Friday, September 9, 2011

Batgirl #1

I’d planned on skipping this book out of protest for the removal of Oracle. After a lot of positive comments on Twitter and review sites, I decided to give the first issue a chance. I’m glad I did. While the book isn’t kid-friendly at all (I had hoped to read it with my daughter), it does have some of the sick villainy that Gail Simone did so well in Secret Six.

Simone's new villain (the Mirror) opens up the book drowning a man with a yard hose, and that’s only one of about 10 murders spread through the issue. That’s not counting the home invasion and Killing Joke flashback. Speaking of KJ, I’m fascinated with the idea that Barbara is having flashbacks and freezing in action when things happen that remind her of her darkest day. It’s a tremendously realistic side effect, I don’t care how much the hero loves his or her job; sometimes you’re going to get rattled.

Ardian Syaf’s art is decent, but I wasn’t particularly blown away. He’s got that Joe Bennett/Ed Benes look, and I’m not a huge fan. I also think skewing the costume a tad more classic wouldn’t hurt, either. Too much armor and treading on that current Batgirl suit.

So basically, this book has the scary villainy of Secret Six with the bright heroics of Birds of Prey. Not a bad combo at all. It’s a recipe that will bring me back again next month.



Martin Gray said...

I wasn't expecting this to be particularly kid-friendly, given that's not what I associate Gail Simone with. It'd be interesting to see her have a crack.

Hopefully Steph will get a new-book-quite-like-the-old-book' providing a Bat-teen the kids can enjoy too.

Timbotron said...

I knew it probably wouldn't be ok, which a bummer. When my daughter saw Batgirl #1, she yelled "THAT'S THE ONE I WANT!"

Ah well!