The young hacker/Batman sidekick has her hands full as Commissioner Gordon needs rescuing and there’s not a Batman nor Bruce Wayne in sight to save the day. What’s a girl to do?
In a special issue by the guest team of writers Steve Orlando and Vita Ayala and artist Siya Oum, Batman and Bruce Wayne are away–so who’s left to protect Neo-Gotham? Enter Nissa, the seldom seen 15-year-old Batgirl of the future! Crime and corruption lead Commissioner Barbara Gordon to the lawless neighborhood of Crown Point where she soon finds herself under siege. Can this young, self-made caped crusader save Gordon without the resources of Batman?
What’s the skinny?
While Batman and Bruce are halfway across the world hunting Ra’s al Ghul, it’s up to Max and Matt to keep an eye on the Bat-Cave and Neo-Gotham City. The relative peace and serenity of the evening is quickly shattered as a distress signal is received from none other than retired Batgirl and current police commissioner Barbara Gordon.
Along the way to rescue the Commissioner, Max crosses paths with the mysterious and rarely seen new Batgirl. The two find themselves in the same place for two very different reasons; corrupt cops and a missing police commissioner. Not only is the pair in one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in Neo-Gotham, but they’ve also got a bunch of bad guys with guns to tango with. The original Batgirl, the new Batgirl and Batman’s current computer expert against a gang of drug peddling police officers. Epic showdown ahead!
What’s the catch?
I understand each artist out there has their own style and approach to drawing male and female characters; that being said Commissioner Barbara Gordon looks like a guy more often than not. When looking at the other two major female characters of the story, there’s no question that the artist can draw women, so I’m not sure what happened there.
When you think of Batman and Gotham City you don’t picture white backgrounds and bright colors; so color me confused (sorry I had to) when I discovered half the story has just that. Color is pivotal in setting the tone for a story and the choices made in that department here didn’t help the story as they could have. Commissioner Gordon has been kidnapped, there are corrupt cops trafficking drugs to kids and we’re in Gotham City! Get rid of all this white please.
Is it good?
My biggest take away here was my newfound interest in Batgirl. Where did she receive her training? How is she equipping herself as a high school kid? And how did she get started as Batgirl in the first place? The only place I’ve seen Max thus far in this series is sitting behind a computer screen. It’s good to see the character step outside of her comfort zone and show the readers what she can do. Barbara Gordon is the perfect supporting character to help explore Max and Batgirl’s characters, without having to rely on Batman for all of the interaction.
It’s tough to take three characters, put them all on equal footing and squeeze them into a one-shot story. Steve Orlando and Vita Ayala managed to make it look fairly easy. Beyond my previously mentioned issues with the artwork I had a few small things that bothered me with Max; her equipment and how she managed to get around skyscraper covered Neo-Gotham. Those gripes aside this was still an enjoyable comic to read, with great character development for three interesting people we’ve seen little of so far in this series.
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