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  1. #511
    I am a diamond, Ms. Pryde millernumber1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tzigone View Post
    Firstly, I think they try too hard to "differentiate" the Batfamily members sometimes. They end up pigeon-holing them as just one thing. I've complained before, especially, about someone deciding that each Robin is basically one concentrated aspect of Bruce instead of each having a fully developed skillset in various areas. Tim is the Detective - so no one else is. Which is ridiculous. Dick's detective skills were highly praised for years, and then later he was kind of a flake, which is so sad. Tim was used to be well-rounded, despite having some issues, and became broody and miserable (understandable, since Steph, Jack, Dana, Kon, and Bart were all killed). And went from a smart kid to super genius. Here is a post I had with some irritation on that. Sometimes it feels like they can each only have one dominant emotion/personality-trait - instead of each being a whole person, they each have to be an aspect of a whole person. This probably happens more when they are together, but wouldn't swear to it.

    Also, I think later on sometimes (not at all always) something of Steph's demeanor gives the impression of being a bit ditzy/flaky. Not the reality of her actions, you understand, but the demeanor, the language. This happens to Dick some, as well, later. And I seem to recall it applying to cartoon Starfire, but it's been a long time since I watched that Teen Titans.

    What made me interested in Steph in the first place was that Batman didn't want her working in Gotham, but she did it anyway. She did not submit to his authority. The pregnancy storyline sounded interesting (it was okay, but sometimes went a little after-school-special). But mostly, it was that she worked independently, though in Bruce's city, and under no one else's authority. I liked the idea. So that's why I picked decided to read. As I read, I became more frustrated with Batman, and how he orders his family around (and they do what he says) and how he acts like he's the king of Gotham and gets to decide what happens there. I liked her because she was likable - it pretty simple. She was struggling for acceptance, had a mother she loved but couldn't rely on, was trying to find her place, and having some fun and trying to improve. And Tim and Bruce were not supportive, but she didn't let that stop her. Despite being rough around the edges and inexperienced, she was generally capable, if reckless. She's a bit insecure, and it's understandable that she is - in a professional sense because they keep telling her she is unworthy, and in personal sense because not only does Robin not tell her his identity, but he doesn't exactly invite her to hang out with Young Justice and him, either. He's in every piece of her life, but kept her walled off from his, and she doesn't know how important she is to him. After she finds out his identity, things change a bit.

    But since I really like the independence aspect, you can see why I'm not exactly a fan of her being Batgirl (or Robin, even if had been done to deliberately make her a failure and kill her off). She's become subordinate to someone instead of being her own boss. Heck, Barbara is even her teacher, too, so has some authority over her in that aspect of her life as well. I know that being accepted into the Batfamily was meant to be a promotion. But for me, it's a demotion, because she went from being independent to at least sort of answering to someone else. Worse, they treated her so poorly. It's Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - you're supposed to be happy that all the reindeer love him now, but I want to tell them to go screw themselves. Obviously, the most mature, most self-confident reaction is just not to care anymore what those people think (see Jake Stone on the Librarians for an excellent example), but it's not necessarily as fun, and it's not really a place you think Steph would be at that time - emotionally recovered enough for that. Heck, I might even feel better if they said she'd earned Batgirl, but then it seemed like she was given out of charity, because she needed it. That I did not like, at all. It's one thing for Damian, and an entirely different one for Steph to me. And then, you know, sometimes it's like having the title makes her worthy of respect/regard instead of herself making her worthy of respect. And they (at least Barbara) can take it away anytime they want - just like Bruce did Robin. At least that's how it is in the early issues of Batgirl - it may change later, but I disliked the vibe enough I haven't read many issues (I did read a couple later ones).

    But mostly, it's because I read and liked the character, and then she had a completely different characterization. Personality-wise, she's like the same in name-only, almost. This happens all the time in comics. And so I have a lot of characters that I only like in certain eras or at least that I strongly prefer the characterization of a certain era and don't really care to read others (I gave list in a previous post). Here is a post about someone who finds New 52 and post-COIE Barbara to be like two different characters. A very understandable perception, IMO. I can sometimes feel similarly about late '90s and late '00s Tim and Steph. At least Tim has stuff that would make him act the new way (so much death) - I don't feel like anything that happened in Steph's life would motivate her to start throwing wisecracks and being extremely cheerful.

    I don't like dark paths and I certainly don't want anyone to be him. I don't even want Bruce to be post-COIE Batman. Got annoyed when Tim and Dick and even Barbara pulled some of his tricks.

    Thing is, she gets treated like this (by fans) in the present tense (and even before N52). She might have been canonically far less capable when she was Spoiler, but she was a far more serious character (in a day-to-day-interaction sense, not claiming she didn't have any angst later).
    I mean, when you have a large family (as I grew up in), people do tend to "specialize" even though they are more than their differentiating traits. I just think that there's some specific things that most (but not all, as I tried to explain in my "classification of Steph fans" post earlier) Steph fans tend to love about her. The frustrating thing for me, sometimes, is that when a writer tries to put some things back in the character, the fandom generally rejects them. Tynion gave Steph a lot more anger, but was accused constantly of both hating Steph but also making Steph (and Tim and the rest of the non-Batman members of the team) a Mary Sue because they're constantly criticizing Batman.

    There's definitely a tendency of fans and less careful writers of flanderizing - allowing one trait to overwhelm the others. But I don't think that means we have to throw out the baby of Steph's cheer and joy with the bathwater of "Steph is just Tim's perky girlfriend who is a clutz."

    I do love that Steph is an outsider. She's the underdog. And I really appreciate that Tynion worked to give her some of that quality in his Detective Comics story - but he wanted to do so without making Batman as much of a jerk as he was in the early 2000s, so he had to make Steph make choices to put herself outside of the family. That necessarily makes her less easily sympathetic - but I think also makes her more complicated and interesting, as well as honoring her past continuity history.

    However, keeping a character constantly down may make them sympathetic, but it also is really tiring, I think, if you never give her a win. That is what Batgirl was to a lot of Steph fans. I know that when I picked up Batgirl #1, I noticed it was Steph in the cowl, and thought, "Well, that's certainly some element of justice for what she went through in War Games." I think, though, even though she gained a support structure, she was still independent. That was the whole point of the Bruce Wayne: The Road Home issue. And in the end, though she had her friends help her out in #23, she faces her father alone, and wins. Now, you may not like that Bruce and Cass gave her the mantle - but I think the whole run shows her earning it.

    I think you have a solid point that Steph's voice changed quite a bit from before War Games to Batgirl - and a lot of that is just Miller's style. If you watch his Smallville episodes, or read Smallville Season 11 - it's like Bendis or Tom King - he writes in a fairly recognizable way. However, I think that while he may have started out with a few gaps in his Steph knowledge, by the time he got one year into the series, it was clear he'd done his research, because of all the careful references to her history. Now, Miller's style might not be for you, or might not be for you on Steph. But it's kinda the nature of the comics beast when you have different writers all the time. And not liking one of them is totally fine.

    All we can do as fans is try to spread the love, share our favorite issues, and continue to talk about her.
    "We're the same thing, you and I. We're both lies that eventually became the truth." Lara Notsil, Star Wars: X-Wing: Solo Command, by Aaron Allston
    "All that is not eternal is eternally out of date." C. S. Lewis, The Four Loves
    "There's room in our line of work for hope, too." Stephanie Brown, Batgirl, by Bryan Q. Miller
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  2. #512
    Incredible Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    I mean, when you have a large family (as I grew up in), people do tend to "specialize" even though they are more than their differentiating traits.
    But none of them grew up in large families. Steph, Tim, Dick, Jason - they were all only children. None lived with any other child in the house as children.

    However, keeping a character constantly down may make them sympathetic, but it also is really tiring, I think, if you never give her a win. That is what Batgirl was to a lot of Steph fans. I know
    I don't want her not to win or to be kept down - I want her to not need their approval, to find confidence in herself and gain skill without having to get it from the Batfam. To win on her terms, instead of theirs. And to be recognizably the character I liked. To be the generally typical mix of happiness, sadness, anger, and triumph that most solo heros get to be. I read '90s Tim and and Steph and Dick (and '80s Dick, too) and they are not interchangeable to me. Obviously opinion will differ, but to me they each have their own voice, and do so without one trait overshadowing all others. Mind you, early '80s and late '90s Dick are different, but I can still like them both, unlike a lot of '00s Dick.

    If you watch his Smallville episodes, or read Smallville Season 11 - it's like Bendis or Tom King - he writes in a fairly recognizable way.
    The guy who pays no attention at all the actual canonical characterization, and just makes the characters do whatever fits the story he wants to tell. Not a compliment to me. Hate what Bendis is doing on Superman, too, and think he has Lois out of character. I know they are popular writers, but not my style.

    But it's kinda the nature of the comics beast when you have different writers all the time. And not liking one of them is totally fine.
    Completely, which is why I heavily pick eras or writers for characters.
    Last edited by Tzigone; 08-22-2019 at 07:05 PM.

  3. #513
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    The reason why it is necessary to "differentiate" the characters is because DC wants to sell these characters.

    If all the characters are too similar in personality or abilities, this causes the characters to feel repetitive.


    Of course, that creates the problem that the characters end up being defined by certain characteristics. Although many fans only accept or like this.

  4. #514
    I am a diamond, Ms. Pryde millernumber1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tzigone View Post
    But none of them grew up on large families. Steph, Tim, Dick, Jason - they were all only children. None lived with any other child in the house.

    I don't want her not to win or to be kept down - I want her to not need their approval, to find confidence in herself without having to get it from the Batfam. To win on her terms, instead of theirs. And to be recognizably the character I liked.

    The guy who pays no attention at all the actual canonical characterization, and just makes the characters do whatever fits the story he wants to tell. Not a compliment to me. Hate what Bendis is doing on Superman, too, and think he has Lois out of character, too. I know they are popular writers, but not my style.
    I was just talking about my own experience. The Batfamily is pretty large, though.

    I can't make anyone like the same things I like - I'm just trying to share why I do like both Steph in Robin, Steph as Batgirl, and now Steph in the n52/Rebirth. I think there are clear things that do carry across from each, though sometimes not the same things.

    The Tom King thing is a fairly significant tangent - I wasn't bringing him up in a positive or negative context, just an example of someone with a recognizable style. I do happen to really love most of his writing, and I would strongly contest your interpretation of that remark, but it's fairly off-topic for the Steph thread.
    "We're the same thing, you and I. We're both lies that eventually became the truth." Lara Notsil, Star Wars: X-Wing: Solo Command, by Aaron Allston
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  5. #515
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    Steph as Batgirl is the reason why I enter in comics. I really like the idea of this character overcoming the little faith of others and proving she's worthy.

    Also, it was a pretty entertaining run for me.

  6. #516
    I am a diamond, Ms. Pryde millernumber1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Konja7 View Post
    Steph as Batgirl is the reason why I enter in comics. I really like the idea of this character overcoming the little faith of others and proving she's worthy.

    Also, it was a pretty entertaining run for me.
    I liked Steph as the underdog before she was Batgirl. But I started reading comics seriously just as she died, and it was really hard from 2004-2011 to read any of her old stuff if you didn't already have it. It was her time as Batgirl which cemented me as a fan, though in 2014, I did a systematic reading of all of her appearance to update the wikia, and I love them all.
    "We're the same thing, you and I. We're both lies that eventually became the truth." Lara Notsil, Star Wars: X-Wing: Solo Command, by Aaron Allston
    "All that is not eternal is eternally out of date." C. S. Lewis, The Four Loves
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  7. #517
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    Well, having started this very interesting topic that has blossomed into a very spirited discussion, let me take a moment to veer off-topic.

    I noticed @uchihafanboy's avatar, which is from Artgerm's cover for Batgirl #12:

    201009 Batgirl (2009) #12 (Sep 2010) cover.jpg

    And realized, late, that Jay Anacleto drew an homage to that cover for DCeased #3, featuring Barbara Gordon, as an exclusive retailer variant for Unknown Comic Books.

    Gory like all the DCeased covers are, it's not like the Artgerm cover wasn't. In fact the homage references the details on the original cover very closely - just taking it, obviously, further, away from Steph's grinning mischievous look into the horror-themed DCeased. Still, whoever thought of referencing this particular cover was on to something.

    DCeased Batgirl #3 Anacleto - all.jpg

    I hope those images posted correctly! And, sorry if I missed it if anyone previously posted about this, since it's not news. The issue went on sale back on July 3. I looked back through July in this forum and didn't notice it.

    These DCeased variants can, btw, still be purchased through eBay, but they aren't cheap. (It seems retailer exclusives never are.) Unknown Comics is selling them there, but for some reason don't seem to still be selling them from their own web site.

  8. #518
    I am a diamond, Ms. Pryde millernumber1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ohfellow View Post
    Well, having started this very interesting topic that has blossomed into a very spirited discussion, let me take a moment to veer off-topic.

    I noticed @uchihafanboy's avatar, which is from Artgerm's cover for Batgirl #12:

    201009 Batgirl (2009) #12 (Sep 2010) cover.jpg

    And realized, late, that Jay Anacleto drew an homage to that cover for DCeased #3, featuring Barbara Gordon, as an exclusive retailer variant for Unknown Comic Books.

    Gory like all the DCeased covers are, it's not like the Artgerm cover wasn't. In fact the homage references the details on the original cover very closely - just taking it, obviously, further, away from Steph's grinning mischievous look into the horror-themed DCeased. Still, whoever thought of referencing this particular cover was on to something.

    DCeased Batgirl #3 Anacleto - all.jpg

    I hope those images posted correctly! And, sorry if I missed it if anyone previously posted about this, since it's not news. The issue went on sale back on July 3. I looked back through July in this forum and didn't notice it.

    These DCeased variants can, btw, still be purchased through eBay, but they aren't cheap. (It seems retailer exclusives never are.) Unknown Comics is selling them there, but for some reason don't seem to still be selling them from their own web site.
    Steph stuff is never off topic here!

    I did see that cover for DCeased, but was quite salty at the changing characters. But excellent catch!
    "We're the same thing, you and I. We're both lies that eventually became the truth." Lara Notsil, Star Wars: X-Wing: Solo Command, by Aaron Allston
    "All that is not eternal is eternally out of date." C. S. Lewis, The Four Loves
    "There's room in our line of work for hope, too." Stephanie Brown, Batgirl, by Bryan Q. Miller
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  9. #519

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    Quote Originally Posted by millernumber1 View Post
    I would love to see Steph face some really dark times as Batgirl (or Spoiler or any identity) - but it would really suck for her to get that story, but then the series got cancelled and she is left in that state for years.
    Not really, Stephanie is all about persevering in the face of difficulty. It would be a blessing for her, we would get to see a true test of her character.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tzigone View Post
    I don't like dark paths and I certainly don't want anyone to be him. I don't even want Bruce to be post-COIE Batman. Got annoyed when Tim and Dick and even Barbara pulled some of his tricks. But I can't deny a lot of people love that type of story.
    I love that type of story, when the batfam starts pulling his tricks all the while telling themselves "I'm not Batman". Then when someone calls them out they get angry and deny it even more. IMO when it's done well, it is beautifully written. I would kill to see to how Dixon could write Steph like that. I find them the most fascinating because it shows us that we must always be cautious to make sure we don't become our parents, and that even when we thought we've escaped them, there are still chains that bind us.

  10. #520
    I am a diamond, Ms. Pryde millernumber1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uchihafanboy View Post
    Not really, Stephanie is all about persevering in the face of difficulty. It would be a blessing for her, we would get to see a true test of her character.

    I love that type of story, when the batfam starts pulling his tricks all the while telling themselves "I'm not Batman". Then when someone calls them out they get angry and deny it even more. IMO when it's done well, it is beautifully written. I would kill to see to how Dixon could write Steph like that. I find them the most fascinating because it shows us that we must always be cautious to make sure we don't become our parents, and that even when we thought we've escaped them, there are still chains that bind us.
    I agree that Steph is all about determination. But it would suck for us as fans if they left her in a dark place, instead of showing her on her way back up. I shudder to think what might have happened if Steph hadn't become Batgirl, and just been a supporting character in Red Robin under Fabian Nicieza, who seems to like the "Steph is a screwup" characterization.

    I would love to see Steph struggling with her own Cluemaster-type impulses, though. I think there's bits of that in Tynion - one of the reasons I love his run, is he does think about these things.
    "We're the same thing, you and I. We're both lies that eventually became the truth." Lara Notsil, Star Wars: X-Wing: Solo Command, by Aaron Allston
    "All that is not eternal is eternally out of date." C. S. Lewis, The Four Loves
    "There's room in our line of work for hope, too." Stephanie Brown, Batgirl, by Bryan Q. Miller
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  11. #521
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    I wish they had moved Tyrions run into a new book instead of just ending it! I feel like he had so much more story he wanted to tell!

    I bet DC could easily sell both detective and a Batman Family Team book. DC missed a golden opportunity for another decent selling book.

  12. #522
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katana500 View Post
    I wish they had moved Tyrions run into a new book instead of just ending it! I feel like he had so much more story he wanted to tell!

    I bet DC could easily sell both detective and a Batman Family Team book. DC missed a golden opportunity for another decent selling book.
    I mean, Tynion has at least two, if not more, independent titles going, plus he was doing Tec twice a month. He moved to writing JLDark (which he said was a dream project) and basically writing half of Justice League, plus TWO major events (Wonder Woman Witching Hour and Justice League Drowned Earth), so I think he just didn't have time.

    That being said, I'm still really frustrated that we didn't get those last 18 issues of his plan.
    "We're the same thing, you and I. We're both lies that eventually became the truth." Lara Notsil, Star Wars: X-Wing: Solo Command, by Aaron Allston
    "All that is not eternal is eternally out of date." C. S. Lewis, The Four Loves
    "There's room in our line of work for hope, too." Stephanie Brown, Batgirl, by Bryan Q. Miller
    Stephanie Brown Wiki, My Batman Universe Reviews

  13. #523
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    After getting roughed up by Killer Moth last month, Barbara's fancy-pants new (and I thought weird and ugly) costume got torn up, so she had to put something makeshift together at home. Evidently she was better at that during her Burnside era, but that time she had the time, energy and money to shop. This time she's injured and figuring it out at home, and stitches together something interesting if crude. Since she's broke, this may have to make do for a while.

    Somehow despite the mess she throws together, she managed to attach Spoiler-style ribbing, from beneath the arms all the way down to her boots. And that is why I'm posting this here.

    Some other salient costume elements:

    The full cowl is back and black again, as is a normal sized bat symbol (no longer serving as giant holster holding up a parachute stored in a backpack). But both the cowl and bat look like their stitches are about to tear.

    No more mini-blue cape - it looks darker and hard to tell but I think a more normal length.

    The boots still have some very minor bat stylings on them, but look like real boots this time, and with at least one pouch on one leg. That may be unique but it calls back slightly to Steph's leg belt and the Burnside pouch.

    The gloves look like real gloves, and they're small, with no gauntlets.

    Hard to get a good look, but the belt also seems a normal size again, with some homemade little pouches.

    A yellow knee pad on one leg is weird. Maybe she banged up that knee and needs it.

    I wasn't that happy with Paul Pelletier's run on Batgirl, and was looking forward to a change, but Carmine DiGiandomenico's work - he is doing his own inking so I can't blame this on someone else - seems rough, muddy and busy, so a lot of this was hard to see. We'll see how it goes.

    I just like costumes somewhat more grounded in plausibility, which this one is.

    Any other costume designers, what do you think?

  14. #524

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    Quote Originally Posted by ohfellow View Post
    After getting roughed up by Killer Moth last month, Barbara's fancy-pants new (and I thought weird and ugly) costume got torn up, so she had to put something makeshift together at home. Evidently she was better at that during her Burnside era, but that time she had the time, energy and money to shop. This time she's injured and figuring it out at home, and stitches together something interesting if crude. Since she's broke, this may have to make do for a while.

    Somehow despite the mess she throws together, she managed to attach Spoiler-style ribbing, from beneath the arms all the way down to her boots. And that is why I'm posting this here.

    Some other salient costume elements:

    The full cowl is back and black again, as is a normal sized bat symbol (no longer serving as giant holster holding up a parachute stored in a backpack). But both the cowl and bat look like their stitches are about to tear.

    No more mini-blue cape - it looks darker and hard to tell but I think a more normal length.

    The boots still have some very minor bat stylings on them, but look like real boots this time, and with at least one pouch on one leg. That may be unique but it calls back slightly to Steph's leg belt and the Burnside pouch.

    The gloves look like real gloves, and they're small, with no gauntlets.

    Hard to get a good look, but the belt also seems a normal size again, with some homemade little pouches.

    A yellow knee pad on one leg is weird. Maybe she banged up that knee and needs it.

    I wasn't that happy with Paul Pelletier's run on Batgirl, and was looking forward to a change, but Carmine DiGiandomenico's work - he is doing his own inking so I can't blame this on someone else - seems rough, muddy and busy, so a lot of this was hard to see. We'll see how it goes.

    I just like costumes somewhat more grounded in plausibility, which this one is.

    Any other costume designers, what do you think?
    Could you post a picture of said costume? Thanks

  15. #525
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    Quote Originally Posted by uchihafanboy View Post
    Could you post a picture of said costume? Thanks
    There is no single panel that shows the whole costume clearly, so here are 3 samples, then 2 more closer up.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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