Written by Paul Dini
Art by Guillem March
Gotham City Sirens is an odd book. There's a lot of promise with the concept of a book focusing on three of Batman's rogues gallery, all of which have been pre-existing relationships already established between them. Add Paul Dini, who's had plenty of experience with all three characters, even co-creating one of them, and it seems like a sure fire hit.
Sadly, the first issue of this new series was fairly disappointing and, quite frankly, forgettable. There's little on offer that stood out as vaguely interesting and even less that shows any promise for potential in the future.
If I had to compare this issue to another book, it would be just about anything from Chris Claremont's modern work. However, it's not due to the quality of writing, but moreso due to the fact this issue made it feel more like the book was a gift to Dini so that he can play with is pet characters off on his own, similar to Claremont's X-Men Forever.
The reason I feel this way is due to the characterizations, which felt almost paper thin, as if they were mere characitures of themselves. Take Harley Quinn, for an example, she sounded more like a DCU animated version than the one that had been in Countdown for the past year or so. Despite referencing current events, everyone felt that way to me - like they were stereotypical personalities for the characters moreso than the present day incarnations. Another example of this being a Dini pet book was the mandatory Zatanna cameo. While she was involved in Catwoman's recent heart problems with Hush, it still felt like she was forced into the book just to have her appear.
The final problem I had with this issue was that it felt like mere cheesecake, which probably isn't that surprising with the "diva" action promised in the solicits and a book starring three female villains. From Harley being dressed in some porn star schoolgirl outfit to Zatanna taking a dip in a jacuzzi, a lot of it just felt like it was designed around showing off the girls in the book. Add some new Z-list villain that nobody cared about and who took up the bulk of the issue and nothing really clicked for me here.
Verdict - Avoid It. Nothing to see here. Move along now.