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  1. #376

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    Wonder Woman #190
    story and pencils by Mike Sekowsky, inks by Dick Giordano



    Synopsis: Diana and another Amazon named Leda are fighting some horrible creatures in complete darkness. As they do, we flash back to see how they got here: Diana was moaning about being bored so I-Ching basically said "Hey, why don't you go visit your mother instead of kvetching in my ear all damn day long?" So she somehow contacted Paradise Island and they sent Leda with the mystical taxi to bring her back. Unfortunately, something went wrong and they got shanghaied into another dimension - a dimension filled with weird monsters.

    Luckily, those monsters run away as soon as the recap is finished. But they are replaced by some a-holes in a flying boat. Diana tels Leda to teleport away and get help, which she does, then the boat people land and try to take Diana as their slave. She pulls out a sword (because... uh...l well, she has a sword?) and starts completely ravaging her attackers. But finally her sword breaks and they chain her up.

    They then take her to the capital where they present her to an evil queen who is gathering people for her arena games. She doesn't think much of Diana - until Diana flips out and starts creaming everybody in the room. The other captive, a big bearded barbarian joins in and soon it's a full-scale riot. Diana jumps up on the throne and starts... well, gosh, it looks as though she's about to strangle the queen with her chains... when Diana gets knocked out from behind.

    She wakes up in a cell alongside the barbarian, who is named Ranagor. He's like, "we're screwed," but Diana uses one of her spy gadgets to free them both. They then try to escape, only to end up stumbling right out into the arena. Whoops! The queen gloats and releases a giant monster, but Diana and Ranagor defeat it. They then leap up into the crowd and start pummeling everyone, including the queen, who Diana again gives a facewash.

    But reinforcements arrive and Diana and Ranagor have to flee. They end up finally being trapped on top of the highest tower. Diana sees an approaching army - it's Ranagor's! Turns out Ranagor is the prince of a rebellious nation trying to overthrow the evil queen. If they can get to the army, they might be safe. So Diana shoves Ranagor off the tower into the moat, then dives after him. They get away! For now...

    TO BE CONTINUED!!!

    My Notes: It's finally becoming clear what Sekwosky is really going for with this series, which isn't just a modern spy story but rather modern spy stuff interspersed with epic fantasy. It's a crazy balance to attempt and I think he's being hamstrung by the bi-monthly format; even though I can read them all at once, it's hard ot ignore the fact that there are large two-month gaps between issues. How can you get a real flow going with a series when one spy storyline takes up six months and then you have a fantasy story that takes up the next six months? I think it ends up feeling a bit scattershot.

    Which is too bad, because I really like this stuff. It's instructive to note that this issue has a cover date of October, 1970. That happens to be the same cover date as Conan #1. It's crazy to think, but if you factor in the earlier Last Battle two-parter, Wonder Woman is in a way the only mainstream epic fantasy series coming out at the time (though Marvel was experimenting more and more with the format in weird places like Ka-Zar). In a way this new Wonder Woman series is similar to Marvel's Thor, which has one foot in the superhero world and the other in the world of fantasy. Which, by the way, is how I've always felt Wonder Woman should be done, rather than as a straight superhero book. Later writers in the Pre-Crisis world almost completely ignored the fantasy possibilities Wonder Woman presents and we see here again how cool it can be.

    I don't think this story is as good as Final Battle, but it's pretty damn good. It's also even more of a straight swords-and-sorecery title, with Diana whipping out a sword and killing people Conan-style by the boat load. Literally. When they bring her before the queen, the ship's captain says: "This is no mere girl - as at least a dozen shadow men could tell you - if the dead could speak. Plus eight of my men." So... she just killed 12 yetis and eight humans? And then later she is clearly about to strangle the queen with her chains, Princess Leia style, before she's knocked out. In three issues we've gone from potential torture to shooting down planes with a machine gun to killing people with a sword, all without much of a second thought other than a few complaints form Patrick. Again, what a sharp contrast to other superheroes of the day. But I do have to wonder how this fits in with her mission of bringing peace to the wider world.

    Also, it strikes me that having an ass-kicking, sword-wielding, ruthless action heroine - rather than hero - really is kind of groundbreaking. Of course, given the state of comics at the time, having a female superhero in her own title was also groundbreaking (still, nearly 30 years after the title started, which is sad commentary). This is still two or three years before the debut of Red Sonja.

    Lastly, the cover is interesting. We get the jagged, blocky, sketchy Sekwosky here. Along with the stark use of negative space, is anyone else seeing echoes of Bill Sienkiewicz here? This almost looks like one of his Moon Knight covers from a dozen years later.

    My Grade: A-. Another entertaining, interesting read. Diana continues to evolve as a character with every issue - into a "superhero" that seems much more dangerous than any of her contemporaries.
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  2. #377

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    Wonder Woman #191
    story by Denny O'Neil and Mike Sekowsky, pencils by Sekowsky, inks by Dick Giordano



    Synopsis: Diana and Ranagor are hailed as returning heroes by the army, which is led by Ranagor's father, the king. They party into the night, but Diana gets tired, so she and Ranagor leave the party. He asks her what her whole deal is, so she starts telling him...

    ...and we get a reprint of Wonder Woman #179.

    After Diana finishes telling her story, an enemy flying ship attacks the encampment! Diana and Ranagor esape injury, but the attack just gets everyone even more determined to overthrow the queen.

    TO BE CONTINUED!!

    My Notes: Bah. The lettcolumn suggested a few issues ago that they were working on a special issue for people who missed #179 and were confused by the new direction, but this seems like a really random and poorly thought out place to put it. It's right in the middle of a two-parter! Which extends this into a three-parter, meaning this storyline will now take half a year worth of issues to tell. I just don't think reprints are a good idea for a bi-monthly title, especially not reprinting an issue that just came out less than two years ago.

    Other notes: There's an ad in this issue for Adventure Comics #399, Sekowsky's first as writer and artist on Supergirl. Could this be the reason for the reprint appearing here? Sekwosky getting behind because of his new title? There's no lettercolumn in this issue, which supports that idea. There are, however, two random backups, one being a "Wonder Women of History" installment and the other being a one page thing about marriage customs in other cultures, which seems completely out of place in this comic. Why these are necessary considering they are reprinting an entire issue and have a framing story to boot, I'm not sure, but I'm not going to count pages to try and figure it out.

    There's also an ad for Jimmy Olsen #133, the first Kirby issue and basically the start of a whole new direction for the entire line of Superman titles.

    Oh, and Diana looks hot on this cover. I see some Dick Giordano at work here. Compare this (once I post it) to the overwhelmingly Sekowsky cover for #192 and you'll see what I mean.

    My Grade: D-. Putting the words "special issue" on the cover does not actually make this a special issue. It makes it a wholly unnecessary interruption of both the story and the title's momentum. It only keeps form getting an F because of the frame story.
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  3. #378
    DC Comics Forum Moderator The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Harris View Post
    Synopsis: Diana and Ranagor are hailed as returning heroes by the army, which is led by Ranagor's father, the king. They party into the night, but Diana gets tired, so she and Ranagor leave the party. He asks her what her whole deal is, so she starts telling him...

    ...and we get a reprint of Wonder Woman #179.
    Hmm... I'm not sure if I have seen that before in a comic book. Tons of reprints, sure, but not in that fashion.

    Oh, and Diana looks hot on this cover. I see some Dick Giordano at work here. Compare this (once I post it) to the overwhelmingly Sekowsky cover for #192 and you'll see what I mean.
    That's a Giordano lady, no question about it, though I thought Diana looked pretty good on the preceding cover, too.
    A bat! That's it! It's an omen.. I shall become a bat!

  4. #379
    DC Comics Forum Moderator The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Harris View Post
    Ah, yes. I do think Steinem and the feminist movement using WW as an icon and stumping for her return did have an effect on her return as well. I don't think it would have had much effect if the New Wonder Woman had been selling like gangbusters, but I think since it wasn't, their complaints carried more weight.
    From what you and others here have stated in regard to that and the Marston estate, it was inevitable that the old Diana would come back. Still, if DC really thought this was the way to go with her on a permanent basis back in the late '60s, then you have to scratch your head as to why. Not that a change wasn't needed, of course, but they could have left her status as the most powerful female in the DCU untouched in the process.
    A bat! That's it! It's an omen.. I shall become a bat!

  5. #380
    DC Comics Forum Moderator The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Harris View Post
    My Notes: The cover is interesting here. This issue is from June, 1970. A year or so later, the Comics Code would be rewritten and relaxed, resulting in a spate of new bondage covers on Supergirl, Lois Lane and Wonder Woman in particular. It makes sense on Wonder Woman, since bondage is a major part of her mythos, but this cover is interesting as it comes before the change, making it a rare code-approved bondage cover.
    It's still surprising it got the green light, though. Not just for the bondage, but also for her abbreviated outfit. That would have never been seen a few years earlier.
    A bat! That's it! It's an omen.. I shall become a bat!

  6. #381

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    One thing I forgot to mention is that in #190, during the opening sequence where Diana and Leda fight off the beasts and Diana flashes back, Sekowsky really plays around with format. It's not a linear flashback - instead, it happens concurrently with the action, as the flashback is literally framed by Wonder Woman and Leda fighting in the present. It's very interesting, although I'm not entirely sure it's completely effective, as it is a bit confusing visually - I wasn't entirely sure where to look.

    Here's one of the pages:


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  7. #382

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Darknight Detective View Post
    From what you and others here have stated in regard to that and the Marston estate, it was inevitable that the old Diana would come back. Still, if DC really thought this was the way to go with her on a permanent basis back in the late '60s, then you have to scratch your head as to why. Not that a change wasn't needed, of course, but they could have left her status as the most powerful female in the DCU untouched in the process.
    It's hard to say how much influence the Marston estate had on things, as the details of their agreement have never fully been revealed. All we know for sure is they had a deal with DC that apparently included a clause requiring DC to publish at least 4 issues a year under the Wonder Woman logo, with Wonder Woman as the main character and not a supporting character. Otherwise, the rights would fully revert to the Marston estate. Beyond that, I'mnot sure anyone knows exactly what other stipulations were in the contract.

    As far as keeping Diana the most powerful female hero in the DCU, the sad thing is, other than Supergirl she probably still was even de-powered. There just weren't many other female heroes. Black Canary had not yet received her Canary Cry when Diana made the change and beyond her, there's.... let's see... Zatanna, Batgirl, Wonder Girl and Hawkgirl? That's pretty slim pickings.
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  8. #383
    Senior Member Ish Kabbible's Avatar
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    A comment on the sales figures.For Wonder Woman to have steady sales after the revamp made it a success. This was the time period where superhero sales were plummetting both for DC and Marvel leading to many cancellations (Xmen, Green Lantern,Submariner,Doctor Strange amongst them). For myself at that time, I would never have bought a WW comic before the revamp when it was much too juvenile. After the change, it became one of my favorites.

  9. #384
    DC Comics Forum Moderator The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Harris View Post
    As far as keeping Diana the most powerful female hero in the DCU, the sad thing is, other than Supergirl she probably still was even de-powered. There just weren't many other female heroes. Black Canary had not yet received her Canary Cry when Diana made the change and beyond her, there's.... let's see... Zatanna, Batgirl, Wonder Girl and Hawkgirl? That's pretty slim pickings.
    So she would have been as strong as Dinah and Barb, but the others would have been her superior at this time. If I had been Diana, I would have been a tad upset.
    A bat! That's it! It's an omen.. I shall become a bat!

  10. #385

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ish Kabbible View Post
    A comment on the sales figures.For Wonder Woman to have steady sales after the revamp made it a success. This was the time period where superhero sales were plummetting both for DC and Marvel leading to many cancellations (Xmen, Green Lantern,Submariner,Doctor Strange amongst them). For myself at that time, I would never have bought a WW comic before the revamp when it was much too juvenile. After the change, it became one of my favorites.
    Another valid point. Sekwosky even says this in one of the lettercolumns (I forget which), that superhero books are failing so he wanted to try something different. And more than one letter seems to have come in asking him why Metal Men was canceled, as two issues in a row the lettercolumn answers Metal Men questions. So keeping sales steady is a bit of a win in that environment.
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  11. #386

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    Wonder Woman #192
    story and pencils by Mike Sekowsky, inks by Dick Giordano



    Synopsis: Diana, Ranagor and his army get geared up and launch a full scale siege of the evil queen's base, Castle Skull. But as bravely as they fight, the walls are impenetrable. So Diana gathers up the king's wise men and explains the secret of gunpowder to them and they quickly rig up a bunch of crude cannons. They then begin smashing down the castle walls and laying waste to the queen's forces.

    The queen, in response, sends out her airships, but Diana has a surprise ready for them as well: anti-aircraft mortars. The airships are too slow to maneuver out of the way, so they are sitting ducks, and Diana blasts them all out of the sky. They crash to the ground in fiery heaps.

    Diana and her gunners then level the wall around the castle and the army charges in... only to find another wall behind it, blocking them. So Diana rigs up more cannons, this time hidden inside battering rams so they can get close to the battle. The battle drags on "day after day" with neither side able to claim a real dvantage. The bodies pile up.

    Finally, Diana and Ranagor realize their army is at their limit. Diana has another plan, and she and Ranagor challenege the queen and her champion, Thang, to single (or in this case, dual) combat. The queen accepts, sure that Thang will crush everyone, but Ranagor kills Thang! The queen sees this and flees from Diana. Diana then launches some wagons filled with explosives into the castle wall and they blow up, collapsing the wall.

    Ranagor's army streams into the breach! The queen gets back inside, but it's too late. Ranagor is victorious! They decide to simply let the queen go into the countryside, sure that she will be recognized and killed by the first commoners who see her, after the way she ruled the land with an iron fist. Seems a bit harsh, but then again, maybe not?

    Suddenly, Queen Hippolyta and an army of Amazons show up. They've finally come to rescue Diana, but are too late. Diana and Ranagor say their goodbyes and after a brief respite back on Paradise island, Diana returns to Earth.

    THE END!!!

    My Notes: Diana does her best "Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" imitation here, using her knowledge of modern science to turn the tide of battle. She's also in full-on warrior mode here, leveling walls, blowing up airships will with soldiers and leveling entire platoons with her cannon. Not a moment is spent on reflection about these deeds.

    Even though this story was randomly inflated to a three-parter by last issue's reprint and frame story, it again feels like Sekowsky doesn't have enough room to really get into the battle sequences, the same problem I had with #184. They read kind of like a historical overview - generic scenes of armies fighting with caption boxes telling us what's happening. We don't get the visceral impact; it's kind of lke a Cliff's Notes version.

    As I mentioned before, people write in here about Metal Men and Sekwosky says: "Sorry about dropping METAL MEN where we did - but the real villain is Carmine Infantino." He then tells everyone to write protest letters address specifically to Carmine. Later, he includes a glowing letter of praise for the new direction along with the note "I just stuck this one in for the sake of my ego." I still think he was way to dismissive of the previous version - and at one point in an earlier lettercolumn came off as very egotistical by saying that he has made silk out of a sow's ear with the title - but he does seem to have a sense of humor about things and I also appreciate that he has a specific viewpoint on the character and title. So it's not all bad.

    This issue contains a two-page spread touting the new Superman direction for 1971. This includes Kirby's Jimmy Olsen soft reboot, Sekowsky's own soft reboot in Adventure with Supergirl, the new "relevancy" direction in Lois Lane and the addition of Rose and Thorn, as well as Superman himself becoming a TV reporter and ditching Kryptonite. So that's where we are in terms of DC trying to shake things up to combat nosediving sales.

    Lastly, the cover. It's pure Sekowsky; dark backgrounds, blocky, rough figures, Diana wearing yet another new white outfit. It just seems very, very rough compared to some of his other covers. It sometimes feels like Giordano only inks Diana's hair on some of these covers.

    My Grade: B-. An okay ending to this drawn out story arc, though not really satisfying on an emotional level for me.
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  12. #387

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    Wonder Woman #193
    story and pencils by Mike Sekowsky, inks by Dick Giordano



    Synopsis: Tony is about to shoot a dude when Diana jumps in front and says "wait, your mom sent me!" I'm paraphrasing, actually.

    This triggers a flashback where we see Diana approached by the nice old lady who took her in back in #185 when her house burned down. her son, Tony, who kicked lesbian butt with the help of an Italian street gang, has grabbed his gune and gone rogue. Why? Well, it turns out his sister Angela has been in a coma for two years after someone spiked her drink at a party. He's been on a mission of vengeance ever since and now has apparently found the culprit. The mom doesn't want to lose him to jail time, so she asks Diana for help.

    Diana starts with Tony's pal Eddie, who he served in Vietnam with. Eddie doesn't know anything. So Diana starts pounding pavement. Some thugs try to beat her up, but she kicks their collective rear and discovers they were sent by one Runty Sneed. See, this is what happens when you name your kid Runty Sneed. Talk about predetermination.

    So Diana starts asking around again, but again finds nothing. Just then! Runty Sneed appears in front of her, shot stone dead. Diana is like "...well, crap." So she plays a little game. As onlookers rush over, she leans down over his body and pretends he just told her some super important dying wish. Then she wanders around, waiting for whoever shot Runty to come for her.

    Sure enough, someone attempts a drive-by. She avoids it and takes down the license plate number. She then calls the authorities and is like "I know you can't legally tell me whose plate this is, but... uh, please?" So they do. I guess identity theft just was not that big a deal in the early 70's.

    Armed with her new info, Diana rushes to an apartment building and discovers that whoever it is she is looking for just got chased onto a construction site by Tony, who was brandishing a gun. She rushes up and finds Tony about to shoot... Eddie! Yes, it was Eddie. Tony cleverly figured this out when Eddie spiked some other people's drinks at a recent party. Eddie has been waiting, though, and has a gun of his own. Right up until Diana kicks his butt down a flight of stairs, knocking him out. Hey, she's Wonder Woman.

    The cops show up and arrest Eddie, who confesses. Tony and Diana go home, only to find that Angela is there! In an amazing co-incidence of timing, her doctor managed to drag her out of her coma this very day. And somehow, they've already decided to get engaged! That's one fast operator! It's happy times for everyone!

    THE END!!!

    My Notes: Uh, what? Was that.

    So, a little background. Tony mentioned his sister Angela in passing back in #185, just like one line. Odd as it sounds, people have actually been writing in about this, wondering when we're going to find out about this mysterious Angela chick. So now, almost a year and a half later, Sekowsky finally comes back to that tiny, tiny plot thread.

    There are a couple things I like about this issue. It's a real street level story, even more that "street" books like Daredevil. Though the stakes are a bit inflated, it does feel like a real world problem - a regular guy going to shoot another guy for messing with his sister. I also like the Vietnam stuff laced into the story, with Tony being a vet and stuff. It adds some believability to the edge Tony has.

    On the other hand, Sekowsky's plotting falls all the hell apart here. The stuff with Runty Sneed barely makes any sense and he ties it into the main story in only the most tenuous way. Why did Eddie kill Runty Sneed? Why did Runty want Diana to stop asking questions? It's very vaguely hinted that Eddie is maybe dealing drugs and horning in on Runty's action, but honestly, that's mostly me reading between the lines to try and make sense of this.

    And then there's the ridiculous happy ending. Angela comes out of a coma, is already released from the hospital in full health and is ready to marry her doctor, which, talk about an ethical conflict right there. All presumably just today, because you would think the first thing the hospital would do when Angela woke up is call her mother, which means all that stuff happened between the beginning of the story and the climax. It's just goofy.

    Sekowsky does use again the device of jumping right into the action and then backtracking to fill us in. I don't mind this.

    In the lettercolumn, Sekwosky explains the reprint in #191 by saying that he got sick and that was the only way to get the issue out on time. That makes some sense. And it appears to have been a huge sales success as well. Sekowsky has been saying all along - and printing letters to back it up - that a lot of people missed #179, hence the justification for reprinting it. Well, this issue has the latest statement of ownership. Aveerage sales this time are 172k, or up one thousand from last year. So it's holding steady. However, the issue nearest to filing date - which by my calculations was the reprint in #191 - sold a whopping 205k copies. With only six issues for the year, the fact that this issue was 30k over the average means that the other five issues would have actually averaged a drop in sales for the year without this big boost. So I guess that was a good idea after all.

    Still, however you look at it, holding steady - even slightly upticking - for two straight years is pretty decent work. I do with we had the pre-revamp numbers to compare them to, though.

    My Grade: B-. It's entertaining as long as you don't stop to think about anything that is happening. If you do, it turns into a weird mess. Kirby says, don't ask, just read it!
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  13. #388

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    Wonder Woman #194
    story by Mike Sekowsky and Anthony Hope Hawkins, art by Sekwosky and Dick Giordano



    Synopsis: After a splash page showing Diana swordfighting a guy while a second Diana watches helplessly, we get to the action. Diana is on vacation in the tiny European nation of Daldonia. Suddenly, some a-holes try to kidnap her. She wrecks them. Moments later, the authorities show up and they whisk her off to the palace, calling her "princess." Which she is, of course, but not the one they think.

    Yes, sure enough, Diana turns out to be a dead ringer for the princess of this small country. After several pages of dithering and dialogue and whatever, she agrees to stay on at the mansion just for fun. That night, the princess eats some doped soup and once she's in her chambers, kidnappers slip in and abduct her. Oh no!

    The king convinces Diana to impersonate the princess, apparently just to confuse the kidnappers and maybe draw them out? Or something. So she does, but there's a hitch in her giddyup when she meets the prince who is about to marry the princess. He cottons to her scam right away, but doesn't spill the beans. Diana explains what's going on. They end up agreeing reluctantly to go through with the wedding in hopes that someone will panic? Or something.

    Sure enough, during the wedding, a bunch of sword-wielding assassins attack. Diana clobbers them, then chases the masked ringleader into a secret passage in the castle walls. Turns out the princess was inside the castle the whole time, being kept prisoner in a secret room. Diana defeats the attacker and it turns out to be the princess's cousin, who was next in line for the throne. Diana and the princess quickly swap outfits, the wedding goes off with only the intended hitch and Diana flies back to America, no doubt wonder wtf just happened.

    THE END!!!

    My Notes: This story is an adaptation of the famous Anthony Hope Hawkins novel "The Prisoner of Zenda." I have no idea what possessed Sekowsky to adapt it, but these kind of mistaken identity farces belong back in the 19th century. Blah. There's not much good to say about this one, really.

    One good thing, though, is the cover. I like it for a couple reasons. Sekwosky has really been giving us a lot of covers that a) are dark b) are mostly monochrome other than the leads and c) often have vague or completely blank backgrounds. Here, instead, we get a bright cover with several detailed figures and a detailed background, done in a wide array of hues. It's a welcome change, even though I have liked some of the previous covers.

    In the lettercolumn, someone wrote in to ask for a giant size collection of old Wonder Woman stories from before she lost her powers. Sekowsky says they are working on just such a thing. Indeed, a year later they would publish just such a volume in conjunction with the new Ms. Magazine as part of a deal to allow Gloria Steinem to use WW on the cover of that magazine's first issue.

    The same letter also asks if they have something special planned for issue #200. This is interesting, because #200 does not, in fact, have anything indicating it is a special anniversary celebration. From what I have heard, Denny O'Neil says he simply forgot. I'm not sure how that happens, to be honest, especially when people are writing in letters asking for a special anniversary issue.

    My Grade: C-
    . And that's being generous. It's just goofy and dumb. It also doesn't make me want to ever read the original novel.
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  14. #389

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    One ting I wanted to note is that I-Ching shows up in basically one panel here. It strikes me reading these stories that he really hasn't had a whole lot of screen time in most of this run. After O'Neil left and Sekowsky tied up the first Dr. Cyber storyline in #182, I-Ching was absent in #183, 184 and 185. Then he was back for 186 and 187 before being shot. That caused him to miss 188. 189 he played a fairly large role in, but then he was again absent for #190-194. Even last issue, which takes place in the city, where you would expect to find him, there was no sign of I-Ching.

    Overall, then, during the past 12 issues of the series, spanning two full years, I-Ching has had a major role in exactly three issues. Many of the others he wasn't in at all or barely had a one or two panel cameo. I wonder if Sekwosky just wasn't a big fan of I-Ching or that aspect of the relaunch, or what. Personally, I like him. He'll also be back for a story next issue before kind of falling off the radar again.
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  15. #390
    Senior Member Angilas-Man's Avatar
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    My Notes: This story is an adaptation of the famous Anthony Hope Hawkins novel "The Prisoner of Zenda." I have no idea what possessed Sekowsky to adapt it, but these kind of mistaken identity farces belong back in the 19th century. Blah. There's not much good to say about this one, really.
    Have you seen the '30s Hollywood version of Zenda? It's very good.

    Who hasn't done a Zenda pastiche? there's a Flashman novel, an old Doctor Who serial, a Futurama episode...

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