Batgirl #24 Review

Writer: Shawn Aldridge
Artist: Scott Godlewski
Colors: John Rauch

The idea of choices is nothing new to the Batman-universe. In my opinion, the animated movie Batman: Under the Red Hood, gives one of the best explanations for why Batman can’t simply kill the worst of the worst criminals to make Gotham safer. Batgirl #24 follows that same vein, and while it’s a simple story, it’s nonetheless effective at showcasing what Batgirl has to go through every time she faces criminals.

At the end of the issue, Jacob, an old friend of Barbara’s, has an opportunity to kill Two-Face. Batgirl intervenes, taking the gun from him before he can follow through. Two-Face has always been one of the most dangerous villains in Gotham, and he even murdered Jacob’s father, giving him ample reason to pull the trigger. Jacob would probably be doing Gotham a favor by getting rid of him, but Batgirl doesn’t let him make that mistake.

Batgirl goes on to tell Jacob that everyone has choices, but if he were to kill Two-Face in that moment, that’s one choice that would haunt him forever. Unfortunately, Jacob still doesn’t quite learn the lesson as he starts the initiation sequence to blow up half of the city. Luckily, Batgirl is a better coder than he is, and she saves the day.

There’s a key bit of dialogue that sums up all the themes nicely when all is said and done.

Commission Gordon: “We lost a damn good cop when Jacob’s father was killed. Hate to lose the kid, too.

Batgirl: “We haven’t yet.”

Jacob, bright and talented as he is, made a bad decision, and he’ll be sent off to jail to deal with those consequences. However, Batgirl stopped him from doing something even worse. There’s still a chance of redemption with Jacob as long as he makes the right choices going forward.

Ultimately, this is a solid issue with a lot of nice character moments for Barbara. She gets a chance to show off her tough-as-nails, Batman-esque side when she’s chasing down criminals on her motorcycle. She also shows off her brilliant side (in the vein of Oracle), too. Whereas a lot of issues out this week are part of an overarching series, it’s nice to get a simple one-off story like this. Sometimes what you need most is a nice morality tale with a few jokes sprinkled in, and this issue delivers.

Overall Score: 9/10

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