The reboot of Barbara Gordon, Batgirl

I am reading about the opinions, thoughts and emotions about the DC reboot, specifically, the decision to put Barbara Gordon back in the cape and cowl as Batgirl, rather than her current role as Oracle.  She means a whole lot to readers who don’t have super-heroes to look up to who deal with life in a wheelchair.  I think they’re right.  Also, Barbara Gordon is more interesting as Oracle.

But I have hope for this re-boot.  My hope is that Barbara isn’t healed because of the Lazarus Pit or robotics from S.T.A.R. labs nor some Kryptonian handwavium.

If its a reboot, she hasn’t been shot by the Joker yet.  We’ll know its coming.  We get to see someone wearing the cowl who fights crime not out of angst but because she loves wearing the cape and making Gotham a better place.  We’ll watch this young lady fight crime, try to make the streets of Gotham City a better place out of the sheer joy of using her fists and swinging from rooftops and know that the most horrific comic book villain is going to shoot her and damage her spine.

When she is shot this time, it won’t be just to spur male characters (Batman and Jim Gordon, in the case of the Killing Joke) into action.  When she is shot in this hypothetical reboot scenario I am hoping for, the shooting will be a part of Batgirl’s story as written by Gail Simone.  We will get to see Barbara Gordon deal with those first days in the wheelchair.  Maybe we’ll get to see her become Oracle, make the difficult transition into fighting crime with information, becoming a role model and showing Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown how to be Batgirls too.

Lots of maybe’s.  We’ll know in September.

Batgirl references:

Newsarama, Jill Pantozzi’s op/ed piece, Oracle is Stronger than BATGIRL Will Ever Be

Newsarama, Gail Simone Interview

DC Women Kick Ass, A look at previous attempts to return Barbara Gordon as Batgirl

Tor.com, Rainy Days – Batigirl: The Flood

Wikipedia, Oracle article

Gutters, webcomic about the importance of Barbara Gordon

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5 thoughts on “The reboot of Barbara Gordon, Batgirl

  1. Being paraplegic means you can’t kick ass any more? Huh. Somebody should tell that to all the ass-kicking paraplegics out there, so they can learn their place and stop kicking ass.

    “Superhero becomes inspirational supercripple” is as patronizing as “Weak lady is shot so strong men can avenge her”

    • I never meant to infer that Barbara Gordon did not kick ass as Oracle. She did, often depicted with double-sticks.

      The past tense was about the uncharacteristically light-hearted manner in which she kicked ass as a member of the Gotham City mythos.

    • Yes, I think the history of the character is a total mess, which is why I think it might be neat to see her history compiled in one place, under her own title, with one strong writer in place.

      Or it could be a disaster…

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