Batgirl #17 | Written by: Hope Larson | Art by: Christian Wildgoose | DC Comics | 11.22.2017
Hope Larson and Christian Wildgoose do the tough task in wrapping up a fun arc on the highest of notes. Wildgoose and Larson do many things great, but I've been blown away by the attention to detail with the little things that the eyes might miss if moving too fast.
Slow down and take this book in, pay close attention to the fight scene between Mad Hatter and Batgirl in the flashback opening scene because even I cruised through it on read No. one.
This flashback scene does a fantastic job of bringing us up to date, and by showing us of the strong bond that Batgirl/Barbara and Robin/Nightwing/Dick have always had. Wildgoose brings these panels to life with things like the yanking of night vision goggles, the sly pulling out of Mad Hatter's knife, and the use of the flashlight to show the damage to Hatter and for some pretty scenes in the dark sewer.
Batgirl just went off the grid and pushed it too far, but Robin was there in the past to reign her back in. This opening sequence felt like an emotional kick to the gut between the emotional exchange to the nostalgia-feels of the awesome take on their old costumes.
That then brings us to the very awkward present time, which Larson and Middleton do a great job in creating a relatable scene between the very interesting Barbara-Dick dynamic. Without spoiling anything, it plays on all the will they, won't they stuff while keeping their eyes on the main villain, the Red Queen. As I said above, pay attention to the little things with these two in charge *cough* pay attention to Nightwing's glove *cough*.
The flashback scene and first couple of scenes back in present Batgirl time are enough to write about because it just played off of and enhanced the dynamics that make these two characters very lovable, and very readable.
The showdown between Nightwing, Batgirl and the Red Queen puts a nice touch on the end of this arc. One thing I want to note is that I love sticking with the Babs New 52 style of Batgirl get up.
Rating: 9/10 blows to the Mad Hatter's Jared Leto "Fight Club" face: A perfect ending of a very solid arc shows that with Hope Larson and Christian Wildgoose that every detail matters. These two are money and add a little of that flavor that Batgirl has been riding on for the past couple of years.
The use of flashbacks to real-time and flashbacks to help bring real-time back, if that makes sense, is perfectly done. Putting these two characters back together is so damn satisfying when it's done right, and that's exactly what this creative team does.