[New to DCU] Book Club: Smaller Characters: Week Three: (Batgirl: Art of the Crime) - Batgirl (2016-) #25 -#29

P.S. I accidentally edited last week’s post instead of creating a new one.

Hey Everyone Click here for my Weekly Note!

Hey everyone! Welcome to our humble abode!! Thanks to everyone who joined us last week and anyone joining us for the first time this week! This club is for those who WANT to get into current comics that are just arriving on DCU. This is the third week of Unit 2: Smaller Characters. I can confirm that Unit 3 is Bendis’s Superman.

January: Smaller Characters

Week 1: Catwoman: Copycats

Week 2: Green Arrow: Citizen’s Arrest

Week 3: Batgirl: Art of Crime

Week 4: Teen Titans: Full Throttle

Week 5: Hawkman: Awakening

February will focus on Superman

Remember: Every week, you get to vote on which stories to keep reading and which ones to drop.

So let’s talk about Batgirl: Art of the Crime

Official Description

During a high-speed chase with the murderous Grotesque, the villain hits Batgirl with a souped-up stun gun that fries the device implanted in her spine. (That thing that helps her, you know, walk and be Batgirl?) Babs finds herself in for a whole new world of hurt now that old wounds have been opened up—and so does Grotesque.

:books: WHAT TO READ :books:
Batgirl(2016-) #25-29
:bow_and_arrow:DISCUSSION QUESTIONS :bow_and_arrow:

  1. Is this your first time reading Batgirl: Art of Time

  2. What was your favorite moment in the story?

  3. How do you feel about the Dick/Babs story?

  4. What do you think the villains

  5. Do you like Batgirl’s new costume

  6. Should we keep reading the series?

  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

I would love to hear your general reactions to the story as well!

When: 2020-01-22T08:00:00Z2020-01-26T08:00:00Z

Primer: If you want one because you want to get more background context before you start, let me know!

Want to join the club for an exclusive ever-changing flair, notifications, AND early access to reading orders? Join the club by clicking this link: DC Universe

Want to chat on discord? Use this link to join over 200 fans! https://discord.gg/kfSNQP6

Questions, Comments, Concerns? Feel free to reach out to me on through messaging.


New to DCU Wiki

Is this the current reading? Are the dates wrong?

They were just wrong…

This is my first time reading the whole thing.

The issue that crossed over with Heroes in Crisis. I particularly liked Ollie meeting one of Roys friends who seemed to know Roy better than Ollie.

I’m sorry, who was that? And agree with him on what?

Cool character without much nuance. This kind of character has been done many times but this was overall enjoyable.

A bit twisted, of course, given the stuff going on with Roy. But still driven. He is really having to question himself due to his relationship with Roy and the accusation he’s facing.

I think that was great. I liked seeing him have to take down so many goes seemingly out of his league. I liked that his humanity helped him win here.
But, regarding Red Volcano: who the neck puts an android in prison. Can’t they just pull out the battery or something?

Heck if I know, but isn’t having a plan in place to take the league down more of a Batman move? I hope we get to find out sometime.

I’m a completist, so must vote yessir.

Joshua Lapin-Bertone is one of DCU’s News writers. He wrote this article where he called Green Arrow #45 one of the best DC Comics of the decade.

That is a BOLD claim. Curious to see how it stacks up.

Of the decade? It was good, but I don’t know about all that.

Since I forgot what the questions were, I will say that I really did like the Green Arrow issues, and just starting on the Batgirl issues. :smiley:

@Jay_Kay I’m sorry I accidentally deleted them. Glad to hear you liked it though.

1 Like
  1. Is this your first time reading Green Arrow: Citizens
  2. What was your favorite moment in the story?
  3. How do you feel about Green Arrow #45 in particular? Do you agree with Joshua Lapin-Bertone’s opinion here?
  4. What do you think about the Citizen?
  5. Where is Ollie’s head at after this story?
  6. If you read #41-42: What do you think of Parasite v. Green Arrow
  7. If you read Annual #2: What do you think is in the box?

@Nathan.Payson is tomorrow the end of the Batgirl reading? Sorry, I didn’t realize this post was up.

Thanks, @nu52! :smiley:

  1. Is this your first time reading Green Arrow: Citizens


  1. What was your favorite moment in the story?

I think I will go with Dinah dressing up as Green Arrow to save Ollie from being captured by The Citizen. It’s always fun to see superheroes deal with more advanced secret identity issues like that.

  1. How do you feel about Green Arrow #45 in particular? Do you agree with Joshua Lapin-Bertone’s opinion here?

I mean, it’s a good issue, it’s a damn good issue, but the best issue of the decade? …Maybe if I was a super hardcore Green Arrow or Arsenal fan, maybe, but as it is, I don’t think it would hit the top ten.

  1. What do you think about the Citizen?

He’s definitely a good villain for Ollie. Like some of the best villains for heroes, he’s a character you can see a lot of your hero in, but with something in them that’s twisted or perverted, a dark mirror in what your hero could have become if circumstances were different.

One thing about Citizen’s plan I like is the blackmail that he was going to use on Ollie and the swerve we get. Like, you assume that if a villain is threatening blackmail on a superhero, it’s going to be exposing THAT secret, and it would have been effective for Citizen. After all, how can you imagine people might feel if this rich asshole was putting on tights and punching out people in poorer areas?

But no, what we got was something…I don’t think pedestrian is the right word, but it’s something that is possible to happen to any of us if we drastically erred. It helps to make Ollie feel more grounded than even your standard street-level hero.

  1. Where is Ollie’s head at after this story?

I would say not great but on a better path. Between the Citizen and Roy’s death, he’s had a lot of old wounds opened and rubbed raw. But with Dinah at his side, someone who loves him, cares for him and also won’t put up with crap, he’s in a better place now than he might be if he was by himself. Isolation can make one rub wounds to the bone.

It would almost be a shame if something bad were to happen to that relationship… (BTW, I don’t remember if I voted in the poll, but yes, let’s definitely do that last three issue arc.)

  1. If you read #41-42: What do you think of Parasite v. Green Arrow

It was pretty cool! Typically you only really see Parasite with powered heroes, for probably obvious reasons – Parasite weakens even the strongest heroes like Superman so you get to see him/her on a more equal level and they have to think quicker and use tools they wouldn’t normally use to win the fight, which can be fun to experience. But you don’t really see him with all sorts of powers fighting an already powerless foe. It really makes Ollie feel like an underdog, and I think they were able to make him win in a way that doesn’t feel forced, but earned.

One thing in particular that I liked about these two issues was the fact that Ollie wasn’t just protecting everyone from Parasite, but in the end he still fought for him to have better living conditions in the prison. Ollie is a bleeding heart at the core, and he feels it even when he knows in his brain that sometimes things aren’t that ideal or that easy.

  1. If you read Annual #2: What do you think is in the box?

Seriously, I’m not sure. It’s an interesting prospect – sure it makes sense that there can be in a box something that can take down Batman, or Superman, or Wonder Woman or Green Lantern, but what can be inside that takes out the ENTIRE League? I don’t recall if we get the answer to that, or if we even will, but it’s an interesting idea to ponder.

1 Like

@nu52 Yes, but you can always comment on “done” posts.

1 Like

Green Arrow was very good in this Batgirl story.

There. Did I answer the thread correctly? :stuck_out_tongue:

Y’know, saying it like that reminds me of a Birds of Prey story where Barbara reveals that back when she was Batgirl she had a little crush on Green Arrow, until…

1 Like

On #25: the Paul Dini story is interesting in regards to his March Harriet character. While it’s fair to say that in some ways she feels like Dini trying really hard to make lightning strike again (not every villain neets a sexy hench-wench, Paul), he did later use her in a much better degree in the novelization of Harley Quinn: Mad Love.

In that novel, Dini expands more on Harleen Quinnzel’s time as a psychiatrist in Arkham Asylum, including group therapy sessions with some of the women in the Asylum, specifically Magpie, Poison Ivy, and March Harriet.

Paul actually did an interview on DC Daily talking about this and of course, I can’t find that specific episode now (it’s possible it was taken out of rotation). But what I remember is that he wrote those scenes and used those characters specifically because all three of them depict an aspect of what Harleen will become once she turns. Harriet herself as I recall took on Harley’s codependence on a charismatic figure, and Harleen remarks in her mind in the book about how she feels sorry that Harriet is so obsessed over a man that clearly doesn’t love her.

I got the book a while back and haven’t finished it (gah, I wish I could read more prose novels than I tend to), but what I have read is really good. It’s part of a series of Batman comic novelizations that Titan Books did a year or two ago, including The Killing Joke (which I have finished and loved) and The Court of Owls.

Well, this thread got a bit confusing! But I did just read Batgirl:

I’ve read most of it before, but this is my first time reading the conclusion. I just got distracted before.be

It’s too tragic to call it my favorite, but the most interesting aspect of the story was here chip failing. The danger of not being able to walk again, especially if she pushes herself too hard physically, is a dangerous wrinkle.

I loved it!!! Very sweet and romantic. But I’m still Team Starfire.

It was feeling bad for the corrupt cop at first because I figured that was a dead loved one, but to find out she was completely imaginary to him…that’s pretty jacked up. I didn’t like Wyrm or the Dark Web in Nightwing, but he was better used here.

Was it new? Yeah, sure. Cool.

1 Like

I know, I’m late – this is a book I’ve actually wanted to get caught up on for a while, so I was actually reading this and at the same time a previous arc from the book “Son of Penguin” (which I thought was pretty good, though I do think Hope probably should have dumped the weird chemistry stuff with the guy in the first arc if she was going to go this route in her second story). I’m pretty sure I won’t get things mixed up, though. :sweat_smile:

Is this your first time reading Batgirl: Art of the Crime?

Yep! Overall I really enjoyed it.

What was your favorite moment in the story?

There are some pretty good ones, but I think I’ll go with the heart-to-heart that Barbara has with her father in her old room. There’s a really rich dynamic here where Jim instilled in his daughter this never-say-die attitude, to always push forward and against adversity, and I think it’s fair to say that it’s part of what makes Barbara such a strong woman in her own right. But there’s always that unintended consequence, that fear that she was trying to get out of the chair because she thought he felt she was lesser for what happened. I like that they cleared the air, she told him her fear and he told her explicitly that he will always love her. Such a warm, loving moment.

How do you feel about the Dick/Babs story?

It was pretty nice. I’ve always been more agnostic on her romance with Dick (I honestly think Barbara has more chemistry with Dinah, but that’s just me), but it comes off very well here. I like how they use continuity of what happened with Bruce and Selina back in Tom King’s Batman as a springboard for them to re-evaluate their relationship and understand that life is fleeting and if they care for each other, they should be able to just embrace it.

And it’s a good thing that since then, Barbara and Dick have only gotten closer together and there was no C-list Russian supervillain who got in the way of that, yes indeed! :sweat_smile:

What do you think the villains?

Honestly, I think they’re the weakest part of the story. First off, I really didn’t like the Dark Web storyline that happened in Nightwing, it was such a poor and dimly portrayed idea of technology that it was just mind-numbing (one of the good things about what happened to Nightwing is that it got Percy off the book), and I really never wanted to see them again.

Grotesque wasn’t that much better. At first I was intrigued, I was wondering why his MO changed, and when it was shown he died I pretty much immediately figured out it was the cop and wondered what his motivation would be.

At first when he’s talking to Wyrm and he gets sucked into the digital fantasy with the woman I thought “Oh, he’s doing this to see a dead wife/partner again, that’s an okay enough motivation I suppose.” Then when it’s revealed that he didn’t and he was just killing people to see his fake digital girlfriend it became a little more pathetic, and not in a compelling way.

Do you like Batgirl’s new costume?

I do! I liked the Burnside look well enough, but I feel like what she has feels closer to the Bat-Family while still having her own look. I wish she had more of a complete cowl/mask instead of the domino mask with Bat-ears, though. And her New 52 armor is still my absolute favorite look for her.

@ralphsix I thought that was interesting both as a reminder of who Barbara went through and the vulnerability and having to exist knowing she could lose her legs again.

1 Like