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    Reviews - Wonder Woman - #16

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Comic Addiction Review by Paul Steven Brown - Puffinagogo
This is the third and final issue of Wonder Woman that I’m reviewing as part of a “Three Issue Test Drive”. I’m randomly selecting titles off the shelf of my local comic shop just like I did as a kid. The idea is that after trying out a series for three straight months, I should have a pretty good idea of what it’s about and whether or not I want to continue to pick it up on a regular basis.

The strongest parts of “The Circle” continue to be the examination of the four former bodyguards of Hippolyta. This is an intriguing tale of loyalty, jealousy, and betrayal that is perfectly suited for its mythic backdrop. Of the four, Alkyone has been fleshed out the most. The other three’s point of views and feelings would only add to the story, but aren’t provided.

Unfortunately, there doesn’t appear to be any room for it. This kind of character development has to compete with a story that involves modern day Nazi’s invading the Amazonian island. This ridiculousness is compounded when Wonder Woman shows up to fight them with her own army. Oh did I happen to mention that Diana’s army is made up of talking, white-furred gorillas?

This is not where the story is. The conflict between the four bodyguards, Hippolyta, and Wonder Woman is all that is needed to make this an exciting story that I want to read. The rest is just ugly window dressing. I want to get to know each member of the Circle more. I want each individual’s motivation for following Alkyone and betraying their queen. Diana doesn’t need Nazi’s to endanger her mother or her home. The threat was already there, and so was the potential for a sweeping story with a lot of heart and depth.

The art this issue is a mixed bag. The Dodsons continue to make great visuals, but seven pages in the middle were supplied by Ron Randall. It’s not that Randall is a bad artist, but his style is very generic, DC Comics art and pales in comparison to team supreme, Terry and Rachel. The Dodsons’ Wonder Woman is iconic and powerful, whereas Randall’s version looks like any other generic, super-powered heroine.

Gail Simone and the Dodsons almost had me hooked with this story. Unfortunately, some extraneous elements got in the way of a potentially classic and moving story. I may stick around for the fourth and final chapter of “The Circle”, but if it isn’t a showstopper of a conclusion, I probably won’t be back for the next arc of Wonder Woman.

Overall Rating: 6 out of 10 (Slightly Above Average)

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