by Darryl Ayo
Totally weird. I picked up this comic, opened the cover and nearly jumped out of my skin. Such a creepy image. This is the very first panel of Batwoman #0 by J.H. Williams III.
It sets in soon after; this is a picture of Batman looking through binoculars. But the circle shapes and the shape of those binoculars combine with the silhouette of Batman’s iconic figure to create what looks like a shockingly forward picture of a realistic Batman with cartoon features.
This issue serves as a reintroduction of the Batwoman character. It seems like a good idea in some respects to introduce the character through Batman’s eyes. LITERALLY THROUGH HIS EYES. DUDE, BATMAN IS SPYING ON BATWOMAN THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE ISSUE. Okay, so the weirdness never lets up with this particular comic issue.
Notice that I said it was a good idea “in some respects.” While I understand the marketing perspective of framing the introduction of a relatively new character in an ongoing franchise through the lens of a more popular character and that franchise’s anchor, it does have some lame implications: Batwoman needs Batman to sell. Lamer implications: this is a comic in which a man stalks a woman for the entire story.
Oh, the “man” is BATMAN, he’s a GOOD GUY! The fact remains that the woman (Batwoman) doesn’t realize that this Good Guy is following her every move. He also [spoiler!] attacks her (in disguise!)–to test her, of course! Now, pulling back, since we apparently can’t talk about a woman without talking about her in the context of the men who are fixated on her, Batman apparently has a strange tendency of “testing” his disciples and allies. Batman is basically the textbook example of the guy that many women like to avoid. He follows you around. He is secretive and inarticulate about his motives and intentions. He is willing to engage in violent activities against you just to gauge your reaction. Well. Okay. So this is a post about an issue of Batwoman, yet all I’ve got is a picture of Batman and an analysis of *his* creepy behavior.
(c) DC Entertainment.