Sensation Comics #5 (Comics Review)

The new Wonder Woman ongoing, Sensation Comics, has been chugging along as one of DC’s best offerings in the New 52 since the title’s re-introduction to the comics world almost a month ago. The previous issues have dealt with different aspects of what makes Wonder Woman who she is, but there have also been some common strands that tie them together much more cohesively than would have been otherwise possible. As an anthology series released in digital first and then in print, Sensation Comics has quickly become one of my favourite reads any given week..

This week’s offering, Sensation Comics #5 begins a 2-part arc written by Ivan Cohen in which he explores the concept of Wonder Woman’s spirituality and what kind of an effect that can have on the public at large, and whether she is here to proselytize her beliefs or not. Much of this issue deals with the setup for the next week’s offering, much as Gail Simone’s first issue did, but there is also a lot to like here, and the artwork by Marcus To and Andrew Dalhouse is as great as it has been on the previous issues with the other artists who have worked on the series so far.

In this new issue, we start off with a long and involved sequence in which Wonder Woman gives a televised interview about her recent adventure on Capitol Hill in which the sorceress Circe turned the members of the U.S. Congress into pigs. It was a rather hilarious issue, I’ll admit, and a fun little adventure too. To see Jason Bischoff’s story transition so smoothly into Ivan Cohen’s own 2-part arc was similarly fun. The televised interview portrayed Diana in a great light, especially when she was accused of promoting her religious beliefs, to which she gave some great counters. Go Diana!!!

Ivan Cohen’s take on Wonder Woman matches up with what the Gail Simone and the others have shown to us and the great thing is that he also mixes up grand theatrics and action really well with something much more subtle. This issue isn’t just about a discussion of Wonder Woman’s beliefs, her Greek religious upbringing, but also about what that means to her. This is the important and vital theme of this new arc, “Taketh Away“.

It all gains more importance when you consider that Wonder Woman tells the audience that she isn’t there to spread her beliefs and that it is okay if her gods aren’t worshipped by her audience. It raises an interesting question: how would the Greek gods and demi-gods react to that, especially those like Aphrodite, Athena, Hercules and Hermes who have contributed so much to who she is?

That’s what Ivan Cohen’s script here explores. This is only half the story, but you still get pulled into it and with all the questions that are raised, you try to come up with the answers. What is sure however is that something is indeed going to happen, and that is shown in the final pages of the comic, and with the cliffhanger. Wonder Woman is about to go through a really, really rough time.

The particular… villain introduced in the story was also an element that I liked. It hints at some deception and entrapment, which I’m hoping will be explained further in some way. Judging a 2-parter isn’t an easy job when you have only half the story, so in a way I am waiting for the other shoe to drop here. The interplay with how well Wonder Woman is portrayed in the previous issues, and with Ivan’s own take, this is a great issue to be sure.

Marcus To is the penciller here with Andrew Dalhouse on the colours and Deron Bennett on the letters and as with the previous issue, Gene Ha is the cover artist here as well. To’s pencils are great in this issue, especially in the first half with Wonder Woman’s body language and her expressions. He shows Wonder Woman to be a restrained warrior, someone who can clamp down on her emotions well, and that’s a subtle touch that I appreciated. The other stories have been about Wonder Womans physicality from the get go and that’s not how this issue goes, so this was welcome indeed. The second half deals more with physical action, and is a bit mundane, but great nonetheless. The final page has some interesting things going on, especially in light of the story by Cohen and I’m not sure if it works a well as it is meant to, but I’m open to further exploration of that.

Great issue, looking forward to the next.

Rating: 9/10

More Sensation Comics: #1, #2, #3, #4.

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Posted on September 13, 2014, in Comics Reviews, Review Central and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

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