WW 151WW 151: Jan., 1965, 25 pp "Wonder Girl vs the Teen-Age Monster!" Luckily this issue is all a dream as WG looks at a scrapbook of Diana with Steve Trevor, Manno the Merman and (get this) Wingo the Bird-Man. (If Kanigher had been around at the beginning, don't you just bet it would have been "Steve-o the Hu-Man"?)

She falls asleep and dreams that she is her sister, a teenaged Lt. Diana Prince, who flies out of her office one day to meet up with a teenaged Steve Trevor. She cuddles up next to him in his fighter plane and they encounter two comets. After WG kicks them away, one of the comets loops back at them. It's really hiding an alien spacecraft.

Steve shoots it down and a big, bloppy gold thing with two eyes and a mouth flows out of the wreckage. It makes sounds that sound like "Glop!" so they call it the Glop. It fires gloppy missiles back at Steve. WG rescues him and finds that the Glop has formed itself into a plane that shoots missiles at her. She manages to kick them away and hides behind a cloud, but the Glop digests the cloud. WG creates lightning with her magic lasso. This causes the Glop to rain from the cloud.

Meanwhile below, teenagers dance to a 45 (equivalent to a CD single, except that 45's had two songs on them) with words: "I've got a girl who's a wonder! She makes me feel like thunder! My wonder, wonder girl! She's my pearl! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!" (Can you tell that the Beatles by now have arrived in America? John Lennon should have sued.)

The rain that runs the teenagers off turns out to be little pieces of Glop, who merges and swallows the records. He then starts singing as he makes his marauding way across the countryside. He chews up trees and spits them out as paper.

WG arrives on the scene as army tanks go up against the Glop. For some reason, WG doesn't want them to hurt it, so she stops all the missiles and gunfire before they reach the Glop. The Glop returns the fire. Luckily, WG can handle that as well and as the Glop starts to digest the tanks, WG rescues all the soldiers with her magic lasso.

A piece of surviving Glop sticks to the end of her lasso and then detaches. Singing, "Little ole teenage monster me!" the Glop climbs an office building to emerge in Steve's office. WG escapes out the window onto her robot plane with the Glop in pursuit. Bird-Boy tries to join her, but decides that might be a bad idea since the Glop is firing missiles at the both of them.

WG dives into the ocean and of course Mer-Boy pops up. They find a lurking enemy nuclear sub that fires a nuclear warhead at them. It hits the Glop instead. Good old Gloppie is unharmed and fires back. WG gets out of the area just in time.

Wonder Girl reports back to Paradise Island, informing her family that any time the Glop is attacked, it just gets more powerful. Diana tells her it's a shame she can't send it off to the future, where people will be able to figure out how to handle it. WG decides that time travel is indeed the ticket and has Amazon scientists rig her up as a human time machine. She emerges from the lab just in time to face the Glop, who has turned himself into a nuclear submarine. Grabbing him, she triggers the time machine and sends him back to a time when the earth was still a molten glop of rock. She returns back to the present safe and sound, and not only that, but wakes up from this awful, awful, embarrassingly awful dream.

I like to blame the Glop on the demise of the Wonder Family. He was too horrible even for DC to publish, and they must have blamed his environment as well as him. The End certainly came soon enough after this debacle.

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WW 152WW 152: Feb, 1965. First story: 12 pp. Second story 13 pp. This the first of two issues to put Wonder Girl as the main header on the cover.

"Wonder Girl's Decision of Doom!" One morning as the WF has breakfast, Athena announces that today is judgement day. A single member of the WF must battle any threat against PI, and if she fails the Amazons will lose their home and all their powers as Amazons.

The luck of the draw chooses WG and she sees all the temporarily-powerless Amazons and her family off onto boats and then patrols the island alone. A giant snake crawls out of a suden chasm. Caught in its coils, WG still manages to trick it into trying to eat a globe that forces its jaws open, and then hurls it into the ocean.

Next, Mer-Boy brings her flowers but finds himself frozen in the ocean, for an iceberg creature is approaching, freezing everything. Even as WG freezes, she starts to vibrate herself and breaks free of the ice, giving the creature a good kick which drives it off.

Next WG glides over PI. She spots Bird-Boy diving straight towards the land. As she intercepts she realizes that he's been turned into stone. She diverts their fall into a pool. A Medusa bird is responsible for Bird-Boy's condition. Wonder Girl fights the Medusa bird HAND TO HAND -- which is the ONLY time during this entire run that I can remember any of the WF battling a foe hand to hand. Of course in this case, it's another female, the first evil normal-sized humanoid female they've encountered.

WG defeats it and leaves the Medusa bird apparently dead at the bottom of the pool even as Bird-Boy starts turning back to normal. She rescues him from the water and brings him out into the open air where he can dry off.

There she spots the Duke of Deception's invasion fleet bearing down on Paradise, but part of it also threatens the fleet of ships carrying all the Amazons. Which one should WG fight? She decides that her orders were to protect the island, so with tears in her eyes she goes after the invaders over her homeland and dispatches them fairly quickly. Suprisingly, WW -- who now has her powers back -- rescues her as she falls out of the sky. Athena has called the war games off since WG has done such a great job, and the Amazons now have their powers back.

Second story:

"Wonder Girl's Mysterious Father!" Now, this is a weird one. WG and Hippy watch newsreels of various "Dad & Daughter Day" events on the mainland, and WG waxes nostalgic about her own father. (Told you this was weird.) Hippy says, "I long to see your father too, WONDER GIRL! But -- you know he was lost at sea! And somehow, we m-must go on w-without him!" Interesting. This would make it seem like Hippy had feelings for WG's father, which would imply that yet another member of the WF (if we keep with our theory that WG is separate from Diana) had a father: WG.

WG promises her mother that she'll never make her feel sad again and goes out to glide away her blues. She sees a small ship struck by lightning and a man thrown overboard. Wonder Girl saves him from several sea creatures. She hands him off to Bird-Boy while she fashions a little island that she can set him on. The man awakens thinking that WG is his daughter. She plays along with him. Having contacted her mother on WG's wrist omni-receiver, Hippy counsels her to maintain the masquerade until a passing ship can pick him up.

The stranger calls WG "Annie" and tells her that they should rehearse their act. Through experimentation, which includes WG singing "Yeah -- yeah -- YEAH!" WG discovers that the man is a circus acrobat. She strings her magic lasso between two palm trees and they practice a high wire acrobatic act. The man never thinks twice about Bird-Boy and Mer-Boy, who watch them, and comments favorably on WG's "new-found" Herculean strength.

WG arranges for the Amazns to see the act and runs a line between the island and a building on Paradise. Together, the man and WG put on one heck of an exhibition.

Suddenly WG sees somebody floating out on the ocean on a piece of wreckage, threatened by a giant sea creature. It turns out to be a girl whose name is Annie, and as soon as the stranger sees her, his memory comes back. Now WG spots a ship on the horizon and transports the two of them to it.

The story ends with WG saying to Hippy, "Mother -- perhaps soemday my real father will come back from the sea?" Hippy: "Perhaps, WONDER GIRL! The sea is mysterious! Stranger things have happened! Who knows what will happen next?"

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Here's one of my top three picks!

WW 153WW 153: April, 1965. This is the second issue to present WG as the headline act on the cover. "Wonder Girl's Stolen Face!" 25 pp.

We begin with everyone admiring WG and how beautiful she is. Suddenly we see her now: she's half green, running amok on Paradise and tearing buildings down in her wake. "Why should I leave anything beautiful still standing -- when I look like THIS? A split-face! Half of which only looks like me -- to remind me of what I was!"

We then go into a flashback as the WF sits down for a portrait, the artist wondering which of them is the most beautiful. But they are being monitored by that diabolical Martian, the Duke of Deception. Now he's plotting to destroy the WF by turning one of them against the rest of the family.

He recalls how in ages past he turned the beautiful Medusa into the monster of legend. Later he was jealous of Dr. Jekyll and so transformed him into the horrible Mr. Hyde. Now, back in the present, he observes WG being romanced by both Mer-Boy and Bird-Boy. She saves them from the attack of a giant bird, and then when they fall into the ocean, she saves them from the trident of a giant undersea humanoid monster.

Along the way she has to give Bird-Boy artificial resuscitation which makes Mer-Boy jealous. As they lounge on a small island, the DofD beams one of his horrible faces onto WG. It is half her normal face and half green, grotesque and misshapen. She turns around and the boys stare at her in shock. Then she sees her own reflection in the water.

As soon as her initial shock passes, she shouts at the boys that they're looking away from her becuase she's so ugly. But Mer-Boy is the first to pipe up that he still loves her, and he takes her to an undersea parade as his date, where all the merpeople laugh. Wonder Girl upsets all the floats in her anger and embarrassment and takes off to the surface.

Now Bird-Boy keeps a date with her, taking her to the Birdland Ballroom, where all the bird people laugh at her. She breaks up the joint and throws off Bird-Boy. Returning to Paradise Island, her family thinks that she's dressed up for Halloween, which sets her off on a rampage. "Why should I leave anything BEAUTIFUL still standing -- when I look like THIS?"

Her family catches up to her and tells her how sorry they are to see her this way, and that they only want to help her. WG realizes how wrong she's been and leaves, banishing herself for life where she can't cause harm to anyone.

the Duke of Deception

As she leaves, she encounters a Martian spaceship and sees her face hanging in its domed window. The DofD mocks her with her own face and reveals his fleet waiting for the perfect time to invade. WG spots her family getting in range of the fleet and manages to free herself from where she'd been magnetically caught, just in time to warn her family, and the WF makes mincemeat of the invasion fleet.

Happy ending!Diana catches Wonder Girl's stolen face as the ship it was in breaks apart and falls. Amazon plastic surgeons work to restore WG's face. Days later, when the bandages are removed, Bird-Boy and Mer-Boy anxiously hover outside her hospital window, assuring her that they're both on her side no matter how the operation turned out. But as the bandages are removed, we see her revealed in her original glory. The boys begin to argue again about who's going to take her out on her next date.

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WW 154WW 154: May, 1965. 25 pp. "Battle of the Boiling Man!" Once again, Kanigher brings us into the the first crisis of the story and then resorts to a flashback. WW has to grab Steve, who has bailed out of his burning plane without a parachute, while a Boiling Man, who is a giant (of course) humanoid volcano, erupts out of Paradise Island right under Steve. Diana must make the decision between saving Steve or saving PI.

This kind of storytelling is in addition to the initial splash page, which gives a similar crisis and is, in effect, immediate reiteration. So we switch to the usual flashback about How It All Began:

Queen Hip calls Di Prince over her omni-receiver and reminds her that it's Name Day and she must come home. According to Hip: "The name WONDER WOMAN is an honor -- like a decoration won in battle! Each year -- on NAME DAY -- WONDER WOMAN must earn it in open competition! If any one of YOU proves herself a BETTER Amazon -- then SHE will be called Wonder Woman!"

Before WW leaves, Steve approaches her and tells her that he will be flying an experimental ship today and he was thinking about landing on PI and asking her mother for permission to marry her. What a clever scamp that Steve is! (insert retching noise here) WW reminds him that to set foot on Paradise would be doom for the Amazons, blah blah blah, and takes off.

She encounters an iceberg in the viciintiy of Paradise where Manno the Mer-man lies frozen. As soon as Diana frees him, they are attacked by a giant mannish monster chasing Bird-Man. The monster grabs Diana's lasso so she throws herself into its face, sending it on its way.

Two adult suitors now grasp her by her hands and feet, as if she were WG with her two suitors, and WW has to call her plane to knock her out of their grasp because they just won't let go.

Diana attempts the Name Day competition with Athena and Aphrodite watching: The first contest is to climb to the top of a glass pole in 60 seconds. WW, WGirl and WTot all succeed. From then on, the goddesses choose the individual battles.

WTot's task is to fashion a 1000-headed ball and roll it up Paradise Mountain. She looks out at the crowd of Amazons, whips out her magic lasso, and rolls them all up in it, then up the mountain. Betcha they liked that, especially the ones in the middle with no air.

Next contest is for WGirl: She must "from out of the MIGHTIEST -- extract the TINIEST!" So WG glides out over the sea and spots a whale, which she suspects could be the mightiest. She's swept into its mouth and finds Mer-Boy already swallowed. The two can't fight the great forces of water coming in and out of the whale's mouth. WG uses a swordfish to tickle the whale, and the whale sneezes them out. The goddesses consider this a victory.

Now they throw a sheet of paper to WW which will give her her assignement, but as she's diving for it, WW spots Steve's plane in flames and him bailing out without a parachute for some idiotic reason. Plunging to his doom. She decides to save Steve.

This Boiling Man guy that we previously saw suddenly erupts out of Paradise, bursting with boiling lava and explosive gases. Diana uses her wonder breath to propell Steve high into the air, since he's weaering a semi-space suit. Then she takes her magic lasso, which turns red-hot from its contact with Boiling Man, and dumps BM into the ocean to cool him off and give her a quick break because she cannot handle the heat.

The sea begins to boil and the merpeople cry for her to save them. Luckily for us -- remember? -- there's a convenient iceberg floating nearby. She deposits BM on the top and eventually he is encased enough in the ice so she can throw it all into space and return in time to catch Steve.

Diana asks the goddesses' forgiveness for ignoring their mission and asks them what the mission would have been. Athena replies that it would have been "Freeze fire into glass!" which Diana has done, so now when everyone votes on who should be Wonder Woman, the unanimous result is Princess Diana.

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WW 155WW 155: July 1965, 24 pp. As the ultimate Wonder Woman story of this era, this story teaches us all how horrible men are. "I Married a Monster!" begins of course not only with the splash page but also a page and a half rehashing the splash page AND climax, showing WW marrying a monster with her family and friends in tow. How did this happen?

Steve had come on like gangbusters to Diana and told her that he knows that she only loves him and not Manno or Bird-Man, so "When are you going to marry me! Better hurry! Before you're an old maid!" He's a real keeper, Diana! (You can see why Sekowsky's first move in the Diana Prince era was ak-ak-ak to gun him down dead, can't you?)

Diana says she will never marry him and calls her plane. She's so upset that for the first time in her life she misses jumping into it. On her way to PI, she passes over the Statue of Liberty, where King Kong (who is not named) stands on top, fighting off jet planes while Fae Wray sits, watching. Diana grabs the giant ape and Fae says, "Thanks a mil, WONDER WOMAN! How do you say 'NO!' -- and make it stick!" Diana responds that she's having the same problem herself and then deposits Kong on an island with other giant apes on it.
She's still on the way to Paradise in her convertible plane (the top is down) when Bird-Man comes upon her and tells her that she's going to marry him sooner or later. She responds that she'll make that "later," and then has to save him from lightning which sends her into the ocean.

At this point we get an interesting panel which shows us that "Invisible to the human eye -- is the extra layer of gills -- skin-grafted onto her by Amazon scientists which enables WONDER WOMAN to extract oxygen out of water... and breathe like a fish!" Well, that finally explains that! Now if they can just explain how everyone can talk and be understood underwater...

But of course since she's underwater, here comes Manno. He tells her that she is going to marry him and that "You don't have to blubber your gratitude, ANGEL-FISH!" Did these guys all go to the same school of romance?

Of course Diana has to save Mer-Man from some dueling swordfish which she handles by inserting a giant sponge between them. As she zooms away in fury from Manno, she feels cold hands on her shoulders pulling her back, and she tells him off only to turn around and see that it was a giant octopus.

Now Diana spots an island in the sky hurtling towards PI. It holds a huge castle and is covered by a clear forcefield-like solid dome. She grabs it with her magic lasso, settles it down on the ocean, bores through the forcefield, and finds that the castle contains many mirrors that have been smashed. A wedding banquet and portraits have also been slashed annd ruined.

Sitting on a throne is a green-haired, pointy-eared monster who yells at her that he doesn't want her pity and that he hates all women. In tears, WW goes back to her mother, who says that it's clear that this guy must have been transformed into a monster on his wedding day and that everyone must have deserted him. (No theories about why the island was falling towards earth or where the forcefield came from...)

So the WF and a bunch of Amazons decide to counter his actions with loving kindness and take gifts to the monster, who turns a fireworks gun on them and drives them away. Only WW returns to the island, where she discovers the monster using a sledgehammer to break up his wedding chapel. Some of the debris hits her and knocks her unconscious, at which point the monster begs her to say something to show she's alive.

She tells him that his strength of spirit in standing up to an Amazon army was magnificent, and that anyone who married him would be lucky, to which he dares her to take the place of the princess who was supposed to marry him. WW immediately sets about repairing the wedding chapel. She returns home, tells her mother that she wants her to preside, and the Amazons all return with WW in veil with wedding bouquet.

Of course Mer-Man and Bird-Man object during the ceremony, but Hippolyta doesn't warrant their objections important enough. At that point, though, the still unnamed monster flees the wedding because "I won't allow this beautiful girl to sacrifice her happiness -- for a monster like me!"

Diana runs after him to spot him about to jump from a cliff, but she trips and goes over the edge instead. The monster catches her. A "sphinx-avis" -- a male sphinx who has to try harder, unlike the "sphinx-hertz" -- flies toward them, but the monster man stays with Diana. His face changes back into that of a "handsome dreamboat."

Diana carves out a block of rock from the cliff and throws it at the sphinx, driving it off. The monster and she now fall together and we abruptly and quite uncomfortably switch viewpoints into the monster's thoughts. He didn't know how happy he was before he met women. Why won't Diana leave him alone? Better a live bachelor than a dead bridegroom. (Hasn't he noticed yet that she has superpowers? Apparently his IQ is rather low.)

His face changes back to that of the monster and by the time Diana alights on the shore, gently catching him, the monster rages at her and tells her that he's going to put up the biggest "no trespassing" sign she's ever seen so that no one will ever bother him again.

The final narrative blurb tells readers that the next issue will be a collector's item having to do with the Golden Age of comics.

We can now see that Wonder Woman actually PREFERS the domineering, emasculating (efeminating?) kind of guy who can completely control a woman's life while reminding her of what second-rate quality she is as a female. Apparently Diana likes to be the recipient of punishment, both physical and emotional. A little spanky-spanky? A little superheroing? Tell me I'm a bad girl, you big, hulking, stupid man. Let me bow to your natural superiority and kiss your little toes. Just as long as Diana feels bad in the end, she'll be happy. Eeesh.

Of additional and much more wholesome note in this issue is an ad for Brave and the Bold with the very first appearance of "The Most FABULOUS FOURSOME [a play on the 'Fab Four' designation the Beatles were usually given] in comics history!": The Teen Titans, including Wonder Girl. Interesting to see that depicted on this cover are four head shots of the Titans: a Cardy Aqualad, an Infantino Kid Flash, a whoever was drawing Batman back then Robin... and an Andru & Esposito Wonder Girl taken from a recent issue. They were obviously lifting this character from Wonder Woman as a separate entity. Wonder why the rest of the DCU refused to look at it that way?

It couldn't be because Wonder Woman was a GIRL and you couldn't take GIRL stories serious, could it? Naaah.

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