Wednesday, July 17, 2013

SPOILERS: Batwoman #22

Batwoman has agreed to work with the DEO to try and take down Batman, but first she'll need some intel to help her with her mission... First stop, take Bette and find Bane, who for some reason is in Alaska. The two cousins track Bane through the wilderness, but are eventually ambushed by him. Taking Director Bones' advice, Kate does whatever she can to subdue Bane quickly, and gets him tied to a tree with coil that gets tighter the more Bane struggles. Kate tells Bane she just wants to talk, and needs info on how to beat Batman. The only useful thing Bane tells her is that he had to resort to treachery. With her conversation over, Kate and Bette leave, and let Chase and the DEO (who apparently strike a deal with Bane) to clean up.

Back in Gotham, Maggie Sawyer does her part by trying to get info on Batman from interviews with some of his rogues. Black Mask, the Mortician, Fright and Professor Pyg (who I was JUST saying I want to see more of) are all interviewed, but don't really help. Each villain gives their own unique, warped perspective on who or what Batman is or could be, but no "oh yeah, this is how you take him down." Pyg is particularly funny due to him talking about wanting drugs and the possibility of Batman being a meat covered robot... Mmmk.

Elsewhere, with the plan of Bette taking on the DEO, Jake and his wife review footage of him and his old black-ops buddies (see Batwoman #0... the second one) putting her through some live combat training. Jake still has some concerns about her unorthodox fighting techniques, but his old teammates compliment Bette on the fact that due to her methods, she's completely unpredictable, and put a big ass-kicking on them. Bette is determined to prove herself to her uncle, and tells the crew that they'll run the scenario again until they're begging her to stop.

Finally, Kate reports in to Bones saying the bait is set, and she needs the next thirty hours to prep the takedown...


The Good: 

Prof. Pyg was here, and he said something, and it was great! Seriously, I had just been mentioning on twitter how we need more of him, instead of random background appearances. I did enjoy the whole "lets get info from Batman's villains" aspect, I thought it was pretty clever. Trevor McCarthy also completed the issue solo, no layout assists or inkers, and I thought the quality was noticable. 

The Bad:

This is nothing new to this title, but I thought this was an issue that just didn't manage it's 20 pages well, once again leading to an unsatisfying, abrupt conclusion. None of the scenes felt cohesive, and some took up way too much space. For example, the Bette scene took up nearly half the issue, and out of it's 8 pages, two and a half of them were going through those black-ops guys one by one, explaining who they are, and what their personal perspective on Bette was. All this info is fine, and I don't like when random characters are just thrown in our faces without introduction, but I feel like it was a little too much in this situation. Of course, this all leads to a final one page scene of Batwoman going "the trap is set" and Mr. Bones responding "Okay." Not very satisfying.

The Bottom Line: 

This series remains enjoyable in both plot and art, but structural issues continue to bog it down for me, and once again, this issue just ends very abruptly. It's just rather unfortunate, because the story is good! I just wish I came away from each issue with a more satisfied, complete feeling.


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