Wonder Woman: Agent of Peace #2
Written by Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda Conner
Art by Daniel Sampere, Juan Albarran, and Hi-Fi
Lettering by Travis Lanham
Published by DC
‘Rama Rating: 7 out of 10
Another “all-star” team up is born in the second installment of Wonder Woman: Agent of Peace. Armed with the appropriately pulpy title of “The Curse of K2,” writers Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda Conner pair Wondy off with another A-list DC heroine, but this one wields pens instead of cartoonish hammers like Harley Quinn did in the series opener.
That’s right, Lois Lane is Wonder Woman’s dance partner this time around, but Agent of Peace #2 could arguably be called more of a Lois story as Palmiotti and Conner temporarily substitutes Diana as Lois’ super backup once things get (literally) hairy. With a breezy but heartfelt energy and occasionally burly artwork, Wonder Woman: Agent of Peace #2 finds the title continuing to operate as DC’s answer to Marvel Two-in-One.
Lois Lane smells a story, and it’s taken her to the treacherous K2 mountains. A group of climbers have gone missing, and to make matters worse, a massive earthquake has hit the area, and Lois aims to find them while also trying to make her deadline. It is here where Palmiotti and Conner deliver a whole new flavor and voice to the title, switching along with letterer Travis Lanham from the poetic, almost terse narration of Diana to a more factual, literary voice from Lois. The change is also visually represented wonderfully by Lanham, who flattens the colors of the caption boxes and changes the font, calling to mind the cramped newsprint style of the current Lois Lane ongoing from Greg Rucka and Mike Perkins.
From there, Palmiotti and Conner get to the actual teaming-up of the team-up, cutting to Wonder Woman picking up Lois’ trail from halfway around the world. These scenes do drag a bit, and keep Wonder Woman somewhat operating outside of the main plot focused on Lois for a while. But that said, Palmiotti and Conner do a great job of padding these lead-up scenes with plenty of Diana as a force of good — we see her helping families through the aftermath of a typhoon, ferrying children to safety, and just all around acting like the hero we would want her to be. I am okay with this kind of marking time with the plot if that means we get more of the titular Agent of Peace from Diana.
And from these heartfelt scenes, the creative team move into it’s somewhat rushed finale, which finds Lois discovering the source of K2’s curse, Shan Xiao, a sort of dark yeti goddess who plans to devour the hikers and then descend onto the world below. Diana, of course, swoops in at the last moment, providing this issue a real “gee, kids, comics!” plot convenience. The writing team try to do what they can to inject a poeticism into the story, combining both Lois and Diana’s narration over the fight scene. While the writing never really comes together like it should, the artwork of Daniel Sampere, Juan Albarran, and Hi-Fi really starts to sing here. Though they do a fine job with the heartfelt scenes in the opening, particularly in a splash page centered around Diana hugging children, flanked with soaring windows of her good deeds around them, once Wonder Woman, Lois Lane, and Shan Xiao face off, they kick into high gear.
Focused on movement and scene transitions, which range from cramped caves to the outer orbit, Sampere, Albarran, and Hi-Fi deliver a surprisingly visceral finale set piece. It all culminates in a big-time ‘Superman Moment’ for Diana as she flies Xiao out into orbit and relinquishes the trapped souls she had consumed in her rituals. It’s a weird but affectionate scene, one that leans into the mythic aspects of Wonder Woman as a title and sends this issue off with a grand final visual beat before the quick resolution between our heroines. Is it groundbreaking? Probably not. But is it fun as hell to read? Absolutely.
It isn’t exactly the “World’s Finest,” but Wonder Woman: Agent of Peace #2 delivers a worthy dynamic duo for it’s follow-up issue. Graced with heart and strength from its two leads and a game creative team Wonder Woman: Agent of Peace makes a strong case for being the ‘DC Showcase’ of the new digital slate.