For those of you who know me (or who read my blog), you will know that when DC decided to reboot Batgirl with Barbara Gordon taking up the cowl once more was a double-edged sword for me. You can go ahead and put away your torches and pitchforks because this is neither a rant nor an article filled with snide remarks over DC's decision. It's not that I don't like Barbara Gordon as Batgirl (far from it, actually), after all...she was the one to originate the role for all those who came after her.
So then why is this reboot a double-edged sword for me? You might think my reasoning is silly, but I'm going to say it anyway.
My reason for this reboot being a double-edged sword for me is because as much as I love Barbara Gordon as Batgirl, I absolutely adored her as Oracle (her role after Joker's brutal attack on her in The Killing Joke).
In that particular role, she proved that being in a wheelchair doesn't mean that you can't still be a badass. As Oracle, she may not have been swinging and jumping from rooftop to rooftop like she did when she wore the cowl, but she was far from helpless. Rather she was more of an omnipresent force of nature.
As Oracle, she was connected to everything by way of cyberspace (and seriously...what better way is there to bamboozle someone than to upload a nasty computer virus or to turn their own technology against them?). Nothing could hide from her. She had eyes and ears everywhere which allowed her to quite literally "strike hard and fade away" (yes, even in a non-TMNT related article, my fangirl colors still show, lol), and as such she could very easily be more dangerous than Black Canary or even Huntress. She was my favorite character in the Birds of Prey series (even in the short-lived television series, Dina Meyer was Barbara Gordon personified, and she brought her to life in the most awesome of ways!), and I was very sad to see her go.
I have one more reason for having the reboot be a double-edged sword for me, and that is that I had grown rather attached to Stephanie Brown (she was the Batgirl before the New 52 reboot, for those of you who didn't read her arc). She was funny, brave, quick-witted, had awesome 'toys' (seriously…check out her Batarangs as well as her Batmobile, a purple Mini Coop by day and awesome tech station on wheels by night, towards the end of her arc), as well as the perfect amount of snark, and I absolutely LOVED her Batgirl costume. Of course, since my favorite color is purple, I will admit that maybe I'm a little biased in that regard...
However, all of my misgivings aside in my going into the reboot, I have to say that I am absolutely loving what the writers are doing with it.
For those of you who haven't picked up the New 52 reboot, I won't give too much away, but I will say that the way in which the writers handled the occurence in The Killing Joke is very well done. Instead of the writers ignoring it completely and starting the reboot completely from scratch, they kept it as part of the cannon lore (and it's often referred to throughout the course of the reboot), and instead created a solution to the incident's outcome. However, because the solution itself was experimental, the chance of once again returning to a wheelchair is constantly looming over Barbara's head.
This only serves to add to the drama that ensues, and believe me there is a great deal of drama. It not only centers around Barbara's demons from the residual trauma of The Killing Joke, but it also centers around matters of a more familial nature (again...not going to go into too much detail for those of you who haven't read the new comic books).
But drama isn't the only thing to be found within the pages of these rebooted comic books. There's plenty of action to be had as well as humor.
While I went into the reading of the Batgirl reboot with trepidation, I nevertheless instantly found myself completely pulled in and chomping at the bit for new issues with the same voraciousness that I usually reserve for my TMNT comic books. The bottom line is that I'm so very glad that I went ahead and ignored my original misgivings and gave the Batgirl reboot a shot. While Stephanie Brown will always have a special place in my heart (along with Oracle and Power Girl), there can be no denying that it's good to have Barbara Gordon taking up the mantle once more.
Have you hugged your nerd today? ;)