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POISON IVY #1

Writer: Derek Fridolfs

Artist: Javier Pina

Colorist: John Kalisz

Review by Suzanne Nagda

Poison Ivy is a character struggling to find relevancy in the New 52. She fails to progress into a compelling villain through recent appearances in Birds of Prey and Detective Comics. This is largely because of Poison Ivy’s portrayal as a mainly one-dimensional character. Derek Fridolfs and Javier Pina have a lot to prove with this one-shot issue about everyone’s favorite botanist.

This issue succeeds in an unexpected way by completely revamping her origin story and empowering her (quite literally) compared to previous iterations. I really enjoy the flashback scenes to Pamela Isley’s childhood and how her experiences inform her present day decisions in the aftermath of Trinity War. John Kalisz renders these flashback scenes with a softer effect that looks like watercolors. In general, this is a really pretty book with some interesting panel layouts.

Although there is an interesting twist to her origin, Poison Ivy is still largely a one-note character with her role as a seductress bending people to her will. She was a character originally modeled after a 1950s pin-up model, in fact. Her motivations as an Eco-terrorist are exactly what you would expect. What you see is mostly what you get. After reading this issue, I didn’t feel as invested in Poison Ivy as I was hoping to be. Unfortunately, the plot lacked momentum at times and lapsed into familiar territory for the character.

Verdict: Unless you are a big Poison Ivy fan, I would pass on this one. It didn’t leave me itching for a Pamela Isley mini-series anytime soon.

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