batwatch's Batwoman #16 - World's Finest, Part IV: Serpent's Homeland review

Batwoman #16

Serpent's Homeland

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Yay! It's time for another issue of Batwoman. Nothing gets me so worked up as being able to see another adventure of my favorite heroine. As the Medusa saga sprints towards the finish line, everything has taken on epic proportions as Gotham is under siege from the creatures of nightmare. Last month's Interlude II story was an good respite from the main arch, but I'm more than eager to get back to Kate, Diana, and the fray of monsters. Do the creatures of nightmare make for a heavenly story, or does the whole tale end up in the fiery pits of Tartarus?

In this issue, Batwoman tries to rescue the children, Wonder Woman takes on the Hydra, Medusa tries to resurrect her mother, Cameron Chase has a brush with death, and Flamebird gets a rematch.

Heading for the Finish Line

You can definitely tell that this Batwoman arch is wrapping up as it starts to give some resolution to all its characters. Batwoman gets to confront the monster she has been tracking for months, Flamebirds gets a shot at redemption, and even Cameron Chase has to prove herself in the field rather than from the safety of her office. We finally get to see a little motivation behind Medusa's actions as we learn that she is trying to bring her mother back to life, and though I would not accuse the whole evil god banished by the good gods story of uniqueness, it is still satisfying and interesting.

The flip side of entertaining so many subplots is that we do not really get much personal time with the World's Finest. After the hiatus last month, I was really eager to catch up with Batwoman and Wonder Woman, but Batwoman only graces about half the pages of this issue and Wonder Woman does not get a lot of screen time either earning only about a quarter of the pages. Thankfully, two of those Wonder Woman pages deal with an awesome Hydra fight, that I wish could have lasted longer. Possibly, it will continue in the next chapter. We do see a little bit of interaction between Kate and Diana as this dynamic duo play off each other as Kate nearly makes a stupid decision when her home is destroyed, but beyond that, the two heroines really do not have any interaction.

The art is amazing as always especially the fight with the Hydra. As much as I enjoy Williams III's work on this book, he has such amazing images that he would probably be able to put his talent to more use in a series more geared to fantasy, and I suppose that is exactly what he will do as he will leave Batwoman's art soon to focus on the Sandman prequel. Anyway, he is still amazing. The only thing that struck me as a little bit odd was that Kate's boobs seemed to be sticking out a bit much on some panels of pages 1 and page 4.

Bat Nitpicks

I had a couple of little nitpicks.

In the panels where Kate's base is destroyed, there is a giant redwood sized tree shown. Is that supposed to be symbolic or is there just a giant tree in Gotham? Has this played a role in some previous issue I missed?

I'm also not sure how I feel about Kate crying when her home was destroyed. I mean, I get that she was losing a lot of equipment and personal belongings, but Kate has usually done a pretty good job of blocking things out in battle. I'm not saying it is a bad characterization, but it did strike me as odd.

Conclusion 9/10

Though I am going to have to wait yet another month before I really see an adventure focused on Batwoman, this is still a very good issue. Pick it up and enjoy.

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6 Comments
Posted by SupBatz

Williams is leaving the book? Aw. That's a shame. You're defintiely right that he'd probably be better suited for a more fantasy-like book. But I've grown so attatched to such amazing Batwoman art. I hope they find someone equally talented to replace Williams.

Good review as always. Agreed about Batwoman's boobs looking odd in places. And I wish I'd seen a bit more Batwoman in places. But as a whole I enjoyed very much (especially getting a glimpse into Chase's past).

Posted by psynetrix

The giant tree has always been there since Rucka's run in Detective Comics.

Edited by albahan888

@SupBatz: He's not leaving the book. He'll still be co-writing and he's already skipped an arc on art. He'll be off for at least 7 issues (the next arc which will be drawn by Trevor McCarthy) while he's doing the Sandman prequel with Gaiman. From a recent interview it sounds like he definitely will be back on art sometime after that but I could've read it wrong.

Posted by SupBatz

@albahan888: Thank you for the clairification. That sounds reasonable to me. And I'm definitely glad he'll be sticking around for writing even if he leaves art (temporarily or not). He's been so tied to the character over the years that it'd be a shame to see him take leave of writing her.

Posted by BatWatch

@psynetrix said:

The giant tree has always been there since Rucka's run in Detective Comics.

Thanks. I was wondering about that. It struck me as very odd. Was it ever explained why there was a giant tree in Gotham?

@albahan888 said:

@SupBatz: He's not leaving the book. He'll still be co-writing and he's already skipped an arc on art. He'll be off for at least 7 issues (the next arc which will be drawn by Trevor McCarthy) while he's doing the Sandman prequel with Gaiman. From a recent interview it sounds like he definitely will be back on art sometime after that but I could've read it wrong.

Well, He is definitely taking off for Sandman. I don't think he has said for sure whether or not he will return after that. It probably depends on what other projects open up for him and who is working on Batwoman at the time.

Edited by albahan888

@BatWatch: He's not taking off for Sandman other than for art. He's going to still co-write the book and possibly do covers. He picked Trevor McCarthy to rotate with because he likes his style. He will be working on Batwoman for the foreseeable future just not on art but he's always been going to only do every other arc on art. Unless DC fires him off of writing the book (which I'll admit is possible with them these days) or he quits he'll be back on art by next year is my guess because he isn't leaving the book except in an art capacity and he has already done that for the second arc.

As I said from the sounds of an interview on another site (I don't know the policy here on mentioning other sites so I won't) it doesn't seem like he plans to be gone off of Batwoman art for much longer than the McCarthy 7 issue arc but plans and circumstances can change so we'll see but I just don't get how you think he's leaving the book other than not doing art.

Other reviews for Batwoman #16 - World's Finest, Part IV: Serpent's Homeland

    World's Finest Indeed! 0

    After the boring interlude featuring Det. Maggie Sawyer, Batwoman is back on track with an amazing issue. Everyone and their mother shows on this one, tons of action and character development. Of course Williams' art is the cherry on top.Please check my mini-review here:http://bit.ly/10OMnpvComments and feedback are always welcome!...

    1 out of 2 found this review helpful.

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