Wonder Woman #8 (from The Batmom April 2012)

COVERGIRL: When Cliff Chiang gives me an awesome cover, I want to scream.


Also, inexplicably, swear. Happily swear. Yell FUCK YEAH! really loudly in the middle of Harrison’s and lustily high-five the gang in the New Comics section.

But usually I’m with my 6-year-old, and plus I have never yelled FUCK YEAH in my entire life. I once yelled FUCK, and it was when I was in college, and it was in front of my dad, and it was because I spilled hot coffee on my leg. But now I’m 41, and my FUCK-yelling days (well, 1 day) are long gone.

So instead of bellowing profanities, I just enjoy the tiny leap my soul takes when Cliff Chiang wows me once again.

Inside StoryWonder Woman and Hermes away to hell, where the scene is ever-changing depending on Uncle Hades’ whim. Today, it’s London, a wickedly welcoming nod to Diana.

Speaking through his minions, who are everywhere taking the form of everything, Hades tells Diana he’s keeping Zola until he gets what she promised him: a queen.

(Digression: Not sure if Azzarello or Chiang conceived of this riff on Hades, but he’s genius, a small, armored child with candles atop his head, the wax of which obscures his eyes. As Stink Moody would say, double freaky-deaky!)

Diana and Hermes battle their way into a hellaciously imagined version of Zola’s Virginia farmhouse, where Zola and her ballooning belly are shacked up, emerging only to fire blasts at who/whatever Hades sends to torment her. Hades arrives soon after his niece and nephew, bringing along an army of Walking Dead extras for backup. He tells Diana if she won’t get him a queen, he’ll take Eros’ guns in exchange for Zola.

She agrees, whereupon Hades shoots at her. Wonder Woman’s bullet-deflecting wristbands offer no protection against the bullets from the golden pistols, and so she falls wounded at Hades’ feet. It seems the little devil wants to marry her.

Before Diana passes out, she instructs Hermes to take Zola away, but we the reader can’t be sure he does.

Ramble: Issue 7 caused a lot of controversy, what with the myth-smashing, sperm-stealing, baby-tossing turn the Amazonians took. Comic book critics were criticizing all over the place.

Is this month’s (have I said awesome?) cover an answer to these critics? While she’s wielding Eros’ shiny golden guns, Diana on the cover has little to do with Diana’s story inside, which ends with a bullet-holed Wonder Woman lying weak on the ground at Hades’ feet. She’s saved Zola, but at what cost?

So maybe the cover is aimed at the critics. Kablammie in your kvetching faces, Ye of Much Dissatisfaction. I am Diana and I am Something Else Altogether. Shut the Fuck Up and Read!