Sadly, this is the final issue of the surprisingly strong Gotham City Sirens series... Who'd have expected this series to a) last for 26 issues, and b) make Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn into multifaceted, interesting characters?
Gotham City Sirens #26:
Summary: We kick this party off with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn trying to kill Catwoman for betraying them and getting the two of them locked up in Arkham Asylum. Catwoman puts up a good fight, but eventually she is cornered and captured by the two villains. Ivy is prepared to kill CW, until CW tells the two women that CW had saved the two of them from the start... Ivy demands CW explain herself, and CW tells the other two women that she was subtly manipulated by Batman(Dick Grayson at the time) into taking Ivy and Harley under her wing in order to keep them from doing too much damage to Gotham while Dick was trying to establish himself as Batman. Ivy immediately dismisses CW's words, but Harley can tell CW is being sincere. Harley wants to know when CW realized she was being manipulated by Bats, and CW tells the other two women that she had known what Bats was trying to do from the start, and went along with it because she thought Gotham would be better off with Harley and Ivy working on the side of the angels as opposed to rotting in Arkham. After listening to the entire story, Ivy erupts in an angry outburst, furious that Batman had been manipulating her(through Catwoman), and begins destroying buildings, cars, streets, etc. Batman(Bruce Wayne now) arrives on the scene and attacks Ivy, but Bats is stopped by a swift kick from CW(!). CW tells Bats that the other two women were her responsibility, and that she'd handle it. Bats tells CW that the other two were Arkham bound, but that he'd let CW end things her way. From there, CW heads over to Ivy and Harley and tells them to run away before Bats got wise to what she was doing. Ivy is dubious that CW would go against Batman's word, but CW tells Ivy that she was her own woman, and not one of Batman's lackeys. With that, the women say their good-byes, and Harley and Ivy go their separate ways, leaving Catwoman behind to face down what will almost definitely be a very angry Batman.
Thoughts: I've got to say, this series was pretty strong throughout it's 26 issue run... Paul Dini started it off on the right foot, and Peter Calloway, who I don't know from anywhere, did a wonderful job continuing the series after Dini's departure. I've got to admit, I'm pretty disappointed that guys like Tony Daniel, Dan Didio and the suddenly insane Scott Lobdell are getting titles to write post-reboot, and yet a guy like Calloway isn't. But what can you do? Obviously DC is run by guys that make the inmates in Arkham look sane, so expecting them to make rational/good decisions just isn't going to happen... But let me stop ripping on DC, there'll be plenty of time for that next week... Anyway, this issue was good, but the Batman/manipulation reveal didn't really have much of an emotional impact for me... It just kind of made me shrug my shoulders and go, “Meh.” I did like that CW allowed Ivy and Harley to go free at the end of this issue, since she obviously did see them as friends, even after everything that's happened the last few issues, and the ending with CW having to deal with Batman's wrath for out and out disobeying him was a good place to end things. I actually wish more DC series would have ended in an open-ended way like that. We really don't know what happens to close out this series. Do CW and Bats fight? Do Dick and Damian capture Ivy and Harley, while Bruce deals with CW? Does Bruce understand why CW allowed the other women to escape and forgive her? It leaves it up to the reader to make up their mind on how THEY want the series to end, and since it all really doesn't matter what happens in the long run, I appreciate the ambiguity. So long Sirens, it's been a blast.
Score: 7 out of 10.You gotta love Ivy's bland super-villain dialogue... "I will DESTROY Batman..."