Wednesday, 20 January 2016
Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death #1 Review (Amy Chu, Clay Mann)
Like Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy/Pamela Isley is another female Batman villain who’s been given her own title because she’s apparently a good person now. And, also like Harley, the creators behind Ivy aren’t quite sure what to do with her.
Writer Amy Chu is quick to make familiar connections for the audience. The kids from Gotham Academy cameo on a field trip to Pamela’s new lab, funded by the Wayne Foundation, followed shortly by Harley. Other than that, there’s not much of a story, though the final page reveals the story direction the series is headed in.
Besides glossing over how and why Ivy’s now intent on being good, there’s talk about new life-extending research - because, on top of overpopulation, we now need everyone living twice as long? Not exactly good for The Green, Ivy! Since when did she choose humans over plants anyway?
I suppose Ivy does steal the “living fossil” from Southern Angola by taking it from its natural environment back to Gotham, so there’s a little bit of bad still in her. We’re also shown that Ivy’s a tough cookie, in case new readers weren’t aware of that, beating up some diamond-trafficking thugs in Angola with her plant powers and then kicking in some bar jerks with Harley. We’re also reminded she and Harley are a couple because that’s not mentioned every single time they’re together!
Artist Clay Mann shows off Ivy and Harley’s curves whenever he can with some sharp inks from (I’m assuming his brother) Seth Mann and some fine colours from Ulises Arreola. The artwork’s not that special but it’s decent.
Poison Ivy #1 is not a terribly impressive first issue. Though Chu firmly ensconces Ivy within Batman’s world, she doesn’t make a great case for why she should have her own book. I’m glad DC are bringing in more female creators and female main characters but, equality quotas aside, I’d like to read more quality DC comics - judging by this dull first issue, this series unfortunately doesn’t look to be one of them.
Poison Ivy: Cylce of Life and Death #1