Review – Catwoman #31
Published by DC Comics
Written by Ram V
Art by Fernando Blanco
Colours by Jordie Bellaire
Lettering by Tom Napolitano
Available: 19th May 2021
Read our review of issue #30 to see what we though of the story so far!
Catwoman and Shoes have crashed Mr Roy’s home art gallery opening, but they aren’t there to nick a Klimt or a Monet. No, they’re after the newest addition to Mr Roy’s esteemed collection: a large test tube containing Poison Ivy! But how did Pamela get in this predicament in the first place, what was done to her, and why does she seem…different?
I am having a ball at the moment as I seem to spend a lot of my time reviewing Ram’s work particularly The Many Deaths Of Laila Starr and Swamp Thing but with the top scores I’ve given, would this issue of Catwoman be a dud? It’s no Laila Starr, but it still is one of the best DC books out that the moment.
The measure of a Batman family character is, do they stand up without him or does his dark shadow still dominate? With Catwoman, I neither missed nor wanted the Bat in the issue and the hero of Alleytown is doing very well for herself.
V’s script starts things off with a bang with an opening action sequence where Selina takes out a few armed guards with ease, the action flies of the page. What follows is the classic heist misdirection (a la Ocean’s 11) as we flashback to how she stole a Degas and set off freeing Ivy. Unfortunately, she underestimates who is pulling the strings and is now on the radar of Simon Saint. Poor Ivy’s worse for wear after a dip in the Bacta tank, but we finally get the new name for her…IVY (errr?)
This matches what is going on in the Green of Swamp Thing where this month Levi was confronted by Queen Ivy and … just Ivy.
The next issue looks like a setup with a showdown between Alleytown and the combined forces of Wight Witch and Father Valley. I have a feeling not everybody’s getting out alive next time.
Artist Blanco once again captures every aspect of Selina’s personality brilliantly on the page, sly sideways nods, flirtatious gestures and fluid movements. From her ability to own the room before the heist begins to her confident skill Blanco’s understanding of the character is as perfect as one could ask for. The bright red action boxes on the first few pages draw out the subtle gestures that get missed in panel work sometimes showing a picture in picture format to let your mind fill in the holes.
Blanco’s art is strengthened further by Bellaire’s wonderful colouring. Using cool blue tones for the oft returned to parlour scene misdirection between Catwoman and Roy as a breaker, the story’s colours create beautiful contrasts as it bounces from the then to the brighter looks of the story’s other scenes.
Ram and the creative team deliver another strong story for this developing title. We are left with plot hooks of future foes, unseen dangers, and a rematch in the works to bring back the majority of subscribers. I wonder if we’ll have Swamp Thing and Catwoman match up to save the soul of the Poinsonless Ivy? This is a solid four stars from me.
What did you think of our review for Catwoman #31? Let us know in the comments and leave your own rating above.
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