Friday, January 31, 2014

Review: Batgirl, Vol. 3: Death of the Family by Gail Simone, Ed Benes (Illustrations)

Release Date: October 29, 2013
Publisher: DC Comics
Source: Library
Author Links: Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Gail Simone continues her Batgirl run in a tale that ties into the best-selling Bat-Family event "Death of the Family." When the Joker returns, Barbara Gordon must confront her past as she deals with the crazed criminal responsible for crippling her. Plus, once the dust settles, Barbara must deal with her family demons as her psychotic brother James Jr. comes after her.

In my humble opinion, Gail Simone is probably one of the most consistent writers in comic books. As in, her stuff is consistently good. I'm not going to claim that she's never written any stinkers, just that I haven't read them if she has. Take this title, for example. Bringing Barbara Gordon back into her original role as Batgirl could have easily gone veryvery wrong.
A lot of people loved Cassandra Cain as Batgirl, and everyone loved Babs role as Oracle.
I'm still crossing my fingers that somehow Simone will manage to merge a version of Oracle into this title. Pretty Please!
Not sure how, but Simone sidestepped some pretty big landmines, and pulled off one of the biggest changes to the Bat family universe. In fact, she has turned this into one of the few titles that I continually look forward to from DC.

Now, if you haven't been keeping up, what we have here is the Death of the Family arc. The title is a nod toward the famous Batman: A Death in the Family. You know, where the fans got to vote on the outcome of what happened to Robin (Jason Todd). Unfortunately for Jason, he was so annoying that the fans voted to let the Joker kill him off. 
But as I've mentioned before, nobody stays dead in comics. Jason is back. First as the villain Red Hood, and now as the not quite as villainous anti-hero Red Hood.
And Joker is back, as well...minus the skin on his face. Well it's there, but it's just sorta taped on or something.
Sorry you'll just have to read the books if you wanna know the answer to that one.

In this arc, the Joker is coming for everyone Batman loves, not just Robin. Naturally, Barbara is high on the list of targets. Unfortunately for her, Joker isn't the only one who is out for blood. She also has to contend with one of the scariest villains in DC's recent history, her brother! In case you don't know, James Gordon is the super-creepy serial killer who has special things planned for his sister.
Will what the Joker has in store for her be good enough for James? Or will her be unwilling to share Babs with anyone else?
Read it and find out!

Highly Recommended!


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