Batgirl hits the streets in her new costume to find the fake Oracle

As widely expected DC is launching a new Batgirls ongoing series starring Stephanie Brown (Spoiler) and Cassandra Caine (Orphans) collectively picking up the mantle to be mentored by the original Batgirl Barbara Gordon. 

‘Babs’, who is arguably the heart of the Batman family of characters, has been embracing her role as Oracle more and more in recent months, as the technology from the earliest weeks of 2011’s the New 52 (opens in new tab) that cured her spinal paralysis suffered at the hands of the Joker in 1988’s The Killing Joke (opens in new tab) seems to be in danger of wearing out or breaking. 

Nightwing #84

image from Nightwing #84 by Robbi Rodriguez (Image credit: DC)

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But she hasn’t fully retired as Batgirl yet, and in September 21’s Nightwing #84 (opens in new tab) by writer Tom Taylor, the first of a three-issue ‘Fear State’ tie-in story arc she once again dons the costume to hit the streets and rooftops, this time debuting a new variation of her Burnside costume designed by cover artist Bruno Redondo.

Despite being warned by Dick about venturing out to join the physical fight again, she insists because someone is using her Oracle tech to pose as her to endanger Gotham City, her friends, and (Bat) family. In fact, earlier in the issue, the fake Oracle directed Nightwing into a trap, which would have killed him if Batman hadn’t rescued him. 

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(Image credit: DC)

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(Image credit: DC)

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The last page of the issue by interior artist Robbi Rodriguez debuts his version of Redondo’s design, which debuted on his cover to October’s Nightwing #85, the middle of three connecting covers (see above) along with a design sheet released by DC.

Time will tell if Batgirl fans are witnessing the final days of Barbara as a costumed streel-level crimefighter, or if she’ll continue to join the fights on special occasions like the current ‘Fear State’ crossover, and they’ll always be something of a debate about which version of Barbara is the best version. But for the moment, she’s still Batgirl and has a new look to be enjoyed for however long it lasts. 

Whether she’s Batgirl, Oracle, or just Babs, Barbara Gordon is one of the very best supporting characters in one of the very best supporting casts in comic books. Check out Newsarama’s list of Batman’s best supporting characters (opens in new tab).

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