Review by C.J. Bunce
A new hardcover mini book joins Insight Editions‘ palm-sized book series (check out our review of the Harry Potter book here), this time reprinting 300 covers of the Wonder Woman comic book series, all in color. So for a list price of $11.99, Wonder Woman fans can now flip through decades of the superheroine’s visual history. You will be surprised at the volume of reptiles, undersea creatures, and dinosaurs she has wrestled over the decades from 1942 to 1983.
Wonder Woman: The Complete Covers Volume 1 finds Diana, the Amazon warrior-princess, in all sorts of situations–action and adventures featuring her ride, climb, lasso, grab, toss, wrestle, run, dive, fly, strut, sit, lasso some more, block, drive, fight, swing, soar, manhandled, swim, throw, jump, lift, spacewalk, clam surf, hoist trees, punch, sword fight, cry (but only twice), protect, shoot, drown, get tied up or handcuffed, fall, get eaten, kick, put a guy in a headlock, and lasso again, and deflect bullets and lightning, and die.
Who appeared the most with Wonder Woman on the covers of the first 300 issues of the Wonder Woman comic book? Wonder Woman. That’s right, DC must have figured if one image of the superheroine sold a 52-page comic, then the Amazon battling herself would bring in even more readers. How many costume changes did she get in 300 issues? For the first 177 issues she went from boots to sandal boots and back again, until 1968 when the comics featured a series of mod outfits, but she returned to her classic look with issue 204 (her boots would change yet again).
Check out our preview of Volume 1 and Volume 2 below.
Readers will notice a variety of historical changes to the comics over time, as illustrated on the covers, in content, culture, title logo, the nature of the threats Wonder Woman faces, and more. Over 41 years prices moved from 10 cents in June 1942 to 12 cents in 1962, and then to 15 cents in 1969, with periodic increases by 5 cents until it reached 40 cents in 1978, then increases by 10 cents until it reached 60 cents in 1981, with special issues at 50 cents and 60 cents, arriving at Issue #300 in 1983 at $1.50 cover price.
The book is almost exclusively a page-by-page reprint of the history of the Wonder Woman title in covers. No writer for this book is listed as the book only includes a few paragraphs of historical commentary.
A handy, sturdy pocket-sized hardcover book for Wonder Woman fans and vintage comics collectors, Wonder Woman: The Complete Covers Volume 1 is available now here at Amazon (at the time of this review, only $7.99). Here are excerpts from Volume 1, courtesy of the publisher:
And here is a first look at Volume 2 of the mini book cover series:
You can pre-order Wonder Woman: The Complete Cover Volume 2 here at Amazon, available May 19, 2019.