Un-Flashpoint the Bat-Clan #2 - Barbara Gordon

Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

This is the second of an eight part blog series that will explain why Flashpoint should never have happened to the Bat-Clan and it started with Dick Grayson and will follow through each character in order of appearance chronologically until we come full circle with Bruce Wayne at the end. (This was originally posted on my tumblr at http://mrmessyface.tumblr.com but I decided to post on here too to get your opinions as well.)

Previous entry: Dick Grayson.

Barbara as Batgirl in ALL-STAR BATMAN & ROBIN, THE BOY WONDER #6

Our second entry is about one of the most iconic female characters in comic book history, Barbara Gordon. That is not as arguable as Dick Grayson being the greatest hero in the DC Universe. Barbara was the first official Batgirl. (Bette who?) She was basically the literal version of a “fangirl.” From what I could gather, she was pretty much just a big fan of Batman when it started out. (Much like her brother in the Dark Knight movie series.) At least that’s what my interpretation of her character in the early days.

In her original appearance in DETECTIVE COMICS #359 in 1967, Barbara decided to dress up as a “female version of Batman” for a police masquerade ball. She stumbled upon an attempt to kill Bruce Wayne by Killer Moth and felt the need to help. Turns out it was a dummy Wayne set up by Batman and Robin and she messed it all up. Refusing to quit, she eventually found Killer Moth’s hideout and rescued Batman and Robin from a gravity free chamber. Batman was impressed and told her that he would accept help from her whenever he needed it. But the Barbara we all know and love wouldn’t just wait for invitation and she’s been in the Bat-Clan ever since.

DETECTIVE COMICS #359

In 1988, Alan Moore gave a striking blow to every Batgirl fan out there. In BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE, Joker was dead set on kidnapping Commissioner Gordon and abusing, torturing, and humiliating him any way possible. He wasn’t going to let anything or anyone get in his way. So, when he knocked on the Commissioner’s door, Barbara answers and he just shoots her through the stomach straight into her spine, paralyzing her from the waist down. The sad thing was that Batman did not actually punish Joker when he finally got a hold of him. Instead, they shared a laugh, which was quite brutal.

BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE

In SUICIDE SQUAD #23 in 1989, the enigmatic identity of Oracle first appeared. This unknown character was the source of information for the team, and later Batman and many other heroes. It wasn’t until SUICIDE SQUAD #38 in 1990, that they revealed that Oracle was actually Barbara Gordon. She eventually went on to becoming one of the most useful allies Batman has ever had. No, seriously, without her Batman would probably be only as good as Green Arrow. (lol) She ended up starting her own team of heroes under her guidance called the Birds of Prey who usually starred Black Canary, Huntress, Lady Blackhawk, and many others. She also mentored Cassandra Cain as the second Batgirl and taught her to speak English.

When the infamous Final Crisis came and Batman was assumed dead, Barbara was locked in an all-consuming battle with the Calculator over the Anti-Life equation being spread over the internet. She eventually succeeded and then proceeded to mentor his daughter, Wendy, when she was in a wheelchair. Wendy eventually became Proxy, Oracle’s protege.

When Dick Grayson was running around as Batman, Barbara was not only running the Birds of Prey, but also mentoring Stephanie Brown as Batgirl. Later, in the storyarc titled “The Death of Oracle,” the Calculator and his new friend Mortis try to get revenge on Oracle for all of the times she took down the Calculator. He shoots down a helicopter during a Birds of Prey rescue mission and assumes that Oracle was inside it. She led everyone, except for some very close friends, to believe that she actually died. Her last comment being “Big sister is watching everyone.”

Mortis with Oracle's mask

After Flashpoint, she was seen getting back the use of her legs and returned to being Batgirl. In this new world, she was only paralyzed for 3 years and was never Oracle. Also, without any way of arguing it, proved that both Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown have never been Batgirl in this timeline. Barbara is struggling with her confidence to return to being a superhero while Cassandra and Stephanie are nowhere to be found. She is also a member of the Birds of Prey as Batgirl with Black Canary as the leader. Her teammates include Starling, Poison Ivy, and Katana. Also, in this universe, she has obviously never fallen in love because the relationship with Dick Grayson was erased and Ted Kord never existed in this universe to begin with. As far as I’m concerned, that is a very sad development.

Barbara as the New 52 Batgirl

Instead of changing everything, Barbara should have stayed as Oracle, allowing all the developments between Cassandra and Stephanie to stick. I like that everyone believed she was dead and that would have proved worthy in her efforts to guide both the Birds and the Bat-Clan.

Solution: Don’t flashpoint the universe and make Barbara go back to being Oracle, but make her even stronger than before. One of the best things about her was that she was a good role model for every young boy or girl who was in a wheelchair that felt useless. Her being able to walk again and the readers can’t felt like some kind of insult to those readers, to me.

Next entry: Jason Todd.

#1 Edited by Spectre108 (269 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428 said:

In her original appearance in DETECTIVE COMICS #359 in 1967, Barbara decided to dress up as a “female version of Batman” for a police masquerade ball. She stumbled upon an attempt to kill Bruce Wayne by Killer Moth and felt the need to help. Turns out it was a dummy Wayne set up by Batman and Robin and she messed it all up. Refusing to quit, she eventually found Killer Moth’s hideout and rescued Batman and Robin from a gravity free chamber.

Gravity free chamber. You never fail, Silver Age, you never fail.

Anyway, I'm really enjoying these so far. Looking forward to Jason Todd.

#2 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@Spectre108: Thanks, that means a lot.

#3 Posted by X9 (753 posts) - - Show Bio

"Don’t flashpoint the universe and make Barbara go back to being Oracle, but make her even stronger than before. One of the best things about her was that she was a good role model for every young boy or girl who was in a wheelchair that felt useless. Her being able to walk again and the readers can’t felt like some kind of insult to those readers, to me."

I have a friend in a wheelchair. First thing: she's never felt useless. Second: she was more than happy to see Barbara walking again.She even said she never understood why they decided to cripple her and give her a smaller role. (that's how she saw it) She thinks Oracle sucks haha XP

Plus...it's a freaking fictitious world! People come back from the deads, why can't they be able to walk again?! Even because the surgery Barbara did really exists. Wouldn't it give hope to people in wheelchairs, istead of just letting the character there even when she lives in a universe where pretty much everything is possible?

Last but not least... the new 52 has been on for a while and people are liking it from what I see. I'm not saying I liked all the changes, but, well, they're there now and I can't blame writers for changing things. Stories need to renew. Just accept it and read the new stories or, if you don't like them, simply stop reading ¬¬

P.S: I don't mean to be rude. It's just that this whole "they shouldn't have done it" talk is really tiring me...

#4 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@X9: I never said it wasn't possible to make her be able to walk again. If anything, I wondered why they didn't do that years ago. It was just HOW they did it. By erasing history... By erasing characters... By changing the entire status quo designed around this one particular character. It doesn't even feel like the same character to me. And I don't ever blame the writers... (Except Lobdell on Teen Titans and Liefeld on Deathstroke...) But I'm actually blaming the editors and upper-management. The point of these blogs isn't to just be like "they shouldn't have done it" but to point out how it would have clearly been better if they didn't do it originally. Natural change is always better than forced change. If they could have cured Oracle and not step on everyone else's toes, I would have stood by it.

#5 Posted by fodigg (6146 posts) - - Show Bio

I would've preferred her has Oracle. They could've given her her legs back and kept her as Oracle if they'd wanted to. The thing about Batgirl is that it doesn't really matter who it is, the name stands out enough to sell, so they didn't need Babs to be Batgirl. I don't like how it was inconsistent how they handled the Batgirls vs. the Robins. It leads to a lot of confusion, for example, to have had Tim but no Steph.

#6 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@fodigg: I could work with her getting her legs back but making it that she was the only Batgirl and it took her 3 years to heal while it took Bruce 1 year sounds so stupid. It makes it feel as though there was no progression in the Batgirl side of the Bat universe by making it that nobody else took up the mantle. Using the Stephanie as Batgirl, Barbara as Oracle setup shows that the characters have progessed and are not sitting in the past waiting for a Flashpoint to happen. Now the history dictates there has only been 3 Robins and 1 Batgirl. Just Dick, Jason, and Damian as Robin. With Tim as Red Robin. And no such thing as Stephanie or Cassandra. It's horrible.

#7 Posted by fodigg (6146 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: Agreed. I know in your other thread we're debating "big changes" vs. "no changes", but whatever decided in that regard, I'd just want things to be consistent. And the fact that the bat family is handled inconsistently even within itself--namely with the girls--well that's just outrageous. Either reboot or don't reboot, but don't say "yeah, we've had time for 4 robins but only 1 batgirl".

#8 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

not interested. stephanie brown sucks and if she takes up the mantle of batgirl again i will stop buying DC.

Barbara is the true batgirl. The one and only.

#9 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

Also do yourself a favour. Jason Todd got a huge amount of following ever since Red Hood and the outlaws started. Everyone is pretty happy with where he is now compared to psychopath Red Hood pre flashpoint. So don't try to start a flame war by creating another one of those un-flashpoint jason todd.

#10 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@fodigg: Actually 3 Robins. Lobdell made it that Tim was never Robin.

@sethysquare: You don't even know what I'm going to say about Jason yet. How do you know I didn't like the development on him? Just because I say certain things in the first 2 blogs doesn't mean I am going to make the same blog 8 times but based on different characters. I could have made just one blog but it would have been the longest blog ever. So I broke it up. And the point to each is to just make Flashpoint and the New 52 never happen but make most of the stories happen anyway. I actually like what they did to Jason. I just didn't like the how. You'll see when I post the blog. So please don't prejudge a blog before it's even posted. At least read it first.

#11 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: You like what they did to Jason, but you didn't like how? Good luck trying to write anything about that. Lets see how Jason's fans attack you on there. lol.

#12 Edited by fodigg (6146 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: I'm aware he said that, but fuck him.

edit: It's issues like that that make me actually wish they'd just dropped Tim along with Steph and Cass.

#13 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@sethysquare: Dude, I am a Jason fan. You're just one of those hateful fellows aren't you?

#14 Posted by DEGRAAF (7870 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: didnt they talk about Dick and Babs love and relationship in their crossover?

@TheMess1428 said:

@fodigg: I could work with her getting her legs back but making it that she was the only Batgirl and it took her 3 years to heal while it took Bruce 1 year sounds so stupid. It makes it feel as though there was no progression in the Batgirl side of the Bat universe by making it that nobody else took up the mantle. Using the Stephanie as Batgirl, Barbara as Oracle setup shows that the characters have progessed and are not sitting in the past waiting for a Flashpoint to happen. Now the history dictates there has only been 3 Robins and 1 Batgirl. Just Dick, Jason, and Damian as Robin. With Tim as Red Robin. And no such thing as Stephanie or Cassandra. It's horrible.

this is wrong though. In Teen Titans as well as Batman they mention that Tim used to be Robin

@sethysquare said:

not interested. stephanie brown sucks and if she takes up the mantle of batgirl again i will stop buying DC.

Barbara is the true batgirl. The one and only.

Steph as well and Cass were great. I hate that they got rid of either of them. It's like almost the whole Bat universe had been moving on for the last 10 years while Babs was frozen in time.

@sethysquare said:

Also do yourself a favour. Jason Todd got a huge amount of following ever since Red Hood and the outlaws started. Everyone is pretty happy with where he is now compared to psychopath Red Hood pre flashpoint. So don't try to start a flame war by creating another one of those un-flashpoint jason todd.

also while i am enjoying Red Hood I dont like that he is more friendly with the bat family. I liked it better when he would sabotage them and compete with Dick. Also this blogs are really good and its nice having something to look forward to every day on this site. I hope Mess continues on with the rest of the DCU.

#15 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: hateful? nopes. but I do love babs and jason todd alot. Especially what we're seeing here post flashpoint.

#16 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@DEGRAAF said:

@TheMess1428: didnt they talk about Dick and Babs love and relationship in their crossover?

@TheMess1428 said:

@fodigg: I could work with her getting her legs back but making it that she was the only Batgirl and it took her 3 years to heal while it took Bruce 1 year sounds so stupid. It makes it feel as though there was no progression in the Batgirl side of the Bat universe by making it that nobody else took up the mantle. Using the Stephanie as Batgirl, Barbara as Oracle setup shows that the characters have progessed and are not sitting in the past waiting for a Flashpoint to happen. Now the history dictates there has only been 3 Robins and 1 Batgirl. Just Dick, Jason, and Damian as Robin. With Tim as Red Robin. And no such thing as Stephanie or Cassandra. It's horrible.

this is wrong though. In Teen Titans as well as Batman they mention that Tim used to be Robin

@sethysquare said:

not interested. stephanie brown sucks and if she takes up the mantle of batgirl again i will stop buying DC.

Barbara is the true batgirl. The one and only.

Steph as well and Cass were great. I hate that they got rid of either of them. It's like almost the whole Bat universe had been moving on for the last 10 years while Babs was frozen in time.

@sethysquare said:

Also do yourself a favour. Jason Todd got a huge amount of following ever since Red Hood and the outlaws started. Everyone is pretty happy with where he is now compared to psychopath Red Hood pre flashpoint. So don't try to start a flame war by creating another one of those un-flashpoint jason todd.

also while i am enjoying Red Hood I dont like that he is more friendly with the bat family. I liked it better when he would sabotage them and compete with Dick. Also this blogs are really good and its nice having something to look forward to every day on this site. I hope Mess continues on with the rest of the DCU.

ew. okays, whatever, i'll stay outta it.

#17 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@DEGRAAF: The info on Dick and Babs' relationship is that they never dated but she has had secret feelings for him. She kinda shows it in the comic but that's it. As for Jason, it really depended on the writer. There was some great stuff where he just tried to co-exist but didn't really hate with them and sometimes he wanted to kill them. So yeah I'm okay with anything except his whole Red Hood and Scarlet days. That was really off.

As for making these for the whole DCU, that takes a lot of my time. But I might do a few here and there. I especially might do it on the Teen Titans and Green Arrow.

#18 Posted by DEGRAAF (7870 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428 said:

@DEGRAAF: The info on Dick and Babs' relationship is that they never dated but she has had secret feelings for him. She kinda shows it in the comic but that's it. As for Jason, it really depended on the writer. There was some great stuff where he just tried to co-exist but didn't really hate with them and sometimes he wanted to kill them. So yeah I'm okay with anything except his whole Red Hood and Scarlet days. That was really off.

As for making these for the whole DCU, that takes a lot of my time. But I might do a few here and there. I especially might do it on the Teen Titans and Green Arrow.

i actually liked it but only bc i knew it wasnt going to last. If he ended up with a full time sidekick basically becoming the anti-Batman i would be upset. Do think his outfit now is way better then the old one and i didnt like scarlet.

As for Dick and Babs according to his page (i know it was fan written but still) "he also checks up on Barbara Gordon, his former love", "Grayson is worried and thus asks her why she is doing what she is doing, because she could end up back in a wheelchair. Batgirl, ignores the comment and then runs away, with Dick following. During the way Barbara reflects on how she feels for Dick and how their relationship has evolved over the years. They end up fighting physically, with it ending with Barbara asking him to leave her alone for this, nearly letting it slip that she "loves him", but correcting herself before she does. At the end of this confrontation, she ends up asking Dick if he can leave her alone for some time."

#19 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@DEGRAAF: I like his current look but I do not like how the helmet looks like a red version of THE MASK. I liked the older version better. Just keep the face off of it. Yeah that was fan written, most of it really doesn't make sense but the summary of the issue is pretty close to accurate.

#20 Posted by DEGRAAF (7870 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: agreed about the Red hood mask. I thought all their history prior to her being shot was still there. I will have to go pick up the crossovers to see for myself.... (lol i will be back later today to let you know)

#21 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@DEGRAAF: There is only one crossover post-Flashpoint. Batgirl #3 and Nightwing #4.

#22 Posted by DEGRAAF (7870 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: ok. I meant the crossover but the multiple issues ( i know there are at least 2)

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