Knock knock! Who’s there? The Joker. The Joker who? The Joker who’s here to have a nice chat with Barbara Gordon! Don’t miss this devastating tie-in to “Joker War”!
On the heels of solicitations revealing Batgirl will be coming to a close in issue #50, issue #47 finds itself thrust into the “Joker War” with an appearance from the Clown Prince of Crime himself, making for an issue that is heavier than maybe even it realizes.
The dynamics between Babs and the Joker is one filled with abuse, controversy and so much more. Other than Batman, there are few characters with such a powerful history. As “The Joker War” rages on in the ongoing Batman series by Tynion IV, the two find themselves in an odd meetup filled with tension that largely goes without direct mention. Instead, we see Joker exploring his plan further with Batgirl’s involvement through a physical reminder of the abuse by taking her legs again.
This is a smart decision and really sets the stage for a wide range of storytelling potentials, but as we continue reading the story doesn’t really follow up on that meaningfully. The editorial direction feels less nuanced than the meetup between these two required and this inhibits the significance of what occurs. While it’s a setup that will easily pull you in, it leans just a little too heavily into the larger story at play to be as successful as possible.
The artwork certainly helps the issue to standout, though. Joker and Babs’ back and forth is depicted beautifully and the drama is apparent in every panel. Considering the nature of the issue, AndWorld Design pulls off some great work helping to establish effective pacing and coherence. It’s not particularly action-packed, but it’s utterly dramatic and the visuals capture that wonderfully.
The rather sassy ending with an awesome splash sort of sums up what this issue brings to the table. A great concept and fun dialogue but lacking in the heavy significance that could’ve happened. I really enjoyed Barbaras’ accusation of Joker’s love for Batman, drawing relations to the themes that have driven the series up to this point and her ability to identify them. It makes for a fun enough read that is worth your money, but you might end up wishing for just a little more depth by the final page.
Batgirl #47 makes clever use of the Joker War tie-in, but just doesn't dive deep enough into the implications of the dramatic teamup to capitalize as successfully as possible, despite delivering plenty of awesome artwork.
Batgirl #47: Don’t You Dare Laugh At Me
- Writing - 7.5/107.5/10
- Storyline - 8/108/10
- Art - 9/109/10
- Color - 9/109/10
- Cover Art - 9.5/109.5/10
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