Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Batwoman ( Katherine "Kate" Kane)

After the Infinite Crisis series, a new Katherine "Kate" Kane is introduced. Kate is Renee Montoya's former lover and heiress to one of the wealthiest families in Gotham City . Renee refers to her as "Katherine the younger" and asks Kate to help find the connection between the Kanes and the address 520 Kane Street. While still upset from their breakup, Kate agrees to help Renee, but punches her and tells her to leave after Renee mentions they used to love each other. Not long after that, Batwoman is shown to be observing Montoya from the rooftops as Renee converses with the Question (in his guise as "Charlie") in an alley.

Kate meets with Renee and Charlie in Gotham Park and confirms that the warehouse was being leased by Ridge-Ferrick until six weeks ago. Renee refuses to tell Kate what's going on saying that she doesn't owe Kate anything, which shocks Kate and prompts her to tail them as Batwoman. When Renee and the Question break into Ridge-Ferrick's Gotham offices, they are attacked by Whisper A'Daire's shapeshifting minions, and Batwoman arrives to rescue them. Making quick work of two monsters, Batwoman stops Renee from shooting the third, instead kicking the monster out a window. Batwoman informs them the police are coming, asks that she not be mentioned, and leaves.

After Renee learns that the Book of Crime, a sacred text of Intergang, contains a prophecy foretelling the brutal murder of the "twice named daughter of Kane," she and the Question return to Gotham. They contact Kate by flashing a batsignal, and the three join forces to avert Intergang's plans. As Kate continues the case, she is joined by Nightwing, who has recently returned to Gotham and becomes infatuated with her. On Christmas Eve, he gives her an 'official' Batarang. She also celebrates Hanukkah with Renee, and the two kiss shortly before Christmas.

One year after the start of 52, Alfred Pennyworth mentions Kathy Kane to Bruce Wayne, when listing the various women Bruce dated in his playboy days and the Penguin suggests Batman bring a date to the opening of his club, asking, "Why don't you bring that new Batwoman? I hear she's kind of hot."

Batwoman later appears in a story written by Greg Rucka for the DC Infinite Holiday Special. This story fleshed out some of the current Batwoman's background, including the fact that she is Jewish.

As Batwoman, Kate lacks any superpowers, and instead relies on her martial artistry and Batman-inspired equipment when fighting crime. In the ten years since her breakup with Renee Montoya, she has learned to fight and is able to defeat three monsters, as well as spy on Renee and the Question with relative ease.

Being the heiress of a family whose fortune is comparable to the Waynes, Kate possesses the finances to produce an arsenal of equipment, similar to Batman. This includes a baton-like device which can extend from the center in length and has Bat-shaped attachments at each end. She also makes use of Batarangs and a Batman-like grappling hook.

Unlike the Silver Age Kathy Kane, who was written as being romantically attracted to Batman, the new version of Kane is portrayed as a "lipstick lesbian", while still hiding this fact from nearly everyone she knows. In her civilian identity as a socialite, she is acquainted with Bruce Wayne and is friends with a doctor named Mallory, who treats the Question's cancer. Her homosexuality was announced at the same time as the character was revealed in the spring of 2006. Kate is also Jewish, and celebrated Hanukkah with Renee during the events of 52.

Her homosexuality attracted substantial media coverage when the character was announced in the spring of 2006. Stories appeared on television news outlets such as CNN, general news magazines such as "USA Today", and gay culture magazines such as Out.

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