Publisher: DC Comics
Released: May 9th 2017
Following Wonder Woman: The Lies I wasn’t expecting Year One to be an origin story (despite the title, which in retrospect should have given it away). I still really enjoyed this version though, and think that fans of the movie would probably enjoy diving into the comic ‘verse with this series (assuming they haven’t already). The artwork is stunning, and I think potentially even a step up from volume one.
Being that it’s an origin story, there’s a whole lot of information and details crammed into this volume. The focus is mainly on Wonder Woman (obviously) but Steve Trevor also manages to snag some of the screen time (ahem, page time) for a bit of a origin story for himself.
I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of seeing Themyscira and everything that goes on there. So naturally I loved the part of Wonder Woman’s backstory that involved her life in Themyscira. Diana appears to have a lot of healthy relationships back home. The relationship with her mother wasn’t one I pictured – for some reason I always assume her queen/mother would be a bit more on the smothering or super protective side, which when you think about it is a silly supposition. The revelation (finally) that Wonder Woman is bi wasn’t really a shock for anyone I imagine, despite the controversy it kicked up. Personally I’m just happy that they stopped skirting around the issue of it and decided to go with honesty.
I feel like Steve Trevor’s entire setup was designed to make our hearts break. We’ve shown this beautiful friendship between him and Nick only to (spoiler warning) see Nick die literally the minute before Steve meets Diana. I know that wasn’t really the point of it, but it sure felt that way! In truth they were clearly trying to show us how loyal and dedicated Steve is.
Along with the obvious main characters (Diana being primary, Steven being secondary), I really liked the side cast and the time spent developing them. Etta and Barbara Ann (AKA Cheetah – though she isn’t yet in this continuity) are probably my favorites, and their (not so) quiet courtship of each other is adorable. Fans of Cheetah will love the final issue in this volume – it focuses specifically on Barbara Ann and the time she spent researching the Amazons. It was fascinating and well written.
As for the plot itself; I enjoyed it. I think it served its purpose of both fleshing out the world and being a driving factor for all the characters getting together. I also loved the way the gods were represented in this volume (mostly through exceptionally capable animals or ominous scenery such as the tree). The imagery is both evocative and memorable.
As much as I would like to pretend otherwise, I found the government’s reaction to Wonder Woman to be pretty accurate, if not a bit on the gentle side. The sudden appearance of a super-powered person with access to alarming tech? Who also doesn’t speak English (and thus can’t answer their million questions). Yeah that’s not going to go over too well; which is a shame really. On the plus side, I’d like to think most of the population would have reacted positively to her rescuing people (and yeah, I totally buy the press focusing on the wrong elements).
I can’t wait to see what happens in volume three (The Truth) and am looking forward to continuing my binge-read through Wonder Woman.