"Cataclysm, Part Thirteen: Blunt Trauma": Stephanie Brown was at the Westerberg Mall with her date Dean when the 7.0 earthquake hit Gotham City. Stephanie notices an elevator come loose and begins to fall. Stephanie pushes Dean out of the way
- Gotham needs buttkickers, not shining knights.
- — Huntress
Batman: Huntress & Spoiler #1 is a one-shot with a cover date of May, 1998.
Synopsis for "Cataclysm, Part Thirteen: Blunt Trauma"
Stephanie Brown was at the Westerberg Mall with her date Dean when the 7.0 earthquake hit Gotham City. Stephanie notices an elevator come loose and begins to fall. Stephanie pushes Dean out of the way as the elevator falls to first floor. The main shake lasted for 15 seconds. Dean can't help but think about the condition his father's car that he borrowed rather than thanking Stephanie or asking her if she's alright. Dean wants to leave the mall but Stephanie insists that they need to stay and help people. Dean bails out on Stephanie while she stays behind to look for injured survivors. Meanwhile at Blackgate Penitentiary, Cluemaster escapes along with Dragoncat, Ratcatcher, Monsoon, Baffler and Firefly.
Arthur leads his fellow convicts through a land bridge but Ernie Chubb challenges Arthur's position as team leader. Arthur pulls out a gun on Ernie and tells Chubb to get behind him or die. Monsoon sneaks up from behind and knocks out Chubb. Monsoon had a personal vendetta against Chubb because Ernie put him through hell when he was a coerced gladiator in the Secret Ring. Arthur proposes they hide out at the nearest building before they can make preparations to escape Gotham. The convicts choose the Westerberg Mall. Ratcatcher thinks its a bad idea because the mall maybe a prime location for medical relief and law enforcement but Arthur figures that with anarchy running rampant throughout the city like people looting the mall, no one notice will them because everyone else will have their hands busy. Firefly watches as a huge chunk of Gotham is ablaze.
Stephanie notices as most people in the mall are helping one another while a few loot the local department stores. Stephanie puts on her Spoiler outfit and takes on the looters. As Stephanie finishes off the remainder of the looters, she notices a toddler walking on a crumbling pathway because she is trying to reclaim her stuffed crocodile. Spoiler leaps into action by using a grappling wire to swing down and grab little Kimmy before she falls off. Spoiler grabs Kimmy then throws her into her mother's arms but Stephanie's grappling hook comes loose and she begins to fall. Fortunately, Huntress comes to Stephanie's aid and grabs her before she could fall to the bottom. Helena tells Stephanie that she has been following a group of escaped convicts from Blackgate who used a subway tunnel to enter the mall until she sustained a gunshot wound to her arm.
Czonk aka Baffler breaks into a sporting goods store and steals a few shotguns then starts firing at armed security guards. Arthur and his fellow convicts rummage through the clothing store t find disguises. Ratcatcher and Monsoon find some St. Patrick's Day clothing on clearance while the others dress in regular clothing. Spoiler and Huntress take Baffler by surprise but its Huntress who ultimately beats him to a bloody pulp. Arthur takes a look on Baffler and sees Stephanie as well as Huntress standing over Baffler's unconscious body. Arthur orders his fellow convicts to look for an exit so they won't be compelled to shoot at Stephanie. All of the convicts except for Firefly head to the second floor to look for an escape.
Stephanie begins to smell gas and notices a trail of gasoline coming towards her and Huntress. Suddenly, the gasoline trail is set ablaze and the girls take cover. Firefly laughs with pride that he has killed two of Gotham's vigilantes while setting the mall on fire. Huntress pinpoints Firefly's location and shoots an arrow into his shoulder. Huntress was about to kill Firefly with a second shot but Spoiler drops a cash register on Lynns' head in order to prevent Huntress from killing him. Huntress screams at Spoiler for getting in the way of her brand of justice and because Stephanie believes in Batman's moral code about not killing criminals. Huntress grabs Lynns and throws his unconscious body into a nearby fountain. Arthur watches from afar as the girls deal with Firefly while his fellow convicts indulge their appetites with ice cream. Arthur scolds his fellow convicts for losing their focus on finding a way to escape then he spots a Gotham Savings & Trust. Arthur leads his fellow convicts to the depository in order to grab as much skip money as they can carry.
Spoiler and Huntress hear sounds coming from the depository. The girls find the Blackgate convicts walking out with bags of money. Stephanie and Arthur lock eyes with one another then Huntress aims her crossbow gauntlet. Stephanie stops Huntress and Arthur orders Monsoon to eliminate the girls. Huntress grabs Spoiler and asks why she would get in the way. Stephanie explains that Cluemaster is her father. Huntress moves Stephanie out of Monsoon's charging path then shoots a couple of arrows into Monsoon's left shoulder. As the convicts watch Monsoon tear through the girls, Ratcatcher informs them that the elevators aren't working and the main entrance is blocked by police officers who have arrived on the scene. Arthur tells his fellow convicts to head into the theater and find a fire exit in order to get out of the mall.
Monsoon starts to choke the life out Huntress until Stephanie grabs a line post to knock out Monsoon's kneecaps. Monsoon's grip on Huntress loosens and Helena dropkicks Monsoon who goes over the railing then falls onto the main floor. Suddenly, the girls see Arthur Brown running scared out of the theater. Ernie Chubb comes charging into the mall with a Hummer. Chubb runs into Dragoncat and Dragoncat hits the windshield of the Hummer. Huntress jumps onto the hood of the Hummer while Stephanie deals with her father who dropped all of his skip money on the floor. Arthur tries to reason and bargain with his daughter by trying to convince her that this money will give them a better life. Ratcatcher summons his rats to attack Spoiler while Arthur makes a getaway. Spoiler tries to repel the vermin with her cape and takes cover on a giant reading block at the toy store.
Huntress blocks Chubb's view so he tries to shake her off by swerving back and forth. Huntress looks behind her and sees a railing that will lead toward the end of the second floor. Huntress jumps off the Hummer and Chubb cries out in anger as well as terror. Huntress can hear Chubb damning her name as the Hummer crashes through the railing then descends onto the main floor. The Hummer hits the main level and explodes with Chubb engulfed in flames. As for Spoiler, she manages to escape the rats and ambushes her father as well as Ratcatcher. Stephanie drop kicks both of them and Ratcatcher is knocked out when he hits another giant reading block head first. Arthur pleads with his daughter to let him escape because he knows about Huntress' reputation about executing criminals. Stephanie can't help but agree with him but she tells Arthur that he's going to walk away without the money.
Arthur agrees to Stepahnie's terms without an argument because he sees Huntress walking towards them. Arthur crawls down a damaged escalator while Huntress asks Spoiler if she managed to apprehend her father. Stephanie reports that she was only able to take out Ratcatcher and her father got away. Helena knew better and confronted Stephanie. Stephanie asks Helena if she knows the feeling of living down the fact of having a criminal for a father. Helena replies that she knows that feeling all too well because she comes from a family of criminals. Spoiler walks Huntress out of the mall in order to get Helena some medical attention.
Appearing in "Cataclysm, Part Thirteen: Blunt Trauma"
- Dean (Single appearance)
- Kimmy (Single appearance)
- Lou (mall cop)
- This one-shot special is chapter 13 of the Cataclysm storyline running through all of the Batman titles in 1998.
- This issue is reprinted in the Batman: Cataclysm collection, as well as the 2015 edition.
- The events of this issue takes place between Batman #554 and Detective Comics #721.
- There is a movie poster that promotes the film Gorfinator 3. The name is probably a pun of the Terminator franchise and the name of DC editor Jordan B. Gorfinkel.
Links and References
|Batman: Cataclysm Crossover|
This issue is a part of the Cataclysm crossover that swept through all Batman Family Titles during 1998. Gotham City was almost completely destroyed by a massive earthquake. This story led into the events that would eventually create No Man's Land.