Batgirl #37 – Cecil Castellucci, Writer; Carmine Di Giandomenico, Artist; Jordie Bellaire, Colorist
Ray – 7.5/10
Ray: Unlike most new runs on a property, it actually doesn’t seem like Cecil Castellucci is dropping the plots from Mairghread Scott’s run at all – even after she went to great pains to dismantle Barbara’s life just in time for the new run.
Batgirl #37 picks up on a lot of the plots from last issue, and even features some of the same villains. The Terrible Trio – now with a new Shark who is just Fox’s cousin who slipped on the mask – are looking for a way to get back on top after their defeat, and their mission leads them to a secret base in the Blue Ridge Mountains where they’re seeking gear – and instead find a mysterious green robot built like a woman, who locks them in and demands the password from them before something bad happens. While they’re in this fix and looking doomed, Barbara’s situation is no less dire – as she faces the terrifying attacks of Killer Moth.
Yes, Barbara’s oldest nemesis has been upgraded and is actually posing a threat.
Castellucci actually has a clever twist on the endless series of offers being made by Lex Luthor to the villains of the DCU, in that Killer Moth hasn’t received an offer but desperately wants one. He’s upgraded himself and is out to kill Batgirl to prove himself “worthy”.
He’s no less pathetic, but his desperation makes him dangerous and the issue ends with Batgirl in surprisingly dire straits. This segment was very well done, but I didn’t find the others as compelling. The reveal that this mystery robot was actually the remnants of Oracle was revealed in solicits and it’s not a great look to make DC’s most prominent disabled heroine into an evil robot.
The subplot involving Jason Bard apparently developing feelings for Barbara….pass, given the significant age gap and just how many times he’s screwed over her family. It’s not a pairing I’m particularly interested in. But as a first issue, Batgirl #37 is showing some good characterization for its lead character, so there’s promise here.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.