Posted By Leo Reyna on July 10, 2014
On the surface, everything about the new Batgirl comic run announced by DC Comics Thursday is nothing like we come to expect from the company.
Sure, new Batgirl writers Cameron Stewart and Brenden Fletcher have a history with DC from their respective work on Batman Inc. and Wednesday Comics. However, where they plan to take Barbara Gordon and her superhero alter-ego is a complete 180 on how she’s been portrayed in the New 52 reboot written by Gail Simone. With her old life literally gone in flames, Barbara packs up her bags and moves to Burnside, described by Stewart as “the cool, trendy borough of Gotham.” Starting in October with issue 35, Batgirl will drop the its overtly dark tone for a more upbeat atmosphere. Stewart promises the new Batgirl book will be lighthearted and fun; two things severely lacking in the comics DC publishes today.
Then there’s Batgirl’s newly redesigned costume by Babs Tarr, who will make her comic debut as illustrator for the series. Gone is the movie-inspired and needlessly complicated armor Batgirl has worn since the New 52 began and in is a more practical, fashionable, and simply appealing apparel that beautifully represents the youthful side of Barbara. Rarely has DC hit the nail on the head when it came to redesigning its characters for a new generations, with the Justice League sporting line-covered armor with collars, Starfire wearing less clothing than ever before, and Powergirl initially dressing like a toothpaste before reverting back to her original appearance. However, Tarr’s take on Batgirl’s costume does exactly what a redesign should do: Draw inspiration from the original, while modernizing it for a new era.
It’s surreal how the new Batgirl actually feels fresh and not a retread of DC’s 90s ideology. Everything about Batgirl comes off as something Marvel Comics would do, considering its recent relaunches of She-Hulk, Ms. Marvel, and Ghost Rider. But it’s not. Batgirl is all DC and it bring changes the publisher should have introduced since relaunching its comic book library in 2011. It may have taken three years, but DC has finally caught up with the times for Batgirl. Hopefully Batgirl is only the beginning and more titles will soon start to follow, because this is what the DC universe desperately needs.
Let’s see more of this.
And less of this.