By Marguerite Bennett, James Tynion IV, Steve Epting & Jeremy Cox
Although Batwoman did not receive a solo series when Rebirth first launched, readers haven’t had to wait that long for a new book featuring her. Thanks to Marguerite Bennett, James Tynion IV, Steve Epting and James Cox, it shouldn’t take long for readers to see that Kate Kane is in excellent hands.
The writing team of Bennett and Tynion IV is fantastic here and they both really get the character. The book provides an effective character study into Kate Kane as we see her at various points in her life, and the refresher on what happens here is really impressive. Bennett and Tynion explore her motivations as we get to see several snapshots of her past life from a young child through to adulthood, all focused on developing her character and turning her into the crimefighter that she is in the present. No scene is wasted here; each moment plays an important part in shaping her life, and whilst there is the obligatory Batman cameo that comes from most Batman-related books, it’s a brief one that is handled strongly.
The artwork is amazing and Steve Epting (who has worked on excellent titles as Velvet) really brings his A-game to this book that plunges the reader into a noir setting that will be really interesting to explore in the future. The emotions and facial expressions of the characters are portrayed incredibly well here by Epting, and it’s also worth noting that the book benefits from an impressive panel layout that make the most out of the red color of Batwoman’s costume. The colors of course are brought to life incredibly well by Jeremy Cox who really helps flesh out the cast, especially with the great detail put into pretty much every panel.
For people who have read more of Batwoman’s comics than most, this issue may feel like a recap of events that have come before. However, given that Batwoman’s origin hasn’t been repeated nearly as often as someone like Batman’s, it serves as a great way for newcomers to catch up even if you haven’t read a Batwoman comic. This one certainly works as a nice refresher. Even if you’re fully aware of her origins and don’t need any refreshing, this book still manages to be worth a read for artistic reasons, because Steve Epting and Jeremy Cox are on fine form here. It looks as though the visuals are well on course to return to the quality that we’ve seen from the likes of J.H. Williams III in the past.
Batwoman Rebirth #1 hits the ground running as a new series that explores her origin in an effective way through some incredible artwork. The cliffhanger will no doubt have readers looking forward to more, and there’s a lot of potential on display here for this book to turn into one of DC’s best very quickly.