Wonder Woman #5 is written by Tom King and published by DC Comics. Artwork is by Daniel Sampere and coloured by Tomeu Morey. Letters are by Clayton Cowles. Main cover art (left) is by Sampere and Morey. Backup story is written by King with artwork by Belen Ortega and colours by Alejandro Sanchez.
Wonder Woman #5 is available from today, in print and on digital platforms where all good comic books are sold.
If the U.S. government can’t stop her, then who can?! As Sargent Steel retreats to gather deadlier forces, the Wonder Girls call on Diana, begging her to lay down her lasso. Will she see the truth before it’s too late? Plus, Trinity invites the sons of Batman and Superman to Themyscira for a contest they’ll never forget!
What’s so wonderful to see in this modern era is the versatility of many of DC’s most legendary characters. Tom King has worked his magic on a number of difference DC properties, bringing new depth and context. Five issues in to his run on Wonder Woman and Diana is facing what is potentially her toughest ever foe. The US government. But with this latest issue King is taking a different approach, pausing the conflict to see both sides regrouping and preparing for the coming war.
There’s something really ominous about issue #5. Brilliant structured as a push and pull between the opposing forces as both stare down the barrel of what feels like an inevitable outcome. On the one-side we have our mysterious villain, a puppet master manipulating the government and Sargent Steel against the Amazons. His narrations continue to spin a Machiavellian tale of man against woman. One which feels all too reminiscent of opinions spouted on social media these days. This issue he’s on a mission to collect Wonder Woman’s fiercest villains. It adds to an already stacked cast this month. But beyond that it sees King really upping the stakes, creating what feels like a potentially insurmountable task for Diana.
On the flip side is Diana. Her mission this issue is to dissuade her sisters from joining the fight. Which, let’s face it, is the single most Diana thing to do. Issue #5 adds Yara, Cassie and Donna as supporting roles. Giving them more to do than in previous cameo appearances. Diana takes on each of the sisters in a tourney. Should she win then they must swear not to join her cause. One approach to writing this would be to have Diana single-mindedly making this fight her own. Arrogantly believing she has what it takes to stop the coming war. But not King. King makes sure never to compromise Diana’s morals. Making it clear at several junctures that her actions are about saving her sisters from what she sees as certain doom.
For an awful, gut-wrenching moment it feels like Wonder Woman is building towards its own Death of Superman story. A character-ending moment when the would will mourn the loss of one of its greatest champions. King’s building sense of calamity crescendos as Diana inevitably defeats each of her sisters and is left to face her battle alone. Of course at this stage we’re aware of the army which the The Sovereign has built. So reaching the final pages of the main story the audience is left to feel absolutely no hope. That is until a perfectly rendered final splash page which certainly twists the tale once again.
There’s little more I can say about Daniel Sampere and Tomeu Morey’s artwork. Wonder Woman is one of the best, if not the best looking DC book currently on shelves. Every element of this month’s issue looks immaculate. From returning villain designs right through to the costumes worn by each of Diana’s sisters. This is top level, blockbuster stuff.
Of course there’s also the back up story. Also written by King but with artwork by Belen Ortega and Alejandro Sanchez. The story of Trinity, Jon Kent and Damian Wayne is moving along swiftly in readiness for the Trinity Special #1 which releases in February. The kids are growing up before our eyes but both story and artwork still feature a youthful exuberance which the main story does not require. Whilst I’m yet to fall for Trinity it’s hard to ignore the chemistry which she has with both of her so-called brothers. The joke around “Trinity’s Trinity” works well in this short story. However it’s difficult to shrug off the continuing mystery of her parentage. If DC is building towards a vision of the future where Trinity, Jon and Damian will front a book of their own it’s certainly taking the right steps to establish their connection.
A page-turner of epic proportions. Every panel of Wonder Woman #5 is pure bliss to withhold. King’s story is upping the emotional stakes this month, ramping up audience anxieties for a full blown war.