This week’s issue of BATWOMAN was rather hard to stomach as once again the feelings between Maggie and Kate pull at the reader’s heartstrings. I felt that all too real shiver down the back of my spine that the epic saga I feel in love with is going to end, and it’s beginning now.
The issue definitely called for a table flipping as I pushed past the confusing pages of jumping story line and exchanging art styles. I felt the Batwoman I knew slowly slipping away from me with poorly executed villain agendas taking the focal point to the issue; we are left with 2 distinct parties of socialites, one attempting to knock the other out with Batwoman stumbling into the middle of the fight. The detective nature of her character has all but disappeared and been replaced with a rash, disordered Kate who isn’t sure what to do about the personal life choices that are looming ahead of her.
4 years of building this character has led to public applause and praise from fans across the world, now only to be palmed off into a makeshift story arc. The insight to Kate’s internal traumas through her therapy sessions and personal dialogue have been brought to the forefront of the issue, filling most of the pages. This tells me that this is not only the end of Batwoman’s relationship, but the years of character construction which built this once strong, brave, female lead that had not been seen since the likes of Huntress in the Bat family.
Despite there not being very much in the issue, I still love the limited Maggie time we are getting. With the cop in dilemma again, she desperately takes on a renegade vampire Batwoman. It was a relief to find this was just a nightmare sequence, and Maggie was safe and sound in Metropolis, but that’s about all for the writing I can say on a pleasing note. The art style in the issue varies, but personally I happen to enjoy the more seductive look of Nocturna thanks to Jeremy Haun as he weaves his magic again. He most certainly has a way of making beautiful women look even more stunning with his attention to detailed facial features and overly feminine contours.
Firstly, the artwork jumps from the organic artist Jeremy Haun to a few panels by Scott Kolins. This was not only confusing, but the poorly executed panels left the clearly female Kate Kane looking more masculine and with a boyish body. I was unimpressed at the change of suit details as well, as the Bat suit is her defining calling card and to have it tampered with yet again made me question as to why keep consistency at all. I understand that new artists have the ability to interpret the character they are handed, but there is a limit to what should be kept the same and what should be changed. Though it was not only the jump of artwork that had me fuming on the sofa, the story that was created and inspired since the reboot as her own Batwoman in her own origin Greg Rucka’s 52 is now slipping away.
As a huge fan of the Maggie and Kate pairing, I feel that the nightmare scenario and bad rash decisions made by Kate are just a desperate tactic to break up the engaged couple. After denying their marriage back at the end of the DEO saga, Marc Andreyko jumps from page to page with an incoherent perspective, and finally ends up with our redhead making a misguided call to Maggie’s ex, the man who is holding Maggie’s daughter from her. I sense an ultimatum being thrown onto the table: it’s either your daughter of your fiancé, you can’t have both. I’m just praying that DC doesn’t break up the one couple still standing in the Bat family.
As much as it kills me to read these issues, I won’t ever stop. But be prepared for a raging moment or two as you sift through the pages. Leading up to the giant FUTURES END issues, we are just going to have to wait and hold out hope for our beloved couple and where the Nocturna arc will take us next. But don’t get your hopes up that this is going to be an action packed issue. Just take it for what it is in the story and let’s pray the plot will become clear once more.