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Wonder Woman: Rise of the Olympian Paperback – November 10, 2009

3.5 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews
Book 5 of 2 in the Wonder Woman III Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

A cadre of Wonder Woman’s greatest foes bands together to create an unspeakable monster out of the ashes of mankind’s deadliest sins. True to the name she has chosen for herself, Genocide lives to spread hopelessness and hate and has been tasked to destroy Wonder Woman and all that she holds dear. Diana must gather up all of her strength and call upon her allies to save the world. Although this is a straightforward working of mainstream superhero plots, Rise of the Olympian offers a no-holds-barred, action-packed ride. The art is fluid and dynamic, and Simone (who took over the franchise in 2007) supplies strong writing. Grades 9-12. --Tina Coleman

About the Author

Gail Simone is the fan-favourite writer of Villains United, Superman: Action Comics, Rose & Thorn, Deadpool, The Simpsons, Gen 13, The All-New Atom and Welcome to Tranquility. Aaron Lopresti is a fan-favourite penciller whose work includes Amazing Spider-Man, Captain Marvel, Excalibur, Generation X, Ms. Marvel, Mystic, New X-Men, Sludge. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics; 1st edition (November 10, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401225136
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401225131
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 0.3 x 10.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,689,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Sean Curley on November 10, 2009
Format: Paperback
Gail Simone's first twelve issues on "Wonder Woman" followed a specific formula: a four-issue arc of major significance, followed by a two-issue arc telling smaller stories. With two such cycles completed, she now dives into the biggest and most ambitious arc she has yet attempted on the title. "Rise of the Olympian" spans eight issues, twice the length of any previous story, and aims to tackle aspects of the Wonder Woman mythos that were severely mauled by the previous writers of the franchise in "Amazons Attack!". This story was also marketed heavily as an entry point for readers, alongside such works as Grant Morrison's "Batman RIP". It would be nice to say that Simone achieves an unqualified success here, but that is not the case. "Rise of the Olympian" has flaws fit for its ambitions. Spoilers follow.

Befitting its size, there is quite a lot going on here. Too much, in many ways. For most of the story, there are two separate strands at work that really don't seem to have much in common beyond their occurring at the same time. In one, which occupied Diana's time for most of the story, she confronts the new villain Genocide, a creation of the latest iteration of the Secret Society of Supervillains. This strand features, for the first time in the run, a couple of pre-existing major Wondy villains, the Cheetah (Barbara Minerva) and Dr. Psycho. They are mostly well-used, though what seems like an opportunity to rebuild the Cheetah into the scheming mastermind she was initially characterized as before rot set in is ultimately not to be. The big flaw in this story, and it's a fairly major one, is Genocide herself. Simply, the character doesn't work. She's built up as a Doomsday-level threat, but the story never really conveys this by her actions.
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Format: Paperback
Following off Gail's opening arc, The Circle, Simone continues her run with style. Now, I'll mention that the complexity of the story mentioned in a prior review is true, there's a lot going on here and some may have trouble with that, and there are some parts like the Society of Supervillains and Cheetah who'd have benefited from more screen time, but I feel it more than earns it's wings with it's epicness, well written characters, and most importantly, doing what perhaps no writer since Rucka has done: Truly get Wonder Woman.

There are three main threats in this volume. The Society of Supervillains, the villain Genocide, and Achilles and the Olympians under Zeus. The Society as I mentioned could've stood to have more time on their own, but are primarily there to set up Genocide. They have some mook villains, but it might as well just be Cheetah, Professor TO Morrow, and Felix Faust for most intents and purposes, of whom Cheetah gets the most time and even then it's not a ton. Genocide on the other hand, despite her fairly 2d sounding name, is a truly threatening anti-Diana who is the key point of the story. More gets unveiled as she attacks Diana on both a physical and moral level, and the pay off of both the reveal of her origins and the final fight through Washington DC are more than pay off enough for her storyline.

Finally, there's Achilles, who'll I'll spend the most time on.

The idea of a male character being sent to fill Diana's role is one that's been done before, far too often, but Achilles is different than any of his predecessors in one important way: His deep and abiding respect for Diana. If he had a say in the matter, he'd love to just back Wonder Woman up as long as the job gets done, but Zeus has thrust him into the role.
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Format: Paperback
Reprinting the prologue from DC Universe # 0 as well as Wonder Woman (2006 series) #s 26-33, Rise Of The Olympian finds some new blood being brought into the Wonder Woman mythos. The titular Olympian is Achilles, one of a number of dead heroes from Greece's past who've been resurrected by Zeus. It seems that the head of the Greek gods feels Wonder Woman has failed to bring peace to the world as the Amazons originally envisioned, and so has set about to create his own equivelent of the Amazon warriors, with some fairly radical plans for what he wants them to accomplish and how. Meanwhile, a perhaps even more formidable player is unleashed on the world in the form of Genocide, created by the cadre of super-villains known as The Society and intended to be, in their own words, their "JLA-killer". However, this character - possibly the fiercest-looking and most bloodthirsty female villain ever seen in comicdom - has almost immediately upon creation scared even its creators with the depths of her darkness and bloodlust.

Making her public debut at a shopping center where she massacres most of the mall's shoppers and workers, Genocide finds herself confronted by Wonder Woman and agents from the Department Of Metahuman Affairs, but the encounter doesn't quite go the way anyone expected. The story progresses with Genocide quickly becoming even more dangerous, and with delving into the surprising (and imaginative) origins of the character. At the same time, Zeus's resurrected warriors have another major figure with some very definate plans for them. The odds have seldom been so stacked against Wonder Woman and her allies.
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