Batgirls #8 review

After dropping Seer off at their door, and promising to help her the Batgirls finish making good on that agreement this month as they wrap up this two part mini-arc. Featuring not only the Batgirls, but Nightwing as well, it’s sure to be a fun one.

I enjoyed issue #8 of Batgirls. It’s not perfect, nor does it challenge the reader, but it is fun. It captures the light feeling I wanted when the series was announced, and what it’s tried to cultivate in previous issues.

It does this through an almost constant stream of quips, puns, and flirty dialogue shared between the Batgirls, and between Dick Grayson and Barbara as he joins the group for their infiltration of the Iceberg Lounge. The usual roles are swapped this issue, as Babs takes the lead on the ground investigating and going after Seer, with Dick beside her. Cassandra and Stephanie take more of a backseat role –though only for the first half– as Barbara’s eyes and ears outside the lounge.

 

The story focuses on rescuing Seer, who was captured by the Saints last issue, and is being held under the Iceberg Lounge in her secret lair. The rescue involves infiltrating the lunge in disguise, sneaking down to the lair, and battling it out with various members of the Saints, and everyone gets in on the fun at some point or another. The action is split between both duos, and jumps between them as the issue progresses.

It’s a pretty straightforward rescue, and honestly the real content here is the character interactions. Particularly Babs and Dick. Their dialogue is very flirty, with the book making it crystal clear they’re dating and treating the night’s adventure like a full date, both in and out of costume. If you’re a DickBabs fan, this book hits that sweet spot of watching the couple interact. Dick is played up as the doting boyfriend who loves Barbara, while she’s equally as enamored with him. And while Dick teases Babs he also respects her, and acts as a very component partner while they take on the Saints. It’s nice to see them together both as civilians and heroes.

However, despite the fun, pun and flirty filled issue, it does feel distinctly lacking in depth. Last issue gave us some backstory on Seer, but she’s almost all but forgotten here, buried underneath the fun flirty tone of the book. We don’t really get any more depth from her, or anything to further endear readers to her beyond a hapless plea towards Babs not to wipe her computer.

Speaking of that, Barbara’s treatment of Seer feels very off. She spends this issue and the previous very firmly defending Seer because she’s a child. Insisting they rescue her because of that, and give her a second chance. However the moment they get down to Seer’s base, she hacks the computer, copies files, and seemingly destroys it in a way that means Seer can’t use it anymore. She claims it’s to give Seer a chance to start over but, honestly? It feels a little cruel. She doesn’t hear the kid out, or offer any help in starting over. In fact, she makes a comment about how it will take Seer a while to get back at them because she is a kid and off all alone. It feels like the exact opposite of what she should be doing, both as a good person and hero. I’m not saying she should have taken Seer under her wing as a mini-Oracle, but she should have offered some kind of support instead of stripping this orphan of her only livelihood and just telling her she was bad for lying.

Robbi Rodriguez’s art fit’s the tone well for this issue. His work is very dynamic, with a lot of movement and characters that make big expressions. The way he draws Nightwing and Batgirl together is cute, and you can tell how much they like each other in just a few panels by their expressions and body language. Take the scene where they’re in an elevator changing from party clothes into their hero gear, The two are smiley and close, but still actively getting ready for the fight ahead.

I liked that this was a shorter arc. Even though I wish the narrative itself had a little more meat when it came to the plot and building of Seer, I feel like the brief two part story felt better for Batgirls. It feels more focused and less chaotic, which is a problem I had with the opening arc. Hopefully things continue on this trajectory, keeping the story tight and character driven as it moves into it’s next tale.

Recommended If

  • DickBabs is your OTP
  • Shorter arcs are your cup of tea
  • You want a lighter, banter filled, story

Overall

While there are aspects of this issue I’d have liked to have seen done a little different, like Barbara’s interactions with Seer, I had quite a bit of fun with it. As an avid Dick and Babs fan I always like seeing them together, and the couple felt like the highlight of the issue. It was nice to see Barbara take center stage again, and even nicer to have a short arc that really focused on what it was doing.

Score: 6.5/10


DISCLAIMER: DC Comics provided Batman News with a copy of this comic for the purpose of this review.