Wonder Woman’s place in DC’s trinity – along with Batman and Superman – has never been in doubt, but finding a story which suits not only her messy backstory but also the near-omnipotence of her powers has proved difficult for many creators.
Dead Earth takes a big swing at both and mostly connects. Here, Wonder Woman awakens to find Earth in ruins and the remaining human population constantly threatened by mutant monsters. Her decision to try to save humanity puts her at odds with her heritage and with her own past. It’s a post-apocalyptic tale which captures Diana’s power and humanity while adding a tragic element akin to Batman’s origin.
Daniel Warren Johnson’s art is superb. The action is kinetic, the monsters are grotesque, and there are double-page vistas of devastation which give the book an epic scale. Colorist Mike Spicer adds warm orange and yellow tones throughout, giving the world a burned-out feeling. Bright pinks and blue hints make everything pop, capturing the wreckage of Earth beautifully.
There may not be such a thing as “the definitive Wonder Woman story” (though Jill Lepore’s The Secret History of Wonder Woman comes close), but Dead Earth is a welcome addition to the canon.
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