Wonder Woman: Come Back to Me #1 – Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti, Writers; Chad Hardin, Artist; Alex Sinclair, Colorist
Ray – 9/10
Ray: While Tom King and Brian Michael Bendis wasted no time in their Walmart comics getting their heroes involved in epic and cosmic quests, the reunited Harley Quinn creative team of Conner, Palmiotti and Hardin smartly takes a different route with their Wonder Woman story, Wonder Woman: Come Back to Me #1. This first issue is a very human story, set against the backdrop not of a supervillain attack or a cosmic disaster but a very human tragedy – a wildfire.
As Come Back to Me #1 begins, Diana and Steve are adorably domestic as they live together (with temporary houseguest Etta Candy), but Steve has a flight of an experimental airplane tomorrow. It doesn’t take a genius to know that there’ll be complications, but before Diana can dwell on that she has to deal with a raging fire that’s trapped not just dozens of people but hundreds of animals in a rapidly shrinking patch surrounded by flames. The visuals in this segment of the people and animals battling to survive are stunning.
Diana being able to talk to animals is one of those powers that’s most often used for laughs, but in a story like this it’s used to brilliant effect as she’s essentially working as a translator between the two groups that need each other to survive. Palmiotti and Conner do an amazing job capturing all the different facets of Wonder Woman – warrior, peacemaker, savior, and still able to throw back a drink with the firefighters without batting an eyelash. This Diana is fun, which is something missing from a lot of these stories. But then things take a serious turn as Steve’s plane goes missing over the Atlantic, and no one has a clue where he’s gone. We’ve seen Steve go missing more than once – including in the current G. Willow Wilson run – but this creative team does a good job with the emotional stakes.
The second half of the story shows exactly what happened to Steve – in a sense – in a tense segment taking place in the Bermuda Triangle, as Steve and his flight crew are besieged by mysterious storms that take them down to an unknown location. As Diana and Etta search the water, they come up empty and the emotional punch in this scene is strong.
But soon, both of them are sucked up into the same mysterious storm and deposited in a prehistoric lost world with one of the most impressive monsters I’ve seen in a comic in a while. This comic shifts genres so often it’s almost jarring, but it’s so much fun that I’m very forgiving. Talking crab? Giant jaguar man? Why not! Like this week’s issue of Superman’s Pal, Jimmy Olsen, this book feels like it embraces the Silver Age aesthetic in a way few do while updating the story. Great visuals and great plot twists make this a must-read Wonder Woman story.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.