Way back around 2009-2010, DC Comics announced the production of a series of hardcover graphic novels by top tier creative teams centering around their most iconic characters free of any current or past continuity. The first and most successful of these was “Superman: Earth One”, written by J. Michael Straczynski and drawn by Shane Davis, which has gone on to have two subsequent volumes. On Friday (September 25), ICv2 revealed that the long delayed “Wonder Woman: Earth One” was finally set for release in April 2016.
Announced as one of the initial wave of “Earth One” graphic novels as part of “the trinity” of iconic DC Universe characters in 2009-2010, the journey from premise to printing has been a long one for this Wonder Woman work. In 2006, as part of DC Comics’ “All-Star” imprint (envisioned to compete with Marvel’s then successful “Ultimate” imprint), Adam Hughes was set to write and draw an “All-Star Wonder Woman” series to go alongside “All-Star Superman” (by Grant Morrison and Frank Quietly) and “All-Star Batman & Robin the Boy Wonder” (by Frank Miller and Jim Lee). By 2008, this project was announced as “in the freezer” due to both Hughes’ workload and the long delays with publishing issues of the previous two series. By 2009-2010, DC Comics focused on a similar imprint aimed at the bookstore market more than comic shops. In 2012, it was revealed (via Robot 6) that Greg Rucka and J.H. Williams III were initially attached to write and draw (respectively) the first volume of “Wonder Woman: Earth One”, but after being promised the gig by senior editors for years, Rucka was yanked from it at the last moment. It proved to be such a betrayal, in fact, that Rucka quit working for DC Comics entirely until earlier this year (when he write a “Convergence” mini series for them) despite basing most of his career up until that point with the company. Ultimately, it was revealed that Grant Morrison and Yanick Paquette would write and draw Princess Diana’s graphic novel at long last.
The official synopsis for the tome reads: “From the masterful minds of Grant Morrison (FINAL CRISIS, THE MULTIVERSITY) and Yanick Paquette (SWAMP THING, BATMAN, INC.) comes the most provocative origin of Wonder Woman you’ve ever seen — a wholly unique retelling that still honors her origins.
For millennia, the Amazons of Paradise Island have created a thriving society away from the blight of man. One resident, however, is not satisfied with this secluded life — Diana, Princess of the Amazons, knows there is more in this world and wants to explore, only to be frustrated by her protective mother, Hippolyta. Diana finds her escape when Air Force pilot Steve Trevor, the first man she has ever seen, crashes onto their shores. With his life hanging in the balance, Diana ventures into the long forbidden world of men. The Amazons chase after her and bring her back to Paradise Island in chains to face trial for breaking their oldest law…staying separated from the world that wronged them.
Thought provoking yet reverent, thoroughly modern but still timeless, the power and courage of Paradise Island’s greatest champion — Wonder Woman — is introduced in this new addition to DC’s New York Times best selling Earth One original graphic novel series.”
The graphic novel will be available in comic shops on April 6 and general bookstores on April 12. The hardcover will be 122 pages long and have a cover price of $22.99. Considering how long it took this hardcover to be produced, it is unknown if and when there would be a second. Grant Morrison has stated in multiple interviews that this was to be one of his last projects for DC Comics, as he has shifted towards more creator owned work. He’s also cited the strong influence by Wonder Woman’s creator William Moulton Marston on this story as well as an attempt to recreate the heroine for women more than men (and has even bragged that no male characters are even present for the story’s first 48 pages). Both “Superman: Earth One” and “Batman: Earth One” (by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank) have seen more than one volume and were top sellers; it will remain to be seen how a similar approach with Wonder Woman fares. With the heroine making her live action film debut as a co-star of “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” on March 25, it is likely this was timed to hit store shelves while that movie is still playing and in time for Wonder Woman’s 75th anniversary.