Catwoman: Wild Ride
by Ed Brubaker, Cameron Stewart
(DC Comics, 2005)

Catwoman needs a vacation.

After the grim turn of events in the preceding Relentless story arc, Selina Kyle and her young friend/honorary sidekick Holly are in desperate need of a break. So, in the best Thelma & Louise tradition, they heist a car and hit the road. But, when Catwoman's involved, you can count on more than a breath of fresh air and a change of scenery.

The first stop on their agenda is rural New York, where Ted "Wildcat" Grant gives Holly a crash course in brawling; meanwhile, Catwoman and Wildcat break up a burglary and end up battling a group of self-immolating Egyptian cat-god worshippers. In Keystone City, Selina doesn't encounter the Flash, but she does run into one of the Rogues. Captain Cold has information she needs, but he requires an exchange of services first. Then, a late-night diner stop turns into a hostage situation.

In Opal City, under the shadow of a statue honoring the original Starman, Selina meets an old "friend," a criminal she sprang from jail but who refused to follow her to freedom. Then, in St. Roch, Wildcat, Hawkman and Hawkgirl provide an assist.

Meanwhile, back in Gotham, two of Selina's paramours -- Slam Bradley and Batman -- settle their differences with knuckles and blood.

Wild Ride is certainly light-hearted when compared to Relentless. And thank god! Selina Kyle isn't a Sad Sack; she shouldn't have misfortune heaped on her head at every turn. After a sequence as dark and disturbing as Relentless, Wild Ride is just what the doctor ordered.

by Tom Knapp
6 May 2006

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