This week from DC Comics we continue to follow Diana on her hunt for Janus. In Wonder Woman 778, Diana, Siegfried and Ratatosk undertake part 9 of this incredible journey through the multiverse. Each jump leads them to a new and sometimes unexpected destination. No matter what they do they always seem to be one step behind Janus, and now with Deadman as her hostage, time is running out. The team is determined to keep going unto the bitter end.
One thing I have enjoyed about this jaunt through the multiverse, is that its given the art department a chance to go through Diana’s wardrobe of past and possible future outfits. A few of her outfits harken back to her early days, much like the outfit she starts off in here. When the team makes the jump to Gemworld, I love the outfit she wears there. I’d really like to see that one come back down the road. The prehistoric outfit was pretty cool too. They could do a special issue dedicated specifically to all the outfits she wore during this multiversal trek.
We Are Almost There – Right?
Now that we begin part 9, one would think we are nearing the end, right? After Wonder Woman 778 ends, I still do not know how to answer that. I think we reached the end of the chase, but a whole new chapter stands ready to begin. Squad WW begins this issue in a strange place Siegfried calls heaven. I don’t know about anyone else, but my standards of Heaven are a lot higher than this wasteland. It turns out to they are in none other than Superman’s favorite vacation land – The Phantom Zone. They face off against Xa-Du. No idea who this new Janus recruit is, but he seems pretty formidable. Good thing the Phantom Zone’s consciousness (didn’t even know that was a thing), Aethyr, took offense to Janus violating his mind/zone. A Quick assist there and the crew moves on to the next universe.
Next up is a zany new world that looks eerily familiar, yet different. The feel of Gotham is strong, yet as Diana points out, it is not her Gotham. Instead, we find out this is indeed the zany world of the Fifth Dimension. This dimension hosts the infamous Batmite and Mr. Mxyzptlks. A huge annoyance to Batman and the Superfriends back in the 80s, Mr. M (ain’t spelling that again) is one of the few frenemies that hasn’t resurfaced in a long time. It was good to see the little guys again.
From there they make the jump to Gemworld. The outfits look cool. The stakes get higher, but once again Janus slips away. Finally, they end up in a prehistoric somewhere, but they seem to be slipping further and further away. Diana makes a mad dash at Janus and slips through her dimensional tear, but a big question arises. Siegfried battles his way though the giant bugs and creatures of this land, singing Diana’s praises as he does, but when he leaps at the tear, does he make it through? Odds would say, he doesn’t. Will the two ever meet up again?
Unto the Bitter End – Diana Being Diana
The one thing I truly love about this issue is that it demonstrates Diana/Wonder Woman in her truest form. She’s an amazon, a group of warrior women from the annals of Greek mythology. She kicks ass with the best of them – literally. She stands as one of the DC Trinity. Superman represents to hope and optimism. Batman represents the brains and darker side of reality, but Diana has always been the heart and virtue.
She corners Janus a couple times in this issue. Swords clash and fists fly, but even though Diana does not check her swings, she also fights with her heart. She appeals to Janus to stop this madness, and makes the wise observation that Janus cannot gain wisdom or true understanding without her past self. It’s our past experiences that guide our future actions. Diana never gives up hoping a better way can found. I think this is what Patty Jenkins tried to do with WW84.
Unto the Bitter End – The End?!
Diana makes the blind leap through the fissure from prehistoric world to…..nowhere? She lands in an empty existence where nothing exists. Did Diana miss the jump? Did she jump too late and did Janus just win?! I love how the artistry really contributes to the story here. Diana is in black and white in a world of empty white. She lost and Janus just won. What else can be done?
The amazon kicks in. Diana breathes so hope survives. She will fight Janus as long as she draws breath. As her determination sets in, color returns to her character, like she’s taking form for the first time. With sword drawn she swears to dog Janus until the end of time. Unfortunately, Janus appears behind her, and at her feet lies the lifeless body of Deadman. Janus rubs verbal salt into the wound as Diana breaks down at her failure ending with “Welcome to the future, Diana!”
Did Janus just win? Can Diana pick up the pieces and keep fighting? The issue ends with the title for the next issue “The Future Comes for the Present.” I think Afterworlds is over, but the war is just beginning. I have no doubt Diana will find a way to fight unto the bitter end.