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Subj: Batgirl #5
Posted: Thu Dec 10, 2009 at 03:29:15 pm EST (Viewed 19 times)

This is it, the issue in which Batgirls past and present meet the larger Bat-family. Some guy named Diesel with gasoline for blood who is burning down some sort of project built by the father of her classmate Francisco Garcia.

While fighting gas for blood, Dick Batman and dickish Robin show up. Dick goes all Bruce on Steph and tells her to sit back. A rope is thrown around blazo and Damien (nothing subtle about that name) uses his 10-year-old body to knock down a guy three times his size. (Sometimes I really hate comic book physics).

Using bat freeze-a-rangs, Dim Diesel is frozen along with Robin the boy mass murderer. We're at the cave next, and Dick and Babs are having it out. At this point I must comment that I hate the retcon that they had an affair. Up until the 1990s or early 2000s Babs was more of an older sister. Dick's first real love was Starfire. That was modern-age stuff, not continuit left over from the 1940s and 1950s. Just bugs me. At some point you have to dance with the girl you came with.

Dick admits freezing killer boy along with fire man wasn't the worst thing that happened. Meanwhile Steph and the anti-Bat have a conversation. He wants to meet Cass and doesn't know why Steph does what she does. No vengence there, she's not super talented. (Not true, jumping off buildings and fighting Blood Fuel when cops and firefighters are afraid to is just badass. She's got the stuff, but she hasn't killed anyone which does separate her from Damien and Jason Todd. She hasn't joined a cult of assassins, which separates her from Tim/Robin/Hamburger Chain. She hasn't slept with a sexy alien while Babs has feelings for him. So having done none of those terrible things, I can see why Damien is perplexed by a nice girl with moxy and no desire to do anything but good. Don't give up hope Damien, she does have heavy daddy issues.)

Steph, or rather the writer, makes an interesting observation. Damien is filled with anger. I don't think any other book has pointed that out. An angry kid who hasn't hesitated to kill and wants to meet the best assissin in the world. That can't end badly.

Steph is next seen in the library, putting books away. She overhears Gossip Girl and Garcia boy talking about some dark secret concerning his dad. Which makes sense, whenever I make conversation about family criminal conspiracy, I do it in a public place where anyone can hear.

Gossip Girl catches Steph evesdropping and storms off. Steph decides to escort Garcia Boy out in the snowy climes of Gotham U. Damien is spotted. Steph confronts him. I really want to see that boy killed by being slowly lowered into a wood chipper. Now, that doesn't mean that I have issues.

Steph, while on patrol and doing things that would amaze Spider-Man, decides to bump into Garcia boy at his favorite diner. She has to borrow clothes from Babs. They're smoking hot clothes.

She meets the great slab of beef. They're talking, then suddenly a van pulls up to the diner, masked thugs get out. Someone says target acquired, which indicates sophistication. Steph, in a little black dress and trench coat jumps over a chair, picks it up and slams one thug. Another said it's not always about you and shoots her in the head. She receives a superficial wound which knocks her out.

We also had a scene in which Babs meets her dad at that cop diner. Dad isn't there but Nick Studly is. Apparently dad set them up. I'm now going to get serious. I'm not trying to be funny. This scene makes me uncomfortable. Maybe it's because I'm a bad person, maybe because it's that I'm ignorant. But I would like to hear about issues of romance between parapalygics and non-handicapped people. It's awkward and brings up all sorts of issues. I question whether the writers of DC, in general, have done their homework. Also, Commissioner Gordon playing matchmaker, given these circumstances. Does it make him a bumbling but loving dad, or does it make him an asshat, interfereing in things he doesn't understand? I don't know. I really would like to hear from people on this, especially people who are in Babs' situation. A little clear, honest talk about the real difficulties in this type of situation would be appreciated.

What I liked. Steph, she showed moxie and fearlessness. She was doing Ok fighting a scary villain. Granted I don't like superpowered Bat villains. I don't mind gimmicks or unusual skill sets, but gas for blood? Doesn't float my boat.

Dick was a dick. Is that something they do in the other bat books? I haven't been reading them. But it seems like being a jerk is part of being Batman. I also liked that Steph actually called Damien on his nonsense. She pointed out that of course he doesn't understand stuff, he's 10 years old. I'm going to say something nice about Joel Shumacher. Making Robin college-aged was a good move on his part. I can believe an 18-year-old can be a crime fighter. I don't buy a 10-year-old. Don't tell me about training etc. It comes down to muscle mass, weight, physics, neural development, bone strength. Simply put there's a reason why there are weight classifications in prize fighting.

I don't mind the soap opera with classmates, but they really haven't been set up properly. We only have a couple of scenes in the classroom. Say what you will about the old days, but they could really get a lot of information in a short period. By issue #5 of The Amazing Spider-Man, we really knew who Flash Thompson, J. Jonah Jameson, Liz Allen and Aunt May were. I can't say the same about Gossip Girl and Garcia.

The head shot was a nice "to be continued" moment. Overall I liked this issue. Had some nice character interplay. Said it before, but really liked Steph's observation that Damien is really angry.

Not a bad issue at all. The art was good. But need to tell us who the supporting cast is. I would like to learn more about the real difficulties of Babs' dating.

Or I could be wrong.

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