Sunday, August 19, 2007

Let's get one thing straight.....

Recently there has been some controversy in the blogosphere regarding Alan Moore's "The Killing Joke" and its subsequent impact on the WiR (Women in Refrigerators) Syndrome. I won't go into detail on that, but I would like to take this opportunity to clear up a popular misconception about the book, which I read most recently in this post on Shelly's blog. (The bold type is mine.)

Aside from crippling a sidekick to a character, Batman, who already had Robin, The Killing Joke helped revitalize Barbara Gordon as she transformed herself into Oracle and went from sidekick/guest star to Major Player. She can literally appear in any story in continuity. She has her own book with her own team. Rather than be the helpless female, Babs fought back. True, that was after the fact, but ....

Yeah, it was "after the fact", all right. Years after the fact.

Let's clear something up right now:

Alan Moore's "The Killing Joke" did not help revitalize Barbara Gordon.

Suicide Squad did.

Moore, and apparently the Bat-editorship at the time, thought Batgirl was disposable enough to end her career permanently.
"Suicide Squad" writers John Ostrander and the late Kim Yale, on the other hand, thought Barbara Gordon was salvageable enough to re-invent her. They deserve credit for inspiring what's happened since (Birds of Prey).
Not "The Killing Joke".


At 4:31 AM , Blogger Shelly said...

Suicide Squad might have been when and where the revitalization occurred, but without the Killing Joke, there would have been no reason for it. I doubt anyone would've turned Batgirl into Oracle.

I never read Suicide Squad, and I did read Killing Joke many years after it was published.

However, I still stand by my statement.

At 12:50 PM , Blogger notintheface said...

Welcome, Shelly! Hope we hashed out everything over at your blog.

Thanks for the link. Unlike another comics blogger who shares my real first name, I don't mind the links.

"Yadda yadda yadda...agree to disagree...etc."

Feel free to come back

At 10:16 AM , Blogger Shelly said...

Oh, I'll be back. ;) I'm even gonna subscribe! Links are what make the internet the internet.

And yeah, we hashed things out nicely on my blog. I love discussions online when they're nice and civil.

And of course, now I'm hot to read the Suicide Squad showing Babs becoming Oracle. I think that's the reprint volume that was just canceled.

At 9:20 PM , Blogger notintheface said...

Same here. Although I read some issues, including the "Babs is revealed as Oracle" one, I wasn't a regular reader. But Dave Campbell's articles highlighting the book have whetted my appetite for an upcoming trade.


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