After stumbling upon a room full of imposter Catwomen, Selina Kyle picks up the trail to try and find the person framing her so that she can get some answers.
CATWOMAN #2 – ‘Copycats Part 2’
Story & Art: Joëlle Jones
Colors: Laura Allred
Lettering: Josh Reed
Main Cover: Jones & Allred
Variant Cover: Stanley “Artgerm” Lau
Associate Editor: Brittany Holzherr
Editor: Jamie S. Rich
What You Need to Know:
After dynamically undoing from Bruce Wayne, Selina Kyle has fled to Villa Hermosa, California for a fresh start. Unfortunately for her, the city finds itself filled with a ton of false Catwomen, one of whom has shot at the police, causing them to go after the real Catwoman. Though Selina doesn’t know it yet, the woman behind the imposter Catwomen is Raina Creel, the Governor’s wife, though what her intentions are, exactly, remains to be seen.
What You’ll Find Out:
It’s three am in the morning and Selina has just come across a room full of women dressed up in her old look. Hoping that she can make the upcoming battle against them last so that she can finally get some sleep, Selina jumps into the fight, distracting herself away from the depression that’s consumed her since leaving Bruce and Gotham City behind. The first thing she does is disarm one of the nearby Copycatwomen, taking her whip for herself and then attacking the other women. Seasoned fighter that she is, and driven as she is by depression, anger, and purpose, Selina makes quick work of the women, using their costumes against them, breaking noses, dislocating shoulders, doing everything she can to bring down the imposters.
Finally, she throws one out of a large window onto the rooftop of the building and questions her, discovering that all of these women were hired from auditions. The woman explains that she believes Governor Creel’s election campaign hired them for some sort of flash mob thing. Selina lets the woman go, but warns her that if she catches her or the other imposters again, she’ll scratch their eyes out.
Back at Raina Creel’s, the Copycatwoman who had shot the cops and first gained Selina’s ire is trying to explain how she messed up to Raina. Raina herself is upset because the cops that were shot were on her payroll, and their loyalty had been a very valuable thing after so many years. She turns to one of the men in the room – a Dr. Finick – and asks him if he has anything to prescribe for the very sorry Copycatwoman. He does – a hammer to the hand, followed by an injection that he says will make things all better.
Back at her new lair, Selina is curled up in her bed, still unable to sleep, when Carlos comes in with an enormous box filled with gadgets since he knew Selina had been looking for some. Selina turns down a variety of gadgets, including a taser ring, a batarang, and a lipstick pistol, before settling on some unnamed ones. When Carlos says that a diamond ring might cover the cost of all the gadgets, Selina tells him he can’t have the one he’s eyeing, but instead gives him another one that should cover the costs.
That afternoon, Governor Creel holds a surprise press conference where he comes clean about his cancer diagnosis – the prognosis is optimistic – and says that he’s officially resigning as of that evening, feeling that it’s in the best interests of the people to do so. Raina is blindsided by this announcement and when questioned by her sons if she’s alright, tells them that she’s fine, she just has to move her plans up now. One of her sons asks her if she’s sure that “she” will show up that night, and Raina confidently believes that “she” – most likely Selina Kyle, all things considered – will.
In Downtown Villa Hermosa, Sam – one of the cops who had tried to apprehend Selina in the last issue – is having a drink by himself when Will, one of the other cops he works with, stops by, looking for leads on Selina’s whereabouts, but Sam isn’t very forthcoming with any information. He tells Will to go home because the case isn’t his and he needs to worry about himself more than anything else.
That night, Selina Kyle arrives at the Rancho Rodeo, dressed in a slinky black gown, and enters what seems to be a grand party. She’s immediately greeted by Raymond Creel, one of Raina’s sons, who tells her that they’ve been expecting her…
What Just Happened?:
Selina Kyle is always at her best when she has something to fight for, and here she’s fighting for maybe the one thing that’s most important to her – her name and her identity. Selina’s never one who could properly be copied, and she’s definitely not one who likes to be framed for something she hasn’t done – especially when it’s murder. Sure, she’ll take the fall for someone she loves, as she tried to with Holly Robinson when Rebirth started, but if it’s a stranger, all bets are off.
The art really sings in this issue. That’s not to say that Joëlle Jones’ scripting or plot or bad – it’s a solid issue all around – but the way Jones uses art to tell her story is absolutely expressive and incredible. The opening pages, where Selina’s fighting against the imposter Catwomen are masterfully done, full of emotion and rage. Never once does Jones’ Selina seem as though she’s just prettily posing in fighting positions – she really seems in it, and the brutality of the fight shines through. Jones’ Selina is a scrappy, capable fighter who will do anything to win and survive, and it really is a spot-on interpretation of Selina.
Jones is also slowly, methodically building up the danger that is Raina Creel. Whatever she’s planning hasn’t been disclosed yet, but it’s clear that she needs Selina for her plans. It’s an easy guess that eventually, Selina is going to be victorious over Creel, but the anticipation of these two women, and what Creel’s plans are for Selina fill the story with a good amount of tension. Creel truly is a nasty piece of work, but one who is clearly no less a survivor than Selina.
This issue continues the tradition set by the first issue of having some visual callouts to Batman Returns, specifically the page where Selina is interrogating the imposter Catwoman. The angle hews closely to some rooftop scenes from the aforementioned film, and it’s a nice reference to have to appear, especially as it’s something that other artists don’t tend to reference very often.
Laura Allred fills the book with some very bold yet muted colors, giving the book an almost heightened pop art feel. Allred and Jones are a compelling combination of an art team, and they work well together, flawlessly elevating the material with their techniques. They know how to set a mood and tell a story, and one hopes that they will end up together in this for the long haul because they have the potential to be an iconic storytelling team.
Final Thoughts: It’s clear that Jones is someone who loves and respects Selina, and that shines through in her art and her writing, showing a great grasp on the character. With a threatening villain looming, and some incredible character work, this book earns a very high recommendation.
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