Legendary G.I. Joe writer Larry Hama returns to Diana Prince with this week's launch of Convergence: Wonder Woman, writing a character he once edited for the two-month Convergence event.
Working with Joshua Middleton on the two-issue story, Hama is writing the '70s Wonder Woman era, just after her jump suited look. The series, whiched debuted this week, is the second Convergence tie-in by Hama, having launched Convergence: Shadow of the Bat earlier this month.
Newsarama talked to Hama to find out more about the story and what it was like to revisit Diana.
Newsarama: Larry, you certainly have experience with Wonder Woman, having edited her title. Are you visiting the same era in Convergence?
Larry Hama: No, it’s a different era, actually, an earlier one.
Nrama: So what costume is she wearing, because she had a couple different versions back then.
Hama: Took some liberties and combined the white jumpsuit (as her “civilian” garb), and her eagle-top bustier costume for fighting togs.
Nrama: How would you describe the Wonder Woman of this era? What's her personality, her secret identity, her approach? What's she like?
Hama: I have her fixed in my head as the quintessential “tough cookie.” She’s pragmatic, she takes charge, she doesn’t hesitate or double-think before springing into action. She’s Diana Prince, returned to civilian life after a stint in the Air Force, and she’s sorting out her life in “the world of men.”
Nrama: What's her relationship with other characters like? Who's in her life, in your issues?
Hama: Steve Trevor is her boyfriend, and she’s not conflicted about him the way she was depicted in other versions. Steve is competent, brave and strong. He may not be as physically powerful as her, but he is good-hearted, and he would do anything for her— and she knows this. Etta is Diana’s best friend. Etta may not make the best life choices, and she isn’t the brightest bulb in the chandelier, but she has a simple ethical core, and she is loyal. And Diana is not a fickle friend.
Nrama: What was your first exposure to Wonder Woman, and how does this version of her fit into your experience with the character?
Hama: Definitely the Ross Andru/Mike Esposito stuff. I never cared much for the white jump suit era, or Mike Sekowsky’s take on the character. Preferred Dick Giordano's version, and also John Rosenberger's. What I tried to do was take the visual trappings of the era, and overlay a more modern sensibility and storytelling methodology.
Nrama: We know now that the characters inside the domes have been without their powers for a year. The solicitation mentions a "domesday cult." That's a clever play on words. What is it, and what's Wonder Woman's role in fighting it?
Hama: Her fight with the cult is entirely personal. They’re messing with her friends. And she doesn’t take that lightly.
Nrama: One of the more interesting aspects of these two issues is the use of the vampire characters from Batman & Dracula: Red Rain. How aware were you of that story and what did you think of it?
Hama: I was not even aware of its existence. Had to do some catch-up reading, and decide how best to use those characters within the narrative.
Nrama: How did you piece together the plot using "Wonder Woman vs. vampires" as your starting point?
Hama: I always write page by page. I get the characters into a situation, and get them to tell me how they are going to resolve everything. I don’t know what’s going to happen on page five until I get to page four. Of course, I go back and tweak previous pages as I go, but my method is to roll the first page down the hill and run along after it trying to keep up.
Nrama: Joshua Middleton has such a unique art style. How would you describe the way the comic turned out and how his art affects the tone of the series?
Hama: I love his stuff. He has such a strong design sense, and the acting is right there in every way, with a goodly amount of subtext built in. His drawing isn’t just surface. What I like best about it is that he manages to make me look better.
Nrama: What's one of the more interesting visuals you got to see?
Hama: I liked everything. Nothing is more interesting than anything else. It all hangs together with a wonderful symmetry of effort.
Nrama: Anything else you want to tell fans about Convergence: Wonder Woman?
Hama: Buy extra copies and give them to friends.