WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Wonder Woman #56, Part 2 of The Witching Hour crossover event by James Tynion IV, Emanuela Lupacchino, Ray McCarthy, Romulo Fajardo Jr and Dave Sharpe, in stores now.
Desperate times call for desperate measures.
Justice League Dark was a team born out of both necessity and circumstance. The destruction of the Source Wall in this year’s Justice League: No Justice has led to many unforeseen consequences, the repercussions of which are currently rippling throughout the DC Universe. Creatures like the Omega Titans were awakened, the Dark Gods made their return and the entire world of magic fell out of balance, with Wonder Woman taking it upon herself to put together a new team to deal with the latter threat.
Led by the Amazon Princess, Zatanna, Detective Chimp, Man-Bat and Swamp Thing became the newest iteration of Justice League Dark, and together they repelled the first wave of attack from the Otherkind, the ancient owners of magic.
But just as soon as this threat was (momentarily) stopped, another, perhaps even bigger one has just arrived: Hecate, the Witch-Mother, and the ancient Triple Goddess of magic. The goddess has grown angry at how humans wield magic in the world, and she seeks to supplant it all with her own. Simply put, the Otherkind came to take away magic, but Hecate is coming to control it all.
To make matters worse, Diana has recently discovered that she has carried the mark of Hecate ever since she was a little girl, making her a part of the Witch-Mother’s grand plans. For that reason, with the world of magic once again on the ropes and only the Justice League Dark as a line of defense, the burgeoning super-team turns to an unlikely new ally: one of Wonder Woman’s oldest foes: Circe.
First introduced in 1949’s Wonder Woman #37 by Robert Kanigher and Harry G. Peter, it took until 1988 for the character would become an iconic, recurring foe of the Amazon Princess. As an ancient Greek sorceress, Circe has proven to be the ultimate nemesis for Diana, one who deserves as much recognition as Cheetah or even Ares.
The events of the Justice League Dark/Wonder Woman crossover “The Witching Hour” have led Diana to seek a truce with her enemy. She has only just discovered that she was witch-marked by Hecate, a secret mark that allows her to tap into magical powers of unknown magnitude. There is much she doesn’t know about this ability, however, and she believes Circe, who once had Hecate for a patron, may hold the answers she seeks.
Naturally, when Wonder Woman’s team makes its way to the shores of the sorceress’ island, it doesn’t take long for her to cast spells and attack. But before Circe can strike a fatal blow on her old enemy, Diana reveals the mark of Hecate on her forehead… and that is enough to stop Circe dead in her tracks. Instantly, she calms down, reverts the spells she initially threw, and even changes her appearance to look much friendlier. Recognizing that the Witching Hour is at hand, she apologizes for the attack. Later, with the Justice League Dark dining and wining in Circe’s home, she reveals to them the entire history of Hecate, of her unlimited power, her plans and her goals.
After painting a pretty bleak picture, she and Wonder Woman deduce the only way to defeat Hecate may be with her own power — power that’s inside of Diana. after some heated debate with Zatanna, Wonder Woman instructs her enemy-turned-ally to activate the power of Hecate within her — something that the sorceress has no trouble doing. Now, Diana is ready to fight, alongside her team and Circe who, for the time being, seems to have become a member of Justice League Dark.
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