'Sensation Comics' artwork by Phil Jimenez (click to enlarge)


With both Legends of the Dark Knight and Adventures of Superman sadly no longer with us, it seemed unlikely that Wonder Woman would also star in her own digital-first anthology series from DC Comics. Fortunately that's turned out not to be the case, as the publisher has confirmed the third member of its heroic "trinity" will indeed be the focus of Sensation Comics, a digital-first anthology launching in August that invites talents from across the spectrum of comics to share their own distinct visions of William Moulton Marston's amazon princess.

Like the Batman and Superman anthologies, Sensation Comics -- named for the Golden Age series in which Wonder Woman first appeared -- will feature stories not tied to the narrative continuity or artistic palette of DC's mainline New 52 comics.

“With this series creators can dream up unique takes on the Amazon Princess to give fans a new adventure every week," said Hank Kanalz, DC's VP of Vertigo and Integrated Publishing, who leads the publisher's west coast digital comics office. "We’re very excited about the line-up, and readers won’t want to miss the sensational action-packed Wonder Woman stories we have planned for the coming weeks and beyond.”

That lineup includes former Wonder Woman writer Gail Simone and artist Ethan Van Sciver, whose work will feature in Sensation Comics' inaugural installment. IGN reports that additional contributors to the series include Lauren Beukes, Cecil Castellucci, Amanda Deibert, Caitlin Kittredge, Renae De Liz, James Tynion IV, Georges Jeanty, Chris Sprouse, and Cat Staggs. Sensation Comics is edited by Kristy Quinn.

DC's existing Wonder Woman title by Cliff Chiang and Brian Azzarello is arguably the character's best long form series since the 1980s -- maybe ever -- but its violent, urban fantasy take on Diana and her mythos flies too far afield from the classic Wonder Woman idiom for some longtime fans. For them, Sensation Comics could offer a more palatable alternative -- at least if Adventures of Superman is anything to go on. The digital-first series ComicsAlliance had repeatedly identified as the best Superman comic currently published (before it was cancelled last month) because, in part, it presented a more classic version of Superman filtered through the idiosyncrasies of talented creators telling all sorts of stories, and was not limited by the aesthetic parameters of the New 52.

Hopefully we can expect the same eclecticism from Sensation Comics, particularly because, as I've argued before, Wonder Woman is the most elastic of DC's trinity with respect to both narrative and visual representation. Wonder Woman is not a character like Bruce Wayne or Peter Parker or Clark Kent, whose authors are beholden to unbreakable tenets of a core mythology such as murdered parents, a doomed planet, an estranged sidekick, a science experiment gone wrong, etc. Wonder Woman is less that and more an elemental force of strength, beauty and majesty through which all manners of stories can be expressed. All that matters is the island of only women, a powerful princess, and a world that needs her help. Robert Valley's brilliant Wonder Woman animation for DC Nation demonstrates how cool Diana of Themyscira can be when contemplated in this way, and it would be most welcome if DC's Sensation Comics put forth work born from a similarly imaginative place.

Wonder Woman deserves nothing less.


'Sensation Comics' artwork by Renae De Liz


'Sensation Comics' artwork by Ethan Van Sciver