Catwoman: Crime Pays

Catwoman: Crime Pays
Catwoman Crime Pays review
  • North American Publisher / ISBN: DC - 1-4012-1929-2
  • Volume No.: 8
  • Release date: 2008
  • UPC: 9781401219291
  • Contains adult content?: no
  • Does this pass the Bechdel test?: no
  • Positive minority portrayal?: no
  • CATEGORIES: Superhero

Although this iteration of Catwoman began by encompassing Selina Kyle’s role as a thief, it’s been sidelined as the series continued, first subordinated by her role as protector of Gotham’s East End, then via assorted encounters with super-villains as the tone shifted to a more traditional superhero comic. A very good one, mind. For a brief while here Will Pfeifer restores the criminal element, as Catwoman is left without resources and needs to build anew from scratch. It’s largely entertaining, but falls down with a previously unknown and unconvincing mastermind jerking Selina’s strings. This has a later purpose and a good pay-off, but that occurs in The Long Road Home.

Catwoman Dies needed to visit the wider DC universe via incorporating crossover material, and the same occurs here as Selina is caught in the net of super-villains to be transported to an alien planet to ensure Earth is rid of them. See Salvation Run for the full details. “Let’s review. You’re four thousand light years from home and your only choices are to hook up with a mad scientist or a mad man, both of whom you’ve done your level best to cheese off” is Catwoman’s assessment. She’s referring to Lex Luthor and the Joker.

It doesn’t seem promising, and indeed the introduction is standard stuff, but where Pfeifer takes it from there is very good, and all the better for discarding the Salvation Run nonsense where Catwoman is an awkward fit. The script provides a turning point, and the opportunity for Selina to have a lot of fun.

David López is called upon to illustrate several different environments, and he’s excellent with each, be it the inside of a department store or an alien lab.

By now Pfeifer has completely discarded the Catwoman supporting cast he inherited, although there’s a sort of return for someone believed definitively dead, and in the case of Holly this galls. He used her well within Catwoman Dies, but however preoccupied Selina Kyle may be with other matters, it doesn’t ring true that she’d just abandon Holly without making some attempt to locate her.

Pfeifer’s not bothered with much in the way of replacements. Batman’s appearing more often, and the Calculator, a sort of villainous equivalent to Oracle’s computer genius is effective. It wasn’t Pfeifer who transformed him from the ridiculous villain he once was, but he explores the possibilities of that transformation adeptly. Pfeifer’s Catwoman, though, like the cats she represents, is primarily a loner.

This is the penultimate volume for this run of Catwoman, which concludes with The Long Road Home. Both volumes are scheduled to appear within the larger Final Jeopardy due to be published in early 2017.