Okay. "Superman | Wonder Woman #3" just got interesting. I was quite critical of the world's finest power couple in my previous review of issue #2. Admittedly, I'm still not ready for the relationship between them because I'm moored to previous DC continuity and to our national love affair with Lois and Clark. However, Charles Soule does something here that will keep me reading this book for a while longer. He doesn't dismiss my apprehension of a Superman • Wonder Woman | boyfriend • girlfriend thing. He adds a tension to this book that looks to be leading toward an all-out conflict between our heroes and Phantom Zone escapee Zod. Not to mention with the world-at-large.
There's something about Zod. I'm not sure how many people will receive this new take on the classic Superman villain. Tony S. Daniel brings us a Zod that is akin to Terrence Stamp sans the disco jumpsuit. Luckily he arrives on the scene wearing Kryptonian attire bearing the infamous "Z" emblem. The Justice League has been tracking the energy manifestations that not only brought Zod here, but also briefly released Doomsday from the Phantom Zone (see issue #2). When Batman (yeah, he shows up in this issue) is alerted to what is called an inter-dimensional incursion in the middle of his pep talk with Clark about (among other things) his relationship with Diana, the Man of Steel speeds to its location. However, Justice League ARGUS (as I'll call them) has shown up first. Led by Steve Trevor, Martian Manhunter, Hawkman and Vibe try to take down a confused and awfully powerful Zod. They are unable to do so. Daniels does a great job drawing these scenes and the book overall. However, it's up to the lasso of truth to do the heavy lifting when both Superman and Wonder Woman finally arrive.
The tension between Diana and Steve is evident. As many readers may know, Steve Trevor is the classic Wonder Woman love interest in DC continuity. This relationship changed also in the New 52 during a few story arcs between the first year's run of Wonder Woman and Justice League of America.
A couple more good points include the fact that the New 52's Superman still doesn't quite understand all of his powers, the palpable fear of a Kryptonian planet and Daniel's cover art.
Will Batman aka billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne make for a perfect matchmaker? It seems ridiculous when one thinks about it. In theory it's not so good. I will confess that it works as a plot point. I won't droll on about missing Lois and the notion of egalitarian versus complementarian relationships like I did in the last review. Other than an all-to-easy capture of Zod by Wonder Woman, I have nothing specific to point out that didn't work for me in this issue.
I'm staying put on "Superman | Wonder Woman." I'm curious to know what direction this story arc will go. Issue #3 was fun. There was a lot of action. It seems to be building up to even more conflict upon the arrival of Zod's love interest: Faora. We shall see in the next issue.
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