Catwoman is celebrating its 25th issue with an extra-sized three-story issue all written by the excellent Ram V. A driving theme in all of the stories is how the character and her future tales have a lot more legs as this issue builds on new ideas. Its main story ties into “The Joker War”, playing off her collaboration with Riddler and Penguin and building towards something more for Selina on a personal level. In more ways than one, this series shines a bright light on the future of the series.
Without a doubt, the first story will strike readers due to Fernando Blanco’s excellent visuals. Intercut with Selina breaking in to steal something (of course she is), we get dreamlike scenes of Selina interacting with a tiger. There’s an interesting symbolic story going on here, the tamed cat or the wild animal within, which cuts well with a more conventional snatch and grab tale. Well, not so conventional since Selina is teaming up with the Riddler and Penguin to steal back Bruce Wayne’s fortune from the Joker. Together it’s good superhero comics with an additional layer of thoughtful storytelling.
The story has plenty of action, two-timing, and good barbs traded between the villains. Riddler’s riddles are good, too — I often wonder if writers Google these or come up with them themselves. It all culminates in a worthy action story.
This builds towards a finish that should have Bat/Cat fans a bit up in arms. I’ll say no more to avoid spoilers, but I’m glad this character has returned to spice up Catwoman’s life. It’s also exciting to see the story build this area of Catwoman’s life.
Following this is a story by Ram V and John Paul Leon with colors by FCO Plascencia set in Alleytown. Catwoman is new to the area, but quickly pinpoints the pickpockets and thieves. The art works splendidly in this story, showing the stacked houses and impoverished areas that convey the characters thieving from Catwoman are in need. They just need a little more practice. This story helps set up the young thieves in the story, building up a possible team for Catwoman to work with. It’s an exciting and quite frankly genius idea I’m shocked nobody has tried yet. If Batman can have his Bat-family, can’t Catwoman have her cat-burglar family?
Following this is a story drawn by Juan Ferreyra that is equal parts cute and clever. It has a flair similar to Batman Returns, showing off the perspective of a cat who wants to rob Selina. The catlike nature of Catwoman is often forgotten, but here Ram V and Ferreyra are playing with the theme well. The nature of the cat, the loner nature and confidence, are depicted well by Ferreyra, which plays to Catwoman’s personality, too.
Catwoman #25 is a worthy milestone issue for the series, playing into current events and building up new plots for future use. There’s a genius move to increase the supporting cast while reminding us Catwoman is strong for her spirit. An important detail.