Batgirl #39 Review

by Olivier Roth on September 27, 2019

Writer: Cecil Castellucci

Artist: Carmine Di Giandomenico

Colorist: Jordie Bellaire

Letterer: Andworld Design

Published by: DC 


This issue of Batgirl feels like a culmination of what Castellucci has been working towards in resetting Barbara Gordon in her new life - or at least, that is the feeling I got while reading this issue, having not been following Batgirl since the Burnside days. 


Castellucci does a marvelous job of interweaving aspects of Barbara’s new life as a, I want to say staff of a newly elected government official, and what she has been up to as Batgirl. The issue sees Barbara teaming up with Jason Bard, also of the Burnside years, as they go canvassing for her boss, you guessed it, Burnside. The interactions between the two feels very natural throughout their time out together, and you can see that the end goal is add Bard as a potential love interest to Babs going forward.  


One thing I really liked in this issue is the impact that Barbara as Batgirl had on the community of Burnside. Interspersed throughout, we get glimpses and inner thoughts from Barbara saving or fighting for the people of Burnside. This serves to establish that she may not live there anymore, but her time there was well spent. 


The only downside of this particular issue for me was when Barbara dons the Batgirl suit and goes out on patrol. The reason being is that, this being a Year of the Villain tie-in (ish), this is the night that Luthor made his proposal. And it seems like the entire town goes crazy as if all they needed was permission. That was probably the intent, but it is jarring to see on page. 


Elsewhere in the book, Castellucci provides some insight into the machinations of Oracle and how she perceives her upcoming fight with Batgirl going. I liked what Castellucci does here as Oracle, in of itself, could just be a super evil AI, but within this issue, we get a reason as to the why of her antagonism towards Batgirl. A little something I didn’t know I needed. 


The art in the issue is typical Di Giandomenico - if you’ve seen their work before, you know what to expect. I really enjoyed them on Flash a few years ago because the fluidity of their art worked really well on Flash. Thankfully, that same fluidity works really well on Batgirl as well. Add in Bellaire’s color choices really helped enhance Di Giandomenico’s pencils throughout.

Our Score:


A Look Inside