- With DC's September 2011 line-wide relaunch, one of the more controversial changes was Barbara Gordon's return to the role of Batgirl, involving her regaining mobility to her legs, after being paralyzed in "The Killing Joke" over 20 years ago.
- As it turns out, "The Killing Joke" did indeed happen in the world of The New 52 relaunch. It is shown that Barbara has just recently regained the use of her legs.
- Her new found mobility may springboard her back into action, but the effects of the Joker's terrible act may be mentally more difficult to get over than she ever imagined.
- While Babs is able to walk again this could be temporary- meaning she has to be careful. It should also be noted Kyle Higgins confirmed that Babs and Dick Grayson never dated however, the feelings for the two are there.
- During the events of the Death of the Family story-arc, she finally had her first encounter with the Joker since he paralyzed her.
Her new solo ongoing Batgirl series is being written by Gail Simone and drawn by Ed Benes.
While attending a costume party dressed as a female counterpart of Batman, Barbara Gordon witnesses the kidnapping of billionaire Bruce Wayne by super-villain Killer Moth. She prevents this and without realizing it, draws the attention of the Dark Knight. This event begins Barbara's path in crime fighting.
In the New 52, Barbara, alongside with her brother, was visiting her father in the Police Station of Gotham City, under the excuse of needing it as part of a college project. Her real motivation, though, was taking a closer look on what the officers thought and knew about Batman, the mysterious vigilant who was similar to her in many aspects, including her smartness.
She is escorted by officer Dwight Morgan, who is slightly attracted by the young lady. In the middle of the visit, though, a criminal who had just been arrested, Harry X, managed to start caos in the Station, with the help of his allies. He threats James Junior's life, saying he would only need one of the comissioner's kids as a hostage. He picked Barbara over the boy he called an aberration, forcing her to run with her brother while Morgan fought the assassin.
The bandit, however, defeated the officer and would certainly kill him if Barbara did not stop him. She dressed up with the Batman's fantasy which the cops were using to try to get how the vigilant worked. She uses her martial arts skills to defeat Harry and is praised by Batman himself for the good work.
Since then, she started to work alongside with him and Robin. At first, Batman did not want another partner, but he ended up accepting her. Barbara remained as Batgirl for about a year, leaving the crime fighting life to focus on her studies and personal projects.
Barbara Gordon was created by Gardner Fox and Carmine Infantino.
By day she is a librarian and at night she pursues her career in crime fighting. Eventually she begins dating many boys including private investigator Jason Bard. She would soon team-up with Superman, Supergirl and fight the likes of Mr. Mxyzptlk. She has also fought alongside the Justice League of America as well as having a team-up with Supergirl on her own. Later on, she begins to work with Batman's partner, Robin, on occasion as well as working with Jason Bard. Batgirl eventually reveals her secret identity to her adopted father, Police Commissioner Jim Gordon, who had already figured out who she was. He had, after all, known her all her life, going from her uncle to father. She is later elected to the U.S. House of Representative and as a result moves to D.C. with the hopes of giving up her career as Batgirl. However a year later she is set up on a blind date with Clark Kent and later fights alongside Superman. She would then team-up with both Superman and Supergirl again throughout the Silver Age.
Barbara Gordon continues to be Batgirl and again frequently teams up with Robin. She also encounters Batwoman, who has been retired for some time, who comes out of retirement however, she is later killed by the Bronze Tiger. Before her death they fight Killer Moth and Cavalier. She plays a small role in Crisis on Infinite Earths, and delivers Supergirl's eulogy. After this event, which reshaped the DC Universe, Batgirl entered the Modern Age
The Modern Age saw Barbara Gordon as a slightly darker character. While recounting the series of events that lead her to become Batgirl, this is also significantly different that in the previous age's interpretations of her character. She encounters The Batman at a early age. As she grows up she excels in school, warranting her the honor of skipping grades throughout her academic career. She also pursues martial arts and striving to become a star athlete. She initially tries to pursue a career in criminal justice as opposed to her future vigilantism as Batgirl. Her father is no longer Jim Gordon, instead being the adoptive daughter of Gordon, also being her uncle, however there has been allegations that Jim is her biological father.
She would still be Batgirl for some time, however she started to feel inadequate in a world that had heroes like Superman, Captain Marvel, and Wonder Woman. She retired from her career as Batgirl, however that did not stop violence from entering her life. In an attempt to drive Jim Gordon insane, the Joker arrives at the Gordon's house and shoots Barbara Gordon through the spine. He then takes pictures of her in various states of undress and torture that he would show Gordon later in an attempt to drive him insane. The shots from the Joker's gun severed Barbara's spine leaving her in a wheelchair for the rest of her life. Upon hearing this both Barbara and Nightwing, the former Robin Dick Grayson are devastated. This would lead to an obsessive disorder regarding the Joker, tapping into video of him, as well as telling Nightwing that they should make an exception to their one rule and kill the Clown Prince of Crime. She would later ask Batman for the camera that was used to shoot the pictures of her. She has it in a secret building, along with her original Batgirl suit.
Initially Barbara falls into a bout of depression, but soon uses her knowledge of computers in the ever growing modern era and use it to fight crime the best way she can. Using her incredible smarts and photographic memory along with her ability to use computers in a way that most of the DCU are unable to, she creates a new persona. She now goes by the codename Oracle and she serves as an information broker, first to the Suicide Squad, then to heroes throughout her world. She also trains to become a fighting threat from the world famous Richard Dragon, although she is still in a wheelchair.
She is also a key player, gathering information for Batman and his operations throughout the years, specifically during No Man's Land and when Bruce Wayne was accused of murdering his girlfriend. She is seen to have a very good relationship with all the members of the Batman Family in recent years, and has served as a member of the Justice League.
Upon her complete transformation into the Oracle, she founds the Birds of Prey, a team of female heroes whom she employs and sends out as agents in her fight on crime as well as considering them extended members of the Batman Family. She partnered with Power Girl, however their partnership did not work very well. Black Canary, Dinah Lance, becomes the main operative in her unit, as the two have formed an incredibly strong friendship once they finally meet in person.
During War Games, Oracle's computer systems are compromised by the Black Mask as he confronts the Batman. Batman was going to kill the Black Mask, however due to Oracle setting off her self destruct mechanism in her Clock Tower she forced Batman to rescue her. Because of this destruction, Barbara decides to cut her ties with the Batman and moves her operation to Metropolis.
Barbara is later possessed by Brainiac, who attempts to have a biological body. Barbara was able to overcome his advances and remove him from her body, however in the aftermath a virus remains in her system. Because of this virus she is able to communicate cyberpathically with computer systems. Later, Dr. Mid-Nite is able to make the virus dormant, however after this she is soon able to move her toes, however that does not last very long.
Barbara Gordon's return to the role of Batgirl, involving her regaining mobility to her legs, after being paralyzed in "The Killing Joke". She has just recently regained the use of her legs. Her new found mobility may springboard her back into action, but the effects of the Joker's terrible act may be mentally more difficult to get over than she ever imagined. Though Babs is able to walk again, it could be temporary, which means she has to be careful. Also, in addition to working solo, she has been helping out Black Canary's Birds of Prey, in spite of not initially wanting to join the team.
Major Story Arcs
No Man's Land
A very young woman named Cassandra Cain became involved with the Bat Family after saving Commissioner Gordon's life from her father David Cain an assassin, during No Man's Land. Cassandra proved herself and was given the Batgirl costume the Huntress wore with the approval of both Batman and Oracle. She then became the next to officially carry on the mantle of Batgirl. It is during this time that Cassandra become Barbara's ward. It is also at this time Oracle begins a relationship with Dick Grayson once again following the events of No Man's Land . This on again off again relationship has been going on for some time. Also the Huntress joins the Birds of Prey, although Barbara and Helena do not get along, particularly after it is revealed that Dick and Helena had a relationship at one point.
Cassandra works as Batgirl with Oracle and they become a team to be reckoned with. One time they were trying to solve a bombing at the diamond exchange that killed several people. Two-Face caused the bombing and took credit for it but the problem was why did six of the bodies disappear. It turned out they were being reanimated and used by a man named Malcolm Greymater (The General) in his crime-syndicate known as the Trio. The machine that brought people back didn't really work on everyone's minds leaving some complete zombies while others with slight memory loss that just got worse as their brains rotted. Good looking woman were taking to a strip club were they would perform. Strong men were recruited in his own gang. Everything led them to Arcadia were Oracle and Cassandra worked with the Ghost.
On Jim Gordon's birthday, Barbara waits for him to arrive to see him as he's out having drinks with several officers. As he leaves to come visit Barbara, he runs into Catwoman before being shot three times in the back by an unknown shooter as Catwoman is grazed by a bullet he discharged. Barbara hearing this, is forced to feign ignorance and officers arrive to take her to the hospital, where all the local media is there trying to gather a statement from her. Once Gordon pulls out of his first surgery, Barbara calls in Azrael, Robin, Batgirl, Nightwing and Batman to find out the truth. As Bruce, charges all of them to look for Catwoman with Oracle coordinating their efforts as Bruce waits with Gordon.
Following the tip from Harley Quinn, Oracle and Nightwing devise a plan to slow Catwoman down and capture her. By all the heroes chasing her and making her tired before allowing her to fall on a net, and be shocked by Robin. Catwoman then tells her story of witnessing a fellow officer shoot Gordon, and hide the weapon which she took and hid in order to prove her innocence. Upon Batgirl and Azrael gaining the gun, they release Catwoman with Dick heading to Barbara to have it traced. Barbara then traces the gun as being having recovered by G.C.P.D but having never been recorded in evidence, with officer Rich being revealed to be Jordan Reynolds, a mobster from Chicago who Commissioner Gordon had arrested, but was put in witness protection in exchange for information.
Following learning the truth Nightwing is forced to talk Barbara out seeking vengeance instead of justice. Nightwing manages to talk her out of it, giving him the gun as she leaves to the hospital to see the now awakened Commissioner Gordon.
Oracle is responsible for coordinating efforts between Batman, Nightwing, Robin, Batgirl, Onyx and Catwoman when Gotham is tossed into a city wide gang war. Through out the gang war, Batman grew increasingly cold to Oracle, only relying on her to give out orders to the others. Following Orpheus being killed by Black Mask, and taking his place as the new head of Gotham organized crime. Black Mask then arrives to Oracle's clock tower along with Scarecrow and a Gotham television reporter which he believe is the Batcave, as Hush told him.
Through the use of sacrificing his henchmen and Scare Crow to Oracle's various traps, he makes it to the top where he meets Barbara herself. He then challenges Batman for a final televised duel to death and if he doesn't show up threatens a live televised execution of Barbara. Batman then arrives and begins his battle with Black Mask despite Barbara's pleas to end it. When Bruce continues his battle with Black Mask, Barbara takes matters into her own hands activating the tower's self destruct system forcing Bruce to choose between continuing his fight to the death or saving her, which he readily does.
Following the clock tower's destruction she leaves Gotham as well as the Gotham vigilantes believing it's unfair to them as well as the Birds of Prey. She then begins traveling the world with the Birds, eventually setting up base in Metropolis.
Oracle and Martian Manhunter team up in order to counteract the Secret Society's jailbreak during Infinite Crisis. It was around this time that Jason Todd returned to Gotham as red Hood. Before the crisis started however, Dick Grayson proposed to Barbara, however in the aftermath of the crisis she puts the engagement on hold in order for Dick to travel the world with Bruce Wayne and Tim Drake, retracing the roots of Batman. She tells him they aren't ready to be married, Dick gives her the engagement ring and a picture of the two of them when they were Robin and Batgirl. Once they return, Oracle begins to work with the Batman, although on a limited basis. Black Canary has left the team and as such The Huntress takes up the field command of the team. Barbara expands her team and include Big Barda as her heavy hitter. Oracle also tries to reform her friendship with Power Girl and invite her back on the team but she blatantly declines her. For a brief period the Government tried to take over the Birds of Prey organization, however Barbara eventually regained control of the team and inducted a new member, Misfit, into her operation.
Cassandra Cain, the one who succeeded her as Batgirl, who was looking for her father in an attempt to kill him, is interrupted by Oracle who simply tells her she knows what she's looking for and offers to delete her browsing history on the computer. However it is revealed Cassandra's father intends to kill Barbara, and in the process Cassandra saves her. Some time later, after the death of the Flash, Oracle sends Batwoman and the Question to gather the Trickster and the Pied Piper as they played a hand in the Flash's death. She also struggles with keeping all the super-heroes secret identities when the Calculator tries to steal her records and computer sources.
Booster Gold is then assigned by Rip Hunter, to prevent the Joker's shooting of Barbara Gordon who he claims was never meant to be shot. Booster then travels back in time to the events of the Killing Joke, and is constantly defeated by The Joker and his henchmen with Barbara still being paralyzed. Rip then explains that Barbara being shot, much like Ted Kord are "solidified time" meaning it's impossible to alter to save them from their fate,
In Final Crisis Darkseid has figured out the Anti-Life Equation, and as a result attempts to put it on the internet. Oracle attempts to thwart his attempts, even going as far as attempting to shut down the entire internet, however she fails and as a result the Equation is plastered on the Internet. After the crisis she is released from the Equation, and begins to doubt her abilities, disbanding the Birds of Prey.
Search for The Cure
During Battle for the Cowl, even though the Birds of Prey are inactive, she summons them in an attempt to help Nightwing and Robin. She acts as operator for the Network in Gotham City. The Calculator's daughter is dying and he becomes obsessed with attempting to find the Anti-Life Equation in an attempt to save her. Oracle learns of his excursions when one of her informants are killed while in a virtual reality game. Oracle travels to Hong Kong hoping to use state of the art computer technology to reach the Equation before the Calculator. When he learns of her attempts he swears vengeance on her. She manages to help catch him, while visiting his daughter and she cures the Anti-Life Equation.
When Green Lantern is thrown into the Bat-Signal in Gotham, both Jim Gordon and Barbara are present. Barbara then sends the information that was gathered by Green Lantern and proceeds to send it to all the heroes throughout the planet before Jim and her are pursued by Black Lanterns of the dead Batman Rogues. They are forced to fight for their lives before the new Batman, Robin, and Red Robin arrive. She is possessed by Deadman, who uses his supernatural powers to make her walk, as well as using her natural athletic ability to stave off the Black Lanterns. Robin takes the two to Alfred who tend to their wounds.
Dick Grayson informs Barbara that Cassandra Cain is no longer using the identity of Batgirl. As a result she knows that Stephanie Brown has taken the mantle. Barbara confronts her and tells her to stop going out because she is far too reckless. She tries to dissuade her from pursuing this life, telling her that it will end badly for her, bringing her to the Batcave she tells her to quit. When Scarecrow attacks Gotham, Barbara is forced to send her out to the field. Through this fight Barbara takes a liking to Stephanie, and begins mentoring the young hero. She begins teaching as a professor at Gotham University in order to keep a closer eye on Stephanie. When Dick realizes that Barbara is allowing Stephanie to be Batgirl he confronts her angrily, causing the two to have quite a fight but eventually he accepts Stephanie.
Barbara is set up on a blind date, but that goes south as the man realizes that she wants to be with someone else. She is seen flirting with Dick Grayson again, and at one point when Helena goes undercover, being Dick Grayson's date at a social event, where she kisses Dick to maintain a cover. Barbara hears this over a comm link and is seen to be frustrated and jealous.
Since she is no longer permitted to use the Batcave, Barbara creates a new base of operations for Batgirl beneath her apartment which she calls Firewall. Barbara also begins helping young Wendy Harris, who has also been paralyzed, by giving her a position on 'Team Batgirl' to help Stephanie in her absence.
A Turbulent Reunion
Barbara and the Birds are back in town as Black Canary, Huntress, and Lady Blackhawk come to Gotham. She as always helps the girls with her intelligence. Soon after getting the team back together, Barbara was supposedly kidnapped by Savant, but he did not want to kill her. He just asked her forgiveness. He told her he was not strong enough for her. He tried to commit suicide but before he fell, Barbara took his hand. She was not strong enough to save him but in the final moment Creote appeared and helped her. She blamed herself for her arrogance toward him. She cried and was really worried for his safety. Creote after saving his friend told him Barbara still loves him. That was the reason she would never let him die in front of her. Oracle decides to continue to help them and shows them her other new base of operations: Kord Tower.
The Death of Oracle
With the return of the original Batman, Bruce Wayne, and his formation of Batman Incorporated, Bruce has a new need for the talents of Oracle. He tells Barbara that he and Wayne Enterprises plan to launch the Internet 3.0, and he wants Barbara to be his "ghost in the machine." He shows her a mysterious set of plans that have her in a Bat-Suit, next to a vehicle, but fails to go further into detail about what it all means. Later, Bruce visits Barbara and apparently is trying to talk her out of a decision she's made. He tries to remind her how much he needs Oracle for his future plans, but Barbara tells him it's inappropriate to call her Oracle any more, as too many people know of her existence, continuing to say "Tonight... Oracle dies, once and for all." She grabs Bruce's hand and asks him to wish her luck. All this while Calculator, one of Oracle's greatest foes conspires with new villain Mortis, against her and the rest of the Birds of Prey. When the new villain, Mortis comes looking for Oracle at a strip club, Barbara Gordon is no where in sight and Dove is really drunk. That leaves, Black Canary, Huntress and Lady Blackhawk to defend one another against a foe that has a touch of insanity - then suicide!
As Gordon tries to draw a line between work and home, he gets a phone call from Harvey Bullock telling him to go to the Gotham City Aviary. When Gordon arrives, Bullock informs Jim that the aviary cages are all automated from the control room and there is some troubling video footage from the security cameras that Jim needs to see. Gordon sees the image of a man who resembles his son James Jr. . This troubling assumption begins to trouble Gordon and soon he becomes haunted by the visions of past unsolved case files that involved murdered children.
Fifteen years ago, Gordon was moving up the ranks within the precinct when he started investigating a string of eight murders that involved the Peter Pan Killer who would sneak into family homes and abduct children from their beds then murder them. Gordon apprehended the Peter Pan Killer when he attempted to abduct a young James Jr.
Now after 15 years, Gordon heads to Blackgate to interrogate the Peter Pan Killer before he was released from prison. Gordon wanted to find out why the killer didn’t go through with kidnapping James Jr. The killer reveals that he was going to kill Gordon Jr. rather than abducting him because James Jr. gave the killer an ominous stare when he entered the boy’s room. The killer also reveals that he murdered a young girl who was friends with Oracle before he visited Gordon’s apartment.
This revelation causes Gordon wonder about his son’s innocence and what exactly happened to the young girl. Oracle has always been under the assumption that James Jr. murdered her friend Bess because she saw James Jr. playing with her friend’s apartment keys with smug look on his face. Gordon has heard this story from Babs before but now he doubts if Babs’ story is actually true. There is a possibility that the killer took the young girl’s keys and dropped them at the Gordon’s apartment by accident. After his conversation with the Peter Pan Killer, Gordon threatens the killer that he will be followed at all times in order to prevent another murder.
Later on that same day, Gordon invites Oracle for some coffee at Bay Diner and talks to her about his findings. Jim tells Barbara that her brother, James Jr., is back in Gotham City. Barbara asks her father if he really thinks it's him coming back, and Jim replies yes. As they continue their talk, Barbara reminds her father that Jim Jr. is really smart and cunning. Jim tells her that it's going to be all right and that they've got police officers looking out for him. Oracle still sticks by her story and she leaves her father with lingering doubts but then James Jr. appears from other side of the diner, staring at his father. James Jr. sits down with his father and explains his return to Gotham. James Jr. begins by apologizing to his father for the theatrics at the aviary. James tells the commissioner that his mother (Barbara Sr.) sent him to Arkham for a psychological evaluation and the doctors clinically diagnosed him as mentally unstable in regards to exhibiting apathetic behavior. However, the doctors prescribed an experimental medicine to help James in stabilizing his emotional imbalance.
James also overheard Oracle's convictions about him and he swears to his father that he has never killed anybody. Gordon still doesn't know what to think about his son until James informs him about his volunteer work at Dr. Thompkins' clinic. James Jr. leaves the cafe and asks that his father will hopefully find it in his heart to forgive him. For a while, Gordon feels this extreme sense of relief that his son is misunderstood but he is changing for the better. When Gordon reaches his apartment, he finds a trail of blood. Gordon follows the trail to James Jr.'s old room. The trail ends in James' closet. Gordon opens the door and finds the body of a schoolyard bully that James Jr. fell victim to when he was young.
It seems everyone was right about James Jr. even though Gordon tried to give him the benefit of the doubt. Gordon immediately goes to the clinic and finds Dr. Thompkins. Gordon confronts Leslie by demanding to know where his son is. Leslie informs Gordon that his son is a model volunteer because anything she asks him to do, he "happily" does. Over time, Leslie has given James Jr. more responsibilities like making "nutrition runs" for newborn babies who come from poor families. Gordon doesn't want to panic Leslie by telling her what he had found at his apartment so he humbly asks her to call him the moment James comes in for his shift. Leslie agrees to Gordon's request and she tries to calm his worries by showing him James' office.
Leslie flips on the lights in James' office and gives Gordon a tour. As Leslie professes how great James is, Gordon on the other hand, can't believe that Leslie would be so naive to willingly put her full trust in someone like James. Gordon peers around the office and finds a vile of James' medicine. The medicine is called Diaxemene which is designed to release a chemical in the brain so the patient can feel empathy. Gordon takes a pill from the vile, thanks Leslie for the tour and makes his way to Barbara's place at Kord Tower.
Gordon gives Barbara the pill that he took from James' office and asks her to run a couple of tests. Barbara knew something was going on with James but she didn't want to rub in her father's face because she could see that Gordon still wanted to hold onto any hope of saving his son. Barbara figures the medicine is supposed to help James in treating or possibly curing his psychotic tendencies but Diaxemene is still in the testing phases and hasn't been approved by the FDA. Gordon is hoping he can convince James to undergo some blood work in order to make sure that he has been taking his pills.
Gordon leaves Barbara to her work while he heads back to the clinic. Barbara breaks down the pill's components and she makes a startling discovery. James has reversed the effect of the pill and now the pill is designed to chemically induce apathy rather than empathy in a certain section of the brain. However, the dosage of James' pill is of such low grade that it wouldn't affect an adult. Barbara relays all of her findings to Gordon's cell phone. Gordon can't understand why James would concoct a pill with such a low dosage then it hits him. Leslie made James responsible for the "nutrition runs" at her clinic. James has been putting his pills in the baby formula and giving it to all the newborns thereby ensuring their development into becoming psychopaths.
Just as Gordon reached the clinic, he is stopped by Det. Bullock who has some really bad news. Bullock says the Joker has escaped Arkham and something horrible has happened to Gordon's ex-wife. Gordon acts quickly by warning Leslie about James then he calls in a small task force to station themselves at the clinic and wait for James to return. Gordon must put the hunt for his deranged son in the hands of his brothers in blue while he accompanies Bullock. Bullock tells Gordon that he received an anonymous phone call from someone who said Barbara Gordon is going to die at the Gotham Plaza Hotel. Gordon and Bullock reach the hotel room where Barbara was staying at and as Gordon entered, he notices a light coming from the bathroom. Gordon falls to his knees in tears because he has found his beloved ex-wife nude in the bath tub with a crimson smile across her face.
Gordon rushes Barbara to the lab at Wayne Enterprises while Bullock calls in Oracle and tells her what has just happened. Oracle reacts by calling Dick and having him meet her father at the lab. Oracle runs a few tests on her mother while Dick injects the anti-Joker Venom. Fortunately, Gordon got to Barbara just in time to save her and the Joker Venom was a derivative of the original. Gordon at this point wants Joker's head on a pike for all the misery he has brought to the Gordons but Dick convinces Gordon that there is no way the Joker could have escaped Arkham and found out where Barbara was so quickly. Dick promises Gordon that he will find Joker and make him talk.
Dick heads to Arkham and conducts a complete sweep of the crime scene. From what Dick could deduce, Joker didn't get very far from Arkham because Dick begins follow a trail of Joker's sweat which seems to be secreting Joker Venom. Dick follows the trail to an abandoned section of Arkham. At this point, Dick figures that Joker must have discovered Victor Zsasz's underground path which leads to the catacombs beneath Arkham. Zsasz used this path to escape Arkham so he could freely kill anyone he wanted in Gotham then he would make his way back to Arkham as if he had never escaped at all.
Dick finds Joker in a dank corner of the catacombs. He notices Joker mumbling to himself about being disappointed. Dick apprehends Joker and begins to interrogate him. Joker starts off by complaining about the fact that Dick isn't the real Batman by saying "You don't scare me little bird” and he isn't saying a word until the real Batman returns. Dick decides to beat down on the Joker until he reveals who he hired to attack Barbara Gordon. Joker laughs hysterically because according to him, the real Batman would have figured out that the Joker does his own dirty work and he would never send some errand boy to take credit for his fun. Dick finally realizes that the Joker was able to escape simply because someone needed him to be the scapegoat for the attack on Barbara Gordon and they were counting on Commissioner Gordon to retaliate by ending the Joker once and for all.
Back at the lab, Gordon sat by Barbara's side as Bullock escorted Oracle back to her apartment. Barbara eventually wakes up and when she laid her eyes on Gordon, she immediately began to scream for help. A doctor comes rushing and injects a sedative into Barbara. Gordon finally realizes that James injected the Joker Venom into his mother as a way to get back at her for institutionalizing him while at the same time he wanted Gordon to think the Joker was responsible for the attack on Barbara in order to bait him into killing the Joker. If Gordon knows how calculating his son can be then he would guess that James has already realized his plan to manipulate everything is falling apart which leaves only one person left for him to torture...Oracle.
Bullock drops Oracle off at her apartment doorstep and just as she entered her apartment, James closes the door right behind her. James and Oracle enter a discussion about on how depraved he is. James respects Oracle because she is the only one who can see him for what he is. Barbara replies to his compliment with a scoff. Oracle always knew James was disturbed and most of those people that he has already killed were actually victims rather people who had it coming. In short, Oracle realizes that James tries to find flaws or start something with another person just so he can justify as well as satisfy his violent tendencies. James smiles and his respect for Oracle's deduction has reached new lengths.
Post-Flashpoint: Earth-0 (DC's New 52)
The Return of Batgirl
Barbara's story opens up shortly after her return to the role of Batgirl, having recovered the use of her legs due to an experimental surgery. When beating up a group of thugs threatening to murder a couple in their home, she recalls how good it feels to have a goon crumble beneath her feet. However, in spite of her excitement at being back in the crime fighting role, she realizes that she is quite a bit rusty, as she makes a few mistakes in the process of taking down the bad guys. She remarks how she felt scared during the encounter, and the she knows she succeeded in large part due to luck.
Barbara soon moves out of her house, leaving behind her father, James Gordon, as she believes it's time to stretch her own legs and make a life of her own. She moves into an apartment, with a new roommate named Alysia Yeoh.
When a hospital is attacked by a madman by the name of Mirror, Batgirl arrives to stop him. However, when he points a gun at her, she experiences a momentary, as it reminds her of when the Joker shot her spine, the event that paralyzed her in the first place. Because she freezes up in fear, Mirror is able to kill the man he was after and then get away.
Batgirl manages to track him down to a cemetery, where she engages him in combat. Mirror manages to defeat her and then get away again, though not before she is able to get a look at the list of names he carries around. She then returns to her apartment, where she passes out and is patched up by her roommate, who assumes she was being abused by a boyfriend.
After determining that Mirror had gone to the cemetery in order to visit someone, she researches recent deaths and managed to figure out who he is, Jonathan Mills. Batgirl tracks down the man's apartment, but he isn't there, instead contacting her via a television screen, revealing that he has been hunting down and killing people who should have died in horrific accidents, but instead miraculously survived. He also reveals his next target, giving Batgirl a chance to save him.
Batgirl arrives at the train due to explode shortly. However, she fails to realize that there are in fact two targets, and is unable to save the second man before his train car explodes. Distraught over the event, Barbara visits her father. In their conversation, it is revealed that her newly healed legs might not be permanent, and that if she pushes herself too hard, they may deteriorate again.
The next night, when recovering her motorcycle from the impound lot, Batgirl comes across Nightwing, who wanted to make sure she was alright, because he and Batman are worried about her. She assures him that she's fine, but when he persists, she goes on to prove it to him, briefly coming to blows with him. However, Nightwing reveals that he and Batman aren't worried about her because they think she isn't capable, but because they love her. Batgirl acknowledges this, but affirms that she must do this alone.
Batgirl determines that Mirror would return to his family's graves on Christmas Eve and leaves a note for him there, calling him a disgrace to his family. She lures him to Sprang Park, where defeats him in a House of Mirrors by showing him a projection of the news clippings detailing the accident that took his family but left him alive, causing him to go insane long enough to be subdued.
Later that night, while Barbara and Alysia are opening Christmas Presents, Barbara's estranged mother (also named Barbara) who left her family nine years ago, shows up on her doorstep, wanting to come back into her daughter's life. Understandably, Barbara is a bit resentful towards her mother for leaving, and is reluctant to let the woman back into her life.
After the incident with her mother, Batgirl arrives at the scene of a crime, where four men are robbing commuters at gunpoint on a bridge, all while repeating the numbers "338". When she breaks up the scene, one of the men, the father of the other three, shoots them dead and then attempts to commit suicide before she is able to stop him. She is then attacked by a woman named Gretel, who is able to hold her own in a fight. Shortly after her arrival, Gretel flees the scene.
When she learns that Gretel is after Bruce Wayne, Batgirl races off to get there in time to stop her. However, Bruce Wayne's driver is already under the woman's control, using the trigger of "338" to make him do her bidding. While Batgirl manages to arrive before the driver can kill Bruce, she is then attacked by Bruce himself, who is also under Gretel's spell. After a short fight, she manages to talk him down and get him to snap out of it, though Gretel manages to escape.
The next night, Batgirl works out a plan with Batman, using his Bruce Wayne persona in another public appearance as bait to draw out Gretel. After stopping the police that were under Gretel's spell, Batgirl locates Gretel atop a crane and pursues her, along with Batman. Together, they are able to defeat her.
Sometime later, Barbara goes to visit Black Canary, waking her up in the middle of the night to spar. During their spar, she realizes that something is holding her back when she fights, something causing hesitation and trepidation. Even though her body has healed, her spirit is still wounded. Afterward, while talking over coffee, Barbara laments about how guilty she feels that she regained the use of her legs, while others are still in a wheelchair. Eventually, Dinah slaps her and tells her to stop feeling sorry for herself, and to stop complaining that she can walk again, when she never once complained while actually in a wheelchair. Dinah also urges Barbara to give her mother a chance, and to at least try to let the woman back in her life, because others don't even have a mother.
After regaining her confidence, Batgirl decides to check out some intel for Black Canary. She arrives at the Iceberg Casino, where a group of masked men are attacking the patrons. Batgirl promptly interrupts the the attack, beating up several of the men. Their ringleader, Grotesque, however, escapes into the sewers with a couple of his men. She follows him, though he is able to get away. When she recognizes one of the other men she knocked unconscious, she recognizes him as the same man who was with the Joker the night she was shot.
The next day, Barbara meets with her mother and wants to know why she left them nine years ago. Her mother explains that it was because she loved her, and didn't want her to get hurt. James, Jr., Barbara's brother, had apparently been acting strangely, even killing their pet cat, saying it was his mother's fault, and then threatening to hurt his sister if she didn't leave. In a panicked breakdown, she actually believed her son, and so fled to keep her family safe. Barbara's mother goes on to claim that she later received therapy, and then when she heard that James, Jr. was put away in Arkham, she returned to apologize to her family. Barbara then leaves, needing time to process the information.
Batgirl later tracks down Grotesque, only managing to defeat him with the help of Danny, the man she unmasked earlier. During the conflict, Danny is mortally wounded, and, while dying in Batgirl's arms, reveals that he was the one who called the ambulance that made it to Barbara in time after she was shot. if not for his actions, she would have bled to death. Elsewhere, James, Jr. reappears, apparently having escaped or been released from Arkham. He meets Alysia, Barbara's roommate, and gets her to go out for coffee with him.
Night of the Owls
During the Night of the Owls event, Batgirl is attacked by a Talon named Mary, using a bomb carried by a paper balloon. The Talon proves to be more than a match, swiftly defeating her, yet inexplicably leaving her alive. However, Batgirl is able to take a scrap of paper from the Talon, before she retreats. When she returns to her apartment, she studies the paper, on which a date is written in Kanji. Realizing that the note is written on mulberry paper, she connects the date to a period between 1944 and 1945, when Japan built thousands of paper balloons to carry bombs to the United States.
As she wonders what possible meaning that could have, Gotham is suddenly attacked by those same types of bombs, carried by paper balloons. Batgirl immediately rushes off to help, arriving at the GCPD building a short while later only to find it up in flames. Spotting the Talon on the roof, Batgirl makes her way upwards to engage her in combat again. Though the Talon gains a quick upper hand, Batgirl is able to win by flipping her over the ledge of the roof onto one of the floating bombs, an act that she is reluctant to go through with. Gravely injured, Mary reveals why she didn't kill Barbara when they first fought, writing the words "I Hav Mask 2, I Understand" in her own blood.
Later in the same night, Batgirl assists the Birds of Prey in taking down another Talon, by locking it in a freezer cart on a train with Poison Ivy.
The Dark Knight-Cycle of Violence
While under the influence of Fear gas, Commissioner Gordon sees a illusion of Barbara with a stomach wound, and James Jr. in a straight jacket. The figments of the gas then apologizes to their father for ruining his perfect life.
Batgirl beats up a group of carjackers, taking most of them down with ease. One of them, however, manages to flee towards the parking garage exit, only to run into a bear rap that snaps his leg. While Batgirl tries to assure him that he'll be okay, and wants to wait with him until an ambulance arrives, the local security detail insists that she leaves, and says that they will take care of it. Against her better judgment, Batgirl does indeed leave.
Later that night, Barbara gets a call from Alysia to bail her out of jail, after being arrested during one of her protests. The two go out for dinner, conversing about the sad state of Gotham. Alysia speaks out against figures like Bruce Wayne, stating that they're going about fixing the city in the wrong way.
The following night, Batgirl is ambushed by a group of vigilantes calling themselves The Disgraced, who are holding the kid from before, Michael, the one caught in the bear trap, hostage. They offer Batgirl a chance to join their organization, but she refuses, saving Michael as they throw him off a building. The Disgraced then attack Batgirl, claiming that crime in Gotham is now dead, just as she will be.
Barbra Gordon lead the surviving Gothamites and keep them safe within Arkham Asylum. Mr. Freeze and Killer Croc live up on the satellite being their eyes in the sky.
Powers and Abilities
Regardless of the version or universe, Barbara is always portrayed as someone with a genius level intellect. In the New 52 it has been shown how fast she can cross informations to get what she wants and how, during her life, people have always called her "talented", "decided", "obstinate" and "exceptional". Among the activities in which she stands out there are ballet, martial arts and science. In issue #9 it is shown that she is also familiar with Kanji.
As Oracle, she was a genius, possessing extensive knowledge in numerous different fields of study, making her an adept leader, detective, computer scientist, linguist, and combatant. After the Joker shot her, causing her paraplegia, Barbara decided to continue fighting crime from behind the scenes. Although she is no longer on the field fighting criminals head to head, she has shown to be one of the most resourceful and greatest crime fighters on earth. Her brilliance in computer science has allowed to direct the Birds of Prey by computer; hack the most well-protected systems; guard her own equipment from infiltration; and access security cameras and footage as effective means of surveillance and to aid in her detective work, among seemingly limitless other uses. She has formed connections with numerous different superhero teams and individuals, often times assisting them when they require information and reference. Oracle also has large databases on various superheroes and villains alike, utilizing the information she has attained in her investigations.
Barbara is also a master martial artist. After her paralysis, Richard Dragon trained her to fight and protect herself from the wheelchair. She was once able to knock away Tarantula while in her wheelchair. As Batgirl, Barbara was also a skilled acrobat. In issue #0 of her New 52 title, she says she had been taking self-defense classes since she was six.
Barbara is the Bat Family member who thinks the most about the impact her actions may have on the marginalized population of Gotham. She wonders if the superhero game is the right path for the city. She goes easy on the thieves and bandits that are on this life for lack of better choices. She was even able to understand some villains' issues. To sum up, she can walk on others' shoes and reflect on her own actions, what makes her an unique member of the Bat Family.
Before the reboot, her relationship with both Batgirls, Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown, proved that she can be a real safe Harbor for the ones she cares about. The Birds of Prey, Bruce and even Tim did not hesitate before asking her help. She usually provided a great solution.
In the Thrillkiller story arc of alternate continuity, Barbara Gordon is in an isolated relationship with her father/mentor, Commissioner James Gordon. When her mother died, Barbara blames her father for not solving the man who killed his wife, and her mom. So deciding that she needs to do some good, Barbara Gordon becomes Batgirl! This story is in the early 1960's, and is a noir story. She is joined by acrobat extraordinaire, Richard Greystark (whom is Dick Grayson) and finds the man who killed his mother. As a wealthy heiress, she has gained money from the death of her mother and has used that wealth to buy Wayne Manor. Which the Waynes ( Thomas and Martha) lost during the great depression. In this Earth, Bruce Wayne is a crime detective at GCPD, and Barbara Gordon has romantic feelings for him.
In the Red Rain Story arc, When Batman becomes a vampire, he decides to have partners, and bites Barbara Gordon. As a vampire she has all of the powers of a known vampire, but when she wants her boyfriend, Dick Grayson to come to dinner, he gets concerned and decides to take her out. When she leads him into a dark alley, he almost gets bit, but to his split-second timing he runs a stake through her heart. Leaving her to die in the alley, Donna Troy comes and removes the stake from her heart, and they both try to warn Dick not to go see Bruce Wayne.
In the Elseworld's Finest Supergirl & Batgirl, James Gordon died saving the Waynes from the mugger and his daughter Barbara became Batgirl to avenge the loss of her father. Bruce Wayne, to pay her back for saving his parents and losing her own, assisted her and financed her mission. Batgirl created a crime monitoring computer program called Oracle as well as a cybernetic costume and a flying Batmobile. She was Gotham's only hero (keeping all others out of the city) until she met Kara Zor-El (Supergirl) and the two's friendship allowed Batgirl to overcome her obsessed stalker the Joker, and Supergirl's enemy Lex Luthor.
Batman (1966 - 1967)
Yvonne Craig portrays Barbara Gordon and Batgirl in the 60's television series that starred Adam West and Burt Ward. Barbara Gordon is much like her Silver Age counterpart as she is portrayed as a Librarian. The identity and character of Barbara Gordon were devised jointly for comics and the television series, the previous Bat-Girl having fallen out of favor with DC editorial. The TV series producer, William Dozier, asked for a female character to appeal to female viewers. As a collaborative effort between TV and comics, Batgirl was created. She appears in 26 episodes in the third season and is seen helping Batman and Robin while concealing her identity as Batgirl. However Alfred Pennyworth discovers her secret but vows to never tell anyone.
Birds of Prey (2002-2003)
Dina Meyer plays Barbara Gordon in the series as she heads the team for which the show is loosely based on. The series follows Barbara as she leads a team that consists of Batman and Catwoman's daughter, Helena Wayne, the Huntress and Dinah Redman, the Black Canary. Before the series began Batman left Gotham, in this series renamed New Gotham, after the Joker ordered a hit on Catwoman, which succeeded as he attacked Barbara, much in the same way as was depicted in The Killing Joke. While the series only lasted one season that consisted of 13 episodes it shows Barbara donning the Batsuit twice, using a device that allows her to walk in order to combat Lady Shiva and Harleen Quinzel. For the majority of the series, Barbara worked in the Watchtower with Alfred.
Smallville (2001 - 2011)
Even if she never appeared on screen, Barbara Gordon appeared within the Smallville: Season Eleven comic book series. In this continuity, Barbara is Batman's sidekick known as Nightwing.
Batman with Robin the Boy Wonder (1968)
Voiced by Jane Webb, Barbara Gordon appeared as a worker in the District Attorney's Office.
Batman: The Animated Series
Barbara Gordon is introduced in the first season. In the second season, when her father is accused of corruption she attempts to contact Batman in hopes that he will show support of her father. She then decides to impersonate him when he refuses, later there is a shooting and she attempts to stop them from getting away. Robin sees her and tries to stop her, only tearing the back of her cowl revealing her hair. Batgirl figures out who is behind the plot and brings him to justice. In the process Batman accepts her as part of the team and she beings flirting with Robin and Dick Grayson, not realizing they are the same person.
Batman & Mr. Freeze: Sub Zero
Barbara Gordon is kidnapped by Mr. Freeze in an attempt to be an organ donor to save his frozen wife who has a rare blood type that Barbara has. Barbara shows her evasion skills throughout the film although she does not appear as Batgirl once. She is revealed to be a 20 year old college student and in a relationship with Dick Grayson
The New Batman Adventures
When Batman: The Animated Series was revamped, Barbara Gordon/Batgirl was instrumental in the new series, becoming a regular. Her Batsuit was redesigned into a black costume. Batman is seen to trust her completely by showing her into the Batcave and revealing their identities. It is also revealed that Robin quit because Batman allowed Barbara to be Batgirl and not telling Dick that she was Batgirl. She is voiced by Tara Strong.
Batgirl is seen combating Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn and Catwoman. This was a five episode mini show, that aired on the internet. It was based off of the Gotham Girls comic series that was released in 2002 and finished in 2003. Tara Strong voices Batgirl in this mini show.
She makes a few appearances in Justice League episodes although there was a Bat Embargo on the characters so they were not able to be seen as such. She makes a cameo appearance in The Savage Time Part 1, where in an alternate time line she is seen kissing an alternate Dick Grayson. She also appeared at Superman's Funeral. She is also mentioned in another episode as skiing with Kara Kent.
Justice League Unlimited
She was originally supposed to appear in an episode but was later replaced by other heroes. After having severe injuries as Batgirl, Barbara is house bound was to be called by Nightwing and there would have been reportedly tension between Huntress Barbara and Nightwing.
Batman: Mystery of The Batwoman
Barbara makes an appearance as she calls Bruce from college questioning him about whether or not he's replaced her. It is revealed Barbara has had a crush on Bruce when she tells him she misses him.
Barbara Gordon is now Gotham's Police Commissioner. It is revealed that Bruce and Barbara did in fact have a relationship, however she left him because he couldn't leave Batman behind. She doesn't resent him, just what he has become. She also hates that Bruce has allegedly dragged another kid under his wing, suggesting something happened between the Animated series and Batman Beyond for her to resent Batman besides their relationship. She is married to District Attorney Sam Young and grows to respect the new Batman. She came close to compromising all of the Batman Family's identities when she is almost forced to arrest Terry, the new Batman, after she apparently sees him murdering a criminal. She also reveals that Dick Grayson is still alive, but their relationship has long since died, telling Terry to look up Nightwing sometime to see how Bruce treated his partners.
Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker
It is revealed why Batman made all his allies quite stop working for him. Tim Drake was kidnapped by the Joker and brainwashed to be like him. Barbara fight Harley Quin and witnesses Tim killing the Joker and comforts him as he breaks down. Barbara and Batman bury the Joker in Arkham and she reveals that Jim Gordon was the only other person to know about the Jokers final fate. She reveals this to Terry and later visits Tim Drake in the hospital where they all reunite with Bruce, although Nightwing is not there, they repair their fragile relationship.
Barbara is portrayed as the teenage daughter of Jim Gordon. Her father wants her to pursue gymnastics with the hopes of her one day making the Olympics. She shows an interest in detective work which worries Jim, as well as her friendship with Pamela Isley, a student with a juvenile record. Once she sees Batman she strives to become part of his team, wanting to be called Batwoman however. Batman knows her identity but does not tell Jim. She earns Batman's trust and eventually figures out the Bruce Wayne is Batman. Bruce reveals that he is Batman to her, after getting a second partner, Robin, Dick Grayson. Dick and Barbara are depicted as having a sibling like relationship. Barbara graduates from Gotham High and enrolls at Gotham University. In the finale, it is revealed that Dick harbors a crush on her. Also in an episode set in the future Barbara is shown to be in a wheel chair and even though Dick is now Nightwing, she calls him Robin in a very flirtatious tone.
Batman: The Brave and The Bold
She is mentioned in an episode titled "Night of The Huntress". Batgirl is also featured in a teaser in the episode "The Last Patrol!" where she helps Batman defeat Killer Moth her costume is same to the one from Batman The Animated Series she is voiced by Mae Whitman.
Batman Under The Red Hood
When Jason Todd pointed a gun at Batman, Jason was going through the list of what Joker has done over the years. During this rant, Jason referenced "friends whom Joker crippled" referring to Joker paralyzing Barbara.
In the Cartoon Network animated series "Young Justice" Barbara Gordon appears as one of Dick Grayson's school-age friends. Barbara makes several cameo appearances.
This incarnation of Barbara Gordon makes her next appearance in the "Young Justice: Invasion" episode "Happy New Year!" In this episode she is shown as Batgirl fighting alongside Wonder Girl. The two of them are shown to have a good friendship with each other as they team-up in combat against the alien bounty hunter Lobo.
Much like Robin she uses explosives and smoke bombs. This is the first time she appears as Batgirl. Barbara wears a slightly changed version of her original Batgirl costume when she is in a mission. It is darker and looks more like the costume of the Batman shown in the series. She has already used her original uniform in "Bloodlines" and in the comics.
Also, in Young Justice #25, Players Chapter 6, it is revealed that Barbara and Dick Grayson (Nightwing) have a long-term romance since they were 14. The team, however, does not know about it. When Dick asks Barbara why they are not oficially together, one day after his 19th birthday, she answers that he is not ready for her yet, due to his flirty personality.
She is voiced by Alyson Stoner.
Super Best Friends Forever
Batgirl is featured as one of the three main heroines alongside Supergirl and Wonder Girl. Her Batgirl costume is redesigned into purple like the one from Batman 60s series. Tara Strong, who voiced Batgirl from The New Batman Adventures, reprises the role.
Batman and Robin (1997)
Alicia Silverstone plays Barbara Wilson, a character who is similar Barbara Gordon but not quite her, unlike the comic counterpart Wilson has blonde hair in the film. She eventually becomes Batgirl in the film. Her costume is all black and she wears a domino mask which differs from her comic counterpart yet similar to Robin's outfit in the movie.Unlike the comics she is not the daughter of Jim Gordon but, the niece of Alfred Pennyworth.
Batman Begins (2005) and The Dark Knight (2008)
Jim Gordon has a daughter who is very young. She is simply referred to as Gordon's Daughter in the credits. She is played by Hannah Gunn.
Barbara Gordon appears in her role as Batgirl in Batman: Vengeance. Throughout the game, instead of crime fighting like Batman, she is in communicator contact with him to give him information of events from the outside.
Tara Strong voices Batgirl.
Batman: Rise of Sin Tzu
Barbara once again in her role as Batgirl appears as one of the four main playable characters in the game. Once again, Tara Strong voices the character.
Barbara's role in Arkham Asylum is to guide and help Bruce throughout the story as Oracle. Throughout the game she provides direct contact with Batman through his com and helps him by giving detailed information about the various situations and puzzles throughout the game.
Barbara in her role as Oracle is an important supporting character in Arkham Asylum. Through out the game she is in radio contact with Batman giving him information about events on the outside, as well help to the Batman when needed.
Young Justice: Legacy
Barbara Gordon/Batgirl will be a playable character in Young Justice Legacy which comes out Feburary 2013
DC Universe Online
Barbara Gordon once again in her role as Oracle is perhaps the most important supporting character in the game. Through out the game, she's in radio contact with every new hero who gains powers as well as the DC universe heroes, giving orders in the Battle against Brainiac and Earth's super villains.
Injustice Gods Among Us
Batgirl is set to appear as the second DLC character, sporting small arm blades, and a more leather based version of her New 52 costume, with the bat symbol on her chest longer.