As a past writer of both Wonder Woman and Red Sonja comics, Gail Simone is well versed in both superhero storytelling and pulp fantasy, making her a great choice to pen the first meeting of Wonder Woman and Conan the Barbarian. Wonder Woman/Conan The Barbarian is a new six-issue miniseries from DC Comics and Dark Horse Comics that sends Diana of Themyscira into the deadly world of Cimmeria, reuniting Simone with her Wonder Woman art team of Aaron Lopresti and inker Matt Ryan for a brutal journey that shows off the ferocity of the world’s most popular female superhero.
These exclusive preview pages of this week’s Wonder Woman/Conan #1 introduce Conan, who is immediately defined by violence with an opening flashback that has weaponry integrated into the border of the page. Brute force is the only way to survive in this land, and Wonder Woman is trapped in a position where this lesson is all too clear. This excerpt also includes pages previously released by DC Comics revealing Wonder Woman in this world, where she’s a slave forced to fight in a gladiator arena. We don’t see her in action, but everything about her body language and facial expressions indicates that she’s going to make some very bad people pay for what they’re doing to her.
Aaron Lopresti brings a lot of drama to the compositions in these pages, and Matt Ryan’s inks add crisp detail that spotlights the specificity of Lopresti’s work. These creators have worked together for a long time, and this series could be the high point in their collaboration if this preview is any indication. The action is slick and savage, the environments are sprawling, and there’s a remarkable amount of detail put into each image. That final shot of Wonder Woman in the arena is especially impressive, and the detail put into each member of the audience intensifies the energy of the scene and makes the setting come to life. Colorist Wendy Broome adds extra dimension to the linework, and her restrained color palette keeps the emphasis on the sharp inking. This a very good-looking book, and this preview is just the start of a story that will significantly expand in scope once the two leads join forces.