CATWOMAN #46 Review

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SYNOPSIS: Lines are blurred as Eiko Hasigawa and Catwoman start playing too nice with one another and each lets their guard down-and in a ruthless city like Gotham, you can’t trust anyone but yourself to watch your back. And Catwoman should know better than to let an old flame get into her head again…that’s her job.

Back in July of 2018, Selina Kyle and Bruce Wayne didn’t go through with their wedding and the characters are still dealing with the ramifications of that decision.

Opening with a series of flashbacks, writer Tini Howard gives readers a look at what worked in the Bat/Cat relationship, even if it was unconventional. The fact that Selina describes it as “someone you love enough to fight with” indicates how she doesn’t shy away from things when they get difficult, provided, of course, that the person is worth it.

Jumping forward to the present day, Howard explores that theme in how Selena relates to other characters like Eiko Hasigawa, Dario Tomasso, and yes, even Valmont. Lest you think it’s all friendships, partnerships, and potential romance, Black Mask, aided by Amygdala, has joined with other crime families to form a self-proclaimed Gentleman’s Club to oppose Catwoman and strengthen their illegal operations in Gotham.

Howard weaves all these elements together deftly, getting you inside Selena’s head and the complicated choices she finds in front of her. Yes, she is still thinking of Bruce, just as he is thinking of her over in his own book, but that doesn’t necessarily chain her to remaining in Gotham. She may be a criminal, but she is looking out for the people of Gotham in her own way, and I appreciate how Howard contrasts that with Batman’s approach.

Sami Basri is on art duties, inked by Vicente Cifuentes and colored by Jordie Bellaire. Basri’s style is very simple and clean, making the storytelling very easy to follow and is pleasing to my eye. Black Mask’s newest mask is suitably creepy and deranged. Seeing Amygdala suited at the table, accidentally crushing his glass of wine got a chuckle out of me. His expression matches how unhinged Black Mask has been lately.

Perhaps not the easiest issue to jump into if you haven’t been following along with recent developments as it still offers enough context for the uninitiated to have a basic understanding of the situation. The art is concise, with solid storytelling elements and a flashback sure to please Team Yellow Oval fans. Howard has succeeded in hooking me and I look forward to the next installment! Javier E. Trujillo

GRADE: B+

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Javier E. Trujillo was a Batman fan long before the 1989 blockbuster opened on his 12th birthday. After following BATMAN-ON-FILM.COM -- the "Dad-Gum Original" -- since its inception, he started to write for BoF in 2019, covering Batman's 80th anniversary. He's a lover of all eras and aspects of The Dark Knight, but artist Jim Aparo will always be how he pictures him. When on the internet, odds are it's because he's talking about Batman or James Bond (or MAYBE Wally West). He resides in the "Live Music Capital of the World" (and also the genesis of Adam West's Bat-Boat), Austin, TX. You can follow him on Twitter @JaviTru or on Instagram @TheBondIsNotEnough.