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Review: Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1

Some Future State stories have dealt with dark, dystopian futures, but the lead story in Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1 takes it a step further with Diana, the remaining Amazons, and an aging Superman fighting to defend Swamp Thing, the Green, and basically the symbol of life on Earth from both Darkseid and the Anti-Life Equation. Writers Becky Cloonan and Michael Conrad and spectacular artist Jen Bartel tell a story about fighting a war with love to the bitter end as Diana doesn’t want to fight for the dying Earth and instead start somewhere fresh with Swamp Thing and her sisters, but is overridden by the warlike Amazons as well as Darkseid popping in for one last chance to conquer Earth.

Cloonan and Conrad’s writing in Immortal Wonder Woman #1 can be described as truly poetic and matches the emotion-tinged visual from Bartel. The opening sequence has Diana interacting with a hologram of Batman and meditating on their relationship as part of DC’s Trinity’s with Batman telling her that she’s a true symbol of hope to rally around. However, Diana is also a realist about what’s going as she wistfully sees a star blink out of existence, and the story cuts to Apokolips where Darkseid realizes the end aka the Anti-Life Equation is near and abandons his empire, son Orion, and follower Big Barda and immediately heads to Earth. Bartel does a great job of contrasting the Amazons’ perspective of Earth with its reality using an almost beach vacation color palette for when the Amazons decide to defend the planet from an unknown threat to using a dark and rusty one for when Darkseid flies through space to the “husk”.

Jen Bartel is known for beautiful character design and capturing deep emotion out of her figures, but she can also draw one hell of a fight scene when Diana and Darkseid finally throw down with again Superman having one heroic moment and then getting flattened. She channels her inner Jack Kirby with colorful explosions and speed lines every time Darkseid lands a blow, or Diana kicks the Apokoliptian tyrant or gets a grip on him with her lasso. Bartel also uses interesting (or heartbreaking) panel shapes like when she lays one out that looks just like Darkseid’s Omega sanction and ends in a stark, panel of skulls on a stark background. On a more macro-level, Cloonan and Conrad keep the objective of the battle high, yet simple, Diana, the Amazons, and Superman have to protect Swamp Thing from Darkseid and the Anti-Life Equation for a chance at filling Earth (or maybe a new planet) with life again. The stakes of this comic are literally life and death.

The first story in Immortal Wonder Woman #1 is a Ragnarok for the DC Universe courtesy of Becky Cloonan, Michael Conrad, and Jen Bartel, who makes everyone look epic, pretty, and/or war worn while nailing the look and color palette of utter cosmic darkness too. It’s the last of the old gods battling the embodiment of utter evil with only a small chance for rebirth in the form of Swamp Thing, who is given a frail form and halting speech patterns. It’s also a masterclass in pacing with Cloonan and Conrad getting to the emotional breaking point before hitting that “To Be Continued” with literal tears streaming in the last panel that Bartel draws.

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1

The second story in Immortal Woman #1 is written by LL McKinney with art from Alitha Martinez, Mark Morales, and Emilio Lopez, is set earlier in the Future State timeline, and features Nubia, an Amazon who has taken up the mantle of Wonder Woman while an off-panel Diana is queen of Themiscyra. Like the lead story, its plot has a world-ending conflict as Grail, the daughter of Darkseid, is stealing parts of an artifact connected to various gods that if put together could rip a hole in time and space. Most of this is explained in many expository text boxes by McKinney, who seems to be trying to fit a 4-6 issue miniseries in two issues.

A feeling of being overstuffed aside, “Nubia” is not without its charms. Martinez and Morales are veteran storytellers, who excel at everything from an exciting bout of close quarters combat between Grail and Nubia with a poster-worthy splash of the protagonist saying, “I am Wonder Woman” to capturing Nubia’s pained facial expressions when Aunt Nancy asks her for a favor in return for helping her solve the mystery behind these artifact thefts. Speaking of Aunt Nancy, McKinney’s background writing YA urban fantasy comes in handy with some of the little world-building touches like having her run a night club called the Ebony Web with a spider on the door and with a (quite handsome) minotaur bouncer. With her punnish name, knowledge of almost everything, and propensity for single malt whisky, Aunt Nancy has a lot of personality and would be an intriguing permanent edition to Nubia’s supporting cast, or the Wonder Woman side of the DC Universe as it’s good to see a god from West African folklore pop up. Also, I think this might be the first time that the wonderful city of Atlanta has popped up in a DC comic that I’ve read.

However, Nubia’s heroism and Aunt Nancy’s charisma don’t completely make up for a story that is mostly telling and not showing with L.L. McKinney basically undercutting the two page vision that Alitha Martinez and Mark Morales draw earlier in the story by explaining it all in a wall of text. On more of a new reader front, she also doesn’t really introduce Grail except that’s she strong (By defeating Nubia in combat.), generically evil, and wants the artifacts. If I hadn’t (unfortunately) read Geoff Johns’ Justice League run, I wouldn’t know that she was Darkseid’s daughter and basically the Anti-Life version of Wonder Woman. I mean, this is the comic book equivalent of a two episode mini Big Bad arc on a CW show so we don’t need a super deep villain, but including this context could deepen the threat against Nubia and reality. I really wanted to like the Nubia story and look forward to McKinney’s graphic novel take on the character, but it was disappointed and definitely felt like a first published comic.

Overall, Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1 has one strong, epic story and another story with potential that it doesn’t fully live up to that also shows the difficulty of transitioning from prose fiction to comics. However, this book is definitely worth picking up for Jen Bartel’s career best take on the final battle between good and evil in the DC Universe with punches that make galaxies trembles and facial expressions that will make you tear up while Becky Cloonan and Michael W. Conrad write a Diana, who is trying to cling onto hope in an utterly no-win situation.

Story: Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad, L.L. McKinney
Art: Jen Bartel, Alitha Martinez with Mark Morales
Colors: Jen Bartel, Emilio Lopez
Letterer: Pat Brosseau, Becca Carey
Story: 8.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.4 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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Preview: Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1

Written by: L.L. McKinney, Michael Conrad, Becky Cloonan
Art by: Alitha Martinez, Jen Bartel

The Undoing are coming. Long past the Age of Heroes, few of Diana Prince’s friends survive, and most of her sisters have passed as well. As an immortal goddess, this is her lot. But then, a threat appears that even the mighty Darkseid can’t handle-and it’s up to Wonder Woman to take on the battle! It’s big action and high fantasy at the end of time, courtesy of Eisner Award-winning cartoonist Becky Cloonan (By Chance or Providence, Gotham Academy) and her Doom Patrol co-writer Michael W. Conrad, with the popular artist Jen Bartel (Blackbird) making her interior art debut for DC. Then, peer into a closer future as the original champion of Themyscira strikes out on her own. Things have not been stable on Paradise Island for some time, and Nubia has found a new home in Man’s World. Now, she is tasked with protecting it from the dangers of the world of myths and magic. The writer of DC’s Nubia: Real One, L.L. McKinney, takes this powerful Amazon to a whole new level.

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1

DC Future State Heads Back to Print

DC’s two-month Future State event launched this week with a bang! You can check out all of our reviews.

The sales success and acclaim of this linewide look into potential futures of the DC Universe has resulted in the publisher returning to press to reprint several titles:

  • Future State: Dark Detective #1
  • Future State: The Next Batman #1
  • Future State: The Next Batman #2
  • Future State: Wonder Woman #1
  • Future State: Harley Quinn #1
  • Future State: Swamp Thing #1

These dynamic “character portrait” style covers feature art from some of the hottest artists in comics, including Nick Derington, Joelle Jones, Dan Mora, Jen Bartel, and Mike Perkins. If you missed a chance to read these groundbreaking stories make sure and pick up your favorite when they hit participating comic book stores on Tuesday, February 2, 2021.

Get a First Look at Seven Secrets #6

BOOM! Studios has revealed a first look at Seven Secrets #6, the latest issue of the highly praised new original comic book series from New York Times bestselling author Tom Taylor, artist Daniele Di Nicuolo, colorist Walter Baiamonte, and letterer Ed Dukeshire, introducing readers to seven powerful secrets—words, wonders, weapons, and worse—with the power to change the world.

To save The Order and everyone he loves, Caspar must leave everything he’s ever known behind. But even with his sacrifice, will Amon get his hands on the Secrets once and for all?

Seven Secrets #6 features main cover art by series artist Daniele di Nicuolo and variant covers art by acclaimed artists Jen Bartel, Miguel Mercado, and Matteo Scalera. It comes to shelves on January 13, 2021.

Seven Secrets #6

DC Reveals a First Look at Future State: Nubia from L. L. McKinney and Alitha Martinez

Daughter of Hippolyta.
Sister to Diana.
Princess of the Amazons.
And now? Wonder Woman.

Nubia is coming to DC‘s Future State! DC Future State is a two-month, line-wide event beginning in January that gives fans a glimpse at possible futures of the DC universe, exploring the enduring legacy of DC Super Heroes.

In Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman, writer L. L. McKinney and artist Alitha Martinez team up for a story about Nubia for DC Future State.

Nubia is one of two feature stories that will debut in Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman. The others is Immortal Wonder Woman by Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad, and Jen Bartel.

Check out a first look at Nubia below!

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman Nubia

DC Officially Announces Future State, a Two-Month Line Wide Event

DC Comics is kicking off 2021 with a look into the future with DC Future State. The rumored line-wide event has been revealed today. It kicks off in January 2021 and goes through 2021. DC Future State features a combination of monthly and twice-monthly oversize anthologies, as we well as a miniseries and one-shots,

DC Future State spotlights the World’s Greatest Super Heroes in fresh new roles, with all-new characters taking up their iconic mantles. DC Future State features an incredible array of creative talent, combining award-winning writers and artists with new voices from the worlds of TV, movies, and animation. In March 2021, the regular DC title lineup resumes, continuing existing storylines from 2020 and introducing new arcs for the year.

In DC Future State, the Multiverse has been saved from the brink of destruction, but the triumph of DC’s heroes has shaken loose the very fabric of time and space! The final chapter of Dark Nights: Death Metal (on sale January 5, 2021)  brings new life to DC’s Multiverse, kicking off this glimpse into the unwritten worlds of DC’s future!

A stellar array of writers and artists are on hand to deliver this unique look at beloved DC characters, including fan favorites such as Mariko Tamaki, Brian Michael Bendis, Gene Luen Yang, Joëlle Jones, Joshua Williamson, Nicola Scott, Cully Hamner, and John Timms, along with new voices such as award-winning screenwriter John Ridley (12 Years A Slave), Brandon Vietti (Young Justice), Meghan Fitzmartin (SupernaturalDC Super Hero Girls), Brandon Easton (Thundercats, Transformers: War for Cybertron), Alitha Martinez (REPRESENT! It’s A Bird!), L.L. McKinney (Nubia: Real One), Paula Sevenbergen (Stargirl), and Siya Oum (Lola XOXO), among others.

Check out below to see what the future beholds!

Batman Family

In this future, Gotham City is controlled by the Magistrate. This villainous regime has taken control of the city, now under constant surveillance. All masked vigilantes have been outlawed and Batman has been killed. But led by an all-new Batman, a new assembly of Gotham’s guardians rise to give hope to all of those who lost it!

Oversized Comics:

Future State: The Next Batman #1-4

  • The Next Batman, by John Ridley, Nick Derington and Laura Braga
  • Outsiders, by Brandon Thomas and Sumit Kumar
  • Arkham Knights, by Paul Jenkins and Jack Herbert
  • Batgirls, by Vita Ayala and Aneke
  • Gotham City Sirens, by Paula Sevenbergen and Emanuela Lupacchino

Future State: Dark Detective #1-4

  • Dark Detective, by Mariko Tamaki and Dan Mora
  • Grifters, by Matthew Rosenberg and Carmine di Giandomenico
  • Red Hood, by Joshua Williamson and Giannis Milonogiannis

Monthly Miniseries:

  • Future State: Batman/Superman, by Gene Luen Yang and Ben Oliver
  • Future State: Catwoman, by Ram V and Otto Schmidt
  • Future State: Harley Quinn, by Stephanie Phillips and Simone Di Meo
  • Future State: Nightwing, by Andrew Constant and Nicola Scott
  • Future State: Robin Eternal, by Meghan Fitzmartin and Eddy Barrows
Superman Family

Due to his involvement in an international crisis happening in the near future, Clark Kent has been rejected by Earth, causing him to focus his lifesaving efforts outside his adopted home. He travels to Warworld to rise through the ranks of gladiatorial combat in order to defeat Mongul with the help of some unlikely heroes. Back in Metropolis, Clark’s son Jon has taken on the mantle of Superman. After seeing the horrors that befell Gotham, he bottles Metropolis in order to keep it safe, putting him at odds with Supergirl.

Connecting the two oversized Future State: Superman titles, Shilo Norman, the man known as Mister Miracle, finds himself caught between the city he grew up in and the battle-torn planet that could be his downfall.

Meanwhile in the Amazon rainforest, Yara Flor is chosen to be the new Wonder Woman. Years later, the new Superman and Wonder Woman join forces to save their cities in a new superhero team-up the likes of which the world has never seen.

Oversized Comics:

Future State: Superman of Metropolis #1-2

  • Superman of Metropolis, by Sean Lewis and John Timms
  • The Guardian, by Sean Lewis and Cully Hamner
  • Mister Miracle, by Brandon Easton and Valentine De Landro
Future State: Superman of Metropolis #1-2

Future State: Superman: Worlds of War #1-4

  • Superman: Worlds of War, by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Mikel Janin
  • Midnighter, by Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad and Gleb Melnikov
  • Black Racer, by Jeremy Adams and Siya Oum
  • Mister Miracle, by Brandon Easton and Valentine De Landro
Future State: Superman: Worlds of War #1-4

Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1-2

  • Immortal Wonder Woman, by Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad and Jen Bartel
  • Nubia, by L.L. McKinney, Alitha E. Martinez and Mark Morales
Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #1-2

Monthly Miniseries and One-Shots

  • Future State: House of El, by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Scott Godlewski (one-shot on sale February)
  • Future State: Kara Zor-El, Superwoman, by Marguerite Bennett and Marguerite Sauvage
  • Future State: Legion of Super-Heroes, by Brian Michael Bendis and Riley Rossmo
  • Future State: Superman/Wonder Woman, by Dan Watters and Leila del Duca
  • Future State: Superman vs. Imperious Lex, by Mark Russell and Steve Pugh (3-issue series ending March 2021)
  • Future State: Wonder Woman, by Joëlle Jones
Justice League Family

A thread of great change runs through the Justice League heroes: a new League is built upon secret identities (even from each other), but an old and evolved enemy will use these secrets to try and overthrow the world. For the supernatural heroes of Justice League Dark, the very fabric of reality has shifted, and heroes are being hunted.

For Flash, Shazam, and the Teen Titans, it all begins when the four Riders of the Apocalypse unleash hell in a battle at Titans Academy, Barry Allen is cut off from the Speed Force, a Famine-controlled Wally West may be beyond saving, and Billy Batson makes a deal with the devil that will change Shazam forever. Off-world, John Stewart and the remaining Green Lanterns are stranded in the shadow of a dead power battery; Jackson Hyde and Andy Curry are separated across the galaxy; and Amanda Waller executes her ultimate plan with a new but terrifyingly familiar Suicide Squad on Earth-3.

At the end of time, Swamp Thing reveals its true intention, ruling supreme until a remnant of humanity launches a rebellion, and Black Adam looks to the past as the only way to save the future of the Multiverse.

Oversized Comics:

Future State: Justice League #1-2

  • Justice League, by Joshua Williamson and Robson Rocha
  • Justice League Dark, by Ram V and Marcio Takara
Future State: Justice League #1

Future State: Green Lantern #1-2

  • Last Lanterns, by Geoffrey Thorne and Tom Raney
  • Tales of the Green Lantern Corps, by Josie Campbell, Ryan Cady and Ernie Altbacker, with Sami Basri and Clayton Henry
Future State: Green Lantern #1

Future State: Suicide Squad #1-2

  • Suicide Squad, by Robbie Thompson and Javi Fernandez
  • Black Adam, by Jeremy Adams and Fernando Pasarin
Future State: Suicide Squad #1

Monthly Miniseries:

  • Future State: Aquaman, by Brandon Thomas and Daniel Sampere
  • Future State: The Flash, by Brandon Vietti and Dale Eaglesham
  • Future State: Teen Titans, by Tim Sheridan and Rafa Sandoval
  • Future State: SHAZAM!, by Tim Sheridan and Eduardo Pansica
  • Future State: Swamp Thing, by Ram V and Mike Perkins

The MCU’s Black Widow Inspires Variant Covers Showcasing Marvel Comics’ Black Widow

Marvel has revealed that select Black Widow comics will receive new Marvel Cinematic Universe variant covers featuring artwork inspired by Marvel Studios’ Black Widow! To celebrate the superspy Avenger’s upcoming solo adventure, fans can find these variants by exploring her action-packed world of espionage in Black Widow #3, the next issue in her current ongoing series by Kelly Thompson and Elena Casagrande, as well as one-shots like Black Widow: Widow’s Sting #1 by Ralph Macchio and Simone Buonfantino and Widowmakers: Red Guardian and Yelena Belova #1 by Devin Grayson and Michele Bandini.

Drawn by some of the industry’s hottest talents, these eye-catching covers showcase characters and imagery from the highly-anticipated film. One of the most popular Black Widow artists in recent years, Eisner award-winning artist Chris Samnee returns to the character with a movie poster-style cover depicting the film’s main cast for Widowmakers: Red Guardian and Yelena Belova #1. On superstar artist Stefano Caselli’s Black Widow: Widow’s Sting #1 cover, Natasha Romanoff races to her next mission. And fans will be delighted at Jen Bartel’s vibrant depiction of Scarlett Johansson’s iconic portrayal of the character in her cover for Black Widow #3!

BLACK WIDOW: WIDOW’S STING #1 (FEB200830)

Written by RALPH MACCHIO
Art by SIMONE BUONFANTINO
MCU Variant Cover by STEFANO CASELLI (AUG200683)

BLACK WIDOW: WIDOW’S STING #1 (FEB200830)

BLACK WIDOW #3 (APR200951)

Written by KELLY THOMPSON
Art by ELENA CASAGRANDE
MCU Variant Cover by JEN BARTEL

BLACK WIDOW #3 (APR200951)

WIDOWMAKERS: RED GUARDIAN AND YELENA BELOVA #1 (FEB200833)

Written by DEVIN GRAYSON
Art by MICHELE BANDINI
MCU VARIANT COVER by CHRIS SAMNEE (SEP200639)

WIDOWMAKERS: RED GUARDIAN AND YELENA BELOVA #1

Preview: Giant-Size X-Men: Tribute to Wein & Cockrum

Giant-Size X-Men: Tribute to Wein & Cockrum

(W) Len Wein (A) Alex Ross, Kevin Nowlan, Chris Samnee, Marcus To, Siya Oum, Stephen Segovia, Marguerite Sauvage, Carmen Nunez Carnero, Bernard Chang, Aaron Kuder, Takeshi Miyagawa, Juan Cabal, Gurihiru, Mark Brooks, Kris Anka, Phil Noto, Valerio Schiti, Leinil Francis Yu, Matteo Lolli, Emanuela Lupacchino, Carlos E. Gomez, R. B. Silva, Ramon Rosanas, Joshua Cassara, David Baldeon, Marcelo Ferreira, Javi Garron, Rod Reis, Javier Rodriguez, Marco Checchetto, Jen Bartel, Michael Del Mundo, Rahzzah, Pepe Larraz, Mike Hawthorne (CA) Adi Granov
Rated T+
In Shops: Sep 30, 2020
SRP: $5.99

CELEBRATING THE CLASSIC’S 45TH ANNIVERSARY!
Forty-five years ago, a comic book came out that would change the face of Marvel Comics forever. Writer Len Wein and artist Dave Cockrum revamped the X-Men completely, replacing the bulk of the teen heroes with a completely new international cast! The legendary one-shot took comic fans by storm and set the series off in a new direction, setting the stage for the legendary X-scribe Chris Claremont to make them the most popular heroes in the Marvel Universe! Now, 37 of Marvel’s top artists come together to re-create this epic story, each re-drawing one pulse-pounding page in tribute to this Marvel masterpiece!

Giant-Size X-Men: Tribute to Wein & Cockrum
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