Sunday, September 20, 2015

Batgirl #43 (HERE BE SPOILERS!)

Fletcher and Stewart engage in a slight, though welcome, dodge in this issue.

At the end of last issue, it looked like Batman was going to arrest Babs.  At the start of this one, though, he disables his suit -- allowing him a brief window of time where base wasn't surveilling him -- and lets Babs go.  He reminds her that the Powers That Be want him to take in costumed vigilantes and suggests that she lies low for a while.  Of course, she doesn't, instead rallying to help him take down Livewire (the villain that escaped prison at the end of last issue).  After their successful team-up, Jim observes that he's going to have to arrest her at some point, but Babs simply notes that they made a great team.

The dodge that I mentioned is the fact that Gordon seems perfectly comfortable with Batgirl, putting her in the context of the other members of the Bat-family.  He even goes so far as to applaud her and the rest of the family, observing that Gotham would've fallen to pieces without them.  I don't deny Jim's support of Batman, obviously, but Fletcher and Stewart are his relationship with Batgirl.  After all, during Simone's run, he was obsessed with arresting her for apparently killing James, Jr..  In issue #26, we learned that she didn't actually kill him, and she and her father were able to enter into an uneasy truce.  It's the "uneasy" part that Fletcher and Stewart ignore here.

As such, it's a dodge, but, as I said, it's a welcome one.  Although the tension between Batgirl and Jim was interesting for a few issues, I didn't really want to see it persist forever.  I'm just going to assume that Jim has a different perspective on the sorts of choices that superheroes have to make now that he is one, and he's letting Batgirl off the hook.  I'm all for that sort of growth in characters, even if I have to invent it in my head.

*** (three of five stars)

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