DC Showcase (Part 5): Catwoman

Hello, my friends.  Hard to believe, but we’ve reached the end.  Welcome to the final entry of the mini-review series known as…

DC Showcase!

It’s about time that a woman takes the spotlight around here.  Everyone’s favorite feline fatale is ready to close this series out in a short simply known as…

Our Title Card!

Originally released on October 18, 2011, this film served as a bonus feature for “Batman: Year One”.  Unlike the rest of the shorts which were directed by Joaquim Dos Santos, this one was under the conduction of Lauren Montgomery.  As such, let’s close out the DC Showcase on a “Purr-Fect” note.

A Chase To Open Things!

We open in Gotham City where a cat is getting chased by two thugs.  They open fire on the feline as it’s pursued onto a bridge before the oncoming traffic ultimately forces it off the side.  With their target seemingly dead, the brutes are picked up in a limo by their boss.

Catwoman-A Most Peculiar Collar! Catwoman-I'm You Savior, Kitty!

Fortunately, Selina Kyle a.k.a. Catwoman (voiced by Eliza Dushku) was following the chase from the roof and was hiding out underneath the bridge where she discreetly saved the cat.  After noticing something very familiar about the collar (which is actually a bracelet), the scene ends with her asking the feline on how (and where) it acquired its accessory.

After getting informed that a boat will be arriving fairly soon so that he can take care of some illegal business, the crime boss named Roughcut (voiced by John DiMaggio) arrives at a strip club called the Kitty Corner.  Upon entering, he and his men see the main strip act going on by a woman named Buttermilk Skye (voiced by Tara Strong).  Upon the conclusion of her striptease act where she takes off her top, Roughcut rewards her with a small diamond.

Lily-Roughcut's Back! Catwoman-You Two Ladies Deserve A Break!

Upon returning to the dressing room, she shows off the valuable rock to her fellow stripper Lily (voiced by Cree Summer).  Already aware of Roughcut’s smuggling operation, she tells Buttermilk about another one of their stripmates named Maggie who received a similar diamond a week ago but hasn’t been seen since.  The scene ends with Catwoman bursting in to take over for them.

Catwoman-Let The Misleading Seduction Begin! Catwoman-Whip It Good!

As such, she pretends to be the next striptease act as she flaunts herself in front of Roughcut and his men.  Thankfully, the thugs think that she’s not the actual Catwoman and just another stripper.  Shortly after bringing out her whip, Selina starts to attack the goons.

Using her signature weapon to snatch up one of the thug’s handguns, Catwoman starts firing it at the ceiling in order to get the patrons and waitresses out.  She then interrogates Roughcut and demands to know where he acquired the bracelet.  Instead, he manages to escape her grasp and starts firing his handgun, forcing Selina to take cover.

Catwoman-Let's Ride! Catwoman-The Chase Is On!

After Roughcut speeds off in his limo, Catwoman steals a motorcycle from a random guy as they partake in a chase scene.  He tries gunning down his pursuer and even shoots out a few big trucks to try and slow her down, but Selina evades the bullet barrage as she manages to keep pace.

Upon reaching a truck carrying various propane tanks, Catwoman whips them out towards the limo.  However, Roughcut fires his handgun at one of the remaining tanks.  Because Selina was too close, the explosion knocks her off the motorcycle and onto the street.  Fortunately, she whips onto a tanker to regain some ground.

Catwoman-Begin Final Battle! Catwoman-Whip It Good! (2)

Upon reaching the docks, Catwoman manages to scope out and find her target.  She begins her fight with Roughcut, but his brute strength starts to get the best of her where he even rips off a car door and throws it, which manages to hit her through a window.

Catwoman-She's Become The Hunted! (2) Catwoman-Elusive As Ever!

Even worse, Selina is forced to run for her life as Roughcut pursues her in a craned truck.  With her agility keeping the massive vehicle at bay, the chase starts to make its way down the pier.

Roughcut-Busted By The Kneecaps! Catwoman-Gettin' The Squeeze In The Final Fight!

Catwoman ultimately manages to smash into Roughcut where they proceed to fight.  During the tussle, Selina activate a lever which drops the truck’s hook.  Unbeknownst to him, the ship had finally arrived at the docks.

Using her whip, Catwoman manages to escape just before the hook latches onto a mooring structure.  This causes the craned truck to flip into the air towards the boat.  Those aboard the vessel saw it coming and managed to get far enough away for the vehicle to fall into the water and kill Roughcut.  However, the cable snaps and severely whips the ship in half, causing it to sink.

Afterwards, Catwoman opens up one of the crates to discover several women that were enslaved into the human trafficking business.  Among those ladies was Selina’s young friend named Holly Robinson (voiced by Liliana Mumy) who was originally going to do some traveling, but didn’t have the necessary money.  As such, Catwoman gives her some of Roughcut’s diamonds that she can exchange for the cash she needs.  And so, the film ends with Selina heading off back into the city.

Catwoman-Locked In Final Battle!

As far as the story goes, it mainly competent.  Selina’s search for her friend leads her into discovering (and stopping) a piece of criminal activity.  There isn’t any major moment happening for Catwoman that I’m able to analyze, so all I can say about our hero and villain is that they’ve got a basic form of character development.  However, I will briefly touch up on their two main voices.  Eliza Dushku does a nice job in her leading lady role.  She projects a very sensual tone, allowing Catwoman to flaunt her sexual charm.  She also expresses a certain amount of confidence that allows Selina to talk in certain levels of fierceness.  Also, John DiMaggio does a good job with the material he’s given.  He’s gruff, serious, and brings a decent amount of respect & command in his two-dimensional role of a crime boss.  The animation is very fluent, displaying seemless movement throughout the film as the main characters worked their way throughout the short.  Finally, the action set pieces do a fairly good job at doing their purpose.  The chase scene is the highlight of that particular category as it maintains a thrilling pace throughout.  With the physique difference, it forces Selina to think of other ways to defeat Roughcut, which is always a plus for the main character.

Catwoman-On Her Guard!

Overall, this is a decently good flick.  While it lacks any reasonable character depth, the actors make up for that with their performances.  The animation is solid, the action is thrilling and the story is fairly straightforward.  If the feline fatale ever peaks your interest, check it out and watch her prowl.

With that, we’ve reached the end of the DC Showcase.  It was fun looking at all five entries and seeing various characters getting their moment in the sun.  Here’s hoping that this is brought back, so that more of DC’s heroes and villains get some recognition, if only for 12-15 minutes.

Catwoman (created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger) is owned by DC Comics.

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