Normally I’d wait for my fangirl filled post on Friday, but I had some thoughts I’d like to expand on specifically for Black Cat (and those thoughts aren’t exactly fangirling. XD). Plus, I feel like I’m making a point that scenes are subjective when it comes to fiction and literature. :D
Spoilers below – but I’m sure you’ve guessed that.
We’ll set the stage a little, I like Black Cat.
I liked her when she was on Spider-man the Animated Series, and I loved her in Spectacular Spider-man. Don’t read read marvel comics save for some stuff on sale at Comixology, so I have no idea what she’s like there, but it was enough that I owned a figurine of her at one point in time (and heaven help me if I could find the thing… *got packed away never to be seen again during a move*).
So, when I saw Comixology got “Amazing Spider-Man Presents: Black Cat” four issue mini-series – my interest was peaked. I held out for a little while though, until I picked up two issues of a non-related series and went “What the hell, why not?”
I was browsing through the first one and after getting through the first half, I started wondering”Huh, this artwork looks familiar.” and then BAM! It hit me.
Tangent about current controversy surrounding Starfire & Catwoman until actual thoughts on comic here:
This was the issue that article that’s been circling around lately cited as a good example of how an empowered woman has sex with the mask on! (No joke, I hadn’t made the connection between the article and the comic I had in my shopping basket unit I read that particular scene; comics are a big world, what were the chances? XD)
This is the quote for future reference (On the article it’s about 15 paragraph blocks down, just under the scan of old!Starfire image:
“Conversely, if you would like to see an example of an extremely well-done superhero sex scene, check out the Spider-Man/Black Cat hookup from Amazing Spider-Man Present Black Cat #1 by Jen Van Meter and Javier Pulido, where Felicia is presented as a tough, sexy lady who knows what she wants sexually and unapologetically goes out to get it. Visually, the morning after is presented on a level playing field with Spider-Man hilariously hanging out in his boxers. Note: This is also a scene where the two superheroes have sex without knowing each other’s real identities, and yet it couldn’t feel more different from how that happens in Catwoman.”
I will agree with that last statement. These two approaches to sex in comics could not have been any different.
The sex scene in Catwoman? I thought it was ridiculously sweet – like I want a cup of cocoa and a warm blanket sweet. The moment she said “Tonight, I think it’s because I need him.” I got warm fuzzies. Everyone seems to be cutting out the pages just before that final scene that establish Batman is someone Catwoman cares about and can depend on to be there for her when she needs him. There was emotion, need and feeling there- it was endearing.
The sex in Red Hood? Total opposite of Catwoman? Casual and Crass? Yes, yes it was. Did it make me laugh? Yes. This isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, I get that. It made me laugh though, first and foremost (which looked to be the point), so it had that going for it as a redeeming feature in an otherwise ‘could have done without that’ scene.
The sex in Black Cat #1? It was just sort of….there. Honestly, it felt creepy and forced. Much like Red Hood, it was a cut away scene – Black Cat hints at an unoccupied building, and then next scene we see they’re both getting dressed talking about work like nothing happened. And I’m sorry, but the line “I got what I was really after tonight,” just sounds stalker-ish to me. Don’t get me wrong, Black Cat’s always been aggressive about Spider-man, and that never bugged me before, but this was…I’m really not sure how to put it into words. But this almost seems worse than Red Hood & The Outlaws’ Starfire if only because there’s actual feelings between these two characters and it still comes out feeling empty.
Tangent End. Thoughts on the comic here:
Take out all the Spider-man scenes and we’d be golden.
I think part of the problem, is this issue wasn’t completely self contained. It felt like there was something else going on with Spider-man in another comic and since I did not own those issues….I had no idea what was going on with him. Maybe this is normal for comics, but I feel like a mini-series shouldn’t require a complementary set of comics to understand what’s going on.
In addition, their relationship troubles just seemed like a tease. You get tiny glimpses of them and then move on without any real resolution until the very last page…where it seems like it happened too quickly/easily. It was a little disjointed and part of me wishes I knew more about the canon universe in which this takes place because I’m wondering where the heck Mary Jane is (that probably dates me somehow. XD)
My only exception would be the last scene between Black Cat & Spider-Man which got a grin when Spidey started mimicking a southern bell (or whatever). This was probably the first scene in the book where the two seemed to have actual chemistry instead of the fight they had going on during the entire issue.
The artwork was okay (not really my first choice, but there was a scene here or there that looked great), and the storyline was interesting enough. Black Cat fighting to save her mother was fun, at least, and the thieving scenes were…I may have to re-read this comic.
How sad is that? I forgot most of what I read already (and it was only just last night), save for a few key scenes. I found myself skimming the dialogue in a lot of places, which is what I tend to do when stuff starts to bore me. It was good enough, though, that I might force myself to re-read it later.
Final verdict: I’d probably still buy it again after reading the issues.