This tweet alerted many of us that we were to expect a Julie Newmar based Catwoman story in the, then-upcoming, comic Catwoman: 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular
Initially the comic was to be released physically and digitally on 15th April 2020.
The digital release was postponed to 29th April 2020, and then postponed again to 3rd June 2020 this time along with the physical release.
My kindle release downloading today, 2nd June 2020.
On the physical side of things since its initial announcement there are now 21 different covers intended for this comic. A regular cover, a blank variant cover and variant covers for each decade from the 1940s up to and including the 2010s, also the retailer KRS comics has an exclusive variant and a virgin (no words, no barcode) version of that variant too. The Comic Mint also has their own variant limited to a release of only 2000, in addition to those J Scott Campbell (who did the 1960s variant) has an additional 8 of his own variants for this comic.
Left Image: 1960s Variant by J Scott Campbell, Right Image: 1 of 8 J Scott Campbell Exclusive Variants, also 1960s based
It has been announced that Catwoman: 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular will be featured in the intended, “Batman Family 80th Anniversary Collection”, currently due out on 20th October 2020.
Prior to the story/comic’s release Jonathan Case (Art, Colours and Letters) auctioned off his story’s 18×24 splash page for the benefit of Book Industry Charitable Foundation (aka binc foundation)
“The Catwoman of Earth” Story Information (Non-Spoiler)
This story is 8 pages long. Story by Jeff Parker and Art, Colours and Letters by Jonathan Case. The story is called “The Catwoman of Earth”.
Although a fraction of the size of a normal comic, and although a part of a larger collection of Batman related, more specifically, Catwoman related, stories, this is the closest thing to a new Batman 66 comic since the Archie Meets Batman 66 six issue mini series ended on 9th January 2019.
Interestingly this is also the first new Batman 66 comic story released that hasn’t been part of a crossover, since the Main run ended on 16th December 2015 with Issue 30.
Jeff Parker has written many of the Batman 66 comics’ stories from both its main run and its run of crossover comics.
Jonathan Case has also previously provided the art and/or colouring for many of the stories from the Batman 66 comics during its main run.
Throughout the comic there are images from, or representing, various decades of Catwoman’s history. Interestingly, one of the images used to represent the 1960s is an image from Batman 66 Issue 11, appropriately, also by Jonathan Case.
“The Catwoman of Earth” Story Information (Spoiler/Story Points)
Before release, and also before release dates had been pushed back, a 4 page preview was released on DC Comics Twitter page back on 16th March 2020
Though not acknowledged in the story, this is the first new story set in the world of Batman 66 since the Crisis on Infinite Earths TV crossover event.
Although set the TV series was set in 1966-1968, (Decades before the TV event Crisis on Infinite Earths), when the multiverse was reborn at the end of Crisis on Infinite Earths, the histories of various worlds changed (from the dawn of time onwards) and whilst nothing in this story contradicts what has come before, it could be the first story set “Post-Crisis”. (Though I have expressed before that I believe the Batman 66 Meets Wonder Woman 77 mini series would have to be a Post-Crisis story in my 12 seconds on Earth 66 blog post )
In this story Catwoman is looking to loot the patrons at the science fair. She knows it is ripe for the taking because if Batman were in town he’d most certainly attend a science fair! We are alerted by Professor Overbeck’s UFO alert machine that there are Alien visitors coming. The Aliens from the planet Oobysku come to greet the humans, and quickly assess them as inferior due to their estimations of the future at the science fair and their use of primitive projectile weapons! They even bandy around the idea of renaming places on Earth in their own image, so assured of their success!
The female alien, Zyla, is amazed by Catwoman’s outfit and wonders whether the humans could make one for her.
Catwoman has had just about enough of the aliens insults and assumptions and when the aliens state that Earth is defenceless, Catwoman stands up to them and states that the Earth is under the protection of Catwoman!
The male aliens are amazed that the humans, Catwoman in particular, don’t realise that a “Femoid” needs permission to speak, Zyla affirming this to be true.
When one of them is instructed to take out Catwoman, they find out that Catwoman is more than a match for them.
After dealing with the male aliens, and leaving them for the police, Catwoman is actually offered the loot she was going to steal, which she then refuses, surmising that simply being handed it just feels wrong.
With Catwoman under the assumption she is about to be arrested, Zyla tells Catwoman that she is able to fly the saucer, and the story ends with the two of them about to fly off to Zyluvia, erm….I mean Europe!
Though we have had a few Batman 66 comics stories without Batman and/or Robin, such as the Catwoman focused “Tail of the Tiger Topaz” from Batman 66 Issue 5, which Batgirl also appeared in, this is the first where none of the terrific trio of Batman, Robin and/or Batgirl appear at all, and where the solitary main character is one of the traditional villains!
A fun short story, again showing us one of Catwoman’s occasional turns to the light side! Something we have seen a few times now but that’s always interesting to see. Perfectly in-keeping with the tone of the show as expected. Catwoman’s refusal of the loot shows her weird sense of right and wrong brilliantly.
I wonder where Batman was during all this? Is Batman nonethewiser? Whether this was a one off or the start of more/new Batman 66 comics’ stories to come I am glad we got to see one more story involving Julie Newmar’s Catwoman.