Batgirl is on her way back to the states after kicking butt in China, but of course the plane ride is going to be bumpy. That’s just how it is for Barbara. Hope Larson and Rafael Albuquerque continue her adventures, but will the quality drop without the backdrop of China? Is it good?
Batgirl #6 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The summary reads:
“RETURN TO BURNSIDE”! On what should be a relaxing flight back home, Babs finds herself and her fellow passengers in mortal peril from…Poison Ivy? Batgirl must get to the bottom of Ivy’s attack and save the plane if she ever wants to see home again
Why does this book matter?
Frankly, Albuquerque is putting on a show with this series. The action pops just a bit more than other books and Larson hasn’t strayed from the unique detective skills Barbara has to offer. The fact that this issue takes place on a plane makes it feel unique too.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This issue introduces a problem for Batgirl to resolve that’s quite cool and clever, integrating Poison Ivy well. Larson reminds us Ivy isn’t all bad anymore and works to make their relationship somewhat complex in the process. The entire issue is paced well, with new details immerging, action taking place, and cool character moments all dropping at opportune times to keep things interesting.
Outside of the action, detective work, and Ivy/Batgirl bonding, there’s also a worthwhile message made about hubris. Larson proves heroes don’t have to punch villains every time they come to a crossroads, and it’s nice to see Batgirl use her words and wit to prevent an all out slug fest.
Albuquerque continues to do excellent work here, be it expressions, eye-catching backgrounds that make the art pop, or making the monster ferociously scary. The biggest win when it comes to art here is how he’s made the tight confines of the plane feel large. Given, the lack of backgrounds in many panels helps make the plane feel big, but the splashes of color and use of ben-day dots work to add layers and depth.
It can’t be perfect can it?
This issue is going to require some suspension of disbelief to work. Questions like, “Why did Batgirl have her costume in her carry on?” “how could Poison Ivy possibly be taking the same plane from China?” and “there’s no way the plane could have made it to America with one engine out just east of Japan.” These questions certainly crossed my mind and made the story a bit silly in some respects.
Hmmm who is that in the foreground I wonder.
Is It Good?
This is an enjoyable done in one story that requires bending reality a bit to work, but is a lot of fun. Batgirl is good for plenty of sharp art and great pacing.