This issue takes Barbara Gordon in a whole new direction. She moves to the hip part of Gotham called Burnside, with a new roommate, Frankie. We get to see the “girl” in Batgirl as she parties too much, hooks up with random hotties and drinks over-priced coffee.
The artwork by Babs Tarr is reminiscent of Mike Allred’s, and I am already a fan. It has a quirky, indie feel to it and it suits the writing perfectly. The one weak point is Black Canary, who for some reason comes off as being pretty unattractive, when she’s normally depicted as a bombshell. Outside of that, however, the art is really cool.
It might have been a bold move, but in this issue, she’s mostly Barbara Gordon, not Batgirl. She doesn’t become Batgirl until the second half of the story. But honestly, I didn’t care. I thought it was perfectly fine to have her in her civilian identity trying to unravel a recent string of crimes. In fact, I was thinking “This would be an amazing TV show” and in most super hero shows, they keep their heroes in their civilian identities most of the time and save the costumed heroics for signature, impactful scenes.
One thing that struck me was the contrast between “hipster” culture and “trendy” culture. Babs and her friends live in a hipster neighborhood, but the villain in the story was trendy, meaning he used the word “Bae” and inserted “#” into his dialogue.
But the story effectively touched on modern young life, tapping heavily into texting and social media. Once again, putting the “girl” into Batgirl. This is a young twentysomething and she uses that to her advantage.
Another thing I liked was the reference to her photographic memory. It was handled in a really innovative way, which was quite cool.
I had dropped this book, but I’m definitely adding it back to my pull list. The art is great, the writing is young and hip. I was quite impressed!
Written by Cameron Stewart and Brenden FletcherArt by Babs Tarr (Breakdowns by Cameron Stewart)
Cover by Cameron Stewart