The New 52 run of Batgirl has had it’s share of drama. Barbara Gordon can now walk. The Joker tried killing her mother. Writer Gail Simone getting kicked off, then brought back on to the title. The newest piece of drama was Batgirls brother James trying to tear her life apart.
Batgirl 19 continues the emotional roller coaster of her life. It opens with Babs going back to her room mate Alysia and asking to come back. Barbara tells her everything (except that she’s Batgirl). In turn we find out Alysia is transgendered, marking the first transgendered comic book character. Or at least, the first one who isn’t fantasy based or has super powers. This is a huge step for DC, and for mainstream comics in general.
We then continue on where Batgirl has to track down James before he kills their mother. In an emotional showdown, James reveals why he hates Barbara so much, and why he wants to ruin her life. It ends with Batgirl throwing a batarang into his eye which causes him to plummet to his death. Maybe. It also starts a possibly new chapter where Commissioner Gordon is now Batgirl’s enemy. I hope Simone and DC explore that in upcoming issues. I feel it would really push Barbara to the limit and we can then see how truly strong our heroine is.
This was a fantastic issue and shows how far the New 52 Batgirl has come. This is certainly darker than previews Batgirl issues, and I’m personally loving it.