Sunday, March 12, 2017

Batgirl And The Birds Of Prey #8 - A Review

When Nightwing is injured trying to bring down a metahuman known as Gemini, it falls to The Birds Of Prey to bring the rogue shape-shifter to justice. The bigger problem may be the mysterious Blackbird, who is apparently mentoring Gemini and several other up-and-coming super-villains. And then there's the rumors of an underground fighting league for metahumans setting up shop in Gotham...

Batgirl And The Birds of Prey #8 sets up a series of subplots in this issue, which promise to keep things interesting for our heroines for a good long while. Julie and Shawna Benson are proving to be both master storytellers and good character writers. This is something that is rarer than you'd think in comic books!

The best part of this issue - and the one thing that threw me for a loop - was the relationship between Helena and Barbara. I had thought we were in for a repeat of the rivalry we saw back in the Chuck Dixon days of Birds of Prey. The Bensons took these expectations and flattened them, having both women admit to their feelings for Dick Grayson and deal with it like adults. It helps, of course, that Helena is prone to detachment and Barbara - ever the intellectual - is smart enough to divorce her feelings from what her brain tells her is a complication she doesn't need. In this, the past of the characters is acknowledged while still remaining true to both characters.

The artwork in this issue suits the series. Roge Antonio is fantastic at crafting expressive faces and that's to the benefit of this issue, which is largely built around some spirited conversations. Colorist Allen Passalaqua does his usual stellar job of finishing the artwork.

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