If you managed to avoid the massive spoiler from DC Comics and read the second issue of Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang's Wonder Woman last week, then you probably noticed that two issues in and the creative team has already made some significant changes to Wonder Woman's history. The most notable (which had previously been spoiled by DC) was confirmed at the end of the issue, but we'll get to that later.
So what parts of Wonder Woman's history have changed and how much has stayed the same, based on what we can tell from what we read in Wonder Woman #2? The series' writer Brian Azzarello has gone on the record stating that when he took on the writing responsibilities of Wonder Woman he didn't go back and re-read each and every one of her character appearances. Instead, Azzarello has left himself plenty of room to discover Diana for himself. According to him, this Wonder Woman is less about helping people understand the last 70 years of the character, and more about reading a good story.
I'm not interested in giving anybody a better understanding of Wonder Woman, coming from a past perspective at all. We're all about telling a good story -- right now. Hopefully, long-term Wonder Woman fans will enjoy the ride as much as the new fans it appears we have brought to the book. We just did New York Comic Con and I've never heard so many people say, "This is the first time I've ever tried Wonder Woman." People just buy Superman or Batman because that's what they buy. With Wonder Woman it was like, "This is something new and I want to try it."
Obviously, Azzarello is giving himself plenty of elbow room to re-tell Wonder Woman's history; and that means taking some creative liberties. As each issue is released not only do we get thrown into an exciting new story, but we also get to re-discover the character and note the changes that have been made -- and that's pretty cool. Here is what we noticed was different in the second issue.== TEASER ==
If you were a fan of the Wonder Woman television series starring Lynda Carter, then you might recall that Diana's mother on the television series (played by actress Cloris Leachman) was not a brunette, but a blonde! Perhaps artist Cliff Chiang took some notes from that portrayal of the character, or from Hippolyta's appearance in the Warner Brothers animated version of the character when he decided to make her a blonde in the new Wonder Woman series. There are several comic book incarnations that depict Hippolyta as a blonde, but the more recent versions of her character have shown her having black hair, similar to Diana's.
Wonder Woman vs. The Amazons?
Was I the only one that sensed some hostility between Wonder Woman and her "sisters"? Within the first few pages of the second issue it seemed pretty obvious that the Amazons have something against their Queen's daughter -- but what? Wonder Woman very quickly became hostile with one of the Amazon's and threatened to kill them after she landed on the island. In the scene she says, "Try it and be certain I'll separate your soul from the land of the living." When Diana said this, it isn't as though she didn't know who she was speaking to. It's not like there's anyone else on Paradise Island other than the Amazons.
In a later scene Diana is approached by Aleka, an Amazon warrior and the banter between them isn't necessarily hostile, but the two do share a very...well..."snarky" exchange. Perhaps it was in good fun, but there's sometimes truth to a little hostility, right? If there is some underlying tension between Diana and the Amazons, could it be attributed to the reason she initially left the island? Wonder Woman's departure from Paradise Island was attributed to Steve Trevor's accidental crash landing; but how much of that classic story will be consistent in Brian Azzarello's retelling of Wonder Woman's origin? What if she left the island on bad terms? It will be interesting to see.
For the first story arc, Azzarello has brought in Strife, otherwise known as Eris, to stir some trouble on Paradise Island. However, Strife's origins are slightly different (based on the revelations we saw in the second issue) from her previous appearances in Wonder Woman's series. According to her previous character appearances (loosely based on Greek mythology), Strife was not Zeus and Hera's child as she is presented in the second issue of Wonder Woman, but rather one of Ares' children, making Zeus her grandfather.
Zeus, You Are The Father
Probably the biggest reveal thus far is the fact that Zeus is now Wonder Woman's biological father -- something that was originally revealed by DC prior to the issue release. Not only does this change Wonder Woman's history (she is no longer brought to life by the Goddesses after Hippolyta made her out of clay), but this also means that she is a demi-goddess and Ares' sister. It will be interesting to see just how much involvement he will have in the series.
Regardless of what happens, Azzarello's plans are to write an interesting story; and so far, we think he's done a fine job. What do you think about all the changes being made to Wonder Woman and her supporting cast of characters?