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Fic Rec of the Week #1:

With everything still majorly up in the air (and most of my stuff--including comics--in storage, because I have so much crap) , I'm having a tough time finding the energy to buckle down and write for more than two seconds at a time, not to mention actually scanning things for the blog.

However, just because I'm seriously strapped for time, doesn't mean I don't still love you enough to bring you updates! So, I've decided to start a new weekly feature: Fic Rec of the Week!

Stories will not necessarily be Catwoman-centric, because, well, that would just be boring, but they will be Gotham-based.

Because I'm currently writing a review/scans post of Catwoman: Year Two, which I plan to post later tonight, I'm thinking a bit about its major guest star: Harvey Dent.



Ouch, Selina, ouch


Thus, today's selection is Dent by about_faces.

Newly-elected D.A. Harvey Dent faces down crime and corruption in Gotham City. Will it cost him his sanity? Of course it will, you know that...but why? Presenting the tragic origins of Two-Face and his gradual descent into madness.

You can read it here on LJ or here on fanfiction.net.

Even if you don't particularly like Two-Face, you might want to give this a try. I've been editing/co-writing it on the sly for the past couple of months, and it's being updated regularly. The story itself is mostly finished and it is freaking massive, so it's taking some time getting it out there because I am a positively obsessive editor. If you follow my usual internet persona bitemetechie's fanfic, you might currently be waiting impatiently for me to finally write something, damn it. Well, while you wait for me to get off my tuchus and get back to work on my solo stuff, you can still get your fix.

Pop by, give it a look and, if you're feeling generous, drop a review or two. It would certainly give my co-writer a bit of a rush! :D

Want to Participate in "Fanfic Recommendation of the Week?" Leave your fic recs in the comments!

DCnU: Catwoman #1 Preview:

Via the DC Comics App, we get our first look at Catwoman's new series, by Judd Winick and Guillem March, which will be hitting stands next Wednesday:



Four full pages and a bit of commentary behind the cut.Collapse )

We'll see what the rest of the issue shapes up to be like; personally, I'm reserving judgment until the first storyarc is out and I can chew on it for awhile. What did you guys make of it?

Katy Perry has a new perfume out, called 'Purr':





I'm so enamored with the cat shaped bottle I'm not sure how to describe the maniacal glee I was filled with when I first saw it. The little fangirl in me is a total sucker for all things cat-shaped and tastefully sparkly.

And purple! Oh, I love purple...

Actually, having spotted this, I'm reminded of another nifty cat-shaped bottle that I've seen around lately, Moselland Rielsling, a German wine that comes in chic cat-shaped bottles:



I don't particularly care for Riesling, myself, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't briefly entertain the idea of buying a bottle the first time I saw it.

And suddenly, I am reminded of the "Drink Like Selina" post I was working on and never finished a few months back, which consisted of delicious theme cocktails. Hrm...I should get on that, shouldn't I?

Tags:


So in my travels, I've picked up a fair bit of Batman-related swag of the disposable, forgettable kind. Coloring and activity books, riddle books, puzzles, that sort of thing. This merchandise is generally pretty unremarkable and isn't very highly sought after, and since it's 'kid stuff' and considered unworthy of being collected, not much of it survives long enough to make it online. The Super Dictionary is one of the exceptions, but there's a lot of fun stuff out there if you know where to look.

One of my favorite coloring/activity books I've come across in the past few years has a handful of Catwoman pages that tell their own little stories, just in the space of a few images. It's pretty easy to add your own captions, or build a simplistic story around them using your imaaaaginaaaation.

Today, I bring you three of them, depicting a fun little Harley Quinn/Catwoman team-up:

The Cat and the Clown Girl, behind the cut!Collapse )

Interestingly, Poison Ivy, the other best known Gotham Femme Fatale, doesn't make a single appearance in the book. Also, Harley Quinn makes more appearances than Catwoman--and Catwoman shows up something like twelve times, so that's nothing to sneeze at. Especially if you take into account that Harley Quinn is barely two decades old, hasn't made an appearance in any of the Batman films and seems to be relatively unknown character outside of people who read comics or are intimately familiar with Batman: The Animated Series, whereas Catwoman has been part of the pop culture landscape in one highly visible fashion or another since the nineteen sixties. I find this fascinating.

Classic!Harley is, of course, an incredibly iconic looking character, so I suppose it's understandable. Her red and black costume is a fashion designer's wet dream, with its clean lines and symmetry, she's a fun, bouncy character in an otherwise grim!dark! universe and, I imagine, for a child, she'd be incredibly fun to color.

(She's certainly fun enough to draw that, despite the fact she's not one of my favorites, she constantly pops from my pencil when I sit down to doodle, whether I want her to or not.)

Still, it raises the question (for me, at least): just how familiar with Harley Quinn is the truly casual Bat-fan, versus Catwoman?

Me: "I, Dr. Von Fangirl, will totally start updating in a timely manner!"

The Universe: "HAHAHAHA, Yeah you think that."

...

Okay, so you know what? Screw it. I will update when I update when I can, because babies are very, very time consuming. And that isn't even taking into consideration the fact that I'm in the process of moving from one state to another and have experienced an earthquake and a hurricane in the last week. HAHAHAHA, Universe, I see you thur, having fun at my expense!
Soooo. The Super Dictionary. If you've been on the internet for any decent length of time, and reading up on comics, or are an old scans_daily alum, you've definitely heard of it. It's arguably one of the most spectacularly cracktastic things that DC Comics has ever put their official stamp of approval on.

Published in the 1970s's, it's an educational tool for children--I'd guess somewhere between the ages of six and ten--that uses well known superheroes to define words. Only a handful of scans exist online, but there are enough that the book is pretty infamous.

The love of my life, the apple of my eye, the cream in my coffee, about_faces, A.K.A. thehefner, decided to sink a substantial amount of effort into locating a copy of the book for our newborn son Hal Tiberius so that he too could grow up learning about the horrors of Lex Luthor's cake stealing habit. Of course, there being many, many Catwoman related entries, I couldn't very well deprive you all! :D

Be forewarned: The scans are REALLY LARGE, and of decent quality, but some are a little lopsided, thanks to the rather slippy, slidey forty year old hardcover. I've only included the entries with illustrations, but there are several more text-only entries that mention our girl, Selina.

I also had a hard time deciding whether to post these all at once, or one by one. while it'd be fun to post each of these one at a time, I have no way of knowing when I'll be able to actually crack my laptop open again. Besides that, the Super Dictionary has a strange kind of narrative, which is really better served by seeing all the entries in one chunk. The Super Dictionary has actual read-between-the-lines continuity!

For example, apparently, Black Canary and Green Arrow were off having hot sex while Green Lantern was in serious trouble. You may think I'm kidding, but it's pretty clear from a handful of the entries just what was going on. I know I've been corrupted by the internet and all, but Lantern's in trouble and Canary and Arrow are just lying on the grass behind a hedge within earshot. Come on now.

(There's also an entry or two in which the Penguin pretty much propositions Robin. SUBTEXT IS THE GREATEST THING EVER.)

What kind of continuity/subtext does Catwoman get? Well, let's have a look!



There are forty Catwoman entries in the Super Dictionary. That's as many as four tens!Collapse )


So, readers, what manner of madcap adventures can you come up with, based on these entries? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

There’s been quite a bit of Catwoman related news hitting the internet in the past couple of weeks, but I’ve been a little too preoccupied with baby-related things to give fandom-y stuff a glance, lately. (My regular blog full of geekery and the odd personal update is still seeing posts, but not nearly as often as it should be.) Plus, my inbox is currently stuffed to the brim with Dr-Von-Fangirl related correspondence, so things have been a little...hectic.

So, two pieces of Catwoman related stuff for you today!

First bit of news:

In case you haven’t yet heard, DC Comics is doing a relaunch/reboot thing. Nobody’s quite clear on the implications and there are a bunch of alarmists running around flailing their arms and screaming about it DEFINITELY being a new Crisis on Infinite Earths AND NOW EVERYTHING IS CANON ALWAYS despite the lack of evidence to that effect.

A bunch of other people are screaming that the events taking place in the current Flashpoint event are totally going to be the new continuity now, because apparently nobody’s ever read a story that involves time travel paradoxes and alternate universes as written by Geoff Johns before. Or a time travel story, period.

Personally, I’m thinking the supposed ‘reboot’ is mainly just a renumbering and series relaunch for publicity purposes and that nothing will change too substantially--and if it does, it certainly won't last very long.

But, as with most things in comics, a wait and see attitude is best.

So, why am I talking about this? Well, Catwoman is one of the titles being relaunched. Selina’s getting her own series again!



Meet Catwoman. She’s addicted to the night. Addicted to shiny objects. Addicted to Batman. Most of all, Catwoman is addicted to danger. She can’t help herself, and the truth is – she doesn’t want to. She’s good at being bad, and very bad at being good. Find out more about what makes Catwoman tick in CATWOMAN #1, written by Judd Winick and illustrated by Guillem March.

[source]

I’m not going to lie: I’ve never much cared for Guillem March’s artwork on Gotham City Sirens, but I think that may have more to do with the book’s washed out coloring--much like the muted coloring above--than the pencils themselves.

As for Judd Winick, he’s a perfectly competent writer (for example, he was responsible for the Scarecrow story As the Crow Flies in Batman which garners affection from a sizable contingent of Jonathan Crane fans who still recognize that the Scare Beast plot is very, very silly), though I don't think he’s written Selina at length before.

(However, as an old school Justice League International fan I do take issue with his Justice League Generation Lost run, but that's a discussion for another time and another place.)

Really, what fills me with the most apprehension here is the description paragraph itself, rather than the writer or the artist.

Catwoman the Cat Burglar is all well and good. She’s great in fact! The last decent heist story we got for Selina was Darwyn Cooke’s Selina’s Big Score, and a tiny smattering of stories in the nineties while she wore the purple suit.

(Believe it or not, the majority of Selina’s nineties series wasn’t robbing museums of their priceless artifacts. Oh, those stories existed, but they were vastly outnumbered by Selina-plays-Hero tales.)

The thing is, though, that while I love bad girl Selina, and I love competent cat burglar Selina, and while I love a flirty, sexually charged Selina:

The description above reads less like a fully developed, well rounded character and more like a straight adolescent male’s idea of what the definition of ‘sexy’ should be. A comic news site (I’ve already forgotten which one!) made a comparison between the description and an interview with a Playboy centerfold and I think that’s pretty apt--provided, of course, that the centerfold’s answers were written by an all male marketing team. I think Catwoman could do better than that

What’s the worst pick-up line you’ve ever heard? You’re under arrest.

What’s the best or most creative pick-up line you’ve ever heard? See above.

What signals do you give to a man when you want him to make the first move? The Bat signal, generally…

What are your biggest turn-ons? Moonlight, expensive baubles, sexual tension, hand-to-hand combat…


Ahem. Yes. So, we'll see how this goes.

Second bit of news:

The new trailer for Arkham City has hit, and it’s VERY Catwoman heavy.



...

I’m sorry, I watch this and the commentary in my head is as follows:

“Ass. Ass. ASS, ASS, BOOBS, ASS.”

Apparently, Catwoman has a posterior and we must all make note of this fact at length.

The costume is a bastardization of the Darwyn Cooke version which I have a lot of affection for, but it falls short of expectations. Mostly due to the outrageous amount of texturing and the fact that zippers and boobs do not work that way. Then again, zippers and boobs in comics rarely work the way zippers and boobs work in reality, so maybe I'm being too harsh considering the source material ;)

As for the voice actress and the characterization? I feel a little…iffy. Cat-related dialogue has always seemed a little cheap and obvious to me, but some fans like that, so to each their own. :D

Going a LONG way to making me want to play the game? Catwoman’s amazing moves. I’m actually hoping the smooch-your-attacker-then-kick-his-head-in move is a special combo, much like Bloodrayne’s ability to jump Nazis and sink her fangs into their necks for sustenance.



Back on point! Catwoman’s fighting style here is fluid and graceful while still having a fair amount of power behind it, and that’s always nice to see. It’s especially nice to see that she isn’t just relying on her bullwhip or claws, instead utilizing other tools: bolas, her natural flexibility, her feet, her fists, her sexuality...

This is pretty rare, as Catwoman’s most recent console game appearances have had her relying an awful lot on the cat gimmicks to the point that it borders on the absurd (the game based on the Catwoman film actually had her licking herself clean, for example), so I’m really happy with this direction. Much like the new solo series, we'll see how this pans out.

Thoughts?

The COMPLETE definitive Catwoman origin.

I disappeared for six months, I know. I have the best excuse ever, though: I've been busy being pregnant.

But, now I'm back and to make up for my horribly long hiatus, I have brought you one hell of a scans-heavy post. The scans-heavy post to end all posts.


Dr. Von Fangirl Now Proudly Presents: The Ultimate Catwoman Origin



"How did I get to be so brave?" Selina asks herself in a fear toxin induced haze above.

It's a fair question. But to answer it, we have to look at its deeper roots--roots that lie in a question of motivation. What compels a seemingly ordinary individual like Selina Kyle to don a mask and stalk the night?

For Bruce Wayne, it took seeing his parents murdered in front of him; Jonathan Crane, a lifetime of ridicule and pain; Harley Quinn, all-consuming obsessive love. All the best heroes and villains in every medium, from literature to film to comic books, have traceable motivations for their behavior. It humanizes them and makes them easier for us, the audience, to understand and sympathize with.

For Selina, there was no one defining moment--at least, not in the way that there was for Bruce Wayne. Instead, it took numerous experiences, some positive and some negative, conspiring to strengthen her, both inside and out. A series of misfortunes, teachers, mistakes to learn from and some very lucky twists of fate to put Selina Kyle in the position for the stars to align just right for her to become the Feline Fatale we all know today.

If you were to wander into a comic shop and ask the clerk behind the counter why Selina became Catwoman, chances are they wouldn't be able to tell you in great detail. Not because she doesn't have a detailed history, but because most of the comics that touch on her origin stories are out of print--and have been for a long, long time. In fact, this problem isn't limited to just the clerk in the comic shop; so little information is available online regarding Selina's origins that there is no way to get a complete picture of who she is from any source.

As a result of this, there's some very wrong info floating around. People remember events wrong, or misrepresent them, or misinterpret them, or they've heard it from a friend-of-a-friend. However the bad information is created, it then gets spread around until it starts to look like fact.

People who don't like Selina's origin as a dominatrix, for example, state over and over again that the events of Batman: Year One have never been confirmed by other sources, or that they've been contradicted by Catwoman: Year One. Others say that she never trained with Ted Grant, or that she couldn't possibly be as skilled as she is in the art of hand-to-hand combat because we never saw her training with anyone, or that it doesn't make sense for a dominatrix to suddenly have mad cat burglary skillz.

Up until now, there's never been any way to dispute these statements, no matter how incorrect they are. Personally, every time I see them, I get hopping mad because I know better. But, that's me. I've been collecting Catwoman's appearances for ages; I've been reading her stories for fifteen years; I can't expect everyone else to track down every single issue just to find out what really makes Selina tick.

One of the underlying reasons I started this blog was not just to spread love for Catwoman around, but to serve as an educational resource. About eighty percent of Catwoman’s post-crisis comics appearances remain uncollected, including all of her 90‘s solo-series (except four issues in ‘The Cat File‘--which is out of print). This means the only way you’ll find them is by scouring back issue bins--and even then, you might not know what to look for. If you ever want to read Selina’s complete origin story, it’d take forever to track everything down and piece it together.

Thus, after nearly nine months of preparation, searching, research and hard work, I have compiled the most complete post-crisis Catwoman origin in history. Since I own about four hundred of Selina’s four hundred-sixty comics appearances published since the crisis--indeed, I own EVERY appearance from 1986 to 1999 as well as her 1989, 1993 and 2002 series and am slowly filling in what few gaps are left--I was able to comb through every appearance, looking for mentions of her origin so that nothing would be left out.

Piecing together the timeline took a fair bit of doing and a fair bit of me pulling my hair out, but all in all, the result was worth it. The timeline draws from several different sources that contain information about Selina’s beginnings: Batman: Year One, Catwoman: Her Sister’s Keeper, Catwoman Annual #2, Catwoman #0, Catwoman: Secret Files and Origins, Catwoman #81 and Catwoman #94.

In the interests of clarity and conciseness, I had one rule while compiling the timeline:

Events must be either CONFIRMED by another comic or UNDISPUTED throughout continuity to make it onto the timeline as canon.

If part of an event is disputed, while another part of the event is confirmed, then only the confirmed part makes it onto the timeline. Also, with the exception of a couple of pages from Selina's Big Score (still found in Batman: Ego and Other Stories), all of these comics are out of print.

This post is most definitely NOT dial-up friendly and is VERY, VERY image heavy. But I swear it'll be worth it. (ETA: as of 9/01/15, photobucket appears to be borked; please right click each image and open in a new tab until I can get that sorted. Thanks!)

Please be advised, this post contains violence, domestic abuse, self harm, suicide and mentions of rape.

Selina Kyle's own 'Year One' origin story starts here...Collapse )

Now, with this post finally, FINALLY complete, I can go off and start playing catch-up with back-logged posts that I owe you guys. :)






This appears to be from the seventies. NEATO KEEN!









Merch. Monday



Happy Valentine's Day!


Merch. Monday



This handmade looking change purse was found on ebay. Nifty!




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