Wonder Woman – Volume 4 – 5


Wonder Woman – Volume 4 – 5

General Info

Issue No:
5
On Sale Date:
January 2012
Cover Date:
March 2012
Era:
New 52
Story Title:
Lourdes

Creative Team

Cover Artist:
Cliff Chiang
Writer:
Brian Azzarello
Penciller:
Tony Atkins
Inker:
Tony Atkins
Letterer:
Jared K. Fletcher
Colourist:
Matthew Wilson
Editor:
Chris Conroy (Associate), Matt Idelson

Characters

Main:
Wonder Woman (Princess Diana), Zola, Lennox
Heroes:
N/A
Villains:
N/A
Olympians:
Poseidon, Hades, Hermes, Hera
Amazons:
N/A
Other:
N/A
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Comments

Five issues into the relaunch and Diana has barely thrown a punch! Brain Azzarello’s wordy and densely layered tome continued once again to focus almost exclusively on family intrigue and politics, versus any sense of adventure or action. Although sales appeared to be holding up well, some began to ask whether the book should simply be called “The Olympic Gods…..guest starring Wonder Woman.”

This issue features a fill in artists named Tony Atkins, whose style is reminiscent of Chiang’s unique approach and manages to deliver a reasonable level of artistic continuity, although his version of Diana is unable to compete with Chiang’s well crafted interpretation.

As expected, several of the “New 52” titles originally launched in September 2011 simply did not gain a following but perhaps surprisingly to many, the publisher announced their cancellation even before reaching a full twelve months into the launch. Long term fans who still mourned for the classic version of Diana however became excited by the announcement that new titles would be replacing them – and one in particular caught their eye. It was announced that a new “Justice Society of America” title would be launched, set on an “Earth Two”.

There was some raising of eyebrows that after the continuity problems that DC had got themselves into with all their multiple earths and that the whole purpose of the “New 52” was that it would wipe the slate clean and simplify matters, the publisher was already beginning to expand their new universe once again and – most pertinent to fans of Wonder Woman – create alternate versions of existing characters. Some fans hoped that perhaps this alternate earth would also feature the original (and best) version of Wonder Woman -wearing the classic costume and doing what she does best – fighting for justice and peace while protecting the innocent and showing us all that love and compassion can create a better world.

Synopsis

On the River Thames in London at night a tug boat is making its way upstream when the crew comes across the remains of a dead creature floating in the inky waters. As they draw up alongside they at first assume it is a dead horse that has somehow been dragged into the water by a large carp, but as they look more closely they realise to their surprise that horse and fish are actually one and the same creature…

The following morning Diana, Zola and Hermes are sitting outside a cafe having breakfast. As Hermes reads the newspaper, whose front page features a story about the “monster” pulled from the Thames, the Amazon Princess replies in answer to his question that she does not intend to go and confront Hera after the events on Paradise Island, as this would leave Zola and him vulnerable. He responds that although that is one way of looking at it, conversely the fact that Hera knows that Diana is the daughter of Zeus means that by keeping Zola close to her, the Amazon Princess is exposing the girl to danger.

Just then a man walks up and greets them with a thick cockney accent. Diana asks who he is and as he pulls up a chair to join them replies that he is the man who has the advantage of knowing who they are. As he gets out a cigarette she tells him that they were having a private conversation, but he tells her that their words were carried on the wind and one can understand them if one cares to listen…”Daughter of Zeus.” As he light sup the cigarette she snatches it from his mouth and snuffs it out, glaring at him that Zola is pregnant. He responds that it is right to look after the little ones and that it must be hard for Diana to learn on the same day that her father is Zeus and that he has scarpered off the “mortal coil”.

A scowling Hermes asks for his name and he says they can call him Lennox. He continues to tell them how he has also heard on the wind that now Zeus is gone the brothers are looking to carve up what is left behind. And they all know how evil the Gods can get, right? Diana replies that she has dealt with evil before and staring directly at Lennox asks if she is dealing with evil right now? He replies “Well, you’ll excuse me for being cagey but that is what I’m here to find out.” He adds that he has “mixed it up” with bad men in the past…but they were just men. Today he is getting into something he has avoided for eighty years. Diana replies that he does not look eighty years of age and smiling he responds “Or you don’t see the family resemblance little sister.”…

A short while later diana and Zola are walking along the embankment as it begins to rain. Zola tells her that she cannot believe that Diana fell for “that creep’s line.” Diana says she understands Zola’s skepticism but what if he really is family? “From what I’ve seen you can do without your new family” says Zola but Diana replies “Hmmm, but I have to live without my old one.” Realising what she has juts said and feeling guilty, Zola apologises but the Amazon Princess simply smiles and reminds Zola that she is now Diana’s aunt. “Not till the baby’s born!” Zola replies. She smiles back and continues that it is so weird that Diana is older than her and yet she is going to give birth to her nephew. “I think it’s a born” she adds.

As they walk across Tower Bridge Diana says that it is no weirder than what Lennox claims. She tells Zola that she believes what he said may be true and that he has learned who he was…bombed in the Blitzkrieg but somehow surviving it all and then continuing to fight in the war as a soldier and never being killed. Diana continues that to her his story means something. Coming to an understanding of who you are in the midst of discovering who you are not. And then going to war with the fate of the world hanging in the balance. Good against evil. Winner takes all. “That is something I believe in. Or want to.”

As they lean on the bridge railings looking down the Thames Zola reminds Diana that she is overlooking some of the other things Lennox had said. “Like what” asks Diana. Zola replies “Like what all winner took was the day.”

Meanwhile further downstream Hermes and Lennox walk along the muddy river bank towards the entrance of an outlet. The Messenger God says that he cannot go inside in his state and as Lennox enters alone, lighting another cigarette, he tells Hermes that if he makes it out alive to be ready for what he delivers…

Back on the bridge Zola tells Diana she is perfect but the Amazon Princess disagrees and says that she is not even close to being perfect and there are things she has done in her life that given the chance she would take back. “Me too” says Zola and Diana says “Then we’re not so different.” The young girl then looks at her watch and asks if Diana is worried as Lennox had told her to be on the bridge at six or she would regret it. Diana calmly smiles back that as she has had the chance to spend the whole afternoon with Zola then how could she possibly have any regrets?

Just then Big Ben strikes six and Zola’s eyes open wide as she sees a monstrous sight – a combination of sea creatures and horses – emerge from the waters and adding “I think your reason just showed up.” Quickly removing her clothing to reveal her costume underneath Diana curses Lennox for being right.

As she effortlessly leaps over the railing and down towards the river below she tells Zola to stay where she is. As the Amazon Princess lands on the submerged body of the huge creature which is towed almost chariot-like by the sea horses – a massive head rises from the waters to face her.

She calmly greets the beast as “Lord Poseidon.” The Sea God sniffs her and identifies her as an Amazon – and something else. Yes, there is your blood.” she tells him. “Zeus” he bellows back. “Well, his blood no longer holds water. So you would do well to get out of my way. I have no quarrel with you…mongrel

Meanwhile Lennox ventures further inside the dark outlet and approaches a curtain of water…

Poseidon continues to roar that his brother Zeus was a monster who cared about nothing other than himself. Now that the heavens no longer have a Lord he means to take what is rightfully his and to rectify the mistake he made in ceding power to Zeus…

As Lennox approaches the water three huge dogs emerge and set upon him…

As he is floored and they begin to tear his clothing to shreds another figure emerges – Hades – and orders them to stand down…

Wonder Woman responds that she understands his concerns but is afraid he is too late and that Hera claims the heavens for herself. In rage, Poseidon ensnares her in one of his huge tentacles and Hera, watching from Olympus, is equally stunned by Wonder Woman’s statement!

As a crowd gathers on the bridge watching the spectacle below nobody notices the two centaurs making their way slowly behind the crowds, searching for Zola…