Monday, May 5, 2014

CATWOMAN #13 - August 1994


Credits:  Jo Duffy (writer), Jim Balent (penciler), Bob Smith (inker), Bob Pinaha (letterer), Buzz Setzer (colorist)

Summary:  Catwoman leaps off the bridge to avoid police and eventually makes her way to land.  With the help of her associates, she locates the cybernetic enabler underwater, but is ambushed by armed SCUBA divers.  Selkirk and Dr. Hubbell, the owner of the firm that created the enabler, take the device from her.  However, Catwoman’s driver, Caleb, sneaks into their limo and ambushes them.  Catwoman escapes with the enabler, and Dr. Hubbell’s fur coat.  The enabler makes its way to the hospital, and her friend Brandon is soon able to walk again. 

Irrelevant Continuity:  Since this story picks up right after the previous issue, it should’ve been reprinted earlier in the book.  The previous issue of Robin, for example, takes place at least two days following the helicopter crash on the bridge, while this story opens right after that event.

Review:  I realize this is faint praise, but this is probably the most enjoyable Catwoman issue reprinted in the Knightfall trades so far.  Duffy manages to work in the appropriate amount of exposition this time, so it’s much easier to actually have an investment in the story.  (We now know that Brandon was an acrobat, later paralyzed in a car accident, who helped train Catwoman.)  The story follows the basic chase-fight-chase format of a standard action comic, but it’s executed with enough energy to avoid any tediousness.  I also like the idea that Catwoman has amassed a group of confederates to help her out on missions, such as the two brothers she bribed months earlier with a boat just in case she needed to find something underwater.  As non-offensive as this chapter is, I have to recognize that this issue was only reprinted because it says “Knightsend Aftermath” on the cover.  ("Which stories should we reprint?"  "Beats me; just go to the Coverbrowser site.")  Given the history of the previous Knightfall trades, I’m sure these twenty-three pages could’ve gone to more relevant stories.  Still, it’s more entertaining than most of those Shadow of the Bat issues we’ve had to endure. 

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