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Batwoman #1 - Hydrology, Part 1: Leaching

5

'Batwoman finally returns to Gotham City with the release of 'Batwoman #1,' but does the first issue of the series measure up?

Can I say that the first issue of 'Batwoman' blows a lot of the "new 52" books that I have read out of the water? After waiting months for the release of the first issue, 'Batwoman' has finally arrived; and boy does she know how to make an entrance!

The Good

What wasn't good about this issue? The relaunch of Batwoman maintains the same tone as the previous series, demonstrating that the book (at least the first issue in) can still be good even without the blessing of Greg Rucka. Evidently, artist/writer J.H. Williams III took a page from Rucka's Batwoman series and has managed to apply the same mystery and suspense to Batwoman #1 as Rucka did when he first crafted Kate Kane. What fans get is an edge of your seat thrilling book with art that will leave the reader breathless. Each page out of Batwoman #1 deserves to be blown up and get it's very own spot on my wall. It's that beautiful. There's certainly a tinge of horror in the first issue, and Williams manages to successfully merge mysticism with mystery. Kate's personality doesn't change here, either, and she very boldly asks makes her move on Detective Sawyer.

Reader will also notice some very familiar faces; Kane's father makes a brief appearance and Kate will be teaming up throughout the series with former Teen Titan Flamebird. The banter between the two characters is very fun, and both ladies bring a ton of sass (and class) to the issue. Also, can I just say I kind of love Kate's short bob and tattoos? She oozes cool.

The villain is very interesting, and her interaction with a certain important figure in Gotham crime-fighting is also important to note. It's nice to know that "he" speaks to Kate with a certain level of respect...like an equal.

The Bad

Nothing really bad here.

The Verdict

This is a fantastic jumping on point for new readers. While the first issue does manage to allude to certain events that occurred in the first series, it's written in a very accessible way that will allow new readers to just dive in. Kate makes Batgirl look, well, amateurish. The tone of this series is definitely more refined and I haven't read a female character driven book that is as bold, brash, sassy and exciting as this one. Kate is just damn cool.

39 Comments

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KainScion

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Edited By KainScion

this chicks whiter than paper. looks like a walking corpse.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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Edited By Jonny_Anonymous

THE best Batbook of the New 52, if you have not read this then you MUST pick it up.

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Aeroman

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Edited By Aeroman

love the detective comics run on batwoman and thank god i got this issue

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ElCapitan

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Edited By ElCapitan

It's pedantic, I know, but I was annoyed by what felt like bad Spanish. That tiny quibble aside, this book is beautifully drawn (almost too visually dense) and beautifully written. Definitely worth the money.

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iaconpoint

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Edited By iaconpoint

So, is every female in the GCPD plus half of the rest of the women in Gotham gay?

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Decept-O

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Edited By Decept-O

I passed this up today and boy do I regret it! The cover alone is stupendous.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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Edited By Jonny_Anonymous
@iaconpoint said:

So, is every female in the GCPD plus half of the rest of the women in Gotham gay?

So by every do you mean two?
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fenixREVOLUTION

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Edited By fenixREVOLUTION

So, out of the books I got, this was my book of the week. I missed this art something fierce and Williams sets up a pretty good story here. I was a little scared of how Kate would be written after Rucka left her, but I now have faith she's in good familiar hands. Nothing bad to say about this one, except issue 2 is 30 days away.

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No_Name_

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Edited By No_Name_

@el33tcapitan said:

It's pedantic, I know, but I was annoyed by what felt like bad Spanish. That tiny quibble aside, this book is beautifully drawn (almost too visually dense) and beautifully written. Definitely worth the money.

That bothered me as well. I tried to brush it aside though! Wasn't sure if it was worth mentioning! Glad I wasn't the only one that caught it. :)

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astrid12

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Edited By astrid12

I wanted to pick this one but they were sold out! I go on ebay to try and find a copy and WHAM! they're like 10 dollars...T.T I need to add this to my pull-list...

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RareCheshire

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Edited By RareCheshire

I love the art in this book, very beautiful.

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ElCapitan

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Edited By ElCapitan

@Babs: It's only annoying because America is increasingly Hispanic and if JH Williams wanted to make sure he got it right it wouldn't have been that hard (especially if he still lives in New Mexico).

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longbowhunter

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Edited By longbowhunter

It feels so good to have Kate Kane back. This was the best of the new 52 I've read this week. Seeing Maggie Sawyer was a plus too! Hope to see more familiar faces from Gotham Central.

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No_Name_

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Edited By No_Name_

@el33tcapitan said:

@Babs: It's only annoying because America is increasingly Hispanic and if JH Williams wanted to make sure he got it right it wouldn't have been that hard (especially if he still lives in New Mexico).

I blame the editor. They also had like, nine months to fix it since the book was on hiatus. I totally get where you're coming from.

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doordoor123

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Edited By doordoor123

I wasn't too ecstatic because I know it'll only get better from here. I'm really excited to see Alice again. She's one of my top villains.

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CombatSpoon86

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Edited By CombatSpoon86

Yes can't wait to read this. I choose this over Batgirl for monthly single pickup.

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Daveyo520

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Edited By Daveyo520

I will pick this and Spider Man up tomorrow. I probably should have got this instead of Red Lanterns.

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B'Town

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Edited By B'Town

@iaconpoint said:

So, is every female in the GCPD plus half of the rest of the women in Gotham gay?

I sure hope so! :D

Edit to add:

@Babs: I am so EXCITED about this book Sara, thank you so much for the review! Absolutely BEAUTIFUL.

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TheBlackHood

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Edited By TheBlackHood

I loved this issue, the only thing I had problems with was the Memento / Pulp Fiction / Fear and Loathing style of story telling. It seemed as if each turn of the page took place in a different period of time, added to this the cool, but unconventional setup of the layout and it is REALLY not easy for new readers to pick up. I loved the issue, but the goal was to attract new readers, I don't think this would attract anyone new who wasn't on mushrooms.

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damswedon

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Edited By damswedon

I can't really say why but I did not like this issue at all. Once I was done reading it I had decided that I never want to read another issue again.

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mrzero1982pt2

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Edited By mrzero1982pt2

it was the employees pick at my local comic shop, had to get it!

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InnerVenom123

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Edited By InnerVenom123

@iaconpoint said:

So, is every female in the GCPD plus half of the rest of the women in Gotham gay?

Yes, just like how every man in Gotham is gay. How did you know?

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iaconpoint

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Edited By iaconpoint

@B'Town said:

@iaconpoint said:

So, is every female in the GCPD plus half of the rest of the women in Gotham gay?

I sure hope so! :D

Edit to add:

@Babs: I am so EXCITED about this book Sara, thank you so much for the review! Absolutely BEAUTIFUL.

Nooo! Haha, save us dudes a few. (Sorry to double post you btw)

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Booster_Bronze

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Edited By Booster_Bronze

I was skeptical about this one but I picked it up nontheless to give it a try. The only way I can describe the artwork and frame layout is "hauntingly beautiful." It was better than I thought it would be and I'm thinking of giving it a few more issues to see if it grows on me. I like the Noir-ish feeling to it as well. Only question I have is:

Is Agent Chase actually Chase Meridian? (The character Nicole Kidman played in Batman Forever?)
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TheOptimist

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Edited By TheOptimist

@Booster_Bronze: Cameron Chase, government agent of the DEO. She appeared quite a lot in the Manhunter series, where she had plenty of character development, but all you really need to know in terms of history is that she works for a department that checks up on and investigates superheroes or metahumans of interest.

"Each page out of Batwoman #1 deserves to be blown up and get it's very own spot on my wall."

Agreed, who do we need to campaign to for this to happen?

"She oozes cool."

God, doesn't she just? She seems like that beyond bounds cool kid that you just want to notice you, because if she noticed you, that means you might be cool enough to be worthy to exist.

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BoOMbOoMpOw

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Edited By BoOMbOoMpOw

I`m so happy this ongoing is as good or maybe even better than her run in detective comics. I was really afraid they mess her up in the ongoing :D

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Abriel

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Edited By Abriel

This was my first time reading Batwoman and I plucked it off comixology just to give it a try. I'm glad I did. I really liked it and it's made me want to go pick up the trade I've seen on sale at my comic store. The art was great and after the disappointing issue of Batgirl this was refreshing. One question though: Why is she so pale? I thought it had to be a coloring error but then I realized that she is the only character whose skin looks like that. I'm not complaining I'm just curious. Skin condition? I'm extremely pale too but then I'm a Goth and I avoid the sun like the plague :P

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Booster_Bronze

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Edited By Booster_Bronze

@TheOptimist: Ahh thank you for the clarification Optimist.

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Daveyo520

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Edited By Daveyo520

Made up for my mistake of yesterday and picked it up. Very pretty, love that cover.

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Scodiac

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Edited By Scodiac

Easily one of my favorite running comics at the moment.

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blackkitty

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Edited By blackkitty

Okay, yes, I do like the book. I'm just confused by the teen titans now. If Vic was never a member and it appears they are resetting the book...how was Flamebird a member?

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Comeback_Kal

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Edited By Comeback_Kal

The art was admittedly beautiful - I especially loved those first few pages with the haunting - but the story really wasn't newcomer friendly. I felt like they tried to explain things that happened in the past, but the dialogue ended up feeling like forced exposition, especially the scene with her father. I know all of the 52 issues aren't mean to be true #1s, but you know, still a bit of a disappointment.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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Edited By Jonny_Anonymous
@blackkitty said:

Okay, yes, I do like the book. I'm just confused by the teen titans now. If Vic was never a member and it appears they are resetting the book...how was Flamebird a member?

There not resetting TT, its just the first time for THIS version of the teen titans. 
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Knight Train

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Edited By Knight Train

@TheBlackHood: I disagree, I loved the no-sequitur style storytelling. I know nothing about Batwoman (could've sworn she was some fever dream) but i ate this issue up. I know the mysteries will be solved as that is the point of a first issue; to keep you reading.

And by god is that art amazing, best issue visually so far

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Christina

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Edited By Christina

@damswedon said:

I can't really say why but I did not like this issue at all. Once I was done reading it I had decided that I never want to read another issue again.

You know what, I totally agree. I didn't enjoy this issue at all, I actually found it a little difficult to read. I might go for the next few to give it a chance though.

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Green ankh

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Edited By Green ankh

not only did i find this to be one of the best 52 titles yet...but one of the best books i have read in a long time.

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JonesDeini

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Edited By JonesDeini

@Babs said:

@el33tcapitan said:

It's pedantic, I know, but I was annoyed by what felt like bad Spanish. That tiny quibble aside, this book is beautifully drawn (almost too visually dense) and beautifully written. Definitely worth the money.

That bothered me as well. I tried to brush it aside though! Wasn't sure if it was worth mentioning! Glad I wasn't the only one that caught it. :)

Nope it wasn't just you two. Stuff like that always irks me.

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Eyz

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Edited By Eyz

Finally! Years in the making! and it's finally here!

I wish Rene Montoya!Question will show up on this book later on, keeping her the current Question that way :)

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ChernobylCow

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Edited By ChernobylCow

I've picked up a large majority of the new 52 and I have to say that this series is the one that interests me the most and actually has me excited about comics.

The hero: first of all, I'm just interested to see where she'll go. She has past & current love interests, she's got daddy issues, and hell she's even a mentor, teaching Flamebird the ropes (again?). There is a background plot involving Director Bones and the DEO. After reading about the DEO it seems that they have very little background so this plot line adds a very nice layer of mystery potential to the series (and its accomplished over 2 pages). I don't find the La Llorona threat to be the most interesting case in the world but it is definitely mysterious in a BPRD sort of sense

The art is hands down the best of any issue of the new 52 releases

The weakest part of the book is this two page spread. I've never read Batwoman before and no next to nothing about the character so I immediately hopped on wiki pages to get a little bit more background on her and others like flamebird and director bones. My problem with this 2-page spread is that it just tries to convey way too much information. a) argument with father, b) death of mother and sister (?) c) career in the army d) new life as batwoman e) battle with her evil sister.

But despite all of that its hard to fault Williams and Blackman because it's just pretty ambitious. Compared to something like Wonder Woman #1 that gives us NO information about its heroes this single issue gives us a ton of information and a lot to look forward to in the future.