Genre: DC Comics/Superhero
First Published: June, 2015
Source: Borrowed – Library
This review already seems way less impactful than my review of Illuminae yesterday. There’s no excitement here over this book at all today. Sorry if that disappoints you. It disappoints me too.
This is the first volume in a new Batgirl series started last year. Barbara Gordon, daughter of Police Chief Gordon, is walking in Batman’s footsteps. She’s just moved off to college, is trying to make grades, and also attempting to fight crime on the side. She’s struggling to find her place in the world, and is doing the best she can. Will Batgirl be able to find out who stole her laptop? Will she be able to retrieve all her documents before a big project is due? Will she be able to kick her nasty hangover?
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I can sum up how I feel about this entire collection in just one word: Meh.
I feel very indifferent about the start of this new series.
Now, I haven’t read any other Batgirl comics before, so I can’t critically compare it to those. Still, I didn’t find this to be a very compelling story. I found this plot to be way too little kiddish for the adult themes that are tackled. The villains are literally a joke. They were pathetic. But, what was even more pathetic was that they gave Babs (a totally, has-the-potential-to-be-awesome, kick ass character) a run for her money. She was actually struggling with these guys (and girls). I couldn’t believe it. It would have been fine if this book was aimed at a younger audience, but with all the very adult themes, that wasn’t the case. As someone who is close to Babs age, I should have been able to relate to her and the story, but with how childish a lot of it was, I simply couldn’t.
Speaking of the characters, Barbara (Batgirl), Babs, is a pretty likable character. Besides being an adult in a child’s world, she has a lot going for her. I want to say that, of course, I have nothing against YA or Children’s literature, but they should never be mixed with adult aspects. I wish Babs would have gotten some villains that were worthy of her abilities and skill set and not just good for a joke. She had so much potential, and it made me sad that her character was unable to reach it because of the storytellers.
Another character that I really wanted to like was Dinah, AKA Black Canary, but her character was awful. She was supposed to be something along the lines of the “adult role model” character, but she honestly just came off as a horrible person. She was not likable at all. I wanted to have nothing to do with her character and spent most of her screen time being irritated by her choices and the way she treated everyone. Plus, the fact that her and Babs were fighting was a totally unbelievable storyline and made their strained relationship feel even more ridiculous.
So, why the 2.5 star rating instead of a mere 1 star? I’ll say one good thing about this collection: The artwork was pretty. I did really enjoy the illustrations and the coloring. It was pleasing to the eyes and made the story come to life. Well, as much as it could, anyway, with the poor storytelling.
Okay, just one last complaint before this rant is over. I found too much unnecessary female sexualization in this collection. There were times that I felt uncomfortable looking at the images because I knew they were drawn for the male gaze and not just for plot and story purposes. Yet another reason why the plot was far too juvenile. I didn’t understand why this needed to happen so often through the story. It was just yet another downfall that made me not entirely in like with something I wanted to be far better than it was.
So, all in all, do I recommend this? Meh, not really. Unless you really want to read this or are a die-hard Batgirl fan, I would say it’s safe to skip this one. If you are going to read it, I definitely recommend giving borrowing it some serious consideration.
Will I read the next issue? I might, but I’m certainly in no rush to spend money on it. I’ll wait and see if the Library gets it in before even considering moving on with the series.
Have you read this yet? Thoughts?
Up Tomorrow: Friday Favorites