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PREVIEW: 'BLACK [AF] DEVIL'S DYE' by Vita Ayala and Liana Kangas

 This latest BLACK [AF] collected mini-series is written by breakout star Vita Ayala ( New Mutants, X-Men: Children Of The Atom, Morbius, Bitch Planet, The Wilds ) and rising star artist Liana Kangas ( She Said Destroy ).   When a new drug called VANTA hits the streets, word is it's the hottest thing since Ecstacy. For regular people, it has all the highs and none of the lows of traditional drugs. There is some fine print, however - for empowered Black folks, the drug causes a total and violent loss of control. The Project sends Indigo to investigate, and it soon becomes apparent that this is more than just a new designer distraction for the masses. Indigo together with former Detective Ellen Waters race to find the source of the substance poisoning their people, before it's too late!   The superhero universe where only Black people have superpowers continues to expand, for the first time with a new creative team building onto the exciting world created by Kwanza Osajyefo, Tim

REVIEW: 'Future State: Wonder Woman' #1 by Joelle Jones and Jordie Bellaire

 Deep in the heart of the Amazon rainforest lies a hero of mythic legend...Wonder Woman! But in the absence of Diana, Yara Flor has risen out of obscurity to protect Man’s World from the magic that lies within it. Along with her trusty steed, she journeys to the Underworld to rescue one of her Themysciran sisters from the grasp of Hades. Will she unleash the wrath of this god in the process? You won’t want to miss this first appearance of a character who will change the history of Wonder Woman forever!


Writer: Joelle Jones
Artist: Joelle Jones
Colors: Jordie Bellaire
Letters: Clayton Cowles
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: January 6, 2021

Score: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

We don't review many Big Two titles for several reasons. Full disclosure; we don't get review copies from these publishers and these higher-profile legacy characters don't really need a big marketing push. Indie comics on the other hand could benefit from some good publicity even from a tiny site like ours. However, sometimes a title comes along like 'Future State: Wonder Woman' featuring two of our favorite talents in the business Joelle Jones (Lady Killer, Helheim, Madame Frankenstein) and Jordie Bellaire (Redlands, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Pretty Deadly). We had to check out this new title and as usual, they knocked it out of the park. 

We first meet Yara Flor in the middle of the Amazon forest fighting a hydra. She's fierce, fearless, and a fighter. She's a warrior who relishes a good fight and that automatically reminds us of the original Wonder Woman, Diana of Themyscira. However, Yara is young and impetuous which can lead to mistakes but she's self-aware enough to know and handles it all with humor and a good attitude. She's easy to root for and relate to on some level. She's also on a mission and the world Jones creates around her is both beautiful, lush, and inventive. From the dense forests of the Amazon to the stark eerie environments of the Underworld. 

When Caipora enters the story the issue takes on the charm of a buddy road comedy. The issue actually reminded me of the excellent run of Wonder Woman by Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang. Their series leaned heavily on Greek mythology and adventure. This one uses those mythological figures uniquely to carve out an interesting origin for Yara but the adventure is way more light-hearted and rooted in the unmistakable chemistry of the characters. 

Along with Bellaire's' gorgeous colorwork, Clayton Cowles' dynamic lettering, Jones has created a charming and captivating new chapter for Wonder Woman in the form of Yara Flor. 'Future State: Wonder Woman' is one of the most exciting things to happen to DC Comics in a long time.