Batgirl #0 Review

September sees the one year anniversary of the launch of DC Comics’ big reboot; the New 52, and to celebrate DC are releasing a Zero issue for each of its continuing titles (from the New 52) throughout the month. If like me you are a huge comic nerd then this can only be a good thing. There are many titles that I am looking forward to reading, bagging, boarding and then adding to my collection, but one title in particular has had me counting down the days, and that is Batgirl.

I was hoping that this issue might shed some light on how Barbara recovered from her crippling spinal injuries (inflicted by the Joker in Alan Moore’s classic, The Killing Joke), but this is not the case. The issue is very much an origin story, which is fine with me. The bulk of the story takes place during a tour of the Gotham City Police station, as Barbara, who is joined by her creepy little brother, is researching for a college project, but is that all she is there for? It’s not long before little Miss Gordon lays eyes on something that really captures her imagination, something that just might change her life forever; a bat suit.

With her attention on the suit, Bab’s and James Jr, come face to face with GCPD’s newest prisoner Harry X. This could be just the lead she needs to get that A+ she is chasing. Following a loud explosion a group of Mr X’s crazy followers arrive to break him out, and Harry sets his sights on the commissioner’s kids, as the perfect bargaining chips.

Bab’s on the other hand has other ideas and decides to finally put her many years of self-defence classes to good use. Donning the cape and cowl for the first time, she’s ready to kick some ass.

This comic was superb, brilliantly written by the lovely Gail Simone, The way in which she made Babs’ narration kind of ‘chatty’ gives the book a real sense of realism, as she is just a teenager, and it feels as if we are naughtily reading her diary. I also thought the final page reference to Alan Moore’s classic The Killing Joke, was a really nice touch. On top of the wonderful story, we are treated to some amazing art from Ed Benes who has done a truly exceptional job in bridging this issue to life. I especially loved the fact that in the final pages we get to see Batgirl in her original costume of a Blue cape and no cowl.

I think that Gail Simone has outdone herself yet again with a fantastic origin story, that charts not only Batgirl’s first battle but also alludes to her year as part of the Bat-family. But how was she accepted into that family, and why did she quit? Well they are stories for another time.

All in all Batgirl #0 is yet another fantastic issue in what is for me, one of the best titles in the New 52.

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