BLAKE NORTHCOTT

Catwoman #23

Here’s a comic-book that I’ve been waiting for, this latest issue of Catwoman which is part 1 of a 2-part story that was co-written by Sean Gordon Murphy and Blake Northcott. Catwoman takes a trip to a small Latin American nation called Isla Nevada (the “snowy island”…although the only “snow” on this island is cocaine). This island is dominated by a powerful drug cartel which is lead by a colorful character, and a massive Miami Vice fan (you’ll see what I mean), who calls himself “Snowflame.” Despite his funny name he is shown to be quite ruthless when he needs to be. The island is also home to a local legend about a giant deadly cat-monster who stalks the jungle, which Snowflame dismisses as a myth but we see early on is very real.

Selina flies in as a guest of Snowflame, whom she has some past history with. She’s ostensibly there to attend some fancy, secret and invitation-only special auction he’s holding, which is attended by some other costumed criminals. The two most valuable items up for bid are the world’s largest diamond and a mysterious “list.” Other attendees, who are aware of Selina’s history, make the most logical assumption that she’s there to attempt to steal either the diamond or the list, but when Selina puts on her costume and gets to work she appears to have a completely different agenda.

And that’s really all I can say without spoilers.

First, the number 1 test for a story like this is to ask if it’s new-reader friendly. And I can definitely say that it is. I have not read any of the previous issues of this series, nor have I have been reading any of the regular Batman-related titles in recent years, so I went into this book mostly “blind.” All I know of what Selina’s been up to lately is that and she and Bruce Wayne were engaged a few years ago, and DC was building up to a big wedding, but then she called it off at the last minute. Although I think they’re still dating? But none of that is relevant to this story, everything you need to know to follow along with the tale is revealed in this issue, so whether you’re a regular reader of this series or a newbie like myself, you should be able to enjoy this book.

This story has witty dialog (which I’ve often said is Blake’s specialty as a writer), dramatic tension, and exciting action, all topped off with a suspenseful cliffhanger. It’s also got some nice-looking art by Cian Tormey, whose work I am unfamiliar with but based on his effort here I’d definitely see he’s one to watch. This is a great first start by this creative team, and I can’t wait to see how they conclude it in part 2!

CHACEBOOK RATING: FIVE STARS

AVAILABLE ON COMIXOLOGY

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