Thursday, December 27, 2012
YEAR 1999: BATGIRL
Though the Barbara Gordon Batgirl remains the best known to the general public, Cassandra Cain is on the whole a more original transformation of the "female Batman assistant" concept.
In keeping with the darker spirit of comic books in the 1990s-- as well as her surname, modeled on that of the first person (according to the Bible) who committed a murder-- Cassandra begins with a stain on her soul, in contrast to the many simon-pure heroes of the Golden and Silver Ages. Long before becoming Batgirl, young Cassandra-- the child of assassins Lady Shiva and David Cain-- is trained to become an assassin herself. Not knowing any better, she does kill a victim, only to have such a negative reaction as to flee the influence of her father. She later finds sanctuary and re-training with the Batman Family, and adopts the name "Batgirl" with the blessing of Barbara Gordon. She later lost the title to another claimant, and then to a renascent Gordon-Batgirl.
The scripts, initially by Kelly Puckett, were fairly complex but I personally did not take to the manga-influenced art of co-creator Damion Scott.