There’s a new creative team on the scene in Tini Howard and Nico Leon as Catwoman swings her way back into Gotham for a little entertainment. A gal can’t stay away from home too long right? An exhilarating start to new beginnings, Catwoman #39 introduces us to new characters as well as diving deeper into Selina’s queerness. The team had this as a main priority and they couldn’t have done a better job at tastefully executing this factor of Selina’s identity. Howard, who is bisexual herself, see’s herself in Selina as have so many fans over the years. It’s a treat to not erase such a definitive part of who she is and to have resemblance in comics. Of course, Selina would never deprive herself of anything, or anyone she wants – as she should!
Howard displays a perfect balance of how Selina will always fight for the underdog but takes no shame in stealing for her own pleasure. Despite being a thief, she has a compassionate side so many people know and love. Howard never lightens the tension and gritty reality of the world, wrapping us up in the continuous horror story known as Gotham City. It’s a personal favorite trait of mine; the city that can’t be saved, where chaos is always flowing onto the streets.
A bonus for me was the setting in this issue. I’m a sucker for strip clubs and trouble, that trope fires me up like a flame chasing gas. I can’t get enough. Something about the sexy mystery of danger and giddiness of the unknown. It’s like what Howard said in our recent GateCrasher Podcast:
“Any story where you can get behind the woman because you trust what she does in her job and go along for the ride.”Tini Howard.
We are sat right alongside Selina throughout this issue, she is keeping us in the know as if we’re a part of the heist. It’s inclusive and enticing being clued into the POV of the Catwoman. We share her confidence in knowing things will more than likely run smoothly.
Nico Leon stunned me, serving us saturated artwork that guides the story along, really providing that engagement so many search for in comics, I genuinely felt myself being pulled into the scenarios, which I haven’t experienced in a while from a comic book. I was on edge, excited, and curious to see if this cat was going to pull it all off! Nico studied Gothic architecture to help him deliver flawlessly arcuate artwork and to incorporate his own flare into it.
Can you believe Nico almost gave up working in the comic industry? How blessed we are that he stuck around to share with us his marvelous creations. Not to mention the new character he designed, Valmont. Together with Howard, they brainstormed and finalized this fancy Viking-type guy with an expensive taste for cologne. Not to mention Selina’s outfits!
One of my all-time favorite villains, Black Mask bursts onto the scene in this issue maliciously demanding all kinds of attention – and in a very fashionable way, I might add. Thanks, Nico! Jordie Bellaire on colors compliments the art with incredible depths and tones, bursting life onto the page. The icing on the cake is how Tom Napolitano perfectly places every word, clearly guiding the way through!
This team knows how to execute a vision, their claims are their reality and I highly recommend you saddle up and buckle into the Catwoman series this year. You’re in for a purrfect treat.