Bye, Bye, Batgirl
As of yesterday, Gail Simone is done writing the adventures of Barbara Gordon, the new 52 Batgirl. While this news had been rumored for a while on many comic sites, the fact that it is now a reality is very disappointing. Simone’s love for the character practically bleeds off the page, and from her heartbreaking twitter feed the other day, you can tell it wasn’t a move she was planning on making anytime soon.
When Barbara Gordon was announced as the Batgirl of the New 52, I’ll admit, I was pretty pissed. However, once I heard that Gail Simone would be writing it, I knew I’d immediately be buying it. At the time I was devouring her Secret Six trades, and since that book wasn’t going to be a part of the DC relaunch, I figured I’d at least pick up the first issue of Batgirl and check it out. While I didn’t get any answers revolving around Barbara being out of the wheelchair she was confined to for 20+ years, Simone’s characterization of the Gordon as a “survivor” had me hooked. As someone who never saw Barbara Gordon really be Batgirl in the comics, it was refreshing to see her on the page, and watching Barbara overcome this incredible injury was really inspiring, and lead to Batgirl being one of the best titles of the DC relaunch.
Just as upsetting (but not as surprising) is the news that Scott Snyder and Yanick Paquette will be leaving Swamp Thing with issue 18. I’m extremely sad to see Snyder leave the book, but he has a full load with Batman, Swamp Thing, American Vampire, a Vertigo book with Sean Murphy, and the upcoming Man Of Steel with Jim Lee. Instead of taking on too much and having his work suffer, he’s decided to bow out of Swampy at the end of “Rotworld”. In a tweet from the other day, Snyder said that he and Paquette always had an ending to their run, and that they believe they’ve found the best place to bow out. It’s the complete opposite of what happened to Simone, who was informed via e-mail that she would no longer be writing Batgirl.
Simone is a great writer, one of the best in the business, and she does not deserve to be taken off the book in this fashion. There’s no way DC could have pulled off Barbara Gordon returning as Batgirl without her, and it’s a shame that she’s leaving a character she obviously loves. While I’m sad to see Batgirl dropped from my pull list, I do know that wherever Simone goes, I’m likely to follow.