her feet and removing her golden lasso, hurls it up at the approaching plane, looping the lariat over the nose. Using her incredible strength she manages to guide the plane down to safely touch down on the beach. Steve still finds himself amazed at the capabilities of the lasso.

The next day he and Wonder Woman are again relaxing at the same spot and again he asks her to marry him. She says she would if she could but her answer is still the same. Suddenly they hear gunfire and turn to see a police car giving chase to an open top car driven by gun wielding thugs.

Steve gets to his feet ready to try and stop the bandits but Wonder Woman warns him he will be run over. Instead she unhooks her lasso and throws it around the thugs and orders them to stop and surrender. Compelled by the magic of the lasso they are forced to obey and the police make an arrest. After yet another demonstration of the lasso’s powers, Steve forms an idea.

As they watch the police leading the robbers away he offers to wind up her lasso for her and she smiles, thanking him. He begins to twirl it over his head and before Wonder Woman knows what is happening he throws it around her. He then commands her to stop stalling and marry him! She begs him to drop the lasso and not to hold her to his command. She will marry him when the time is right and she asks to be released. But he replies that he does not want to wait any longer!

Just then they notice an enemy submarine surfacing off shore. Saboteurs disembark into a rubber dingy and begin to make their way towards the beach. She turns to confront them and demands that Steve lets her go so she can deal with them. But he replies that he can handle them and tells her to stay where she is. Unable to disobey, she watches as he runs down towards the shoreline with the other end of the lasso tightly wrapped around his hand. He clouts the surprised saboteurs but is knocked out by the hull of the submarine which has moved in to assist. An anxious Amazon, unable to disobey Steve’s orders to remain where she is, gives a mighty tug on the rope and hauls Steve back out of the water. She gives him a passionate kiss for his bravery but he refuses to let go of the lasso. As the submarine turns to make its escape Steve says he wishes he could stop it. Wonder Woman replies his wish is her command and leaps into the water, still bound in with the lasso. She swims out to the vessel and punches a hole in the hull. The crew are forced to abandon the sinking sub and duly surrender.

A short while later after the crew have been jailed, Steve and the still bound Wonder Woman are driving to City Hall in order to obtain a marriage license. En route though they see a girder hanging from an overhead construction crane suddenly snap and fall towards the crowded street below. Unwilling to remove the lasso, he agrees to give her “plenty of slack” so she can stop the girder from harming anybody. She leaps up and catches the girder in mid air, before bringing it gently down to rest on the sidewalk.

The grateful crowd thank her as she returns to the jeep and Wonder Woman asks Steve if he will release her now he can see how much she is needed? But the stubborn colonel replies that she was sensational and still manages to do everything while bound that she could do if free. The lasso must therefore remain in place as it is the only way he can ensure she will marry him.

A few minutes later as they continue to drive through the streets they see a circus parade approaching from the other direction. Without warning the Lion’s cage is jolted by a bump in the road and the door swings open, allowing the huge cat to escape onto the street. Again, the tireless Amazon leaps out to confront the peril and again asks Steve to release her. He replies not until he thinks it is absolutely necessary, which he does not think it is as she can do everything while still bound!

Wonder Woman confronts the savage beast which leaps at her, sending the Princess tumbling to the ground. But she uses her bracelets to protect herself from the Lion’s massive jaws and clouts it on the nose. She then hefts the stunned cat up above her head and hurls it back inside the cage!

She then gets back into the jeep and they continue on towards City Hall. She tells him that there will have to come a time when he will release her so why not now? He replies that as long as she can perform al her courageous feats, bound or unbound, the answer is no! Shortly they pull up in front of the City Hall steps and he tells her he will release her just as soon as they are married. He adds that he has dreamed of this moment for so long and once they are married, he will withdraw some money from his bank just across the street so they can have a dreamy honeymoon.

Suddenly they hear gunfire and see that the bank has juts been robbed by an armed gang who are now making their getaway. He tells her to remain in the jeep to watch her “prospective husband” in action. He then leaps out of the jeep and races at the surprised gang members, delivering punches left right and centre, all the while still holding on tightly the lasso. But Steve is caught by a blow from one of the gang and stunned, he falls to the ground letting go of the golden rope.

Seeing her chance, Wonder Woman swiftly jumps out of the jeep and lays into the gang, giving them no chance at all. She then uses her lasso to ensnare them and tells Steve that this is the proper use of the lasso – against crime and injustice. He meekly replies that it is a crime that he had to let go of the lasso as that was his only chance of marrying her. She smiles and says that when the time comes along he will not need to lasso her to marry him – she will be only to happy to do so. He just needs to be patient! He responds that it looks like he will have to be, although he has not given up yet and will just have to wait for another chance!