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DC Brings Back Catwoman's Hispanic Roots in New Era | Screen Rant

Major Spoilers for Catwoman: Lonely City Ahead!

Cliff Chiang is with DC Comics yet again, writing and drawing Catwoman: Lonely City for Black Label, which sets a 55-year-old Selina Kyle returning to a new Gotham City. Governed by Mayor Harvey Dent, the new Gotham is better than ever at handling crime and corruption. It ironically has to do with the outlawing of costumed vigilantes like Batman. Chiang proves he's not just a talented artist but a great writer as well, as he dives deep into Selina Kyle with a new, self-reflective narrative.

Selina Kyle is clearly past her prime as she ponders her days as Catwoman. She revisits familiar characters like Barbara Gordon, Penguin, and Killer Croc, while still holding on to Batman's death. Even though she blames herself for letting him die on the mysterious "Fool's Day," she wants to continue Bruce's final wishes: retrieving something from the Batcave that could save Gotham. Eventually, Catwoman comes out of retirement with an unpredictable, reptilian alliance. She and Killer Croc head to finish Batman's mission, planning to break into the Batcave.

Related: Michelle Pfeiffer's Catwoman Stars In Stunning Batman '89 Cover Art

Right when she gets out of Blackgate, Selina Kyle immediately heads back to her penthouse. On the way there, a Batman-looking police officer stops her, scanning her facial data. The officer's HUD displays Catwoman as a White, Hispanic female. Although it might seem like an insignificant detail, this confirmation calls back to older Catwoman comics from the 90s. The story of Selina Kyle's parents appears in Catwoman #81, by Bronwyn Carlton and Staz Johnson. Selina Kyle's mother, Maria Kyle, is a Cuban woman who marries Brian Kyle, an Irish American. Due to harsh circumstances, economic problems, and a toxic relationship, Selina finds her mother in a bathtub and her father on the couch—both dead. This tragedy leads Selina to pursue her early career as a Gotham street thief.

Not only does this make Selina Kyle Latin American, but an Irish American as well. Her roots are further confirmed in Catwoman #89 by Carlton, Johnson, and Craig Rousseau. Harley Quinn, disguising herself as her old persona Dr. Harleen Quinzel, sells Catwoman's origin to a television network. Harley confirms that her "dad is Irish" and "her mom's Cuban or something." In the end, the television network decides to change Selina's childhood for dramatization, causing Harley to kill them all with laughing gas. It seems Harley Quinn is genuine about her fellow Gotham City Siren's identity, even though she is notorious for being a mischievous trickster.

Chiang's story is off to a great start so far, placing a lot of sympathy for the DC Comics feline thief. Catwoman: Lonely City might be the most mature story for the character ever. Like Graham Nolan and Chuck Dixon did in the 90s with Bane, it's excellent to see another DC Comics character subtly representing Hispanic Heritage. Thanks to Chiang, Selina Kyle not only gets a great new story, but she also represents more diverse audiences.

More: Why the '60s Batman TV Show Had 3 Different Actresses Play Catwoman

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