Oracle and the Birds of Prey 1 – 7

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #1
Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Claire Roe

As much as I HATE the idea of Barbara Gordon being Batgirl instead of the great Cassandra Cain, and I think Babs’s current costume is ugly, and she works much better as Oracle…this comic book was a ton of fun. A new person going by the name Oracle is working for Gotham’s mobsters so Barbara Gordon recruits her old team mate Black Canary to figure it all out when they run into the Huntress. Babs and Dinah don’t seem to know Helena anymore (Memories being erased by Dr. Manhattan I suppose) so this basically allows for them to redevelop their team again and Huntress will probably go through the same growing pains she went through in Gail Simone’s run on Birds of Prey but hey at least she has a much better costume this time. I mean now that her abdomen is not exposed…God Hush ruine so much. Anyways, I love that Rebirth has returned Barbara’s time as Oracle to continuity and is bringing our Birds of Prey back together, in the Gotham Clocktower where they belong too! It is a shame that this means that really only Chuck Dixon’s run on Birds is the only one really in continuity….well unless it turns out the rest of their history has just been erased from their memory. But I gotta say the Bensons write some charming dialogue here with these characters and they are complicated on some amazing art by Claire Roe. If this series remains as good as this first issue, it might be the best of Rebirth outside of Detective Comics!

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2
Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Claire Roe

Okay the second issue did not disappoint! More happens in this comic than in six issues of the Justice League of America book. The dialogue is funny and witty just like during Simone’s run. I still hate Barabara as Batgirl instead of Oracle and I probably always will…especially with that costume. How can you be the Dark Knight Damsel running around in purple and yellow? The answer is you can’t because only Cassandra Cain is a real bat. I am so not used to Barbara looking and acting so young it is kind of jarring for me but I am liking this book a ton.

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #3
Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Claire Roe and Roge Antonio

So I know next to nothing about Black Canary’s New 52 origin but it looks like she was raised by foster parents and believed her mom left her to go “on a mission.” Is this a hint at DC Rebirth and the return of JSA? Was her mom the original Black Canary again now? I sure hope so! In this issue, the Huntress quits after Babs gets mat her for going for a killshot. Meanwhile, we got a lot of flashback to Dinah’s childhood which really intrigued me. This book is so shockingly good and I expected to hate having Babs lead the team as Batgirl…and I still do hate the idea of her being Batgirl….but the writing and the art on this thing is too good to hate. I love how there is a whole team of snake-themed villains.

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #4
Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Roge Antonio

The Huntress’s origin is recapped here and I wonder how much it dovetails with the Huntress: Year One mini-series from ten years ago. Anyways, it was done really well in this comic too and the Birds finally find out who Huntress is…again. At the end of the issue, they find the new Oracle’s lair…and the person seems to actually be a fan of Barbara Gordon Batgirl….I wonder if this is a new character or someone we already know?

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #5
Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Roge Antonio

So as it turns out this new Oracle is actually more like me than I thought…he is a fan of Oracle Barbara Gordon more than Batgirl Barabara Gordon and even says it himself! I dont really like how easy it was for this guy to figure out all three of her identities (I mean that is Tim Drake level intelligence right?) Gus really seems like a stand-in for all the fans who want to see Babs as Oracle again. It is all very meta. Almost too meta. And that is not the most shocking part of this issue…the big bad is Huntress’s mother!

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #6
Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Roge Antonio

Okay so remember when I asked if this was different from Huntress: Year One? It sure seems to be as Helena’s mom faked her death and was actually part of the plan to kill her father, but her brother was never suppose to get killed. This was a great comic. In the end Huntress chooses to do the right thing and turns her mother in.There was one major blooper though where it is clearly Barbara talking but the artist drew Dinah. Oops! Maybe it will be fixed for the trade. In the end, Barbara asks this Gus guy to be the new Oracle which is fantastic because we do need an Oracle in the Birds of Prey…but the last page made it seem like he might not be just fanboy after all. Is he working for someone else?The mystery gets deeper…

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #7
Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Claire Roe

Ok so the new Oracle knows who Dick Grayson is too? Come on I don’t like that. But this issue was cute as the Birds of Prey figure out why the realators keep trying to break into Gotham Clocktower and Helena decides to stay in Gotham. How exactly though does Dinah maintain a relationship with Ollie if he is on the other side of the country? It’s not like she has flying powers. Still a great series here and I encourage everyone to check it out.

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