Batwoman and Wonder Woman continue battling Medusa, but in the meanwhile, this issue focuses on Maggie Sawyer and her continued search for the missing Gotham children. (Not to gripe, but these children went missing in the first issue of this series, well over a year ago! Drag much?) Maggie is flustered and her brain is all over the place, which is captured well in her first-person narration as her statements bounce from topic to topic. She slowly uncovers clues about Medusa, but she realizes that the G.C.P.D. isn’t enough to take on this criminal organization and must humbly ask Cameron Chase and the D.E.O. for help. It would seem these two women are forming a begrudging working relationship, with Chase tipping Maggie off to a threat to the Gotham parents that she’s been trying to help. The result is a tense stand-off and a close call with La Llorona.
The art this issue is mostly supplied by Trevor McCarthy. While his work isn’t as in-depth or eccentric as J.H. Williams III’s, he does a really fine job here. This issue employs an interesting technique with smaller panels with blocks of narration outside of the panel (mostly, there are a few instances where the narration appears within the panel). It’s unique and creates a slightly jarring effect, which fits Maggie’s scattered mindset. One small critique is that the page lay-outs are blocky with very little innovation, but who knows? Maybe that was intentional.
I liked the fact that the creators took time to devote an entire issue to the supporting cast, especially tumultuous love interest Maggie Sawyer. Rarely does any comic series do this, so this was unexpected and refreshing. Maggie is struggling to hold it together. She’s thrown herself into her investigation only to face failure and opposition. The parents of the missing children are rightfully frustrated, but Maggie is forced to confront them for their own safety. She’s so overwhelmed that she only mentions Kate a couple of times. She seems understandably annoyed at not having heard from her in days, but there are still glimpses of concern. Their’s is a complicated relationship, which is unique and interesting to read, versus most other relationships which can be predictable and by-the-numbers.
I mentioned it before, though, this is still kind of the first storyline of this entire series and it’s been going on for over a year. I really want to see Batwoman last for years… forever, hopefully… but I’d like to see more! She’s still fighting the same bad guys!
This was a good solid one-off issue that a new reader could probably pick up and comprehend pretty well, having not read the previous 14. It retained the vibe of the Batwoman issues, but had a slightly different feel to it.
Written by J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman
Art by Trevor McCarthy and J.H. Williams III (pages 1 and 20 only)
Cover by J.H. Williams III