Wonder Woman #28

    Wonder Woman » Wonder Woman #28 - Jungle Sacrament released by DC Comics on March 1989.

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    Wonder Woman arrives in England in search of her lasso, while Chuma relates the origin of Wonder Woman's villain, the Cheetah.

    In England, in a castle, Chuma is mediating in front of the Great Plant God and contemplates the beating of his heart. It beats like the rhythmic drum. Somewhere outside the castle, the mercenary leader and his colleague who had gunned down an officer during the raid wait. They are to meet with Barbara Minerva but the soldier feels uneasy. Why has she asked them to meet here when her castle is just over the hills? His commander replies that she is paying them and that she is the leader, so they follow her. The soldier still isn’t convinced after Chuma said he was displeased about the casualty (that happened in issue #27). Just then, they hear a sound, but nothing is there. The sound comes from the opposite direction but still, they see nothing. They split up and think it is the sound of an animal. The soldier then hears his commander scream and he turns around. The drumbeat is getting faster. He rushes over to the van and finds his commander on the floor and sees that the tires have also been slashed. He opens fire into the undergrowth surrounding him. As he fires, he hears a yelp. The soldier checks his shot but it is only a dog, but there is no blood on his teeth which means the dog couldn’t have killed the commander. He then hears a growl behind him and it’s too late as the Cheetah pounces. Inside the castle, Chuma hears the scream and the drumbeat slows down.

    Elsewhere, in the Chaos void between Man’s World and Paradise Island Wonder Woman and Hermes are calling for Hestia’s help and the princess prays that she needs her help, desperately. As the power surges through the Caduceus, Hermes’ staff, Wonder Woman says this is useless as Hestia cannot hear them. He tells her to concentrate as this is important and she replies that maybe Hestia chooses not to reply. Is losing the lasso forgivable? He replies that it is not her fault and he shall see the recovery of the lasso is done. Even though Diana sees it as Hestia’s lasso, the gods see it as her lasso, and she is responsible for it. She then asks Hermes to take her back to Man’s World and he asks how she intends to find her lasso without the help of the gods. She replies that she already has.

    In the Boston Police Department Inspector Ed Indelicato and Lt. Shands are speaking with Julia Kapatelis, Christine Fenton, Etta Candy and Steve Trevor about the theft of Wonder Woman’s lasso. Shands holds a magazine called Archaeological Digest". On the cover is Barbara Minerva. Christine also tells him that Myndi Mayer had set up a meeting with Minerva because she had an artifact that was supposedly connected to the Amazons, but the artifact was a fake and it was only a plan to steal Wonder Woman’s lasso. Christine wants her questioned and she asks why they haven’t as they have her address. Shands replies that there is not enough hard evidence. Julia says that she knows Minerva and she is very infamous due to her unethical methods. She is known to go through long lengths to retrieve any artifact and she has done with the Lasso of Truth. She then turns to Ed and tells him that he surely Diana is not the type to work on hunches. Shand butts in and says that Julia is just trying to convince him and that Minerva freed some alien prisoners of war and had them attack Wonder Woman and also had them killed. He says that this is surely a military issue. Etta says that the Pentagon is investigating but the mercenaries did not leave any traces. Even with the attack on Steve and Etta, they still have no connection with Minerva and these attacks. Steve adds that he has not found that helicopter, but he is not giving up just yet. Julia tells them that even as farfetched as this sounds, Minerva is capable of doing this as she is not mentally stable, especially after the African expedition. Just then, the Police Chief bursts in and tells them that there are a couple people outside waiting for them. Outside is Wonder Woman and Hermes and they have had no luck in finding the lasso and that they have had no luck in finding Hestia. Julia suggests that it is about time they left and Wonder Woman asks about Minerva and is handed the magazine with Minerva on the cover. Julia firmly believes that Minerva is the culprit but they have no proof and she has tried calling her in England. Wonder Woman stares at the cover and decides on her next move.

    A few days later, the English papers’ headlines are filled with Wonder Woman’s arrival in England. This reaches Chuma and he wonders if this is merely a coincidence to why Wonder Woman has come. There is no connection to Minerva’s attack but Wonder Woman is no fool. Chuma feels he has a sacred duty and must protect his master.

    In Boston, in the Kapatelis house, Julia, Vanessa, Hermes and Steve read the headlines on Wonder Woman. Julia explains how Diana wanted to personally meet Minerva and she is has made it look like a side trip as apart of an Ambassadorial visit. Hermes says that she should have let him take care of this. Julia tells him that she is not comfortable with Diana going by herself, but they all know how tenacious she can get and that she can be responsible and acts on her beliefs. She believes that to be the right and duty of all living things and that is what Julia respects her for. Hermes doesn’t understand the term “modern woman” and Julia replies that she doesn’t think that women are changing, it’s just that society is catching up to them. Hermes is still unconvinced and Steve says he can’t explain modern women. He just has to experience them. Vanessa adds her own input to why they are so worried about her and Minerva. Minerva is just a cripple and surely Diana will beat her easily!

    In England, Diana gets out of a taxi. The taxi begins to drive away and she thinks to herself that she could not let the taxi go any closer to the castle as she feels that the castle is dangerous. She can smell the blood and she can feel that something horrible has happened. Meanwhile, she is watched by Chuma from a pair of binoculars. Diana arrives at the castle and is sitting inside a room and Chuma asks if she would like some tea. She declines as she has some bad reaction to caffeine but he replies that it is just herbal tea. He takes a sip from his own cup and asks what her business with Minerva is today. She replies that it is a private business matter. She then takes a sip from her tea and she falls to the floor and begins shivering madly. Her tea has been spiked and her limbs are starting to paralyze. Chuma then stands over her, adding that he cannot let her harm his master. Diana then realises that Cheetah and Barbara Minerva is the same person and she asks how such a cripple can turn into a virile animal. Chuma tells Diana that his master ordered him for the drug to be long lasting and slow, so that he can tell the story of Cheetah! It started with an African expedition. Her and her colleague, Dr. Tom Leavens were on an expedition to the Temple of Urzkartaga. After two months, they found nothing but Barbara was determined to find something. Barbara had bribed a local priest to act as her guide and he pointed out a necklace and the priest knew that the city was close but he warned how it was very dangerous as the Cat God lived there. Barbara didn’t believe the priest however and after a few minutes of trekking, the priest ordered them to stop. There was no city, but suddenly, war cries were yelled out and soon they were surrounded by warriors. One of the men opened fire in fear and he was struck down by a spear and the party defended itself. Despite the odds, Barbara did not show fear, only hate. She threw a smoke grenade and she and Tom had made it out. They made their way to a cliff with a river down below. They had no choice and both of them jumped down with spears and arrows following close by. Barbara was a strong swimmer. That’s how she escaped when Julia shot her when Cheetah attacked Diana. The two professors made it and Barbara was pumped and was so excited that they were near the city. Tom could not believe how she reacted, even though her colleagues were dead. She told him that she would find the treasure or he could make it back to safety alone. Later that night, Tom and Barbara were observing a tribe and a ceremony was taking place. In front of the tribe was the Temple of Urzkartaga. They could also see the priest who had betrayed them and saw him sacrifice one of the colleagues. Tom wanted to go, but Barbara insisted that they stay.

    Meanwhile, the priest had revealed a female with the markings of the Cheetah. She was dying and now was the time for her to be renewed. The priest held up a little jar of fresh blood and the Cheetah drank the blood. But a gun shot was fired and hit the jar, and went through to her chest. An armed force attacked the tribe and Barbara was watching, wondering how they found the temple. She then recognised two of the armed men from her own expedition team and she then realised that they followed her. The priest grabbed the Cheetah and as his cloak fell, it was clear that the priest was Chuma. One of the armed men then threw a grenade, but she jumped out of the way and had pushed Chuma into the temple. The explosion caused the entrance to collapse.

    Chuma realises that Diana is not moving at her and the drugs must be almost finished doing their job. He tells how Barbara only wanted treasure and after the collapse of the entrance, there was silence. His eyes were accustomed to the darkness and there he could see Barbara was a gun pointed at him, and she was not happy.


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    Bringing it back 0

    The previous few issues have left the title sort of flagging.  I don't think it helped to have Invasion imposed on the series, but its what happened.  Here we see Diana making an attempt to retrieve her lasso.  She goes to England to talk with Barbara Minerva who has already tried to steal it once.  She falls for the old cliche of a poisoned tea, and while Barbara's assistant Chuma is watching Diana "die" he explains the history of the Cheetah.  I thought this was much more along the lines of wh...

    3 out of 4 found this review helpful.
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