We’ve mercifully reached the end of the long, painful, and excruciating journey that was Ann Nocenti’s Catwoman run. This is Nocenti’s final issue before she starts writing Klarion and hands over Catwoman to someone else. Does her finale at least leave off on a semi-decent note or will it fall flat like so many issues prior? Is it good?
Catwoman #34 (DC Comics)
Catwoman wants to get her BFF/partner in crime, Alice Tesla, out of the house for a little bit since she never gets to. Alice doesn’t want to, but ultimately decides to concede by having them to go to this old Murder Wax Museum to check it out if it would serve as another cool hideout for them. However, they go there and run into this guy called Cyberius who is an online gamer like Alice and wants to challenge her to a game in real life using machines or something. Yeah, not too contrived or anything.
Trying to enjoy myself when you so rudely interrupted my roleplay game!
This was the final issue of Nocenti’s run and how does she end it? Not with a fun Catwoman story about her committing a tough heist or following her around when she’s just in her regular Selina Kyle life. Nope. It’s basically a story about a bunch of geeks sort of LARPing with mechanical beasts that Catwoman is sort of dragged into. She’s really not the star here, but more of a supporting character and barely seems to do anything. Hell, this doesn’t even remotely feel like a Catwoman story and I’m not even sure what, if anything, was accomplished by the end of this issue. This just sort of happened without any buildup, people acted like idiots, and there was no real payoff for anything. It was just a bunch of weak plot bits tied together into making something that sort of resembles a plot or story.
As such, this final issue stunk. Sure, it added some characterization and more background for Alice, but who cares? This should have been an issue that primarily focused on Catwoman and gave her time to shine for her final outing, not toss it over to a character no one really cares about (Catwoman made such a big deal about her being her partner in crime, but at best, the entire run just conveyed her mostly as a girl who made Catwoman her gadgets and nothing more). The dialogue was weak, awkward, and didn’t make much sense. The villain was uninteresting and had nothing memorable about him. The ending is eye-rolling and pretty much will never be followed up on due to the writer and direction change for the book. To be fair, I honestly didn’t have as much of a miserable experience with this issue as previous ones, but it’s just so forgettable and lackluster that I can’t muster any emotion for it at all. Even if you did enjoy Nocenti’s run, I just don’t see this even working for fans like you.
I’m trying to concentrate on believing I’m in a better comic! Don’t ruin this for me.
The artwork is… passable. There’s nothing particularly bad about it here, but there’s nothing that really shines either. The characters are okay, but their size and age seem to change lot of the time. The action is hard to follow and flows poorly. The coloring is drab and unappealing, even where it should be far more colorful. The layouts are okay as well, but nothing to write home about. Honestly, the artwork is just as forgettable as this story was. Just nothing to really recommend here.
Is It Good?
Catwoman #34 is a completely weak and underwhelming finale to Nocenti’s Catwoman run. The story was unengaging, Catwoman barely did anything in the actual issue, the writing was a mess, and the artwork was just forgettable and drab. And, fittingly, that’s how Nocenti’s entire run ends. It started with an god-awful origin story and ended falling flat on its face and breaking its nose. I’d wager a guess that most people will end up remembering this run as easily the worst comic book run of the New 52.