By Ashley Gibbs
The world is feeling the Wonder Woman fever as her solo movie takes over the box office, what better time to have new comics that readers can jump into without much need for knowing years of her background. That’s what I was looking for from Wonder Woman: Steve Trevor #1, an action-packed story that would shed more light on Steve Trevor and show why he’s important to Diana. What I ended up with were mixed emotions and sadly a sense that this comic will have no lasting impact on me. While Steve Trevor does get to fight bad guys and save the day all on his own, it’s weighed down by a lot of internal monologuing and dialogue moments that ruined my sense of immersion.
I don’t like politics in my comics, unless it’s an actual part of the story development or character development or literally a political satire, I don’t want it there. I like to escape reality in a comic so when I started reading this and by page two I see Steve held hostage by “meninist terrorists” who want to steal a chemical that would make women subservient, I just lost interest in the story. It’s well known that Wonder Woman is a symbol of female strength and I love her for it. This can easily be expressed through her deeds, words and actions. I don’t see a need for an extra layer of whatever brand of feminism the writer is trying to convey. Of course, Steve and Diana never say these things nor act this way which is good but having it sprinkled in it at all was a turn-off. The villain even called Steve a “cuckold” and again, it ruined my immersion as a reader. The villains seem like a tumblr caricature of MRAs, made more despicable with each reblog.
But these moments weren’t the only flaws in the story. The focus is on Steve Trevor who has been called by old friends of his in need of his help. They’re on a mission but have been captured so it’s up to Steve to rescue them. The villain they fight is way over the top and frankly unimportant, their group wants to create a new world and rebuild it as they see fit. They don’t actually do much, however, as Steve and company defeat them pretty easily; twice. More time is spent on a group of very creepy children who don’t age due to magical water they drink. And of course Steve’s inner monologues. He muses that the land he found reminds him of Diana’s world that he also happened upon, a paradise free from the strife of man’s world. My issues with the story was the villain didn’t seem like much of a problem, the dialogue was lacking and Steve was pretty boring. Most characters around him were more amusing than him, even Diana who was barely in the issue. Sure, his role is the everyman but what this issue showed me is that maybe he’s not a strong enough character to carry his own series and is better suited as just “Wonder Woman’s boyfriend.”
The artwork is what I would expect from a modern superhero comic. The characters look realistic but not to the point of being unsettling. The movements are great in the action sequences, my personal favorite being in the first part of the story when Wonder Woman fights. The panels are pretty standard, though one scene that stood out was near the end when Steve throws a bomb at the villain, we are given a small panel that is a close up of her face in shock and then a larger one showing the explosion. The colors and shading are well done, and yes, the backgrounds are given their rightful attention. One thing I will note, and it’s probably just a personal nitpick, I like Steve without facial hair. His blonde hair and goatee had him looking like Oliver Queen more than once.
Despite my criticism I didn’t hate this issue. Wonder Woman: Steve Trevor #1 had its moments and I did learn more about Steve Trevor and really enjoyed Diana’s moments, though they were brief. But when my favorite part of a book is a character who shows up on maybe five pages at most, that’s not a very good sign. I found this title to be pretty mediocre and as a start to what may be a series, it didn’t pull me in. Overall, if you want some good Steve Trevor action you may just be better off reading a regular issue of Wonder Woman instead.
Review: Wonder Woman: Steve Trevor #1
Writer: Tim Seely
Artist: Christian Duce
Colorist: Allen Passalaqua
Lettering: Josh Reed
Publisher: DC Comics