Welcome back to Strange Times & Places, where I once again found it easier to work reading some comics into my schedule rather than watching a movie or binging a TV show. Today, we’re looking at the really uneven two issue mini-series Catwoman: Guardian of Gotham.
How’s It Different?
It is an Imaginary Story, where in the early life circumstances of Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle are flipped.
What’s The Story?
Selina “Catwoman” Kyle is the well-established defender of Gotham City, taking her Catmobile from Kyle Manor to answer Commissioner Gordon’s Cat Signal whenever a supervillain threatens the city. This stable arrangement is threatened when a violent psychopath arrives in town and starts making a play for underworld dominance – the murderous Batman. But Selina can take some comfort in the arms of her new beau, a man she can even share her double life with…Bruce Wayne. Uh-oh.
Best of Differences
- The premise, swapping Bruce & Selina’s backgrounds, is a very interesting set-up. Selina Kyle is traditionally a decent person who grew up in crappy circumstances, leading her to become a thieving anti-hero. Here, she’s a good person who grew up in a loving environment that was ripped away by crime – not surprising she becomes a through and through hero. Conversely, Bruce Wayne usually has a core of inner darkness (he does devote his life to beating the snot out of people, after all) tempered by the loving influence of his parents and Alfred. Put him in Selina’s impoverished circumstances and you get someone with the darkness and the drive but not the moral compass. It could be executed better, but it’s an interesting idea.
Worst of Differences
- That interesting premise is used as an excuse for Jim Balent’s “sexy” artwork. From Catwoman’s very dominatrix-y costume (with the common Balent-era problem of her breasts somehow being jammed into individual, form-fitting socks) to Selina’s version of Alfred (a young woman named Brooks who wears a French maid fetish outfit when on duty) to the bizarrely different Two-Face (Darcy Dent, a revenge-seeking disfigured model and the only villain in the mini to be an “original” character), I find the hoops gone through for added “sexiness” to be very tiring.
Come Back Next Week to Find Out If I Get It Together Enough to Review a Movie!