Advance Review: Wonder Woman ’77 Meets the Bionic Woman By Mangels & Tondora

Advance Review: Wonder Woman ’77 Meets the Bionic Woman

“Four Villains and a Funeral”

Published by Dynamite Entertainment and DC Comics

Written by:  Andy Mangels

Art by:  Judit Tondora

Colours by:  Roland Pilcz

The Plot

Everyone is gathered at a funeral for I.A.D.C. (Inter Agency Defense Command) Director, Joe Atkinson, who was killed in the previous issue during an attack by CASTRA.  Jaime Sommers (the Bionic Woman) seems to notice something about Diana Prince (Wonder Woman) who briefly excuses herself.  Suddenly, Wonder Woman shows up at the front door to pay her respects.  Afterwards, Jaime and Wonder Woman meet on the roof where the former deduces that Wonder Woman and Diana are the same person.  The come to an agreement and both are eager to deal with CASTRA.  Meanwhile a mysterious villain from Wonder Woman’s past is making secret arrangements to ship something overseas.  She’s able to intimidate the Captain into gaining total compliance from his men.

The I.A.D.C. and the O.S.I. are discussing what could possibly have been stolen from their computer system and are fearful for the safety of their agents worldwide.  Steve Trevor asks Diana to track down Wonder Woman and then Jaime jumps in to come up with a way to help protect Diana’s secret identity.  Soon the Bionic Woman and Wonder Woman go to track down the ship.  The mysterious villain from earlier is now speaking with Dr. Franklin about the construction of the Fembots, which will be deadlier than the previous models.  Over at a federal penitentiary near Washington, D.C. some men execute a prison break for one of Wonder Woman’s older foes.  Wonder Woman and the Bionic Woman are aboard the ship and fighting the crew but unfortunately, they may be too late to stop it.

The Breakdown

The Wonder Woman and the Bionic Woman tv shows were from before my time, but I caught them in syndication as a kid.  One scene in this book that made me smile was Diana Prince turning into Wonder Woman in front of Jaime.  I really liked the design of this page and it did justice to the tv show.  I also enjoyed how Diana and Jaime were able to work together and compromise on some things so quickly without everything having to escalate into some sort of disagreement before they could get along.  It makes the team-up flow much faster and it develops their partnership better.  Jaime addressing her difficulties in maintaining her secret identity and offering to help Diana maintain hers was a good scene.  I also enjoyed how this title is bringing adversaries of both characters together.  I’m looking forward to the confrontation between the heroes and the villains later in this series.  There was a lot of exposition in this issue and Tondora did a good job of moving the camera around and keeping the story flowing.  I liked how this comic was true to Wonder Woman’s abilities in the tv show such as not having any flight abilities.  The scene when Wonder Woman showed up to Atkinson’s funeral was good because it showed her empathy and how it affects those around her.  In all of her incarnations, that’s always been one of her strongest traits and in this issue, her presence alleviates the pain of those around her.   I thought that Tondora did a good job at staying true to the looks of Lindsay Wagner and Lynda Carter.  I enjoyed Pilcz’s work in this issue as he gave it a painted look, which really suits the story well.  The action scenes were well done and I couldn’t help but hear the sound effects from the tv shows in my mind.  Overall, I enjoyed this issue more than I expected and went back and read the first issue afterwards.

BUT…

One of the villain reveals near the end was good, but casual fans may not be too familiar with him. Perhaps they could have established him just a bit more in this issue.  The odd panel didn’t work for me in terms of art, but overall I didn’t have an issue with the art as it was pretty solid.

The Verdict

I liked how the Bionic Woman was just as formidable as Wonder Woman without that feeling that they were pandering to both audiences.  Wonder Woman wearing her diving suit was a nice touch and showed the fun nature of this comic.  This comic was fun and didn’t come across as hokey.  The creative team did a good job of presenting these characters in the comic medium and captured the feel of them.  It’s also good to see two strong female leads set in a time period when there weren’t as many represented within pop culture.  I’m looking forward to reading the next issue.

7/10

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