“Up On The House Top”
Writer: Tom King
Artist: Clay Mann
Color Artist: Tomeu Morey
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Review by Eric Lee
After an amazing debut issue, Batman/Catwoman #2 becomes more muddled, with a less-than-engaging plot and unclear transition scenes.
As the previous review stated, write Tom King is a thinking man’s writer. He doesn’t spell out everything for a reader., but rather forces us to think more about what’s actually happening. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it definitely muddles the narrative quite a bit. Given that we have three concurrent story lines, it may also be too much of an ask for readers to track every single plot detail.
The problem is that there’s not a clear enough delineation of which timeline we’re following. I’m honestly not sure if there was any “past” plot in this issue or not. I wish the art gave more of a visual indicator, when moving between the “present day” and the “past”. Unfortunately, it makes the reading experience a little more frustrating than it was in issue one.
While I like where the stories are going so far, most of the plots do not advance that much, with the exception of the “future” one. This saddles the second issue with being a sort of “table setting” chapter that needs to set up more promising events later in the series. It also appears that not all timelines are paced the same, as we get a lot more “future” timeline than any of the others.
On the other hand, there’s nothing bad that can be said about artist Clay Mann’s gorgeous visuals. The man does not take the easy way out. He finds the most unique angles and goes crazy with them. His Phantasm depiction is particularly wonderful. She’s so haunting and creepy. I wish we could see more Phantasm in other comics now.
While Batman/Catwoman #2 boasts beautiful art and promising plots, it’s also is a frustrating comic. The pacing and the confusing timeline transitions dragged down my enjoyment level, and also made it difficult to judge the comic on its own merits, instead of as a whole when the entire story’s completed. This certainly feels more like a chapter in a book rather than an individual issue that stands on its own.
Images courtesy of DC Entertainment