batwatch's Catwoman #14 - To Skin a Cat review

Catwoman #14

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To Skin a Cat

The last issue of Catwoman was fun but utterly stupid. Someone apparently set up chess pieces across the city with people locked inside. When one piece takes out another, the people inside die, and Catwoman got caught up in this ridiculous situation. Does Catwoman manage to win the game in this issue, or does she turn out to be nothing more than a pawn in someone else’s game.

In this issue, Joker is revealed to be the force behind the chess scheme, and he takes Catwoman on a magical journey of mayhem.

A Great Big Explosion of Stupidity

I think my brain may have been damaged by intense amounts of stupidity exposure I endured in this issue. I mean, wow! Wow! This is incredibly, amazingly, stupendously bad! I mean really, really bad.

The entire issue makes no sense, and I am not talking about motivation or physical impossibility or any of those sorts of things that I usually mention. No, I mean it literally defies comprehension. To try to make a single cohesive narrative out of this scattershot story requires the reader to make up dozens of excuses for apparently inexplicable scenes.

I do not even know where to being with this. First, you have Joker appear and start menacing Catwoman for no reason whatsoever. Adding to the confusion, Catwoman apparently does not know who Joker is. Now, you can say that these two have never encountered each other because of the reboot, and that seems a bit unlikely, but whatever, but how could you possibly live in Gotham City and work in the criminal underworld and not know who Joker is? It’s ridiculous.

Within a few pages, Catwoman apparently lets herself be put in bonds rather than kicking Joker’s butt which really makes little sense. Joker then tries to centrifuge Catwoman to death which is a sentence I cannot even type without laughing. The centrifuge is so powerful that it rips Catwoman’s clothes off in a move Nocenti apparently stole from the geniuses working over on Worlds’ Finest’s. Despite the centrifuge being powerful enough to shred clothes, Catwoman manages to tear loose metal restraints and climb out of the centrifuge by standing on nothing. Before she can even get completely out of the centrifuge, Catwoman is struck by what I am told is water though it looks more like a foam. She then is drowning in a very large whirlpool, but it’s cool because apparently, she survives in some way which is never shown.

This all happens in the first five pages.

And the Schlock Don’t Stop

The stupidity never stops throughout the rest of the issue. Catwoman and Joker babble about their roles as extensions of Batman as if they know they are characters in a comic book. Their dialogue seems like something out of an experimental play wherein the writer thinks he is being deep while having actors spout utter nonsense from stage. Oh sure, there is occasionally something that makes sense as an individual statement, but the lines have no connection with the actions happening from panel to panel.

Both artist and writer seem to feel comfortable ignoring the rules of time and space since Catwoman is frequently encountering things at random moments without any real context which makes everything seem utterly absurd. It is almost as if this issue was scripted by Salvador Dali only nothing as interesting as a melting clock ever occurs. The most mind blowing moment for me is when Catwoman is crouching on the girders of a building under construction and then gets ran over by a van driving on the girders.

I literally think that Nocenti might be on drugs.

Conclusion

If you want to see a laughably bad comic, then pick this up because it is so over the top bad, it is truly amusing. If you want a good comic, then stay far, far away from this Catwoman #14.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.

8 Comments Refresh
Posted by arnoldoaad

you know i think this is by far your best review, i pretty much agree with it all

its not only the writing makes no sense by the art too, like the scene of the van

It just makes no sense specially, where the hell is Catwoman exactly?

and that Centrifuge thing, If i put my observational powers on it, I think this symbolizes the sex life of Catwoman, Im serious, there is an actual freudian theme on it with her just spinning around losing her cloths and then stopping only to receive this white fluid that was the foam in her face. there is definitely something sexual about it.

Posted by BatWatch

Wow! That had not occurred to me at all. I've never heard about the spinning, but the clothes getting torn off and getting sprayed in the face certainly is not subtle. I think you might be on to something there. Wish I had thought of that.

But yeah, the story was just awful. Still, I'm actually glad I read it because it was just stupid enough to be very funny. It did make my brain go into shock for about thirty minutes, but it was worth it.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

Posted by dannymalt

Totally agree with your review. Catwoman in the new 52 hasn't been very good, this issue being one of the absolute worst!

Posted by BatWatch

@dannymalt said:

Totally agree with your review. Catwoman in the new 52 hasn't been very good, this issue being one of the absolute worst!

Yeah, I've actually enjoyed many of the earlier issues of DCNU Catwoman. I would not accuse them of greatness. They often have plot holes, and they are anything but deep, but I have found many of them to be an awful lot of fun, but this was just...ridiculously bad. I agree, this is the worst Catwoman issue of DCNU and one of the worst issues of the DCNU period. I've almost never given an issue this low of a score. Maybe never.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

Posted by The Mighty Monarch

@BatWatch: I disagree, I found tons of depth in the first year's worth of Catwoman.

But as soon as they switched writers it's crashed into godawful territory.

Edited by BatWatch

@The Mighty Monarch said:

@BatWatch: I disagree, I found tons of depth in the first year's worth of Catwoman.

But as soon as they switched writers it's crashed into godawful territory.

I was okay with the last couple issues. I would not give them high praise, but I thought they were worth reading, but this one was just abominable.

I've just read the first nine issues of Catwoman over this past week, and I do agree they were much better, but I still would not consider them deep. We learn that Catwoman is self-destructive, and...that's about it as far as I can see. What do you see in terms of depth? (sincerely asked)

Here are some of my other reviews of Catwoman.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

Posted by johnkmccubbin91

Couldn't agree more this was an terrible issue and I hope the rest of the crossover's better. Otherwise I'd wish Nocenti would leave

Posted by BatWatch

@johnkmccubbin91 said:

Couldn't agree more this was an terrible issue and I hope the rest of the crossover's better. Otherwise I'd wish Nocenti would leave

I thought this was the end of the crossover. Is the next Catwoman another Death of the Family tie in?

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