Review – Wonder Woman #26 (DC Comics)

Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Shea Fontana
Artwork: Mirka Andolfo
Colours: Romulo Fajardo Jr.
Release Date: 12th July 2017

With writer Greg Rucka’s post-Rebirth Wonder Woman coming to an end in issue 25, the baton is passed here to up-and-coming writer Shea Fontana.  And, joined here by the slick, expressive artwork of Mirka Andolfo, the pair do a solid job here of setting things up for their five-issue “Heart of the Amazon” arc.

This issue serves as a gentle introduction to the new tone and aesthetic of the Fontana/Andolfo partnership as we get to see Wonder Woman doing her hero thing before grudgingly agreeing to take a moment to relax and unwind at a friend’s wedding.  While it’s always entertaining to see Diana in her full, Amazonian glory, it’s also nice to see her out of her costume and doing quote-unquote “regular” things.

Now obviously everything doesn’t end up being as simple as all that, as you’ll quickly find out when you pick the issue up for yourself, but it’s already clear that Fontana is going for a slightly softer version of Wonder Woman here, and her accessible writing style is underscored by the expressive and lively artwork of Andolfo.

Andolfo undoubtedly draws a great Diana, but still seems to struggle a little with male characters, giving them all soft, feminine features – including one particular scene where it looks like Diana’s military debrief is being carried out by a woman in a false moustache.  Thankfully the bulk of the book is populated by female characters, and in that respect Anfolfo really shines, providing an expressive and emotive supporting cast for Diana’s latest foray into the real world.

The issue also serves as a handy jumping-on point for new readers, with Fontana making sure to provide us with all the pertinent information while managing to avoid being bogged down in trying to bridge the gap between her and Rucka’s run.  It’s a slow-paced issue with an exciting cliffhanger, and while there isn’t a huge amount of meat on the storyline bones just yet, there’s certainly enough to whet some readers’ appetites enough to make them want to pick up the next part of the story.  Oh, and the pair also throw in an intriguing flashback sequence that, with the exception the shocking final page, is probably the highlight of the issue.

Ultimately, this is very much a set-up issue, and the gradual pace means it’s difficult to give a definitive prediction of just where this series is heading, or a conclusive scorecard for its new creative team.  But, while Fontana and Andolfo are definitely going for a noticeably different tone and style to Rucka, Sharp and Scott, there’s still a heck of a lot to like here.

Rating: 3.5/5.

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ceejThe writer of this piece was: Craig Neilson-Adams (aka Ceej)
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