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Friday, June 16, 2017 

The WW books that aren't recommendable

The Greenwood Democrat published a sugar-drenched column recommending several Wonder Woman paperbacks to read after watching the movie. But the list includes such wretched items as Grant Morrison's take on the Amazon Princess, the Earth One GN:
Writer Grant Morrison takes Marston’s “submission to loving authority” idea to its logical extreme in this Wonder Woman origin story from a parallel universe (Earth One). That results in this Earth’s version of Etta Candy blurting out, after she hears Diana’s story, “So let me get this straight: You’re from a paradise island of science fiction lesbians? With a side order of bondage?” Yes, and there’s the gorgeous art of Yanick Paquette, too.
And, a disgusting scene where, even if it isn't shown directly, WW grabs Steve Trevor in a most inappropriate spot. That his racial background was changed to African-American in Morrison's rendition - another example of SJW/diversity-pandering in motion - is nothing compared to such a crude, perverted scene that puts Diana in a bad, irresponsible light. In fact, neither are the scenes where WW wears pants for the sake of it. Suffice it to say the crude act performed on the GN's take on Trevor is even racially demeaning. An interesting aside, no SJWs seemed to have any objections to raise about the crudest parts of Morrison's graphic novel, the leftist Kotaku site's negative take notwithstanding. If not, it just attests to how Morrison and artist Yanick Paquette are evidently some of the favored creators of SJWs, as opposed to J. Scott Campbell, Milo Manara and Frank Cho, who, while not without their share of questionable moments, are utterly despised.

Then, there's Brian Azzarello's rendition:
When DC revamped its entire line in 2011, writer Brian Azzarello took the opportunity to change Diana’s origin. He came up with the idea (used in the movie) that Hippolyta had lied to Diana about her being a clay statue brought to life — that she was, instead, the daughter of Zeus, given a false origin to protect her from the wrath of Hera.

A number of long-time Wonder Woman fans prefer the clay-statue origin, but I think making Diana the scion of a sky god — equal in stature to Hercules and Thor, equal in power to Superman — is something the most famous heroine in the world deserves. Plus, this gave Azzarello the excuse to include the entire Greco-Roman pantheon as major friends and foes.
Gee, I wonder why Marston's creation "deserves" this retcon, any more than IronMan/Tony Stark "deserved" a retcon that changes his biological parents to step-parents? Some of Azzarello's writing was pretty grisly and uninspiring too, and not something I would recommend to moviegoers or anybody else new to the medium. And this is what the movie uses? While I don't mind taking liberties with adaptations, I still think it's a huge mistake to rely on these very recent retcons for movie material. If you know where to look, there are stories from the Bronze Age that are just as good, and maybe more.

They even recommend WW: The Circle, by another "scribe" who's turned out to be an embarrassment:
Of the surprisingly few female writers ever assigned to write Wonder Woman, Gail Simone (“Batgirl,” “Secret Six”) is probably the biggest name. She dives deep in this storyline into Diana’s relationship with her mother and fellow Amazons — many of which, it turns out, think the only child on Paradise Island is an offense to their patron deities and want “the abomination” dead. Simone brings her trademark deft characterization, clever banter and inventive weirdness to the tale, which includes Wonder Woman allying with a tribe of intelligent white gorillas and the Amazons fending off an invasion of supervillains.
I don't see what's so encouraging about a story where a society that usually respects its heiress to the throne now considers Diana abominable. Truly revolting. If that's the best Simone could do with the creations she was entrusted to work with, then I just can't feel sorry to see her dropped from writing assignments by the company, even though they're ironically no better than she.

Another bad choice here is Greg Rucka's The Hyketeia:
Bound by an ancient Greek rite, Wonder Woman must protect a young woman from Gotham City — a criminal who is sought by The Batman. Dark Knight battles Amazing Amazon both physically and philosophically in this graphic novel by Greg Rucka and J.G. Jones.

Rucka has written a lot of excellent Wonder Woman stories, including the current series as it re-visits the Amazing Amazon’s origin once again. Rucka re-tells the story of Diana’s arrival in “Man’s World” with artist Nicola Scott in “Wonder Woman: Year One,” and continues untangling her origins in the modern day with artist Liam Sharp in “Wonder Woman: Lies.”
Having read some of his work, I must firmly disagree with that assessment. I still can't get over that hilarious moment where Medusa turned a security guard to stone after he looked at her visual image through a video security camera, but when Rucka's character named Veronica Cale looked at her through a mirror, nothing happened. By the way, what's there to untangle? Only Rucka's farcical scriptwriting. They even bring up a GN called The True Amazon:
Is Princess Diana just a little too perfect for you? Good news — here’s a tale showing how bratty and selfish the daughter of an Amazon Queen can be! Well, until she learns a few life lessons in this delightful graphic novel by writer/artist Jill Thompson (“Scary Godmother”).
Here too, I'm at a loss to understand how a story where Diana's portrayed as a stuck up brat is something moviegoers who admired her as an altruistic figure would want to read about.

The only two parts of the list I'd recommend are the Golden Age archives by Marston and George Perez's reboot from 1987. I think that, despite the Silver Age reliance on slapstick adventures, there is what to try out from that era, ditto the Bronze Age, and most stories leading up as far as 1995. But after that, it starts careening downhill, no thanks to the hacks who were getting their feet through the door at DC, and ruined everything by the mid-2000s. No one who's hoping for engaging stories starring WW should waste their time on the awful writers who make the majority of the paper's list.

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