This wildcard slot was always, in my head going to be used for a comic, but while I originally intended it to be a catch up on why I love Rucka's Detective Comics, certain news this week meant it would be more relevant for me to focus on my first love of DC comics: Birds of Prey.
Start with two characters. Both female; both longstanding DC characters with a history back to the Golden Age. Both having spent a lot of time as a side character in a male heroes' shadow (though not exclusively). Both having been depowered or worse in a direct women in refrigerator trope (i.e. for the narrative purpose of affecting the men in their lives, and not as part of their character development). Both with some attempt since then to rebuild themselves as independent heroes, but not a lot.
Then put them in a buddy cop comic together.
Birds of Prey was the first comic of its kind - I'd say only, but I have read neither Gotham City Sirens nor the Marvel female-dominated team titles - and it was awesome. But don't just take my word for it - have a picspam!
Babs' IC motivations for recruiting Dinah and starting the Birds are exactly the same as the writer's narrative reasons for hooking up these two loose-end heroines. That's pretty cool, in my book.
Though, Huntress sums it up succinctly:
If the concept doesn't appeal to you, then be assured it's not an overused device, but a subtle overarching theme behind the series: a chance to undo all the damage that was done to these characters in the name of cheap angst devices for the boys.
In over words: character development in a comic. Try not to choke in shock.
Alright, Benes loves his T&A a little too much, but look at that smile on Dinah's face.
I've talked about both Babs and Dinah before to to a great extent (links are at the bottom of this post), but of course we can't forget the additions that Gail made to the team - starting with the Huntress.
Badass and nurturing to extreme degrees. Awesome and caring and just a little violent with some self-control issues. Like Black Canary without the subtlety and with a healthy dose of batangst - except that she's a completely separate person, of course.
Confront is totally what Dinah would do too, actually.
Not to forget the fourth member of the team - not the last, but a definite staple - Zinda Blake, Lady Blackhawk. Gotta love a gal who loves her guns.
And together, these girls kick ass.
And don't take any shit from anyone. I mean anyone.
I mean, shit. Who gives that kind of crap to Batman and expects to get away with it?
Dinah's right. The important thing with this title is the lives the characters lead, and the way they interact - not just with each other, but with the rest of the Superhero community.
I love a girl who works out her relationship issues by hitting an Amazon (I had that sequence already uploaded, so I decided to share). and I like relationship issues that actually get some closure and continuation after the break up.
Oh, and don't worry, Dinah and Bruce made up from their fight.
And that shouldn't really be it, but it's late and I've had a tiring weekend, and I'm already a day late with this. In conclusion: this title was amazing, and it's going to be amazing again.
Women in Comics: Dinah Lance
The Beginners Guide to Barbara Gordon
More Joy Day 2010: Birds of Prey picspam