Pretty, Fizzy Paradise

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Sunday, June 25, 2006

Initial Thoughts on Kate Kane:

Okay, as it's Sunday, I don't feel guilty any more about spoiling a comic that came out on Wednesday. Well, I do. But I'm a hypocrite. And too lazy for a post-cut. Sorry.

Anyway, we've now seen the first appearance of Kate Kane.

If you haven't seen it yet, scans_daily posted the scene here. Go look, I'll wait. :-)

Anyway, I have to admit, I'm intrigued. Part of it's because I really really like the Maltese Falcon.

But I'm liking Kate regardless. In a few pages, I'm getting a good idea of what kind of personality she is. From punching Montoya (who deserved it for that crack), already establishing that she's not the vacant barbie doll she looks like. And I particularly like her expression during that whole "I don't know. Possibly. Probably." panel. She might be speaking noncommittally, but her eyes and expression are very sharp. She's thinking.

And something about the line "Do I *look* like I spend time in the harbor district?" won me over. It's hard to explain, but it's a line with such a voice, that I immediately come away with an idea as to what Kate Kane is like.

I've read complaints about Kate being introduced first as Kate Kane rather than Batwoman, thus emphasizing her as the lesbian instead of the superhero, but I actually think this was the best way to go about it. With all the media buzz, Batwoman is already associated with lesbian. If they'd introduced her as Batwoman, it'd be a momentous scene that pulls the audience out of the story, it'd be more "See, THIS is the Batwoman you're all talking about!" She'd feel more exposed, random, like a tacked on token lesbian to the Gotham superheroes.

This way though, she's been nicely integrated into the story first instead of appearing out of nowhere. She's Kate Kane, Montoya's ex and Gotham heiress with some weird connection to the Question's target. She's already nicely integrated into the storyline. Now when she does appear as Batwoman it'll be a natural progression of the story. Renee's ex wants to investigate for herself, stirring up trouble on the way. If the media hadn't made such a huge deal, a lot of us probably wouldn't have realized she's supposed to be Batwoman and would have been surprised!

Now, well, if you're the one person who didn't know before I babbled, I'm sorry.

Anyway, it's a bit early to say for sure, but she seems like she'll be fun. I like what I see of her personality, I really like the tension and chemistry with Renee, and I can't wait to see her meet the Question. Or even better *Batman*.

And I really like that dress. That's one kickass dress. :-)


  • At June 25, 2006 11:58 AM, Blogger ShellyS said…

    I like her, too, and I'm also glad we met Kate before meeting Batwoman, but mostly because with the media hype, there would've been no mystery as to who she is, which would be the only reason I'd want to see Batwoman first. Now I can wonder what makes her be Batwoman. ;)

  • At June 25, 2006 12:40 PM, Blogger Rich said…

    Make that 3 that liked the intro. And Kate seems like a pretty interesting character so far, kind of a female foil for Bruce.

    And to think all these years I thought Kane street was named after Bob Kane!

    BTW, just found this blog - really good work!

  • At June 25, 2006 2:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    What a figure! Shame she likes them girlies, though.

    She seemed interesting and although I'm on the whole not as interested in the Renee story that part was the standout moment this week.

  • At June 25, 2006 4:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I'm going to disagree, I'm sorry. I thought those pages were real clunkers. The dialogue is awful, Montoya's interior monologue is especially bad. I liked the Maltese Falcon too, but Hammett's writing isn't this wooden, even at his worst.

  • At June 25, 2006 4:14 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    Shelly: *nod* It was really a good way to introduce her.

    Rich: Hee, you know what's funny. I didn't even think of Bob Kane.


    Jaap: I think she's got potential.

    Anon: To each their own. :-) The dialogue was clunky, to me, but not unbearably so. And I liked their interaction.

  • At June 25, 2006 6:03 PM, Blogger Richard said…

    Regretfully, I have to side with Anonymous this time. For me, those pages came across as what television writers would call "laying the pipe" -- the term for dialogue or scenes which exist only to establish plot points that will be necessary later on, but are not actually entertaining. A more skillful writer aims for "hiding the pipe" -- taking all that necessary exposition and plot development and disguising it within a scene that is entertaining, so it doesn't seem like you're just setting up a mechanism. And the writing seemed particularly self-conscious about "not being self-conscious" about the gay angle -- I know that description doesn't make much sense, but I can't think how to describe it better. It just felt very stiff and forced.

  • At June 25, 2006 7:02 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    It makes sense, and I do see what you mean, though I think a lot of the self-consciousness is unavoidable with all the Batwoman attention. It's forcing them to be a lot more unfortunately aware, I think.

    It's a shame we can't really appreciate it without all the Batwoman exposure first.

  • At June 26, 2006 1:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The line that got me was (don't have the issue handy, so I'm paraphrasing) "The Kanes own the half of Gotham the Waynes don't own."

    The Wayne*S*? What other Waynes are we talking about--Aunt Harriet?

    (Note: I'm not a regular Bat-fan, so I suppose I could be missing what are fairly obvious points to some more dedicated readers...but I don't think I am.)

  • At June 26, 2006 1:27 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    I think it's probably because Bruce Wayne's such a ditz that it's much easier to name it as a clan (if a clan of one) than to acknowledge half the town is owned by THAT guy. :-P

  • At June 26, 2006 2:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I dunno, I liked the scene myself. Didn't seem clunky, though there's been a fair amount of "laying the pipe" in 52 overall.

  • At June 26, 2006 4:17 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    I thought personally that it was a bit awkward, but the characters' personalities shined through, so I liked it.


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