Another chapter closes for Wonder Woman, as she loses another cast member in her “family’s” last stand against First Born. (It’s not really the last stand, as he is getting his own one shot next month.) It’s all out war as First Born unleashes his savage beast men, but one of Wonder Woman’s allies cuts loose in a nifty, unpredictable way. Meanwhile, another character experiences a change of heart, which is likewise startling.
Ultimately, the brutal battle comes down to Wonder Woman having to make some hard choices. And as mentioned, not everyone walks away from this one.
This issue is cover to cover action, with some nice weighty drama and character development. It makes up for some lower key issues in the past, bringing things nicely to a head. Things take a strange turn this issue with a new apparent status quo for the title character, so I’m intrigued to see what comes next.
Cliff Chiang’s art is always fantastic on this title, and that’s no different here. There are a couple of dynamite sequences, delivering genuine wow moments. Mathew Wilson’s colors are fantastic as well, with most everything rendered in dark, muted tones, allowing Wonder Woman and her crew to pop off the page in their brighter colored garments. The same goes for blood which is really emphasized at times, to good effect.
This issue marked a real turning point, effectively wrapping up this most recent arc. I’m not sure how First Born will be handled in his one-shot. Perhaps it will be a flashback? A lot of things occurred to shake up the book and its cast. The action delivered and was beautifully rendered. This series isn’t always consistent and drags at times, but this issue illustrates just how good it can be when all the parts that make it up click.
WONDER WOMAN #23
Written by Brian Azzarello
Art and Cover by Cliff Chiang