This issue picks up immediately after the events of issue #12. Superman and Wonder Woman have kissed and DC is making it out to be a big deal. Fortunately there is more to it than just a simple kiss. With a focus on Wonder Woman, we see her battle with Cheetah. It was interesting as this is her first appearance in the New 52 but I had to think about it as we've seen Cheetah in AME-COMI GIRLS and I recently re-read the JUSTICE miniseries.
Cheetah's origin and her connection to Wonder Woman (and Steve Trevor) is described. The few pages describing past events really made me long for the Wonder Woman stories I grew up with. Don't get me wrong, I am digging the current New 52 WONDER WOMAN series but throughout the past year, I've felt something has been missing. The idea of Wonder Woman's connection to Barbara Minerva is completely fascinating. This isn't to say that those completely enthralled with her series won't appreciate her depiction here. Wonder Woman fights a fierce battle which leads to a display of the rest of the team wanting to act like an actual team. This is a surprising sign of growth among the members. If this team hasn't been trusting of others, there should be a connection.
What Geoff Johns is giving us is how formal the team has been. It's only now that they are starting to come out of their shells with each other. Just because five years have past since the first arc, that doesn't mean the team has been hanging out together that entire time. Wonder Woman mentions that Cheetah is her problem. She or the League doesn't insist on rushing to Superman's side if Lex Luthor poses a problem.
There is also a look at Cyborg. I've mentioned before that it's a little odd that all the members except for Cyborg have their own series. We get to see their development as characters but we don't really know much about Cyborg and what he's been doing since his accident. There was also a scene with Batman and Aquaman that makes me crave more team ups with these two.
The back up this month focuses on Steve Trevor. He's dealing with the changes after Wonder Woman and the League have pushed him away. We know Steve is going to be involved with the upcoming JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA series. Let's just say you'll want to see what this is about.
The art is handled by Tony Daniel. The first page did throw me off a tiny bit. You can see Daniel's style in Superman and Wonder Woman's face especially. Despite the big battle between Wonder Woman and Cheetah that opens with a Jim Lee-style two page spread, Daniel owns the scene. The use of colors and shadows really enhance the emotion on the characters' faces. There's a lot going on between Wonder Woman and Superman as well as Wonder Woman and the team. Andy Diggle and Tony Daniel on ACTION COMICS is going to be great.
As much as I love Wonder Woman's depiction here, it does feel different from what we're seeing in WONDER WOMAN. Should we focus on continuity? I enjoy WONDER WOMEN and really dug this issue. Should the focus be on enjoying issues individually instead of being hung up on the connection between different series.
The sense of knowing who Cheetah is but not fully knowing who she is in the New 52 caused a little confusion. If she and Wonder Woman had a history for some time, it would seem the League would know more about her than they did. Especially Batman and Cyborg. We unfortunately still have that sense of confusion because we don't have all the answers. We don't know what fully has transpired between the members of the League. It's been five years and we know they trust each other to certain extents but there still is an almost sense of suspicion or doubt between them. We are seeing that change and it seems a little odd that it's finally happening now after all this time.
There is some dealing with the kiss between Superman and Wonder Woman here. That's not all we get. Seeing Wonder Woman and Cheetah face off against each other gives a welcomed feeling of what we used to have before the New 52 started. It's interesting to see that even though the team has been together for five years, they still don't know everything about each other or fully trust one another. That is beginning to change as Johns gives the members a little more humanity. We see them trying to break down the walls between them and try to be more than just a team. The idea is they should be there for each other, not because they need to be but because they want to be. It's this kind of character depth that makes this more than just a comic book filled with popular DC characters. Tony Daniel's art manages to show the emotion and changes the characters are going through. The back up focusing on Steve Trevor gives us hints of what's to come in JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA next year.