It’s nice to see Wonder Woman take center stage in Injustice both in the recent Annual and now in the book itself. Previous Injustice has centered largely on Batman and Superman (with a side salad of Harley Quinn), so it’s good to see Tom Taylor tackling the freshly popular Amazonian goddess, even if she is kind of terrible as a person in this mirror world.
Digital Firsts 29 & 30 (“Lost Paradise [Part 1]”) has Black Adam putting his plan into action, sending Superman’s unsuspecting cousin to Themyscira to rescue Diana, who has for some time now been incarcerated by her sisters for her crimes against humanity.
Damian is still advising poor Kara, for better or worse, and in this situation the jury is still out as to whether there’s enough doubt in Damian–and whether he’s expressed enough of it to Kara–to influence or undermine Black Adam’s plans and the future events. For now, Kara seems committed to helping Diana so long as it’s a means to get cousin free as well.
And, surprise surprise–Kara, Black Adam, and Damian aren’t the only ones who want to see Diana returned to her former glory in spite of even Hippolyta. But now I’m getting ahead of myself because first Kara has to infiltrate this tight community of women who are, as a rule, not generally very friendly or trusting to begin with.
Kara’s naivete here helps. While she presents herself as a shipwreck survivor, her faux-castaway identity doesn’t stand up to scrutiny under the Lasso of Truth, which the Amazons don’t hesitate to throw around her. She’s immediately caught out as a dissembler (they aren’t stupid), but fortunately for Kara, not everyone in Themyscira is of the same mind that putting Diana in prison and giving her avatar to another was the appropriate thing to do. Cue a serious civil altercation in 3…2…1….
To say nothing about who else Diana may be fraternizing with.
Those Amazonians don’t kid around with their jails, do they?
For an issue that might have otherwise felt rather talky, Tom Taylor keeps the tension high. There are a handful of bold action sequences, but not the prolonged pitched battles that had seemed to dominate Injustice 2 up until these last couple of issues. And this pace-breaker has been great because it allows Taylor to shine at what he does best–character development.
Wonder Woman really took a back seat previously, sidelines by a coma-like condition through the first series and barely making any kind of appearance in Injustice: Underground except as a nattering negative Jiminey Cricket to the Superman team. Seeing her here now at the forefront is especially exciting because she’s not an especially likable character and she represent and extreme and cynical view of mankind that has always felt borderline villainous in this series. Whereas Superman slipped into the dark role of Overlord as a direct result of his personal grief, Wonder Woman was just all-to-willing to seize power from the get-go. It was Diana, in fact, who helped mold Superman’s despair into the weapon it has become. So perhaps no surprise here to see her making her deals with the various devils at her disposal.
This is not going to go how they planned
Mike Miller some some awesome work with J Nanjan on colors this go-round. Miller doesn’t skimp on the details here at all: everything from the ocean breakers to the panels densely packed with Amazonians is full of lively and intense detail: intricate hairstyles, carefully rendered environmental textures, armies of armor, and lots and lots of Greek-inspired drapery.
Miller’s been on the Injustice series a long time (almost from the beginning), and I have to say this is hands-down some of his nicest work. Yes, there are some faces that still feel a bit too jowly or weirdly proportioned, but he renders Diana beautifully and the challenge of all those warriors is nothing to sneeze at! I also really enjoy seeing lots of dynamic angles here that feel purposeful and push the narrative (something Miller has typically been a bit weak at in the past). As a book to simply flip through the pages and appreciate the pictures, this one definitely stands out.
- You are riding high on the recent surge of interest in the character of Wonder Woman since the popularity of the WB/DC hit film.
- You can never get enough of Amazonian women scheming, fighting, and generally being very formidable.
- “Fish out of water” is a trope you love: newcomer not-yet-Supergirl brings that fresh perspective to the fracture world of Injustice.
The women take center stage as Kara attempts to infiltrate the paradise that once was Themyscira–a gambit that is both a failure and an unexpected success. Kara continues to feel like a pawn of Black Adam and overall the Superman faction is a bit wobbly but gaining strength. The big question is whether Diana will help bring this group together or contribute further to its disintegration because right now Superman’s supporters feel rather scattered. Bringing back the God of War in also an intriguing development. We’ve had a bit of cool down now: perhaps we’re ready to heat things up again!