Catwoman: When In Rome – Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale

when in rome cover

Catwoman: When in Rome, may be my favorite of all the Loeb and Sale forays into the Batman universe. This six part mini-series tells the story of Catwoman and her disappearance during the Dark Victory saga. It also ties up the question of Selena Kyle (aka Catwoman for all those who have been living in a cave, that is not a batcave) and her connection with the criminal family: the Falcones.

Selena Kyle, with Edward Nygma (aka the Riddler, okay get the hell out of the cave already! By the way if I mention someone named Bruce, seriously you should be able to figure that one out on your own!) fly to Rome to research the Falcone family. Catwoman has made a career of stealing from the Falcones. Carmine Falcone, the head of the family carries a scar across his face from her. Sofia, the Gigante, Falcone is confined to a wheelchair after a battle with Catwoman. But more than being targets of her criminal activities, the Falcones mean much more to Selina Kyle.

“…This…home has particular significance to me. Aside from the ten or twenty grand I can pull out of here every time I stop by. It also helps that the man who owns the building won’t call the police. Carmine, “The Roman”, Falcone is known as Gotham’s City’s untouchable Crime Boss. Just saying that sounds stupid. The Roman’s come to believe that Gotham City is his empire. I haven’t decided if that’s small thinking from a big man…or big thinking from a small man…”

when in rome 2       when in rome 3

In Rome, Selina plans to unearth secrets from the Falcone’s past. Secrets that may prove what she has long suspected. That Selina Kyle is the daughter of Carmine Falcone.

But Rome doesn’t give up her secrets easily and the Falcone family has its own designs on Catwoman. She may need all her lives to escape her one week in Rome.

Loeb and Sale knock this one out. Except for hallucinations and memories, Batman does not make an appearance in this book at all. It is carried, and very well, by Catwoman. Selina Kyle’s search for her own identity is both tragic and desperate. She is not convinced that the truth will not hurt her more than help. But she must know. To do so, she must find the most heavily guarded of all the Falcones family secrets. The location of Louisa Falcone. Carmine Falcone’s wife and the woman Selina Kyle believes to be her own mother.

when in rome 1                               when in rome 4

Terrific artwork and a driven story make this one a must for anyone who reads Batman comic books.

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