‘Batwoman’ #40: hanging up the cowl

Cover

Batwoman #40
Written by Marc Andreyko
Pencils by George Jeanty; Inks by Karl Story & Dexter Vines
Colors by Guy Major
Published by DC Comics

After over three years in publication, Batwoman’s ongoing series comes to an end. There is to be an annual set to release at the start of April, but #40 marks the end of Batwoman’s monthly instalments. To tell the truth, it’s quite miraculous that a title coming from the big two headlining a gay female lead has lasted this long. Then again chances are association to a certain more famous superhero helped keep this book stay afloat, sorry but it tends to be true. One of the greatest problems Batwoman has faced is the numerous controversies surrounding her book. There was the infamous marriage cancellation which caused the creative team of J. H. Williams III and Haden Blackman to walk out, prompting the series to be handed over to Marc Andrekyo. While Andrekyo has done what best he can to fix the damages, he wound up creating controversy by having Kate Kane appear to be raped by a vampire. This latest arc has attempted to fix that debacle and tries its hardest to end the book on a positive note.

The issue picks up right after Morgaine le Fay single handedly beats the Unknowns and flies off to summon herself an army of demons. As Etrigan, Clayface, and Rag Man search the city for the resurrected enchantress, Kate Kane heads home when she learns another of her girlfriend’s former family has wound up dead. The series finally cuts ties with the problematic Nocturna, turning what has been plaguing the series into a weapon. With the help of her sister, Kate is able to finally reject the vampiress. Alice and Kate are able to rekindle their troubled past and move on to facing Morgaine. While there is no perfectly dignified way to end this story, Andreyko sincerely tries. He’s not the talented enough writer to make his way out of the hornets’ nest that is Batwoman. He writes to have readers remember the past but still move on.

George Jeanty has his usual routine with this title. He has a good sense of the gothic but he has serious trouble with characters standing far away from the reader. That being said, his facework is satisfying this time around. The meat of this issue is Kate’s relationships with Alice and Nocturna as the three battle it out over a conversation. Jeanty is not the best choice for this book, but he knows where it counts, making for as decent an ending as once can expect.

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This book is not something to be recommended for anyone beyond the most hardcore of Batwoman fans. While the Unknowns arc, like much of Andrekyo’s run, has been well intended but over ambitious, it tries to wrap up the problematic loose ends as best as possible.




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