Writer Marguerite Bennett
Artist Fernando Blanco
Colorist John Rauch
Letterer Deron Bennett
Cover by Dan Panosian
Variant cover by Michael Cho
Time is literally counting down for Renee Montoya, as a cold case heats up an old flame when Batwoman and Renee decide to work together to figure out who is behind this new operation in Gotham.
Time is a major focus in this issue, with several time based metaphors and plenty of witty clock puns scattered throughout the beautiful pages of this book. In this issue Kate Kane has a desire to let the past be the past, as she works her hardest to make things right in the present and builds towards a brighter future then the one she was recently shown in Detective Comics. A future where she decides her own fate.
Fate and destiny are a tricky thing though, as even when you can see the strings, you can only pull them so much, and with Batwoman coming to Renee’s rescue we see that some people are meant to be together, whether they know it or not.
Throughout this journey we see how much these two truly care about each other, when Batwoman is struck by a clockwork automaton you can see in Renee’s face how scared she was for Kate and how determined she was to help take down the automaton. I really enjoyed the playful and cute back and forth dialogue between the two and found it adorable everytime Batwoman smiled lovingly at Renee. Even more so when Kate started listening to music Renee had mentioned and becomes her ringtone for Kate.
The color palette in this issue was on full display with the use of beautiful pastels balanced with dark shadowing and attention to detail in the panels. I loved the style of Batwoman’s flowing red hair, even if it is a wig, and Kate’s piercing green eyes really popped out in the panels that take place in the past. My favorite panel is right after Renee and Batwoman take down a clockwork automaton, and the two are sitting next to each other, exhausted and tired but happy to be there together. I enjoyed it because you got to see the two relax and be themselves.
Ultimately I felt that writer Marguerite Bennett has a deep love and understanding of Batwoman and Renee Montoya, and she has a great sense of how their relationship works. I found it fantastic to read a mainstream comic book that features a LGBTQ relationship that feels organic and real.
I liked hearing Batwoman’s take on how Batman feels after Batman #50, and how his state of mind has affected the way the Bat Family functions. The fashion designs in this issue are gorgeous as well. The highlight to me being Renee’s stunning white dress with blue face mask and matching blue heels she wore to the ball, and Kate’s red suit with matching red mask definitely made a powerful statement too.
This issue of Batwoman was my first experience reading the character in her solo run, and I’m very happy that I did because what I found was a strong, beautiful and confident woman, a positive role model for the LGBTQ community, a well crafted mystery written with love for the characters and artwork that ties the bow all together.
I give Batwoman #17 “The Time of Your Life” a 9 out of 10
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