Catwoman #8 – Joelle Jones, Writer; Elena Casagrande, Fernando Blanco, Artists; John Kalisz, Colorist
Ray – 7.5/10
Corrina: Thievery Sequence Is Terrific
Ray: Joelle Jones’ Catwoman has had Selina Kyle and Raina Creel on a collision course since the first issue, and in the aftermath of their first major battle the two are both seeking their next advantage. Selina has been recruited by Penguin to engage in a particularly dangerous theft, at the same time Creel meets with a mysterious broker of rare goods to get ahold of an elixir. This mysterious woman, who is always surrounded by a pair of demonic dogs, also has possession of a Jade relic which Creel is interested in – but it’s made very clear to her that it’s not for sale. And that relic just happens to be exactly what Selina has been hired to steal. Why Selina is working for Penguin after the events of the last issue is made clear when he promises her a letter from Holly clearing up recent events – something that is pretty significant given Holly’s role in breaking up the Bat-Cat wedding a few months back.
I didn’t think the heist segment worked quite as well as the rest of the issue, mainly because it veered into the realm of absurdity at times. Why are there suddenly an army of zombies lurking around to attack Catwoman? The scenes look great, at least, but the initial segments here aren’t as strong as when Selina gets down to a one-on-one battle with the guardian of the relic. This is a brutal fight that ends with Selina in possession of the relic – just as Penguin’s inevitable betrayal arrives. Creel, meanwhile, plans to use the elixir to resurrect her dead son and enter a new stage of her war with Catwoman. The issue as a whole is enjoyable, but it doesn’t feel like there’s much of a central story yet. Raina Creel is certainly an evil villain, but she’s largely one-note. And while Selina is definitely a character who deserves her own title – she was one of only eight characters to take her New 52 series to #52 – this series feels more like it’s keeping time for Selina’s return to the Batman title.
Corrina: The art sequences in this series are unbelievably good. Army of zombies out of nowhere aside, the scenes with Selina stealing the relic are a master class in sequential art action storytelling, as is the brutal fight between Selina and the owner of the relic.
I wish the plotting were up to this level, however, as it sometimes feels the wheels are spinning. What does she want? Power, yes, and her son back, but why? So far, it’s one-note.
As for Selina, why would she trust Penguin, of all people, to bring her a letter from Holly? (Of course, that begs the question of why Selina paid so much attention to Holly’s ‘eh, you need to leave, world needs a Batman’ in the first place, which is not the fault of this series.) Selina has always been fiercely independent. Right now, she’s trying to get her sister help and she must be concerned about Holly. She’d hear Penguin out and then find another way, rather than doing exactly as he says.
As it is, it seems the relic might eventually lead to Maggie’s recovery, which may not be a good thing. I guess there’s a parallel there: what Selina will do for her sister and what Creel will do for her son.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.