Barbara Gordon's life is about to get burned to the ground, and we're about to get a whole new take on Batgirl.
Batgirl's been around for a while, but the writer she's most often connected with is Gail Simone. And Gail's written Babs for a long time, most recently having played lead writer on Batgirl since the New 52 dropped back in 2011. Gail's work on the title has been solid, but times change and most of the DCU (Batgirl included) could do with a swift kick in the backside.
Thank goodness that's exactly what it's about to get.
Beginning in October, writers Cameron Stewart and Brenden Fletcher are teaming up with new artist Babs Tarr to bring us a whole new take on Barbara Gordon's Batgirl. And before we get into the specifics of how different she'll be emotionally and psychologically, let's first check out how different she'll be physically. This is her rad new costume:
Leather Jacket -- NOT Spandex. Yes. We are game for this.
Of the new costume, Stewart explains that, "Barbara is forced to make a new costume for herself when her old one becomes unavailable. The new one is something she’s able to make herself, shopping at the various boutique and vintage stores in Burnside. It also reflects her youth and style. Unlike Batman or Batwoman, she no longer needs to stay in the shadows, and in fact learns to embrace the spotlight."
And that seems to be a microcosm of how the new title will be on the whole. While the new team were clear that they were respecting the story Gail told, and that "it’s not a complete reboot," it's clear that this new story will be a thorough departure.
What can we expect story-wise? Says Stewart, "Our approach is to do a series of standalone, single-issue stories, connected by a longer story arc. There will be a variety of new opponents for her to fight that arise from her new environment. Her first task is to deal with a sleazy Internet blackmailer."
That's a great place to start, actually. So far as stories that would appeal to young women, having to deal with Internet harassment ranks pretty high. Cops aren't always aces at dealing with that kind of stuff, so seeing Babs as a hero where the system fails makes a lot of sense.
So Babs is getting a new costume, a new 'hood, and a new attitude. If you want to get a real sonic vibe, apparently the song Stewart and Fletcher imagined playing as Barbara leaps across buildings is Azealia "Bank's 212". That is an, uh ... adult tune. I would not recommend blasting it while sitting at the office. But set aside a little time and you'll see that this is a more youthful, exciting and frenetic book than what we're used to from DC.
We're down for this. Frankly, it sounds like the new Batgirl team is taking a page from more progressive Marvel books like She-Hulk, Ms. Marvel and Hawkeye, which craft a more realistic and modern world for costumed heroes to play in.
Here are the official details:
Written by CAMERON STEWART and BRENDEN FLETCHER
Art by BABS TARR
Cover by CAMERON STEWART
MONSTERS Variant cover by KEVIN NOWLAN
On sale OCTOBER 8 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Barbara Gordon is no stranger to dusting herself off when disaster strikes… so when a fire destroys everything she owned, she spots the opportunity for a new lease on life — and seizes it! Following the rest of Gotham’s young adults to the hip border district of Burnside, Barbara sets about building an all-new Batgirl… and discovers all-new threats preying on her peers! It’s a re-invention of Batgirl from the boots up, by the incredible creative team of Cameron Stewart (BATMAN INC.), Brenden Fletcher (WEDNESDAY COMICS), and rising star artist Babs Tarr!
What do you think? Will you keep reading Batgirl when the changeover happens? Or, if you haven't read DC in a while, will this bring you back?