Batgirl Year One

 BAYB   (DC, 2003, 2009)

™ and © DC Comics

Written by the duo responsible for the excellent Robin: Year One, this mini–series takes a new look at the origin of Barbara “Batgirl” Gordon. The first issue gets things off to a strong start, especially in terms of character motivation. Unlike Bruce Wayne, Peter Parker, and a number of other heroes, Barbara doesn’t become a vigilante because of a death(s) in the family. Refreshingly, she simply wants to use her skills to become a detective. Her father, the future Commissioner Gordon, frowns on such aspirations, and, besides, she’s too short to join the force, anyhow. So she’s forced to carve out a crime-fighting career of her own. Interestingly, she assumes the guise of a bat to spite her father, not because of any allegiance to Batman. (Black Canary of The JSA is her true inspiration in this particular continuity.)

Perhaps the most intelligent aspect of the story is the ironic foreshadowing of the character’s eventual fate as the crippled crime fighter known as Oracle. Barbara yearns to be a part of the action and doesn’t want to “be some glorified Answer Lady for the cops.” To her, a future spent sitting in front of a computer screen is “paralyzing tedium.” Equally impressive is the crisp and clean art, which is evocative of such heavyweights as Bruce Timm, David Mazzucchelli, and Tim Sale.

— Brett Weiss

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  NotesWriterArtist

#1

  2/1/2003
  $2.95
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Origin of Batgirl (Barbara Gordon); Versus Killer Moth (Drury Walker)Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#2

  3/1/2003
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3 copies available from $3.25
 Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#3

  4/1/2003
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 Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#4

  5/1/2003
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Batgirl visits Batcave; Batgirl accepted by BatmanScott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#5

  6/1/2003
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Origin of Firefly (Drury Walker)Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#6

  7/1/2003
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6 copies available from $3.00
 Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#7

  8/1/2003
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5 copies available from $2.50
 Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#8

  9/1/2003
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Versus Blockbuster (Roland Desmond)Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

#9

  10/1/2003
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Versus Killer Moth (Drury Walker); Versus Firefly (Garfield Lynns); Final issueScott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

Book #1

  12/1/2003
  $17.95
  $31.00
No copies available
Collects Batgirl Year One #1–9Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin

Book #1 (3rd printing)

 
  $19.99
  $19.99
No copies available
Collects Batgirl Year One #1–9; ca. 2009Scott Beatty, Chuck DixonMarcos Martin