CatWoman #67 Review

Reviewer: Terry Verticchio
Quick rating: Very good
Title: Catwoman Dies—Part Two
A couple of old comrades have come to play with Selina and all her friends
Writer: Will Pfeifer
Pencils: David Lopez
Inks: Alvaro Lopez
Colours: Jeromy Cox
Letters: Jared K. Fletcher
Cover: Adam Hughes
Editor: Nachie Castro
Publisher: DC Comics
Just when she thought things were going to calm down in her life, Selina finds out that two villains she betrayed have returned for some pay back. Hammer and Sickle have returned to Gotham and are more powerful than ever. But Selina is not one to go down without a fight and fight she does, but that doesn’t stop the Russian pair from going deeper into Catwoman’s personal life.
What a ride. Selina pulls no punches in this issue; she knows how powerful Hammer and Sickle have become and she goes to unheard of lengths to stop them. Pfeifer has the tone and mood of this title down cold. It’s exciting and tense and has just enough dark humour to give things a bit of flavour.
The Lopez art team continues to grow on me. The action is crisp and the images are clear. They also have to draw the most menacing smile in comics.
Well, yet another great issue of Catwoman. If you like old-school comic adventure well then you’re probably reading this book already. If you don’t, well perhaps it’s time you start liking it and by all means start with this book.

Eh comrade?
Even Catwoman needs some help when it comes to both work and home. Since she became a mommy, Selena’s friend Holly put on the leather and acts as Catwoman whenever Selena cannot. Sadly, Holly kind of sucks at being a vigilante. Since she has donned the sexy suit Holly’s been unmasked several times and arrested at least once. I’m surprised she isn’t dead. Holly’s not the only one who’s made a few mistakes. Selena has made a few, including teaming up with some baddies to keep an eye on them. A keep your enemies close type attitude. Of course she was discovered, and when she was she ticked off quite a few people. Some of these people have come back to get revenge. This is where this issue comes in.
Hammer and Sickle, two throwbacks from the good old cold war days, were some of those that Selena had betrayed and sent to jail hoping that they would be there for a long time. Nothing ever works out how it’s suppose to. Thanks to some mysterious (for now) meta-level modifications to the duo they were able to escape and hunt down Catwoman. The wrong Catwoman. When they realize their mistake they modify their plans. Lets just say, I really don’t think the guys at DC would allow for a baby to die in the story, but we’ll find out in the next issue.
For those new to the comic scene, Catwoman is a darker ‘hero.’ I would suggest now letting your kid under ten read this title. However, if you have a daughter/niece/wife/sister that you want to integrate into your world of comics then have her read this book, if not this particular issue then something from this run.
Catwoman #67
Written by Will Pfeifer
Drawn by David Lopez and Alvaro Lopez

Catwoman #67 by Will Pfeifer, David López, and Álvaro López. $2.99, DC.
The problem with having a female lead who hangs out with other women in a comic book is the inherent threat of violence in superhero comics. I don’t mind the beating Selina takes on a regular basis, and I don’t even mind the beating Holly takes on a semi-regular basis (recently), because they’re playing superhero. At the end of this issue, Karon, Holly’s squeeze, is about to be menaced by Boris (of Hammer and Sickle fame). Now, nothing may happen next issue. But the fact that Selina is friends with women is great for the fact that “normal” women aren’t often present in mainstream superhero comics but bad for the fact that the friends of the hero are often maimed or killed in some way. So should we be more concerned that Karon is in danger than if, say, Alfred was? I don’t know. I do know that Pfeifer has done a good job making these characters real, so when they get the shit kicked out of them, I get uncomfortable. I just hope Karon survives the encounter (I know Selina’s kid will, because this is a mainstream DC book).
This is basically a big fight issue, and it’s pretty good. It looks great (López, like Pfeifer, is getting better and better) and it feels like a fight between someone with no power and two superpowered psychos would feel. So I enjoyed it, and then got to the last page, and I’m trepidatious about next issue. Pfeifer wouldn’t dare kill Karon, would he?

Catwoman #67 Review
(author) Luke Paton
(date) May. 21, 2007
After the crushing disappointment of All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder, I took a trip over to the other side of Gotham City to catch up with Catwoman #67. While there’s nothing truly original going on here, it’s still a great comic, and one that has helped me recover from my previous shock.
Last issue, Catwoman and Holly had managed to get themselves into a whole load of trouble, Lenahan had his head chopped off and we saw the return of Hammer and Sickle. In this second part of Catwoman Dies, we see how they attempt to get themselves out of said trouble, with varying results of mayhem.
It’s an action-packed issue, moving from one set piece to another with pleasing speed and ease. The real Catwoman takes centre stage, trying to stay one step ahead of her newly-enhanced foes. Pfeifer shows some great inventiveness in Selina’s techniques and ideas to get the hell out of Dodge. I loved that she takes the subway to get where she wants to be. And I loved that she pulls a gun and uses it when she needs to. This woman is fearless and willing to do anything to help the people around her.
The López’s artwork is similarly great. I wasn’t entirely convinced last issue, but now I’m slowly falling in love with it. Pages and panels are not over-complicated, making the action easy to discern and moving your eye in the correct direction. But, they keep it detailed enough to be visually interesting. Compared to Jim Lee over on All Star, I’d take these guys any day of the week at the moment. Every page looks fantastic.
I had some problems with the last issue, plot-wise, and that still remains true, but they’ve been ironed out here. Pfeifer is telling a simple story, but he’s doing it well. It’s completely linear, and most of the action is confined to one location, and Pfeifer uses this to his advantage, throwing ever-increasing danger upon the two Catwomen. We come out of the action for only two pages. They’re perfectly placed, to keep the pacing of the story in tact, and do all they need to in order to set up a satisfying cliffhanger. The dialogue was short and crisp, each character with a clearly defined voice. I can’t fault Pfeifer in anything he has done this issue.
In my local comic book shop, Catwoman doesn’t come near the Top 20 titles when it’s released, merely heading into the rack of New Comics that week. Similarly, I don’t see much written about this title, like reviews or anything, and that’s a shame. It’s a fun book, nothing too convoluted, nothing to deep, just telling a great action-orientated story.
However, the only thing really pulling it back from greatness is that, as I mentioned earlier, it’s not original. We’ve seen similar stories in almost every other title at one time or another. Spider-Man practically lives on the theme of keeping those he loves out of danger. But, rarely are they done with such ease and satisfaction. If you’re looking for a fun, action hit, then you don’t need to look any further than this issue.

11. Catwoman #67 (12)
W: Will Pfeifer, A: David and Alvaro Lopez, C: Adam Hughes
If nothing else, Catwoman is one of the most consistent books being published today. While this issue isn’t exactly spectacular, its still a very strong read as Pfeifer continues to seamlessly move from one storyline to the next. I’m not tremendously high on the villains (Hammer and Sickle), but the build up of the last few arcs is starting to pay off here big time.

Catwoman #67
If you aren't reading this series, you are cheating yourself out of one of the most consistently action-packed comics going. There is very little in the way of hanging around and chatting in this series. Even now that Selina is a mom, the violence never stops.
Team Lopez rocked the art this week. I love everything about this page:
I like that Selina has her own little Bat-family now. She has Holly as Robin, Calculator as Oracle, Slam as Gordon, and...Karon as Alfred. Sorta. Anyway, it's good stuff.
Catwoman is rad.

Catwoman #67 (DC; by Troy): “Catwoman Dies!” continues as Selina and Holly dust up with Hammer and Sickle. This is strong super-character action, ably told by Will Pfeifer and smoothly rendered by David Lopez and Alvaro Lopez. The best part of the issue is the sense of desperation that permeates every page as Selina takes on opponents who clearly outmatch her. Her smarts and skill are on full display, much as they are for Pfeifer.

Catwoman #67 - The art from David Lopez is awesome. It's going to be a bummer when he gets snatched up and placed on a higher profile book. This is definitely my favorite DC monthly right now. Will Pfeifer has a great run going.

Catwoman #67 - Another battle…..good. Hammer is going after Selina’s kid. Man some shit is gonna hit next issue.

Review: Catwoman #67
5/18/07 10:29 pm
To commemorate the theme of redundant duality, this review will be in argument form, with myself:
So Holly is fighting Hammer and Sickle, two crappy ass C-list meta-villains. Selina is hanging out with Calculator, an obsessive compulsive information trader. He warns her that these lame-ass villains are out of her league.
Wait, didn't she used to fight A-list heroes and villains?
Yes, but this is New Earth and Selina's an amateur now.
I have no idea; I'm just going by the evidence.
I see what you mean. Selina sure does seem to trust Calculator to help her out. Which is weird, considering how he has her over a barrel for stealing a paperweight from Lex Luthor, knowing about Holly's legal situation and now she owes him another one.
Oh, c'mon now, this is New Earth. Selina isn't some sort of experienced thief who grew up in the back alleys, cynical and street smart, knowing how to avoid getting black-mailed and that you can't trust anyone with too much knowledge. Of course she would trust this nice man for doing her a favor. It's obvious he would have no hidden motivations linked to his membership in the Secret Society of Super Villains.
The rail only stops once in the East End?
I guess so. Gotham must be a very small city.
Oh look, Holly lost her mask again.
Yeah, she should get some duct tape or maybe super-glue.
Why did she use Selina's real name?
Well, it was a moot point the instant "Irena" put on the Catwoman costume.
How so?
"Selina Kyle" wasn't the threat to Helena Whatever; Catwoman was. Regardless of what civilian identity she uses, it's the vigilante life-style that threatens the baby's safety.
So, is Holly Selina's side-kick, or something?
I thinks he's meant to be a long-term replacement, judging by her role in Countdown. After all, we all know the super-hero mom with a baby cliche.
Which one is that?
It goes like this: through one plot device or another, a heroine becomes pregnant or otherwise acquires a young child. The plot is stacked to show how impossible it is to do her job and take care of the child, while protecting it from occupational hazards of being a vigilante. She is then forced to make a melodramatic choice between work and family, because there's obviously "no choice". Then the baby either leaves or dies to provide the heroine with motivational angst.
So it's like a microcosm of Women in Refrigerators, with the woman in the traditional protective role and the child as the surrogate, inferior/helpless woman?
Gosh, I can't wait to see that! But wait, you suggested Holly would remain Catwoman?
That would be the "clever twist", replacing a B or C list hero(ine) with another character, while pasting on the same name and similar costume. The idea is that readers won't notice it's a different character because (s)he has the same code-name. In this scenario, Selina would "retire" having learned her lesson that good mommies don't try to have careers.
But I know lots of single moms and some of them are even in dangerous professions like policing, fire-fighting and going to war.
So do I, but this is comic books and we mustn't give women the impression that they can get by without help from men. Anyway, then Holly and Selina almost fight some cops by a convenient plot device named Hammer charges to the rescue. Selina then advises Holly to never stop running.
Wow, what a great life philosophy! I tried that once but I ran out of breath and my problems were still following me.
It's the most surprising thing, isn't it?
Oh yes, can't learn that lesson enough times. What's going on now?
Selina fights the Russian villains some more and passes out after pushing Hammer through a window.
I love consistency in characterization.
I agree; it was a nice touch. Then Sickle figures out Selina has a kid and Hammer's going after Karon and Helena, at her apartment.
Uh... huh. Why did Holly leave Helena with Karon?
Remember what I said about stacked plots? Logically, if Selina is being Catwoman, Holly needs to stay with Helena to act as both baby-sitter and body-guard, and vice versa. Unfortunately, the baby cliche plot requires the reader to see how impossible it is for a woman to do both jobs, even if there are two of her to divide the labor. That it demonstrates how incredibly stupid both women are, not to see the obvious solution, is merely a bonus.
I've got someone on the phone for you!
Who is it?
Someone named Roy Harper. He's saying something about getting a combat-trained friend or relative to watch your kid and arranging a safe-house and escape route. And now I've got a Kate Spencer on line 2 yelling something about "quit with the retreating perfect mommy fantasy and get pro-active, take the fight to your enemies instead of waiting for them to find you."
Sigh. Remember, it's impossible for a woman to be an effective vigilante and raise a child, even with willing help from combat-trained friends. Otherwise, you wouldn't have the dramatic premise of: which choice will she make?!?
That premise is made of straw and Holly is such an amateur that she doesn't even qualify as a side-kick.
True on both counts. Wanna lay bets on when Batman steps in to lecture Selina on what a craptastic job she's doing and solve all her problems, while reprimanding her for murdering Black Mask and not telling him?
So, like, everyone knows except him?
This is New Earth; he turned stupid too.
Ooh, I can't wait for the exciting, though highly choreographed conclusion!
Good news! You don't need to wait! I wrote a fic that compressed this entire OYL run into a single short story over a year ago.
Wow, do you have psychic powers?
I don't think so, but I know I'm smarter than Catwoman.

Catwoman 67
Wow. Pfeifer keeps upping the pace and the stakes. I hope Holly and Selena and Karon and little Helena survive this latest threat. And Boris and Natasha have to be the best named villains in ages. Great cover by Hughes, as usual.

Catwoman #67: Over at his highly entertaining blog, writer Will Pfeifer referred to this issue of Catwoman as a humdinger that never lets up, and brother, he ain’t lyin’. I’ve mentioned before that this book has been pretty much flawless over the past year, but with the last few issues, it’s been all-out action with beautiful artwork by David Lopez, and it’s just an absolute joy to read. I mean really: It might just be me, but seeing a pair of Russian super-villains whose real names are Boris and Natasha is just something that never gets old, and when said super-villains are also being shot, blown up and kicked out of windows while Holly drops another uppercut on Blitzkrieg, it all adds up to one of the most solidly entertaining comics on the market today.


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