Following the controversy surrounding the first issue of the newly rebooted Catwoman series, part of DC Comics’ new 52, one would believe the follow up issue would be a bit more timid, or at the very least, less sexually charged. However, it appears that the intimate scene shared by Batman and Catwoman at the end of the first issue served only as foreplay.
The second issue opens with Batman and Catwoman in the throes of carnal indulgence, which Catwoman describes as “a lot like a bar fight.” The scene is shown in intimate detail, and illustrates a disturbing revelation that Batman is somewhat of an abusive partner. This can be determined by the fact that mid-coitus he apparently yells obscenities at Catwoman while throwing her around the room, bruising her, and choking her. Of course Catwoman is apparently into this, inferring a sort of S&M relationship between the two of them (all that leather suddenly makes sense), making their already strange relationship even more disturbing, because this means Batman basically lets Catwoman break the law and get away with it in exchange for rough sex.
As bothersome as this scene is, it does bring up an interesting question about the nature of Batman. That is, if Bruce Wayne sees Batman as a different persona, does he maintain this character in every aspect of life while in costume, even in a situation as personal and familiar as sex? Is Batman meant to be scary and intimidating in the boudoir, or is he only this way with Catwoman? Was Talia al Ghul thrown about the room in a similar manner during Damien’s conception, or is this “bar fight” style of love making meant to be representative of Batman’s conflicting emotions of love and disdain towards Catwoman?
- See a disturbing re-interpretation of this scene and more at The Mary Sue where part of my article is posted.