Wonder Woman #56 Is A Horrifying Race Against Time

by Tony Thornley

When I saw The Witching Hour crossover solicited, I expected something very different. I expected a corrupted Wonder Woman versus the Justice League Dark. Instead Wonder Woman #56  turns this story into something very different and I’ve loved it.

James Tynion, Emanuela Lupacchino, Ray McCarthy, Romulo Fajardo, and Dave Sharpe don’t rest on their laurels in this issue. Though this issue isn’t action packed, it’s still tense and exciting.
The JLD know they have a ticking clock until Diana’s witchmark is reactivated. They appeal to Circe, hoping the Titan can help. She gives the team plenty of information on Hecate, which leads to a confrontation between Diana and Zatanna. Unfortunately, the debate is cut short when one of the witchmarked attacks Nanda Parabat, and Diana makes a decision that could endanger them all.

Tynion’s story is largely about building up the threat of Hecate. It does lead into an exposition dump here, but he keeps it interesting, building tension and horror. This new threat goes from a MacGuffin to a fully-formed villain, all without showing her face.
He also does some great character work. The conflict between Zee and Diana feels earned, and realistic. These women respect each other, even if they don’t agree, and neither of them is completely wrong. The others also each get at least a brief moment, Circe is equally parts scary and compelling, and no one feels like wallpaper.
Lupacchino and McCarthy’s work is just great. They should really be a superstar team. Though their work leans into the DC house style, it still feels distinct and has its own identity.

The character work is great. The statement about no one feeling like wallpaper is as true about the artwork as it is the script. I love their take on Detective Chimp in particular, who still looks like a chimp but is also given a lot of expressiveness and emotion.
Romulo’s color work unites this story with last week’s one-shot. It also keeps the scary tone of the events here wonderfully.
This continues to be a great mini event, and I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes from here.

Wonder Woman #56 is available now from DC Comics.

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