Wonder Woman #24
Writer: Greg Rucka
Artist: Bilquis Evely
Colors: Romulo Fajardo Jr.
Letters: Jodi Wynne
Cover: Evely & Fajardo Jr; Jenny Frison
Editor: Rebecca Taylor; Mark Doyle
Publisher: DC Comics
Godwatch ends in the only way it could, bittersweet. Though the gang makes it back alive they are emotionally in pieces due to the consequences of their actions. While reading this entire arc I’ve been struck with a few things: missed opportunities; the power of kindness and how friendship makes all the difference in the world. Diana grew up with friends and, being blessed by Aphrodite to fully understand all the aspects of love, easily made new ones in Man’s World. Meanwhile Veronica, by all accounts, only had one true friend and when her choices led to that friend’s vegetative state, clung to her memory in the worst way possible. Then there’s Barbara Ann.
As I’ve said before, Greg Rucka has given Cheetah an intense and heartbreaking inner life that makes her a much more interesting character. What I didn’t realize before, however, is that while this journey is very much told from Diana and Veronica’s opposing point of views it is actually Barbara Ann’s story. Barbara Ann is a perfect mix of Diana and Veronica’s personalities: Outgoing and gregarious when around those she likes (and deems intelligent enough to keep up with her), blisteringly cynical due to being an only and lonely child, yet still (somehow) holding onto her wonder in the history of the world around her. Barbara Ann doesn’t make friends easily but she’s fiercely loyal to the few she has. So, when she’s in trouble, when her pain makes her lash out and start down a path that can never be altered, unlike Veronica, she has people who will fight to save her, even if that means saving her from herself. We see now, because we walked the journey with her, why Barbara Ann is the way she is and why Etta, Diana and Steve will never give up on her: She’s their friend.
While Rucka sneakily makes Cheetah one of my favorite characters, Bilquis Evely makes everything gorgeous with artwork that is clean and crisp, giving us clear emotional beats with facial expressions that tell the story. Romula Fajardo Jr’s colors compliment the story perfectly, enhancing the little details like Etta’s freckles and Diana’s armor and using shading to make the eye go exactly where he wants it to.
A wonderful arc that leaves you wanting more, Five helicopters out of Five.