Writer: Mairghread Scott
Penciller: Tom Derenick
Inker: Sean Parsons
The action takes a back seat to the emotional toll being a vigilante has taken on Batgirl. The comics have never shied away from addressing the very real fact people die as a direct result of living in Gotham and all the insanity that entails.
In this story, Batgirl has to cope with the death of a man she saved only to have him die months later at the hands of Joker. Batgirl suddenly find herself at her wit’s end until she gets some advice she (and the reader) really needs to hear. Everyone only has a set amount of time on Earth, and it’s what we do with that time, little as it may be, that counts. The story really hits home, and it’s a thread that continues throughout this anniversary issue.
Writer: Marguerite Bennett
Artist: Dan Panosian
Colorist: Jordie Bellaire
While the previous story focused on a funeral, this time our attention turns to a wedding. More specifically, Barbara and Dick Grayson discuss what they each have planned for their eventual weddings. It’s a lovely story, and it carries over the themes from “The Reason” nicely. Although their weddings are far off and may never happen, they decide to enjoy the moment. They cuddle in a hotel room, simply giving each other the greatest gift of all: each other’s time.
Writer: Mairghread Scott
Penciller: Paul Pelletier
Inker: Norm Rapmund
This story breaks away from the theme to set up the next Batgirl arc. The villain, Grotesque, has murdered a wealthy couple and stolen a priceless artwork. This story doesn’t offer a lot to chew on. It seems like it’s mostly here to hype the reader up on the next storyline, but it’s engaging nonetheless.
Writer: Paul Dini
Penciller: Emanuela Lupacchino
Inker: Ray McCarthy
Lastly, we get a story written by Paul Dini himself. It’s a great standalone story where we get to see everything that makes Batgirl special. She uses her deductive reasoning to figure out where March Harriet’s final victim is hidden. She uses her compassion to seek justice for the death of March Harriet’s friend. While the story departs from the theme in the first two stories, it’s entertaining, and as long as a comic book can do that, it’s all right in my book.
Overall Score: 9/10
Summary: We get four entertaining Batgirl stories in her anniversary issue, and while the thematic elements could have been a bit more cohesive, it makes for a wonderful celebration of the character.
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