A familiar member of the Batman universe is returning in a big way. Batwoman, bad ass heroine, and queer icon will be returning to publication in a solo, monthly series called Batwoman: Rebirth, followed by Batwoman #1.
Katherine Kane, alias Batwoman, was introduced back in 1956, by Edmond Hamilton and Sheldon Moldoff, as a love interest for Batman, which DC hoped would squash rumors that Batman, their poster boy, was a homosexual (after the very controversial Seduction of the Innocent). She was also part of a plan to expand the Batman universe with the addition of more supporting characters. Her run was short –lived, however, and she was removed (along with other “non-essential characters”) from Batman comics in 1964, and the later publication Crisis on Infinite Earths retroactively eliminated her from existence in the Batman universe.
Kane was reintroduced in 2006 as a lesbian to help increase representation within the brand and since then she’s become something of a symbol for the comic-loving LGBTQ+ community. Considering her past purpose of eliminating rumors of a gay Batman, this was actually a major turnaround for DC and their handling of homosexuality in comics. She also recently served as a mentor of sorts to other supporting characters in the universe, training Spoiler, Orphan, Clayface, Red Robin, and even Nightwing. In her latest revamp, not only will this favored queer woman be returning to publication, but the writer, Marguerite Bennette, is also a queer woman. It may not seem like much to the straight community, but to the LGBTQ+ readers, it means not only does their existence matter to DC, but they are being further validated by handing off their icon to one of their own. Bennette, thrilled with her new appointment, had this to say:
“There has never been a heroine I have loved more than Batwoman. Her flaws, her ferocity, her struggle to rise above her own history and find a way to serve the greater good and those she loves—she’s always cut me straight to the bone. To be a queer woman and to see a queer woman as not just a part but a pillar of the Bat-family was life changing, inspiring and gave me the courage to pursue this career in comics. The opportunity to add to Kate Kane’s story and legacy is both an honor and a sincere dream come true.”
Bennette is known for DC Comics Bombshells, Batgirl, and Earth 2: World’s End. She will be joined by artist Steve Epting, who worked on Aquaman over 15 years ago. Since then he’s been working on Marvel comics Avengers, Fantastic Four, and Captain America. Bennette will be starting her Batwoman journey with a two-issue story arc called Batwoman: Begins with James Tynion IV. Here’s a short synopsis from DC on what to expect:
Following the Night of the Monster Men, Batwoman and Batman discover that the venom from the defeated monsters’ corpses is being sold as a bioweapon. After Batwoman comes face to face with the villain responsible, Batman gives Batwoman a mission that takes her around the world, creating the backdrop for her new solo series in February.
The series sounds promising and Kane seems like she’s in good hands for her solo series. Fans can pick up the first issues in February.
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