Barbara Gordon used to be an awesome example of triumph over adversity. Oracle was never a victim; she was a hero. A hero who was Justice League level (ie a Top Tier hero in terms of her in-universe importance). Unfortunately Barbara Gordon now is a walking victim surrounded by stories of victimisation. It wouldn't be so bad if the themes of her suffering/recovering from her injury were actually properly explored in depth (eg maybe she develops PTSD or some other mental illness) but it just seems that it's treated as "Oh I was paralysed but now I'm better lol. Except sometimes I feel bad about it lol".
I actually was not planning on posting this article here, but a guy on another forum asked me to share it so here it is. I replied to a bunch of comments, but I don't have time to get to everybody's. Sorry. Know that I will read them all even if I do not respond, and I appreciate everybody sharing their thoughts with me.
As far as Oracle rimmed glasses, that is true. I can't help but compare Barbara's current incarnation to her previous one, but I understand that others are not so clingy to continuity. Personally, I do not like many continuity changes, but I can accept changes to a character's history more easily than I can accept changes to a character's character. I don't feel like this is even the same character as featured prior to Flashpoint. If you are okay with that, that's your prerogative, but this character is not the same in my book, and she is inferior in almost every way.
Regarding the age thing, that is what does not track with me. I can see pre-Flashpoint Barbara being a little older but not much. The DC wikia for Barbara Gordon says that pre-Flashpoint Barbara was also nineteen when she was crippled. We know comic book time lines vary from case to case, but by my own personal time line, there were about five years from Barbara's crippling to the end of the DCU. The life of Tim Drake backs this up as he was thirteen when he took the mantle of Robin (about two years real time after Barbara's death) and he was seventeen when the DCU ended. Again, about five years since two years in comic book time is rarely viewed as two years real time. By that math, Oracle was probably twenty-four at the end of the DCU. Current Babs is probably twenty-two possibly twenty-three if you take it as a year past the beginning of the DCNU. She would be twenty-two without it since nineteen plus three equals twenty-two. Anyway, you are talking about a max of two years. Therefore, saying Babs is much younger does not explain away her lack of maturity. It may be a small factor, but not much.
I much prefer Batwoman, but I also enjoy Batgirl of late. It was only the early stuff that was bad. Making suggestions on how a book can improve is not meant as a put down but just a friendly suggestion.
I don't see how fear makes Batgirl any more �present,� nor do I think it is even right to call her reaction fear. Any hero who does not have fear while dealing with a life threatening situation is reckless. Rather, a hero needs to have control of his or her fear. Babs, at times, does not. Again, I see it sad to see a character regressed/completely altered for the worse.
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Now Nightwing, on the other hand, seems to have taken a major physical stumble in the DCNU due to convenient writing. He doesn't have PTSD as an excuse.
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That was #3 on the OP. You'll notice I said I agreed with that one.Barbara Gordon used to be an awesome example of triumph over adversity. Oracle was never a victim; she was a hero. A hero who was Justice League level (ie a Top Tier hero in terms of her in-universe importance). Unfortunately Barbara Gordon now is a walking victim surrounded by stories of victimisation. It wouldn't be so bad if the themes of her suffering/recovering from her injury were actually properly explored in depth (eg maybe she develops PTSD or some other mental illness) but it just seems that it's treated as "Oh I was paralysed but now I'm better lol. Except sometimes I feel bad about it lol".
The job thing is really key here. It adds conflict, allows her to have more to do out of uniform and brings in a stable supporting cast. This really should have been a 1st or 2nd issue thing, it's that important. I am really puzzled as to why this has not been addressed yet.
As for the victim criticism I don't really have a problem with it. Do I want this theme to go on forever? No, but it's an okay theme for a new book that sets it apart a bit from other books.
Life looks better in black and white.
When she was introduced Babs was 25. Then she was made into a congresswoman. She was always significantly older than Knightwing. It was about 20 years before she began to be deaged to make her a viable love interest for him.
Last edited by sunofdarkchild; 01-08-2013 at 11:07 PM.
How does seeing someone get in danger gain you willpower. I would think that Babs, living the life she has till now, would already know about gaining will power and not put Ricky in that situation.
By the way I hope we're not going to see a Phantom of the Opera type situation here where Ricky is going to "fall in love" with Batgirl and try to win her over.
All I want to see in Batgirl is new villains.
I know Gail can deliver great villains from her Secret Six series; she can also updated bat-foes terrifically! If she doe update an existing adversary the s/he should become Barbara's exclusive opponent IMHO.
I have enjoyed Gail's run but I do hope her leaving will see Batgirl grow in the manner she needs to because Babs bumbling along from battle to battle would have gotten old and unbelievable after much longer.
Last edited by batGRRRl4ever; 01-09-2013 at 07:57 AM. Reason: add
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I think it has got too hung up on her "journey" and locked into her emotional state at certain moments. I also think and I know that I have said this before, that even the name "Batgirl" does factor into this, suggesting a juvenile status and someone that is assumed to still need training or experience to be on a level with other characters. That is an advantage with character names that are not age related. Obviously the name is unlikely to change, but assumptions about it could.
The character needs to grow and rise above her tragedy. Otherwise the title should be renamed Batvictim.