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World's Finest Comics told Poison Ivy's origin story in issue #251. Written by Gerry conway and inked by Ric Estrada, it's not survived 100% unchanged to today. )
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Costume is character. Some characters have big changes throughout their "careers", and some have little tweaks. With Poison Ivy, the constants are red hair, greenish costume with an emphasis on sexy. The variances are skin colour (Caucasian skintone, white skin, green skin, Caucasian with green veins), costume coverage (body stocking, bathing suit, world's worst cardigan*), and the level of foliage.

I discovered my favourite Ivy Costume in 1999's Harley Quinn #1 by Paul Dini and Yvel Guichet. You'll know it; it's the one with the iconic Alex Ross cover. It was released during the time of No Man's Land and takes place in that Gotham.

But we're really here for Ivy )


*Arkham Knight, pictured
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Part of my Poison Ivy kick this summer took me to John Layman's Detective Comics. She pops in and out of the Emperor Penguin story, but had more of an impact in the three part Gothtopia that ran in Detective #27-29.

Gothtopia starts with Ivy going on a rampage )
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A long time ago, when Ann Nocenti was announced as the new writer on Catwoman, I had a look around to see what else she had written to see if I liked her stuff. I think I only read a preview of her Catwoman (where Selina hisses No parents! I'm a bastard child! Can't you tell?) and then decided it wasn't for me. It was a good decision, as it really wasn't for me.

Better value though was her 2004 work with
John Van Fleet on Poison Ivy: Cast a Shadow. I haven't seen anything like his work in my time of reading comics, except a little bit of Johnathan Hickman's early stuff. Fleet is very moody and dark, but uses light and shadow well, especially in this story which is all about light and shadow.

Because it's Ann Nocenti, it's absolutely barking. It's a clear enough story, and follows the standard things you'd expect from a Poison Ivy tale, but everybody involved goes around chewing the scenery.

The synopsis is pretty standard too
A rash of bizarre deaths Batman has been investigating is somehow linked to a new tower that has been blocking out the sunlight to Poison Ivy’s cell in Arkham Asylum.

Let's begin )
I like this story, because it's beautiful, and it has something to say, but Nocenti is quite overblown with what she does and how she does it that some things get lost a bit in the shuffle.
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For the last few weeks, I've been on a Batman binge. After beating Arkham Knight and the associated DLC, I've read Zero Year, Rebirth Batman, Rebirth Detective and Batman Eternal, as well as looking up some other series like Poison Ivy: Life and Death and digging out my copy of Cast a Shadow to re-read. I'm definitely going to put a post together on the last one at some point soonish.

This post, however, is going to be a sort of Poison Ivy pick 'n' mix.

Cast a Shadow does of course contain one of my favourite Batman panels ever )



While digging through my old books, I also re-discovered Paul Dini and Dustin Nguyen's Li'l Gotham, which did a remarkably deft take on Poison Ivy in four panels. )

In Cycle of Life and Death by Amy Chu and Clay Mann, Ivy is working incognito at a lab when Doctor Quinzel pops in for a visit.  )

In Batman 26, we get to see Ivy joining The War of Jokes and Riddles )


And over at Detective, the Bat-hipsters are having fun at the basketball )

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