17 Feb, 2011

Twee-views, Batgirl Love Letter

Posted by Raphael in Opinion|Reviews

So this week I have another quick 3 Twee-views (reviews of comics in 140 characters or less) and in a shameless attempt to cash in on Valentine’s Day, a love letter to one of my favorite comics out there: Batgirl.


SUPERMAN #708: JMS Story continues. Superman’s biggest foe: self-doubt??? Oh and lady in black. Wonder Woman says hi. Kinda interesting, but disappointing.

WALKING DEAD #81: No Way Out pt. 2. Andrea proves she’s awesome. Rick in trouble! Just when you think your safe… don’t. Never safe w/ zombies! People die!

NEW AVENGERS #9: BMB does new story involving Nick Fury. What the heck is going on? A little muddled, plus Mockingbird a bit out of char., she ain’t careless.


I have been a huge fan of Batgirl since I started collecting comics. Really, I’ve had one since I grew up on Adam West’s Batman (Yvonne Craig… is it possible to have a crush at the age of 5?), but I really began to like and read the character when Cassandra Cain was Batgirl. Barbara Gordon was always cool, but Cassandra was the next level. She could beat BATMAN in hand-to-hand combat, she had a cooler looking costume, and she was Asian (lack of Asian characters in comics covered in my Chew analysis). She was hands down my favorite female character, and she wasn’t just eye candy (which is what a lot of female characters in comics unfortunately are) to me. And then DC took her away. In Cassandra’s place, however, is a terrific new Batgirl in her own right: Stephanie Brown.

Stephanie was once the teenaged vigilante Spoiler, as well as being Batman’s fourth Robin. She’s the daughter of minor villain Cluemaster (think poor man’s Riddler), and she wanted to fight crime in order to counter her father’s wrongdoing. She was killed off in the Batman series War Games, and brought back recently (Something to do with Leslie Thompkins faking her death). She became the new Batgirl when Cassandra suddenly quit in issue one of the new series. She’s currently a freshman at Gotham U, while being trained by Barbara Gordon (Batgirl I/Oracle).

What I love about the series is the sense of fun. Bryan Q. Miller has written Stephanie really well. Her dialogue is very snappy, and pretty accurate for a college-age woman of this day and age. He writes Stephanie as a fun person who’s got a light personality, but also takes being Batgirl very seriously. She loves what she does, as opposed to the quiet solemnity of Cassandra. In a few ways, she’s like Barbara, which is great when the two of them interact. The art (Lee Garbett at first, now Pere Perez with some Dustin Nguyen thrown in once or twice) is gorgeous and does justice to Gotham, and also doesn’t make Batgirl overly cheesecake-y.

I whole-heartedly recommend Batgirl to anyone who enjoys superhero action with a lighter side. She is one of the better written female characters in all of comics, and I probably would point to her first if someone wanted a good story with a strong female protagonist (sorry Wonder Woman). The first volume is available. If you’d like to hear more of my thoughts on the books I twee-viewed, check out the Superfandom Forums! I’ll expand on them there!

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