Batgirls #11 – Becky Cloonan/Michael W. Conrad, Writers; Neil Googe, Penciller, Scott Godlewski, Wayne Faucher, Inks and Finishes; Rico Renzi, Colorist
Ray – 8/10
Ray: This is one of the funniest, most chaotic books on the stands, rarely more so than in this new issue—with some of the strangest mood whiplash of any book out there. The Hill Ripper is still claiming new victims, and now it seems that the killing spree might have ties to the Riddler. Cass and Steph have been searching for answers, and now their clues have led them to the Gotham City Zoo. Barbara, meanwhile, tried to get help from Commissioner Montoya and was largely shut down, but she might have found another in within the department. As Riddler looms in the background, becoming increasingly enraged at the activities of Grace O’Halloran, Steph finds her possible in at the zoo—a sort-of-date with Kyle Mizoguchi of Gotham Academy. The two briefly flirted in the last issue, to the displeasure of StephCass shippers everywhere, but their date has an unexpected guest—Kyle’s sister Maps.
And that’s where my main problem with this issue lies. It’s only been a few weeks since we saw the last Gotham Academy story, and the difference between the two takes on Maps feel like they’re from different worlds. Maps in the original book was clever and quirky, hyperactive but determined and heroic. The Maps in this book looks and acts like she’s eight years old. Part of this is the frequently shifting art this issue, which makes her look about half the size of the already-short Cass when the two team up to investigate the Bat enclosure. Meanwhile, Steph and Kyle bond… but it never quite crosses into romance, and some lines at the end of the issue give some hope to us proud holdouts. Overall, this is probably the messiest issue of the series, both in art and pacing, but its Cass and Steph are still such fun characters that I maintain this is the best spotlight either of them have gotten in a very long time.
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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.