Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Batgirl #28 - A Review

The New 52 volume of Batgirl has seen Gail Simone create many new villains for Barbara Gordon to contend with.  This issue introduces another one, who is both an interesting character and a subversive satire of Batman himself.  Meet Mr. Uchida - a.k.a. Silver.  Silver is a Gotham billionaire with an interest in fighting evil and a loyal butler who assists his nightly quest to take back Gotham.  The twist?  Silver is a vampire hunter, who thinks Batman and his comrades are vampires!

Simone hangs a lampshade on the concept of Batman itself, pointing out how phenomenally bad it would be for a mentally unstable man with more money than sense to act on his heroic impulses.  But Simone is more than a dark comedian, showing her command of drama and ethos as well.  The scenes involving Barbara and the heroine Strix (who is hunting a missing girl) are quite touching and may be of interest to fans of the Cassandra Cain Batgirl.  I don't want to suggest that Strix is a substitute for Cass (though both women are mute, warped by a violent upbringing and have similar costumes) but the relationship between Barbara and Strix is becoming something similar to what Barbara and Cass shared.

Fernando Pasarin and Jonathan Glapion are back in fine form.  Ask me to name the most underrated and consistently excellent artists in the industry and I would include them among them.  Pasarin's pencils are detailed without being cluttered and Glapion manages to shroud the page in darkness without going overboard.  New colorist Blond also enhances the artwork by using highlights to outline the blacks and greys that dominate the color scheme.  In short, this book looks as good as it reads. 

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