The New York Post, DC’s go to news outlet for leaking various bits of comic book information, has a six page preview for Gail Simone and Ardian Syaf‘s Batgirl #1, which handily answers a lot of the continuity questions that arose when DC announced that paradoxically, Barbara Gordon would be Batgirl and the events of The Killing Joke (the Alan Moore comic in which she is paralyzed by the Joker) would remain canon.
First, we’ve got an aside to Barbara’s upper body strength:
It’s the black box in the bottom middle panel, and don’t bother clicking to embiggen, these are as big as the NYP could offer. The line is: “Fortunately… …I’ve got upper arm strength like a mother at this point.”
And then the finale page of the preview is one more entry in the long line of homages to the art and events of Alan Moore and Brian Bolland‘s The Killing Joke.
Note Barbara’s crooked knee in the bottom panels: Barbara Gordon of the DCnU regained the use of her legs over a period of at least three years after being shot (and sexually abused) by the Joker, and now after emotional and physical trials she’s excited to be Batgirl again. For better or worse, despite pleas from fans of Oracle to allow DC’s highest profile disabled superhero to continue as a kick-ass minority representative, despite pleas from fans of Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain as Batgirl; despite many pointing out that reasoning like “She’s still the most famous Batgirl, so making her Batgirl again makes sense” melts in the face of four former Robins running around the DCnU while the one with the least seniority remains in the Robin identity; this is the DCnU’s Batgirl.
Hopefully, it will turn out to be at least some for the better. I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a part of me that was excited to see Barbara as Batgirl again, seeing as how I was two years old when The Killing Joke was published and got to know her as Batgirl primarily through Batman: The Animated Series. And there’s a part of me that’s really excited at the possibility of a Barbara Gordon/Kate Kane teamup, and a Barbara Gordon vs. the Joker, and Gail Simone’s writing…
Comics: they are always more complicated than you thought going in, in every respect. And I’m not sure whether to take it as good news or bad that no matter how cynical the industry makes me, a part of me still gets excited to read about their superheroes.
(via Bleeding Cool.)