8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
Like the two previous Wonder Woman Archives, this book includes Golden Age comic reprints in a deluxe format. The paper quality is excellent, and the original comic colors look brighter and fresher than ever. This volume includes stories from Sensation Comics, as well as early issues of Wonder Woman's self-titled book. All were originally offered on newstands in 1943.
This volume has quite a few distinctions: it includes the first appearances of Dr Psycho and the Cheetah, art from newspaper comics veteran Frank Godwin, and some of the earliest long-form comic stories for a superhero. Here's a complete list of the stories/comic issues that appear in this volume:
1. "The Secret City of the Incas" (from Sensation Comics #18, June '43) Wonder Woman must find an hidden Incan mountain kingdom to rescue Etta and the Holliday Girls...before a secret Japanese battalion arrives.
2. "The Unbound Amazon" (from Sensation Comics #19, July '43) WW is taken prisoner by Nazi lumberjacks; little do they know that she'll go wild when they remove her Amazonian bracelets!
3. "Battle For Womanhood" and "Etta Candy and Her Holliday Girls," "Mars Invades The Moon" and "The Return of Doctor Psycho" (all from from Wonder Woman #5, June '43) In "Battle...", Dr Psycho uses his 'paranormal' powers to spread distrust of women, at Mars and the Duke of Deception's behest. "Etta..." is a short tale in which Miss Candy foils a fake burglary, quite by accident. In "Mars Invades...", Wonder Woman and Paula take a Kanga to the moon to liberate the Goddess Diana's nymphs. And in the final tale, the diminutive Psycho fakes his death and escapes prison.
4. "The Girl With The Gun" (from Sensation Comics #20, August '43) Wonder Woman must prove the innocence of a WAAC in a case of attempted murder...or the future of women in armed services may be at risk!
5. "War Against Society" (from Sensation Comics #21, September '43) Wonder Woman must stop the rise of an "American Hitler"...a crime boss who threatens to undermine the American military.
6. "Wonder Woman and the Cheetah," "The Adventures of the Beauty Club" and "The Conquest of Paradise" (all from Wonder Woman #6, Fall '43) Priscilla Rich, the original Cheetah debuts in a trio of adventures.
7. "The Secret Submarine" (from Sensation Comics #22, October '43) The Cheetah re-emerges, and takes WW on a deadly undersea voyage.
8. "War Laugh Mania" (from Sensation Comics #23, November '43) Wonder Woman uncovers an insidious plot to undermine American wartime production with the help of Etta and the gang.
9. "The Adventure of the Pilotless Plane" (from Sensation Comics #24, December '43) The Japanese develop a gas bomb to disable American planes...but to combat them, WW must first free herself and Steve Trevor from a dungeon.
10. "The Adventure of the Life Vitamin," "America's Wonder Women of Tomorrow," "The Secret Weapon" and "Demon Of The Depths" (all from Wonder Woman #7, Winter '43) The first three stories take place in 3000 AD, as Queen Hyppolyte and Wonder Woman watch through the magic sphere. They include the election of America's first woman president, a secret Amazonian invention, and Steve Trevor is his own skimpy outfit. "Demon..." deals with a rebellious Amazon girl named Gerta, one WW must teach 'loving obedience' to if the girl is to have a future.
This volume includes an informative foreward by Les Daniels, and a page of biographies for Charles Marston, HG Peter and Frank Godwin. The only bad point I can fault this book with is really moot: the "patriotic" stereotyping and slang used for Germans and Japanese was typical of wartime America. Aside from the occasional lapse into negative stereotypes, characterization in these stories is generally strong. Etta Candy is in fine form, Steve tends to be helpful, and WW's rogues gallery welcomes two formidable members. There are plenty of little "gems" in the dialogue provided by Marston, like the title to this review.
The list price for this book is a bit stiff, but I think this volume of classic WW tales is worth every penny...