DC Showcase: Catwoman (2011)

Animation, Short
Eliza Dushku, John DiMaggio, Liliana Mumy, Kevin Michael Richardson
Catwoman attempts to track down a mysterious cargo shipment that is linked to a Gotham City crime boss called Rough Cut.
  • 18 Oct 2011 Released:
  • N/A DVD Release:
  • N/A Box office:
  • Paul Dini Writer:
  • Lauren Montgomery Director:
  • N/A Website:


"Oh, come on Paul".3/10
Right, Paul Dini wrote this short, he's not flawless he has written some awful things before, but he has also proved himself to be a brilliant writer as well, giving us some of the best Batman episodes, be it from Batman The Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures or Batman: The Brave and the Bold. Man, does he drop the ball here. One thing that many have objected against is the scene in the strip club, it's lengthy, fairly gratuitous, and not only does the stripper perform a striptease, but Catwoman as well, albeit a milder one where she doesn't show her breasts...completely, I didn't get upset about this scene, but I don't think it could've come at a worse time, where people are criticizing DC for their portrayal of female characters, frankly I am getting a bit...let's say tired of it, but the scene, while completely unnecessary, didn't get me mad or anything like that it was just "ugh, here we go again" and Catwoman is constantly portrayed as a bit of a "tease". It reminded me of Mark Kermode's impression of Michael Bay and his laddy, frat-boy leeriness "Woooooh, eh? eh? Look at that, wooooooh, eh?". That's not why I didn't like this short, the main problem is that it is just boring and slow even with it's limited running time, around 13-14 minutes, I loved the Spectre and Green Arrow DC Showcase shorts which had excellent pacing, awesome action, terrific animation and excellent writing, which also had some humor, dark humor in The Spectre's case and I also thought Jonah Hex had it's moments, the short not the movie, obviously. The action here is not that special, they throw in some jarring CG, though it is slightly better than the CG used in some previous DC DTV movies. Villain wasn't threatening, despite the awesome John DiMaggio voicing the character, the fight between Rough Cut and Catwoman was fairly lame as well. I got to say, there's barely anything I liked in it, I thought the ending was pretty good. This was a disappointing outing from Paul Dini, I hope and I'm sure Paul Dini did a better job with the upcoming Arkham City, maybe this was a rushed project from his side.
A comic book issue7/10

--Worth watching if you want 12 minutes of mildly adult entertainment, or you're already getting "Batman: Year One".

DC Showcase: Catwoman is a nice, short animation. However, there-in lies the drawback: it's short. As in, shorter than an episode of an animated series. Written by Paul Dini, best known for his contribution to the DCAU, this animation, and it's story, is equivalent to a stand-alone, 20 page comic book issue. It tries to put in as much action as possible within 10 minutes. I believe the main attraction however is sex. Catwoman is sexy, but they really emphasized this here. The animation itself is not as excellent as one would expect. Being only 10 minutes long, one would have to wonder why they didn't invest in superb animation. Thus, the animation falls in between a regular animated series episode and an exceptional anime.
Don't Listen to the Other Reviewer10/10
This DC showcase Catwoman short is dark, gritty and absolutely fantastic. Thank you Paul Dini once again, you are a master at your craft. I personally love this short and was totally impressed, I think I like it even more than the feature. I read a comment that this should be made into a Catwoman animated series and I for one would definitely watch that. I don't no how this is rated in the 6's on IMDb unless people are rating it a 1 because they expected something for little kids like Batman: Brave and the Bold. I actually think this is the best animated DC product since Batman: Under the Red Hood, and really hope they continue to make more in this style. Adult, Dark & Gritty, with some sweet action throughout (something Year One could've used a little bit more of in my opinion along with a new voice actor for Batman (sorry but Ben Mackensie from Dawson's Creek just doesn't cut it for me, personally if I couldn't get Kevin Conroy, I would look into getting someone like Crispin Freeman to voice Batman). OK back on topic, I'm going to comment on what the previous reviewer said about DC comics and the Catwoman short being sexist (LOL), OH No they showed Catwoman stripping partly (no nudity) in a strip club. It's rated PG-13, GET A LIFE. I swear you see a lot more degrading things watching Miley Cyrus or Lindsey Lohan.
Catwoman foils a smuggler's plot and rescues an old friend.8/10
Okay, did we all watch the same show, here? I've seen several complaints about the quality of the animation, and I keep wondering what part are they complaining about? The car chase, the multiple fight scenes, the pole dance (!), it all looked great to me, far above the usual quality of US animation. Example: check out the backgrounds and you see people actually moving, not just static figures.

Granted,character development wasn't superb here, but from a pure action perspective this was a great debut for our favorite pussycat antihero. I mean, how much character development can you cram into a short? Which is my one complaint and the reason why I only gave it an 8. I wish it would have been longer.
sleek, sexy, but not purr-fect7/10
This loose follow up to "Batman: Year One" sees Selina Kyle well adjusted into her role as Catwoman, a morally ambiguous......well....it is not entirely clear WHAT her role is by this short film. She is supposed to be a thief, a cat burglar, but in this show she comes across as a sultry Batman wannabe. On a normal night of taking down thugs, Catwoman stumbles upon a familiar piece of jewelery which lands her in a drag out confrontation with the mob boss "Rough Cut".

Writer Paul Dini has managed to capture the essence of the Catwoman comic books. Sadly, even the best Catwoman comics tend to be "second stringers" particularly to Batman stories from which Catwoman spun off from. It is a very straight forward story, almost cliched in its execution and sparse in character development. Catwoman is portrayed more as a straight up reluctant defender of the downtrodden than the multi faceted, morally ambiguous, part criminal in the comics.

While the acting is superb, the script is nothing special. John Dimaggio does Brooklyn Marcus Fenix impression for Rough Cut. But despite his awesome performance, the character is no more than a shallow bruiser boss. Once again, the main complaint goes to how short the Dc showcase films are.

Visually however, this DC showcase is as beautiful as Selina Kyle herself. The level of detail in the art is on par with many Japanese anime OVAs and the character designs retain that sultry sexuality we can expect from Catwoman comics. The actual animation however borders on the mediocre. It is no smoother than an average OVA or high budget TV series. Seems that most of the time and effort went into one of the most beautifully animated pole dance sequences in the history of animation (japanese or otherwise). That sequence had an almost rotoscoped quality to it. Exceedingly smooth and uncannily lifelike.

More time could have been spent actually developing the main character. Compared to previous Dc showcase short films like Jonah Hex and The Spectre which delved into the characters' motivations, thoughts and inner personality, Catwoman seems more like a trivial "day in the life of" one shot. It looks great, it feels great, but there could have been more substance to back up the appearance.