This issue like the others before it is a companion issue to “Amazons Attack!” #4 and its continuity once again is effectively entwined with the other.
After the dramatic finale of the previous issue, with mother confronting daughter and Diana forcing Hippolyta to chose either victory over Man’s World or having to murder her own child, the resolution is somewhat of an anti-climax. It almost feels like the creative team had written themselves into a situation they did not know how to resolve and so they took the easy way out.
Whether this had been Jodi Picoult’s intention all along or whether this was simply how new fill-in writer J. Torres decided to approach things I am unsure. The change in writing style is certainly noticeable as we get a more superficial take on Diana and do not really get to learn more about her inner conflict – which is something Picoult had been successfully exploring in her short run on the book. However, the requirement to incorporate the “Amazons Attack” crossover I feel seriously tied the novelist’s hands and perhaps prevented Picoult from really achieving her intended aim. That said of course, she had in her five issue run achieved far more depth and had got into Diana’s head to show us “how she ticks” far more successfully than Heinberg’s ill fated launch story “Who is Wonder Woman?”.
With this issue, Joseph Torres avoids the “soul searching” elements of the run up until now and instead simply focuses on the main story line, as Diana tries to save Themyscira from being obliterated by a nuclear missile. Diana is to a degree almost a guest star in her own book, as Torres covers several other characters and events involved in the overall “Amazons Attack!” story arc too.
soon afterwards. However, they do have time to provide the issue with a striking semi-coloured cover featuring a fierce Wonder Woman advancing, sword at the ready.
Diana stares at her mother resolutely as Hippolyta holds the dagger at her daughter’s throat. Suddenly a red and blue blur streaks from nowhere and Wonder Woman finds herself being lifted into the air by Superman. She orders him to put her down but he replies that they have more important things to worry about right now. He reminds her that Nemesis is dying from poison and needs her help to retrieve the antidote from Themyscira. Reluctantly Diana is taken to join her other Justice League colleagues who are waiting for her.
Batman gives her a brief lecture on priorities before departing to Gotham to address an emergency situation there. Diana tells Black Canary, Mr. terrific and Wildcat that she intends to return to her homeland. As she leaves Black Canary suddenly gets a call from Oracle who informs her that the nuclear missile launch has been initiated and that they only have 52 minutes left to stop it. As the three of them head towards the Department of Meta-Human affairs they are attacked by Amazons.
Meanwhile Stargirl and Superman, who also have their hands full battling several Amazon warriors see Wonder Woman kneel down in prayer. Diana asks the help of her Gods and for them to transport her to Themyscira. In a flash the Amazon Princess disappears!
Having fought of their attackers, Black Canary, Mr. Terrific and Wildcat race into the missile launch command centre. However, they are met by a group of Bestiamorphs – government agents that Circe has transformed into man-beasts. As the heroes fight their way through Mr. Terrific guesses that this was the witch’s idea of a fail safe. He reaches a console and begins to work on it while his team mates fend of the creatures surrounding them.
Across another dimension in the realm of the Gods Wonder Woman materialises back on Paradise Island. As she walks around the deserted capital her mind drifts back to happier times when her home land was alive with vibrancy, love and peace. She soon reaches the royal palace and enters…
Back on Earth Mr. Terrific at last manages to override the launch sequence. Suddenly the console begins to melt as does the whole command centre around them…
On Themyscira Wonder Woman retrieves the anti-dote for the Stygian Hornet sting and steps back outside. She kneels down in prayer once more, asking for her Athena to return her to Earth. But nothing happens…
At the Department of Meta Human Affairs, the three heroes realise that even though the override has been initiated the launch clock is still counting down! As the building continues to melt around them they make their escape hoping the other heroes can stop the missile reaching its destination. Outside, the battling heroes hear a roar and see the missile lift off from its hidden silo and streak into the air. Hawkman tries to catch it but it is moving to fast. Green Lantern uses his ring to grab it but it eludes him. Even Powergirl cannot catch it in time as it disappears into a portal in the sky.
The heroes realise that the only thing left now between the missile and Themyscira is Wonder Woman herself!
On Paradise Island a puzzled Diana wonders why her prayers to return to Man’s World has not been answered. Suddenly a vent opens in the skies above and she assumes that the Gods have responded. But to her horror she sees the missile emerge and accelerate down towards her. She swiftly launches herself into the air to meet it, realising that her comrades must have been unable to prevent its launch!
She unhooks her lasso and loops it around the nosecone, wondering to herself that with Circe gone who had opened the portal? She uses her might to swing the deadly projectile round sending it hurtling back up into the sky. She prayers that Athena guides the missile to somewhere safe but is shocked to see it turn around and head back towards her! “No!” she bellows and charges at it again. She wraps herself around the fuselage and tries to change its course with her bare hands. But the projectile is obviously locked on and refuses to budge. She changes tack and rips away a panel, tearing out the wiring from the guidance system.
With the system damaged, she prepares to turn the missile again but sees to her surprise that like curling snakes, the wiring begins to grow back and repair itself! She rips the strands out again but as quickly as she destroys them they mend themselves. Frustrated, she uses all her strength to shove the missile back up into the sky once again. But of course it simply turns around and locks back on its original course. She realises this is futile and that she cannot keep ripping out wires and redirecting the rocket over and over again.
Crying out, she demand to know why Athena is testing her so? If the Goddess will not save her once favoured daughter, will she at least save her once favoured island of Themyscira? “Why have you forsaken me?” roars Wonder Woman as she heads on a collision course with the missile intent on putting herself between it and the island below.
The sky is filled with a huge explosion but instead of being dead, Diana finds herself alive and the missile gone. She watches in amazement as her beloved Athena materialises before her in the sky. The huge figure of the Goddess fills the sky as a humble Amazon Princess begs forgiveness and thanks her patron for saving her and the Amazon homeland.
But Athena replies that even so, Diana still harbours anger and bitterness towards the Goddess. Wonder Woman replies that in fact her feelings are aimed at all the Gods and asks if they have all lost their way? Why else would they allow the Amazons to wage war on Man’s World? Why allow the senseless violence? Why all the destruction? The pointless deaths of Athena’s most loyal servants and the deaths of countless innocents? Athena could end it all with a wave of her hand just as she had saved Themyscira from the missile.
But the Goddess booms back that Diana had today invoked her name twice, asking for her help as the Goddess of Wisdom. She adds however that Diana seems to have either forgotten or chosen to ignore the fact that she is also the Goddess of War…and the Goddess of Strategy!
With that Athena reaches out one of her huge hands and wraps her fist around a helpless and stunned Wonder Woman!
“..and it is for me and me alone to say how and when and why I wave my “Mighty Hand!”