Batgirl faces a new kind of “mirror” in the wrap-up to the house of glass arc
When we last left our hero, she was befuddled by one Bruce Wayne, who was working against her in a mesmerized state, courtesy of the latest villain, Gretel. This issue gave us some insight into the girl once known as Lisly Bonner, a young reporter who infiltrated mob hang-outs to seek her first big story. Unfortunately for her, that took a turn for the worse and she ended up nearly dead. Like a few other baddies we’ve seen in past issues, she wished she had not been saved. What was there to live for? Through some sort of freak result of the bullet to her head, she finds that she -finally – now had the power… the power of mind control.
All this back story comes shortly after Bruce regains his composure and stops attacking Barbara long enough to whisper some heartfelt – if not poorly timed – words after their scuffle. Following their heart-to-heart, the two team up to bring down this Gretel woman during Bruce’s Gotham revitalization ceremony. Things go mostly as planned, though Officer McKenna shows up to stir the pot a little and put a slight wrench in their plans. But since they’re Bats, it went as well as can be expected.
Now, I had two reactions to this issue. Upon first reading, I thoroughly enjoyed most aspects and think it was a nice little-wrap up to the arc; Simone cleverly wove in some other through lines for upcoming issues. On second read, I found myself getting a little more nit-picky and not buying into it as much. For one, Gretel’s name means nothing to me, allegorically, metaphorically… however you want to look at it. For two, the line she shouts to the citizens of Gotham at the ceremony was CHEESY. BUT, I can forgive a lot of things. Being an aspiring writer myself, I see the mechanical and stylistic things Simone is trying to – and must – accomplish. I can let that go. I did, however, love the parallel between her and Barbara in terms of needing a second chance and something to believe in, to live for. And revenge. She was a different kind of mirror for Batgirl to gaze upon.
I would say I thought Bruce’s statement that she was always meant to be Batgirl was slightly hokey and ill-timed but it’s Bruce. When has he ever been NOT awkward about those kinds of thing? I don’t know if I ever knew that he stayed by her bedside after the shooting. I, too, would believe he’d have reamed her for being careless enough to get shot. So that aspect of the issue was well-played, for all intents and purposes.
The loose end being her mom but I know that will be addressed soon enough. I don’t trust her, personally. That was A LOT of baking and I don’t know what her aim is yet.
Overall, I can’t say it was my favorite issue yet or anything but I appreciate it for what it’s worth and what it accomplished. Plus, the art was as fantastic as ever and Simone – as always – has a really good grip of the Batgirl character and voice in general.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Good composition of art and story||Some flubs here and there, from a fangirl perspective|
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