This is not only a new series, but a new team still trying to find its footing and in some cases its trust. On top of that the bad guy is Oracle, which last I checked was a title held by Barbara Gordon, which makes for an intriguing new take on the character. Question is, is it good?
Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The DC preview reads:
“WHO IS ORACLE?” part 3! Batgirl, Black Canary, and Huntress must team up with the GCPD to protect a mafia capo from an attack by his one-time friends! He’s the only man with a lead on the nefarious new Oracle…but dead men tell no tales! Of course, it’s hard to make a team-up work when the team’s ready to tear itself apart on its first mission!
Why does this book matter?
Writers Shawna Benson and Julie Benson have created an interesting mystery for the Birds of Prey to solve and have brought these characters together in a believable way. Their dynamics are the best part, and the character work has been fun to follow. If you dig characters you better be reading this.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Each character is unique and different in their own way.
The character dynamics are on point in this issue, directly pitting Huntress and Black Canary against each other in a fight sequence that’s both revealing and fun, as well as how each of these characters view Batgirl. Batgirl is her usual spunky self, willing to do the right thing for the right reasons, while Black Canary and Huntress have an edge to them that shows they’re a bit more street smart. That culminates into funny moments throughout the issue (like Black Canary ribbing Huntress for wearing her coat inside or being weirded out by Batgirl’s mischievous grin) due to the fun characters on display. It’s also neat to see how addicted Batgirl is when it comes to computers, which makes you wonder if this story arc is leading towards her becoming Oracle in some way.
The issue contains a good amount of action too, from the fight sequence mentioned above, to an opening car chase, and later a tense moment with traps. The fight sequence is well choreographed by artist Claire Roe which does well to show how fast and brutal their fighting styles are.
Roe does an amazing job with faces throughout the issue making Barbara endearingly cute, but also filled with energy. You just want to hang out with her based on how much character Roe infuses into her. Two of Batgirl’s closest confidants get some play too, which are well rendered as well. My favorite aspect of Roe’s work is how muscular she’s made these characters. Black Canary is ripped, sinewy and ready for battle, and Batgirl has some guns on her as well. They haven’t lost an ounce of their femininity, but you can see they can hold their own when it comes to fighting.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Plot wise things slow down, progressing little in this issue. The cliffhanger is certainly bringing some villains to the foray, but their lack of appearances in this issue is underwhelming. The Birds of Prey are still figuring out how to work together though, which is where much of the fun lies.
Is It Good?
This is one of those issues that feels jam-packed with content with plenty of action, intrigue, and character work. If you dig relationships and team building you’ll dig this book; it has a lot of character!