Tying up this small arc in quite a nice package, Batgirl #32 manages to get rid of any loose ends whilst maintaining a focus on the larger threat. Continuing a surprising reality-based political thread whilst incorporating the super-heroics of a DC title, this issue manages to balance a few characters sufficiently, bringing them all together to produce the downfall of the Cormorant. Not only does it do this in a slick and action-packed way, but it does it through the use of character, producing another wrinkle in the already complex relationships that Babs has.
The 32nd instalment of the title is very much focused on Alejo’s big press event, with the city’s TV screens focused on her. This situation has been chosen specifically and will likely play up to further twists in the future. The fact that the Cormorant attacks on camera and our storyteller took time out to discuss the possibilities as to why this may be the case suggests there is a reason to take notice.
Sadly, the villain himself is largely forgettable in the end. Whilst there is a shock early on when it looks like Cormorant killed Batgirl, with his expert training guaranteeing the jump on her, this is ultimately inconsequential. Whilst see this bird-based assassin is skilful and full of interesting visual design, he is mostly a throwaway character used more as a plot device to create tension between Barbara and Jason, distrust towards Alejo and, ultimately, set up a larger villain.
The death of Cormorant is used brilliantly, however, to create a further divide between this team.
The visuals of this book are great and mesh with the dark, grimy, political thriller we have been reading. Batgirl still really pops in these scenes and there are some great interpretations of the action.
The narrative looks to be developing further alongside The Batman Who Laughs in the next issue, which is a strange decision for a title that is doing very well away from the main DC heroes. However, watching these characters interact should be incredibly interesting.
Batgirl #32 is a satisfying conclusion in that it left just enough to continue a new narrative, whilst tying up every other loose end. The talents of Mairghread Scott are clear in her well-structured tale and I look forward to following where this goes as it continues to define subtle character work in a big title.
Continuing to define great and subtle character work, this political thriller manages to conclude in a satisfying way whilst leaving the door open for a bigger threat.