Monday, September 2, 2013
Why Kate Kane is Awesome
In my opinion there's no comparisons to be made for who the best female bat character is in the reboot. Barbara Gordon has lost a lot of her depth and even in guest appearances struggles to maintain importance. She either doesn't do anything or comes across as very unlikable. Sometimes both. Helena B. is gone leaving us with Helena Wayne as Huntress. This Helena likewise isn't so great to read about. Cass and Steph are gone so there's only one great female bat character around.
When Kate first appeared in 52 there wasn't much to her story. We knew she was Jewish, a former lover of Renee Montoyas', was rich and became Batwoman. She wasn't a well rounded character and it's easy to see a lot changed from 52. Kate's no longer the woman that Renee taught to throw a punch. Her tragic childhood trauma of her kidnapping, the murder of he mother and (assumed murder) of her sister help transform her into someone that needed a mission a life. She tried to follow her parents path only to be denied when she tried to stay truth to herself and her beliefs. Like Cassandra she saw the bat symbol as something to rally behind, it gave her a purpose. I still get chills reading her explaining this to her father when he learns of her nightly activities.
Her cast is likewise amazing starting with her father that does everything in his power to help her out. Where Jim Gordon wants to stay out of his daughter's night life Jacob is more than fine calling all his favors in to make sure his kid has the best training possible. He has moved on more than Kate as he remarried but he always knew there was something more to the kidnapping. Yet he kept in from Kate so she could move on. Bette does her pre-crisis counterpart proud by being the determined fighter that refuses to give up no matter what anyone says. The fact that her uncle Jake stays by her side and promises to train her only makes me love them more.
Kate also has a partner and hopefully so-to-be-wife in Maggie Sawyer. Their devotion and trust has developed into something special. Something that's not just rare in comics because of their sexuality but because happy couples aren't really around too much in general. At least at the moment. I think she's potentially the only bat that's in a stable relationship.
Then there's Alice, her lost twin sister Beth. A villain that's creepy but sympatric at once. Someone I rather read about than Joker, I simply can't read enough of her.
Batwoman thrives on her own not in the shadow of Batman and I wish DC would let other books under the bat banner follow the title's example. While she's the best female bat out there right now there's no denying the male bats could also learn a thing or two.