Wonder Woman – Volume 1 – 239


Wonder Woman – Volume 1 – 239

General Info

Issue No:
239
On Sale Date:
October 1977
Cover Date:
January 1978
Era:
Bronze Age
Story Title:
A Duke Named Deception!

Creative Team

Cover Artist:
Rich Buckler, Vince Colletta
Writer:
Gerry Conway
Penciller:
Jose Delbo
Inker:
Vince Colletta
Letterer:
Milton Snapinn
Colourist:
Gerry Serpe
Editor:
Larry Hama

Characters

Main:
Wonder Woman (Diana Prince)
Heroes:
Flash (Jay Garrick)
Villains:
Duke of Deception
Olympians:
Mars (Ares)
Amazons:
N/A
Other:
General Blankenship, Etta Candy, Colonel Belushi, Lieutenant Pierre Marchand
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Comments

The mystery of the creative team’s approach to colouring continues in this issue as not only do her boots retain their yellow stripe, but her magic belt has turned from yellow to white – though not, it appears, when she is on covers! So much for mirroring the TV show costume…

Synopsis

Nazi spies intent on assassinating General MacArthur, who is still in the city, faces Wonder Woman in a battle of bullets and bracelets.

Suddenly, another figure appears on the scene to help the Amazon Princess, who turns out to be one of her colleagues from the JSA, a man known as The Flash! She asks him what he is doing here considering that he operates from Keystone City and not here in New York. He replies that he will tell her later and wastes no time in laying into the thugs using his super speed. Having floored one nazi, he turns to face another who is about to open fire. In a blur, he removes the gun from the startled spy and then knocks him out. The remaining member of the gang begins to flee but Flash easily catches up to him, even though the German was Hamburg winner of the 1937 all Germany track meet! Before he even has time to react, he is hurled onto the pile of dazed thugs by the Flash.

Wonder Woman walks over to Flash and curtly asks if it ever occurred to him that she might not need or want his assistance? He in turn asks what are fellow Justice Society members for, if not to provide help in times of trouble? He had been in the city for a scientific conference when he saw the commotion in the street and decided to help out.

She tells him that she is astounded that he actually thinks he has done her a favour. She reminds him that she has her own super abilities which she had been born with, unlike his own powers, which had been gained as a result of a freak chemical accident. She rants at him that all the JSA men are the same, appointing her as secretary so she can sit around the club house while they go to fight evil!

He is taken aback by her outburst and asks her why she is so furious? She replies that perhaps it is something she has been brooding over for a long time. She is so accustomed to being treated with equality on Paradise Island that ever since she came here to Man’s World, she does not know how to react when she is not.

Flash replies that he has always thought of her as equal but she tells him to search his heart and then tell her he believes she is as good as he is. With that, she departs and one of the police officers who has recently arrived on the scene asks Flash “What was all that about?”. But the scarlet speedster is just as baffled as the officer…

Meanwhile an angry Amazon stalks though the lobby of the Waldorf Astoria towards the stairs. One of the bellboys sees her enter the stairwell and having heard rumours that she is a guest at the hotel, he decides to follow her. But as he too enters the stairwell he finds it empty. The Amazing Amazon has already climbed the stairs with lightning speed proving that it is not just the flash who can move fast!

She wonders to herself whether she has been too hard on Jay Garrick (The Flash) although she still feels she is right in what she says. It is a feeling that she has had ever since she met General MacArthur the day before (last issue) and though she does not really know how the General feels about Wonder Woman, she does know his attitude towards Yeoman Prince. The General thinks women should be unseen…unheard!

She arrives at her apartment now in her Diana Prince guise and is greeted by a surprised Etta, who had not been expecting her back so soon. Diana soon sees why, as the dashing Lieutenant Marchand is also in the room. He takes her hand and kisses it and Etta sighs at the romantic gesture. She tells Diana that he is taking her out to dinner and as they depart, Diana wishes the two of them a good time. However, there is something about Marchand that bothers her.

She decides that perhaps it is simply because of the mood she is in, as she seems to be suspicious of men in general. She misses Steve Trevor so much and hopes he will be discharged from hospital soon, as he is the only man she understands and trusts.

Meanwhile, the very same Major Trevor is conversing with Colonel Belushi back at the hospital in Washington. He tells Belushi that he cannot seriously believe that Wonder Woman is a National Security threat. But Belushi shows him photographs of her recent rampages. Steve looks at them in disbelief – an image of her destroying a tank; attacking American soldiers; protecting a Japanese assassin.

General Blankenship confirms that the photos are real and tells Steve that she has somehow snapped since Steve had been infected with the mutating toxin. Steve tells them that she obviously needs his help and tries to get up, only to feel faint. They call a doctor in and general Blankenship thinks to himself that although a doctor can help Steve, who in heaven’s name can help Wonder Woman?

The scene changes to the temple of Mars, the God of War who is cursing the Amazon’s name. He rages that Wonder Woman has foiled his plans time and again and if she has her way there will be peace on Earth. He wants rid of her! Just then one of his minions, the Duke of Deception, steps forward to make a suggestion. He tells Mars that she has fallen into disfavour recently with the fools she seeks to save. If they could cause that disfavour to deepen into outright hostility and provoke a confrontation, that would achieve both aims of worsening the world war while destroying the Amazon!

Mars likes the idea but warns the Duke that while success will earn him his heart’s desire, failure will cause him to regret it for the rest of his eternal life. With that, he sends the Duke down to Earth, telling him that he wants Wonder Woman destroyed before another dawn!

A few hours later, Diana and Jay are walking along the promenade in Battery Park having reconciled their differences. She tells him that she is glad he called her because she wants to apologise. He replies that he too wants to say sorry, because after their previous conversation, he had thought about what she had said. He tells her that she is right – that the JSA, just like other people, have developed attitudes and social systems that say women can do some things but not others. Right or wrong, it is the way they have always been up until now and that now she has come to Man’s World, they must rethink their stance towards women.

She accepts his apology and is just about to suggest dinner back at the hotel when she suddenly lets out a cry and points out to sea. She tells Jay that the Statue of Liberty has come alive and is wading through the water towards them in a threatening manner. He looks on bemused as she transforms into Wonder Woman and leaps aboard her waiting robot plane.

She does not know who is controlling the statue, but she knows that it will do a lot of damage in the streets of New York if she lets it get that far. The Statue tries to swipe her from the skies with its torch but her plane manages to avoid the blow and she in turn ensnares the arm with her lasso. Using every reserve of strength, she pulls the massive statue over until it crashes into the sea. Pleased with herself, she wonders what Jay will make of this show of strength!

But as she touches back down smiling, Jay just points at the ruined Statue and asks her in amazement what the destruction of the Statue had been for? “Have you gone completely crazy?” he asks her.

She replies that it was her response to the Statue’s attack. He has no idea what she is talking about and continues to ask her why she has done this. She begins to lose her temper and tells him that he is either blind or pigheaded – but either way the conversation is ended!

As she storms off she wonders why she had been so stupid as to believe that he had changed his opinion of her as a woman. Watching her from a nearby rooftop however, the Duke of Deception smiles at his success and is pleased that she has no idea that she has just battled an illusion. Things are going according to his plans but as he sees Jay transform into the Flash and go after Wonder Woman, he realises that her JSA colleague may be a source of interference.

Flash meanwhile decides that the Amazon Princess needs help but he just misses her as she jumps on board her invisible jet and flies off. Picking up on the vibrations in the air that the invisible plane gives off, he is able to deduce that she is heading towards New Jersey, but has no idea why.

From Wonder Woman’s perspective the reason is clear – German troops are invading the docks from U Boats moored in the harbour. Assuming they must have slipped past the Coast Guard, she jumps down onto the jetty to confront them. In reality however, what she sees as Germans are simply US navy personnel who find themselves on the end of an Amazon whirlwind!

She bowls the first man over, and the others start to protest. But they too are soon cut short as she ploughs into them mercilessly. As more sailors arrive on the scene attracted by the commotion, Wonder Woman simply sees more German invaders and once more lays into them…

Meanwhile on the observation deck of the Empire State Building, Colonel Belushi and General Blankenship have just spotted the battle through binoculars. Belushi tells Blankenship that as soon as he had heard that the Amazon had arrived in New York, he knew they should fly here from Washington straight away. Now that his fears had been confirmed, he orders a company from nearby Fort Dix to capture or kill the crazed Wonder Woman!

At that moment, the Flash is racing to New Jersey across the water, intent on preventing Wonder Woman making the situation any more worse for herself. But the Duke of Deception has other ideas and creates a gigantic sea monster which rears up in front of Flash. Taken completely by surprise, the Flash finds himself fighting for survival against the creature.

At the docks meanwhile, Wonder Woman has taken care of all the ‘Germans’ and is preparing to take them into custody when she hears the roar of military vehicles pull up behind her. It is Belushi and his men and with their tanks, machine guns and rifles trained on the Amazon Princess, the Colonel orders her to surrender at once or face attack!