Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Futures End, Week 4: Harley Quinn & Catwoman

Final week of Futures End, and despite my lack of enthusiasm towards this event, at least I really enjoyed these last two offerings that I chose to read. Actually, for the issues I've read, they've been far more interesting than villains month... but then there was a lot of dumb stuff I chose not to read which I hope is never referenced again. So, you win some, and you lose a lot more.

Harley Quinn:

Harley wants to take a trip to the Bahamas, but she doesn't want to pay for it, so into the cargo storage she goes. One freak storm and a crash later, and she's washed up on an unknown island where she's treated like a goddess by the natives. Why? Because she's got the same skin as their god and... Well, let's just cut to the chase, Joker is there and they worship him as their god. Harley reacts the way you'd expect, kissing, then punching him, falling right back into the old routine... But things are going to be different this time around! Joker has even told Harley they're getting married! Despite some warnings from her beaver, Harley decides to go through with the wedding, and turns out she should have listened to the beaver... Because the volcano on the island is angry, and the wedding was just a whole scam to throw Harley into so Joker wouldn't have to be fed to the island. Little does Joker know, the fine print says he's got to go in too, so despite the heartbreak, Harley teams up with him to save her own life from the natives. Some explosions and some Harley flying halfway across the island, Harley finds herself back on the beach, Joker nowhere to be found, with a hunky Aquatic hero offering her a ride back to Coney Island.

So, because this was a Harley/Joker story, on one end of the spectrum, it was entirely predictable, that's what those two are together. Harley gets smoochy (and a little punchy), thinks things are gonna be different, they're not. That said, the typical Harley/Joker act is a tested formula that works, and it rarely fails to entertain. What was interesting to read was this Harley interacting with the Joker. Harley's book is pretty far off on it's own, for better (mostly) or worse (barely), so bringing in such a big part of her continuity was fun to see. This issue also saw the return of Chad Hardin on art, who took the last two double shipping issues off, and as a fan of his work from the start of this series, I'm glad we got to see him draw the issue with Joker in it. 


Five years into the future, Selina Kyle is still the leader of Gotham's underworld (with her own scratch scars and all) but things are getting restless between the various factions. Tusk is moving in on others turf, and there's a gangwar about to erupt. Selina offers a solution, Tusk doesn't like it, Tusk gets killed by Erin McKillen, citing one of Selina's two rules: "Kill only those who deserve it," the other being "Steal only from those who can afford it." When every disperses, Selina talks to her second in command, Matt Falcone, Carmine's nephew (who seems to also be her lover at the moment) about needing to regain control, and the two go out to make sure Tusk's men don't riot... Of course this leads to an assassination on the part of Falcone, who blows up Selina's car. The other family heads come in after hearing the explosion, with Matt saying he's taking over. His reasoning besides being the second in command, is that he's the only one outside of Selina with the access codes to their offshore bank accounts... which happen to be empty, just like everyone else's ammo clips when they're done with Matt. Some months later, a blonde "heiress" is approached by one Edward Nygma on a beach, and surprise, it's Selina. Edward figured out her game, that it was never about controlling the families, it was about pulling off the biggest heist/long con of Selina's career. After their friendly chat is over, Eddie tries to get Selina to buy his silence, but she points out that what use is a riddle if everyone knows the answer, so she knows he won't be telling anyone.

I don't know what it is about DC's use of Sholly Fisch whenever they don't want Ann Nocenti to write something, but I'm not complaining, because his two Catwoman issues have been pretty consistently great, with some clever wit woven into them. Even in the first page flashback heist, Fisch has Selina use a stolen painting as a barrier between her and the security guards who have their guns drawn. Obviously, they won't shoot in fear of damaging the painting, and that's fucking clever. Then we move into future Selina, and we learn about how she runs the underworld so that it keeps the Bat off their back, and it perfectly fits the character and how she'd rule a criminal empire, but not be a total monster. I realize Fisch isn't going to be taking over Catwoman anytime soon, but these two issues he's written really make me feel like it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world... It'd be pretty great, actually.

It's also worth nothing that this issue hinted towards some stuff that's bound to happen in the upcoming Catwoman arc with Black Mask, who despite the cover, had fuck all to do with this issue, other than those hints... and I'll be honest, the hints seem like something REALLY familiar is going to happen, but we'll see. Nevertheless, if you're interested in Catwoman from October on, I'd pick this one up.

1 comment :

  1. Wow, that Catwoman issue uses the EXACT same gimmick as Batman guaranteeing Riddler's silence in HUSH.