Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #19 Review and *SPOILERS*

Who Is Oracle?

Written By: Julie Benson, Shawna Benson
Art By: Roge Antonio, Marcelo Maiolo, Saida Temofonte
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: February 14, 2018

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

Now that our heroes are back from their Paris one-shot, it's time to get back into a proper arc and to my surprise, it seems to be all about Calculator again.  Hopefully, the Bensons can put this information broker baddie back on his game and make him a serious threat this time instead of someone who just bullied and blackmailed Gus into working for him.  Let's jump into this issue and check it out.

Explain It!:

Our issue begins with Batgirl going with her Oracle alter ego so that she can hack into Calculator's program with the intent of setting up bad guys who think they're working with Calculator to get whatever it is they need, but instead end up finding the Birds of Prey when they arrive for the meet.  You know, superhero cat fishing.  

With this new way of approaching things, the Birds of Prey are taking in record amounts of bad guys, but all good things must come to an end and it seems that Calculator has figured out Oracle's game and has sent a robot named Burnrate out to find out who Oracle really is so that he can put an end to this hacker who has tormented him for so long.  With that, Burnrate makes its presence and demands clear to the Birds of Prey, which forces them to flee, but as they do they realize that anyone who has ever worked with them might be in danger........ leading them to the one-time Oracle, Gus Yale.  

In the end, The Birds of Prey show up to late to save poor old Gus and they're forced to watch him die, but before he does, he hands Barbara a key of sorts...... that we don't really talk about here and as our issue closes it seems that everyone is distraught over Gus' death and also pissed at Barbara for keeping this secret hacking of Calculator's computer to herself....... Which causes Barbara to destroy the Oracle program, putting that alter ego to bed once and for all.  It's no time to feel sorry for yourselves though Birds because Burnrate is out and about and Calculator has it focused on a parole officer.

That's it for this issue of Batgirl and the Birds of Prey and I have to say that it really seems that the Bensons have stepped up their game in writing this book because for a few inconsistencies within this issue, this is probably the best written issue I've seen them put out.  The silliness and jokes are put to a side to tell a pretty emotional story, where Barbara has to deal with her actions after it causes someone to lose their life and it also seems that this has created a bit of a rift within the team and I have to say that for the first time in a long time, I care about what the next issue of Batgirl and the Birds of Prey brings.  The biggest problem I have with this issue though is the villain Burnrate and I don't know if it's because of the art or plotting, but this character just seems to be everywhere.  It's facing off against the Birds, then it somehow beats them to Gus's apartment and even when it looked like it was defeated, it somehow turned up in the end and I have no idea if it escaped the battle or what.......... and I don't really understand how Calculator built it either.  All in all though, besides for this bit, I enjoyed both the art and the story and look forward to more issues like this one.

Bits and Pieces:

We begin a new arc with this issue and the Bensons are coming out like they have something to prove because goddamn, this is probably one of the best issues they have written, where they actually show us stakes to the whole superhero life and what it means to be a part of the Birds of Prey.  The art is great besides for a few confusing scenes, but overall, I look forward to getting more issues like this one here.


1 comment:

  1. I completely agree with you! Overall, I think this is the best issue the Benson have published.