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Batgirl, Vol. 1: The Darkest Reflection (Batgirl Vol. IV #1)

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  5,556 ratings  ·  343 reviews
The nightmare-inducing brute known as Mirror is destroying the lives of Gotham City residents seemingly at random. Will Barbara be able to survive her explosive confrontation with this new villain, as well as facing dark secrets from her past?
Hardcover, 144 pages
Published July 17th 2012 by DC Comics (first published July 1st 2012)
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Batman, Vol. 1 by Scott SnyderWonder Woman, Vol. 1 by Brian AzzarelloBatgirl, Vol. 1 by Gail SimoneBatwoman, Vol. 1 by J.H. Williams IIIJustice League, Vol. 1 by Geoff Johns
The New 52
3rd out of 178 books — 234 voters
Batman, Vol. 1 by Scott SnyderJustice League, Vol. 1 by Geoff JohnsAquaman, Vol. 1 by Geoff JohnsBatwoman, Vol. 1 by J.H. Williams IIIWonder Woman, Vol. 1 by Brian Azzarello
DC Comics New 52 Collected Editions - Volume 1
6th out of 52 books — 105 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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When DC first announced New 52, I didn't understand the reasoning behind it. If they were going to reboot their superhero universe, why do it halfway? Why not jettison decades of overly complicated continuity and start fresh?

That question went double for Batgirl. Barbara Gordon hadn't been active as Batgirl in the DC Universe for over 20 years, and she absolutely deserved a starring role in her own contemporary comic. But again, if you're rebooting continuity, why preserve the events of The Kill
Babs is back!
And better than ever!?

Well, no.
And maybe, yes.

See, I'm one of those who has been rooting for someone to stick Barbara Gordon's ass in a Lazarus Pit for years. Get her outta that chair!
So, the thought of the original Batgirl finally coming back made my inner geek do somersaults. Yay!
Yeah, I liked Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain, but I wanted Barbara. Nobody could take her place. Ever.
And I finally got my wish. careful what you wish for.
'Cause now I miss Oracle.

I gues

 photo batgirl-nightwing-new-52-2_zps3c3d72ba.jpg

We used to chase each other like this. Two kids flirting in a way only a handful of people on Earth could ever match. He with his acrobatics... and me with my ballet.

Everyone else can go home, basically.
Sam Quixote
Barbara Gordon is back as Batgirl! As most people know, her character was shot in the spine and crippled by the Joker in Alan Moore’s “The Killing Joke” and for years afterwards was in a wheelchair, becoming Batman’s tech support as Oracle. With the New 52 relaunch last year, she was controversially taken out of the wheelchair to become Batgirl once again. Interestingly, the events of the “Killing Joke” still happened but 3 years of physiotherapy and pioneering surgery has taken Barbara from the ...more
I very much enjoyed my first foray into Batgirl -- certainly much more than I did the volume of Batman I choked down a while back for a class. Barbara Gordon is fun, and I have a thing for redheads anyway, I liked the art and her interactions with Bruce Wayne, and it's a good introduction for someone new to DC.

I had two nitpicks. One, I didn't think terribly much of the villains. They seemed almost too easily dealt with, like Gail Simone was starting Batgirl out soft because of the point I'm abo
David "proud member of Branwen's adventuring party"
I went into the New 52's "Batgirl" series with very mixed feelings. On the one hand, I enjoyed many stories with the Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown Batgirls, and I was saddened to see those stories apparently wiped out of existence. Also, I was a huge fan of the stellar Birds of Prey runs by Chuck Dixon & Gail Simone, so again, the idea that DC was reversing all of that didn't sit too well with me.

On the other hand, I've never been a fan of Alan Moore's "The Killing Joke", the story in
Crystal Starr Light
Another winner! Even a comic newbie like me could enjoy this and not get lost in missed backstory.

Oh and you know what? This was the sort of carefree, laid-back, no-nonsense voice Laurell K. Hamilton attempted with Anita Blake and succeeded in only making Anita sound like an arrogant brat. Here, it works beautifully.

I'll need a pay raise to be able to follow all these great comic series I keep finding.

***Pink Taco Buddy Read with the Shallow Readers! Female Lead this time: Barbara Gordon a.k.a. Batgirl***

This was my first encounter with Batgirl. I didn't think I would like it as much as I did. I actually thoroughly enjoyed it.

The first chapter was a lot of new information for me. I think it bogged me down, to be honest. But it was all info that I needed in order to know what the hell was going on. My favorite part about this volume was that the two separate stories were mysteries. Very differ
My first Batgirl story and the first time I’ve read a superhero graphic novel written by a woman. It’s nice to get an authentic female point of view in such a story for a change. The plot threads were quite good; there was a lot stuffed in there. I liked how Barbara was able to go toe-to-toe with her friends Nightwing and Batman and how she wanted to prove herself on her own without relying on them to rescue her. She’s tough; but she’s still vulnerable, both in terms of her recovery from the gun ...more
And the award for the most colourful depiction of Gotham City goes to...*drum roll*...The Darkest Reflection!

The wonderfully named art team of Ardian Syaf, Vicente Cifuentes and Ulises Arreola create a city of consistently detailed and atmospheric environments. Syaf draws well-defined and expressive characters throughout, his Jim Gordon and Bruce Wayne in particular. Colourist Arreola bathes Gotham in stunning violet light by day, while serene blue waters run underneath the dark night skies. It
We get the nickel tour of Barbara Gordon's highlights reel: good father, eidetic memory, was in a wheelchair, shot by Joker, part of Batman's posse. Reasonably well-executed exposition.

I am aware of the history of the character, how much Gail Simone loves her and is invested in how much she means to fans, and how controversial the change (out of the chair) is.

Keeping all that in context, I cant help but find Barbara's first chapter a little melodramatic. I'm hoping that's just getting it out of
Michelle Cristiani
Barbara Gordon is (and always was, really), easy to like. She's chatty, and would be a fun buddy. So why am I stopping at 3 stars? I don't think Batgirl as a character has the gravitas to hold up on her own. The very best parts of this are when Batgirl is with another hero. The section with Nightwing is poetic and touching, and the section where she guards Bruce Wayne is brilliant. When she's alone she lacks gravitas. This isn't really Simone's fault: she does as well as anyone could have.

My oth
Greta is Erikasbuddy
Move over Wonder Woman!

We realize you are starting a thing with Superman and everyone is so interested but.....

What about Batgirl?

Yes yes! Batgirl!!!

This is the story of how Batgirl got her groove back!

You see.... I was unaware that the Joker shot Batgirl in the back and paralyzed her.

I know... I'm so uncool. But my son was playing Arkham Asylum and that's in the game because Batgirl is known as Oracle and is telling Batman what to do.

Well, in this book, Batgirl has gotten her legs back and is
So many mixed feelings here. I wasn't exactly excited about the whole concept. I loved Barbara as Oracle, and I felt like she was, overall, a really positive character. The idea of handwaving her disability away because guys who had crushes on her as Batgirl when they were kids want to erase the last 24 years of her in another role. And I was right, in a way. The end result was to handwave away her disability (she got some sort of surgery somewhere or other, and it happened long before the first ...more
Peter Derk
Batgirl is unparalyzed. Apparently by some weird surgical procedure done in South America or something (South America being the home of revolutions in surgical science). I'm fine with that. I can live with that. Let's face it, there was a period in the 90's when it seemed like every lineup of buddies in a comic or cartoon included a guy in a wheelchair, right? Which was alright, but they seemed to always be making the point that people in wheelchairs could do everything everyone else could do. W ...more
Nicholas Karpuk
The DC universe is filled with missed opportunities. Most writers don't get Superman, Green Lantern seems to mostly be composed of glowing guys of various colors arguing against starry backgrounds, and most writers have an almost tiresome sameness to their interpretation of Batman and his bat-kin. Don't even get me started on any of the villains other than the Joker. (I will acknowledge that the Arkham City version of Penguin was stellar, for what it's worth. Two-Face, however, is always wasted. ...more
Rob Babecki
We had to lose one of the best DC books pre-reboot so that they could get rid of Stephanie Brown and Oracle to deliver THIS? A half hearted, poorly executed love letter to Barbara Gordon???

She may not have wanted the reboot but Gail falls all over herself to talk about Barbara Gordon as her hero and then she delivers this dreck?

If you want to read something good by Gail Simone, find all the Secret Six you can get your hands on.
This was one of those books where I didn't like the beginning and put it aside for awhile, and after several more attempts to get back into it, I forced myself to read further...and then proceeded to get addicted and finish it in one sitting. The only reason it's lost that one star is because it did take me a few days to get into it after I brought it home (hey, a few days to avoid reading a comic for me is a big deal, okay?!).

I loved seeing Babs back in the suit. Although I do love Steph as Ba
Mariah Drakoulis
Not so sure about this. Some of the lines that Gail Simone writes toward the beginning made me want to cringe, but the story is definitely compelling and despite sometimes feeling that I want to punch Barbara Gordon in the head, something about this makes me want to keep coming back and reading. The villains are fantastic, and I think that while Gail Simone establishes the main character in a bit more depth, the baddies will give this series its flavour until it all meets together in awesomeness ...more
Alli Brooks
I freaking loved this. Barbra Gordon... Gah.

Now, I'm not super well versed in the world of super hero comics. It's something that I've just recently started digging deeper into and I've heard nothing but high praises about Batgirl, so I decided to check it out.

Oh. My. Goodness.

I really liked how easy to follow the story was. Sometimes when you first start reading a new comic series you feel a little overwhelmed and a bit lost at times. I'm happy to report that isn't the case at all with this.
Nancy O'Toole
The Darkest Reflection is the first volume in The New 52s Batgirl. I'm aware that the decision to remove Barbara Gordon from her wheelchair and put her back in the field was a controversial one, but as someone who never read about her as Oracle, much of the controversy was lost on me. As a result, I did end up enjoying this volume quite a bit. Writer Gail Simone does a great job at presenting Batgirl as a sympathetic lead. Freshly re-minted as a superhero, Barbara is still readjusting to the phy ...more
I have a policy about reading DC comics, especially the New 52. That policy is: don't. Buuuut library and Gail Simone and the next thing I know BAM, I've got a DC comic sitting on my bed. Welp. Damage done, it's already been checked out, might as well read it. And to be clear, I love supporting Gail Simone. A lot. DC, not so much. I'm just like...

This was fantastic. There are reasons I love supporting Gail Simone. If I ever see this for a good price (I work part-time retail, I do what I can) I a
Emily Green
Batgirl: The Darkest Reflection, another title for the New 52, written by Gail Simone who is known for her turn with Birds of Prey, which also features Barbara Gordon, takes Babs in a whole new direction. For the past several years, Barbara Gordon, whenever she was featured in a comic book, she has been in a wheelchair, as a result of an act of senseless violence on the part of the Joker. Plotlines have cast the former Batgirl as Oracle, a behind the scenes crime fighter with great knowledge, in ...more
Inês Silveira
I avoided the new 52 Batgirl for a long time. I'm a big oracle fan, so I was quite reluctant to read Babs back as Batgirl.
But MAAAAN, was I wrong. This was actually QUITE good. I'm going to say this is partially due to the genius that is Gail Simone.
Babs DID get shot by the joker, but she had some sort of super duper surgery and she's back to walking and batgirling again!
338 and mirror were quite good villains and I really enjoyed the first volume!
Come on volume 2!
Part of my 2015 goal to read something by every author I'm following on Twitter.
Kari Ramirez
I'm FINALLY getting around to reviewing these books. I'm so behind on all this!

I'm taking into consideration that Barbara Gordon's return to the suit after everything that happened is a giant thing that must be addressed, but had I not already had a love for Barbara Gordon as Batgirl I might not have kept reading after this one.

There is very little character development on the villain side. We're told a quick blurb about how they got from normal to nutso, but that's it! The one issue of Gretel s
Anna (Yoda Is My Spirit Animal)
Really enjoyed reading Barbara Gordon's story! Kept hearing things about how great this was and it is definitely one of the best New 52s I've read so far. Full review to come.
John Yelverton
One of the only books that I've enjoyed reading from the "New 52" and that's a testimony to the writing talent of Gail Simone.
Ricky Ganci
The surprise winner of the first volume run of New 52 is BATGIRL: THE DARKEST REFLECTION by Gail Simone and Ardian Syaf, which knocks comic book storytelling out of the park in every regard. As excited as I was to see Barbara Gordon return to the Bat-family as Batgirl, I did not expect it to be as good as it is, itself a perfect microcosm of the New 52 itself and a perfect relaunch for what might already be the best version of the character to date.

The premise of Simone's story is simple: she an
The Darkest Reflection does an amazing job bringing Barbara Gordon back as Batgirl in a believable & very human way. She's vulnerable both physically & mentally, has highs & lows, and the villains are great foils for her character development, of course coming off villainous but also sympathetic. Gail Simone brought us a story that is well-written, feminist, & multi-cultural without being tokenistic. I can't wait to read more of her work! As an added bonus the art by Syaf, Cifuen ...more
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Gail Simone is a comic book writer well-known for her work on Birds of Prey (DC), Wonder Woman (DC), and Deadpool (Marvel), among others, and has also written humorous and critical commentary on comics and the comics industry such as the original "Women in Refrigerators" website and a regular column called "You'll All Be Sorry".
More about Gail Simone...

Other Books in the Series

Batgirl Vol. IV (5 books)
  • Batgirl, Vol. 2: Knightfall Descends
  • Batgirl, Vol. 3: Death of the Family
  • Batgirl, Vol. 4: Wanted
  • Batgirl, Vol. 5: Deadline
Batgirl, Vol. 2: Knightfall Descends Villains United Batgirl, Vol. 3: Death of the Family Birds of Prey, Vol. 1: End Run Secret Six, Vol. 1: Unhinged

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