Catwoman #9 – Ram V, Writer; John Timms, Artist
Ray – 7.5/10
Ray: Joelle Jones takes a one-issue break and so does the ongoing battle between Catwoman and the Creel family. In her place, guest creative team Ram V (of indie comics) and regular DC artist John Timms take Catwoman back to basics for a caper story set in the casinos of Villa Hermosa.
A time-hopping tale that introduces several original characters, it kicks off with Selina in a casino being hustled by the dealer – but she seems confident enough. The story then jumps back a week to when Selina’s friend Carlos got a bracelet he had planned to give to his boyfriend stolen from a pawn shop. She quickly puts together some of her old crew, including con men Swifty and James, and they set their sights on the mastermind of the theft – a shady trafficker in stolen goods going by The Broker. But Selina’s only threat in this plot isn’t coming from crime – it’s coming from Villa Hermosa’s law enforcement.
That would be Detective Dean Hadley, a scruffy but by-the-book officer who knows exactly who Selina is and believes she’s up to no good. The issue introduces every character by plastering their name on the screen, which feels a bit distracting, and Hadley, in particular, feels like a stock character.
How many times have we seen the no-nonsense handsome cop who suddenly gets undone by the femme fatale? Once the actual heist gets going, there’s a lot of action and some fun twists and turns. Selina’s always two steps ahead of her opponents, both law and criminal. The issue takes on the tone of a classic heist thriller like the Ocean’s series, which is enough to make it entertaining. But this feels like it should have been a short arc, not a one-off, given how many quick jump-cuts are needed. The issue does come together nicely at the end with commentary on why Selina was so determined to pull off this heist. It largely feels in line with the regular series – entertaining, but never quite great.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.