Friday, August 24, 2012

Batgirl: The Darkest Reflection by Gail Simone

In this reboot (am I not suppose to call it a reboot?) Barbara has made a miraculous recovery.  After being shot by the Joker in the spine, Barbara was paralyzed for two years.  But then she was able to walk again.  Now recovered, she's ready to be Batgirl once more.  Or so she thinks.  Up against a new villain named Mirror, Batgirl realizes she may not be as prepared as she needs to be.

So I was finally able to get my hands on The New 52 Batgirl.  I was on the library waiting list for months.  So I begin my process of reading the female-focused comics of The New 52.  I know I'm behind the times.  What can I say?  I have a lot to read.

I was pretty sure that new Batgirl was going to be at the very least decent because it's written by Gail Simone, who, as we all know, is awesome.  She was also the only solo female writer on the entire New 52 line.  Yeah.  DC and Marvel still have a tendency to sort of suck in that respect.  They also like to stick their heads in the sand and pretend that women aren't reading their comics, because if women aren't reading their comics, then they don't have to care about them or cater to their needs.

Back to the story itself.  So you have to be willing to take in stride Barbara's new story.  No Oracle, no Birds of Pray, she's back to being Batgirl, but has this traumatic background she has to deal with as she gets back into the crime fighting game.  It isn't easy for her to get back.  She freezes the first time Mirror points a gun at her.  As usual, Gail Simone told great stories with a good mix of humor and action.  There's enough back-story to understand what's going on, but not too much that it drags down the action.

I certainly liked the illustrations much better than when I read Birds of Prey.  There were no tits and ass shots, which I appreciated.  Actually, there was very little gratuitous boob flashing or impossible poses, which was delightful.  Yes, a villain who shows up toward the end is wearing a white cat suit with a lot of cleavage.  But it wasn't too bad and that was really it.  Thank you, multiple people who did the art, for not resorting to hypersexulization but allowing the images and words work together to tell a story.

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