Rucka took to his Tumblr to tell fans that he would be leaving the title due to the strain of the twice-monthly schedule. Identifying it as his last issue on the title "for the time being," Rucka advised fans against assuming the worst and wrote, "I just can't maintain the pace on the title while also fulfilling my commitments to my other collaborators. It is, genuinely, as simple as that."
Shortly thereafter, Sharp took to Facebook to confirm that he, too, would be leaving the title -- but cryptically teasing that he wouldn't be going too far.
The departures mark the first major creative shakeup since last year's DC Universe: Rebirth #1, and many of the new teams who took on titles last year talked about a two-year plan for the books. It's possible, if not likely, then that whoever takes over from Rucka will be using an outline he hammered out with DC to guide their first few months.
Rucka thanked collaborators like Sharp, Nicola Scott, editor Mark Doyle and the rest of the creative and editorial teams on the book, saying that he couldn't have done an issue, let alone 26 (including the Wonder Woman: Rebirth one-shot), without them.
"Writing Diana again has been an amazing experience, on the level of a dream-come-true," Rucka continued. "All any of us who've worked on the book this last year have wanted is to serve her well, to illuminate what we so absolutely believe makes Wonder Woman such a remarkable and unique and timeless and important character. To have had that opportunity is something that I doubted I would ever get again. Most of us don't get a single bite at the apple, let alone two, you know? To get that opportunity at a time when Diana is rising to such (long-overdue) prominence makes that apple all the sweeter. That she's turned 75 during the course of our run is–to ruin the analogy–icing on the cake.
"We started Rebirth with a specific, though fairly broad, mandate from DC. 'Bring her back to her core,' was what Geoff Johns told me. How we did it was up to us. Our success in doing so is measured, of course, by you. Wonder Woman 23 sees the end of our 'primary' storyline, 'The Lies/The Truth,' and Wonder Woman #24 serves as something of an epilogue to that tale. Wonder Woman #25 will, I hope, set a table for who is to follow, and provide for them as much room to work and explore and grow. Diana's future is bright, that's what I'm saying."
No word yet on who might replace Rucka, or whether the other artists alternating on the title with Sharp might stay after the pair leave.
DC Comics' full July 2017 solicitations will be released online on Monday, April 17, and will include the solictation text for Wonder Woman #26, and fans' first look at the post-Rucka creative direction.
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