We are coming to the end of the Balent era and the end of the decline on his art on Catwoman, but we’re not done yet. Especially without a little help and/or luck in solving a few of the remaining covers in the 70s part of his run. Below this week’s stumper (which I still can’t find the cat on, and the same with previous week’s stumpers issues #71 and #74), find – cats! cleavage! cats! and did I mention cats? Also Catwoman attempting to use her late Balent era chest as an underwater flotation device and plenty of the No Man’s Land crossover labeling.
I’ve noticed that a problem with many of the No Man’s Land covers is that they have large areas of rather flat space/colour and the rest of the cover is taken up by whatever is the main object of focus, whether Catwoman sitting on her own headstone or a plane going down with Catwoman attached. I don’t think Balent skipped hiding a cat on any covers, but ones like these make me doubt it a bit.
This week’s post contains a bonus cover in order to better divide up the remaining covers in the 70s (four for this post and three in the next one if I can finally sort the stumpers out 🙂 ), so, without further ado:
Catwoman #70, 1999, written by Devin Grayson and drawn by the ever-declining at this point Jim Balent:
This still isn’t as exploitative as the cover for issue one of the Her Sister’s Keeper four issue mini-series, but it still isn’t awesome and is rather out of place with the tone of the series. Then again, this is also at issue 70 out of 77 for Balent’s run and issue 70 out of 94 for her first solo series as a whole.
Catwoman #72, 1999, written by John Ostrander, drawn by Jim Balent, and plagued by the curse of the crossover events:
Catwoman is more than done with being in crossover events. She’s also probably fed up with the multiple broken bones and contortions involved in that pose. And with the tail on her costume inexplicably being back (especially since it was only the grey suit that had a tail when she originally got her suits).
Catwoman #73, 1999, written by John Ostrander and drawn by Jim Balent:
The 90s are almost over at this point, but apparently not super-serious dudes (and dudettes) out to vex Catwoman and use up large amounts of black ink to colour.
Catwoman #76, 2000, written by John Ostrander and drawn by Jim Balent:
She has whiskers ‘and’ a tail. And is being oddly cozy with Penguin. And also oddly inexpressive given how well Balent had drawn her earlier in her run. Also, he seems to have abandoned his basic knowledge of how breasts work.
And now for the answer key …
Make sure you’re ready …
Are you done looking and trying?
Okay, here you go!
There are a lot of live cats on this cover, but the hidden cat is actually a drawing on the front of the soda can that’s located next to the woman’s right hand.
It’s bubble time again, as the cat is hidden in the air stream next to the left hand of Catwoman’s opponent.
This cat is hidden on the edge of the lid for the crate behind Catwoman.
Balent seems to have had a lot of fun with this cover and his choice of hiding spots. There are multiple cats hidden in the drapes, although the most obvious one is on the drapes next to the Penguin.
As always, all images belong to their respective copyright holders and are used for fun review purposes only.