View Poll Results: Batgirl or Oracle?

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  • Batgirl

    50 36.76%
  • Oracle

    86 63.24%
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  1. #31
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    Yes she did. Oracle had plenty of good writers, but she still was just cast doing the same usual things, helping to support others as they move forward and grow, but never actually growing herself or doing something we haven't seen her do before. Especially at time when everybody else around her were embarking on new journeys. Dick became Batman and started taking care of Damian, Tim was forced to become Red Robin, Steph became the new Batgirl, while Babs just made a secondary protagonist in Batgirl rehashing a character arc she should have been well beyond (Her being miserable). And its not like we haven't seen Babs mentor a new Batgirl before. Oracle stopped progressing, and Babs stopped doing new things. Or more accurately DC stopped doing new things with Oracle. Of course a good writer can always bring new life into a character, but DC didn't seem very interested in bringing new life into Oracle. They eventually relaunched BOP, and brought Gail Simone back to do it, but even that was kind of a bloated mess trying to recapture the magic it once had.
    Last edited by Godlike13; 04-27-2016 at 02:16 PM.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Godlike13 View Post
    Batgirl was a new beginning from the stagnation that Oracle faced.
    Gail Simone had just launched Oracle into a new direction, away from being the person that does most of the detecting for the World's Greatest Detective less than one arc before Flashpoint hit.

    Yes she did. Oracle had plenty of good writers, but she still was just cast doing the same usual things, helping to support others as they move forward and grow, but never actually growing herself or doing something we haven't seen her do before.
    Question: what did you read that had Oracle in it?

    Mind you, there was indeed a horrid period at the end of the first Birds Of Prey book where Oracle was terminally incompetent and people started to drop dead whenever she touched a computer, because DC intended to revert her to Batgirl, before getting cold feet and making Stehanie Batgirl and letting Gail Simone relaunch Birds Of Prey.
    Last edited by Carabas; 04-27-2016 at 02:15 PM.

  3. #33
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    I read it all. Yes, the tail end of BoP and that cure mini was awful, but its not like BQM or Gail Simone were bad writers.
    Last edited by Godlike13; 04-27-2016 at 02:29 PM.

  4. #34
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carabas View Post
    Of course in Birds Of Prey she lead her own superteam, hunted down international crime organisations, fought Brainiac, and occasionally beat up bad guys with her fists.
    Oracle was JLA material, Batgirl didn't even make it into the Teen Titans.

    You shouldn't judge a character by what some lazy writer does with her in another character's book. Oracle was massively more powerful than any version of Batgirl.
    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Bifrost View Post
    But once it was done, and they started running stories with Barbara as Oracle, I really liked the character. I found her fascinating. Someone on this thread referred to her "sitting in her tower giving info to Batman," but of course her main role was in the Birds of Prey - where I considered her the primary, and best, character. It turns out I can greatly enjoy a character who doesn't swing through the city on a rope and mainly punch people, if she's well-written.

    Well, it seems she originated as Oracle in 1986, and didn't start Birds of Prey until a one shot in 1995, and vol 1 starting in 1999...

    So for she spent the better part of 10-15 years as 'a character in someone else's book'... and when she DID have her own book she never really LEFT the other books. She was still as strong a presence in Batman's adventures and even Nightwing's adventure as Alfred or Gordon. Honestly, I didn't like 'oracle' in those stories, since she took away from the 'main' character's abilities from the relative safety of her tower. It just really took a lot away from me. Batgirl or Robin are a different category of 'partner' since they're right there dodging bullets with Batman... but the voice in the earbud with all the answers bores me.

    I DID read some Birds of Prey... but I was not a fan of powerless Dinah and hated Huntress, so that was an uphill sell for me. A friend collected them, and I read them when I had already looked at his other stuff, but that book never impressed me. Even as the 'leader' of the team, she was still portrayed as the voice on the phone... Reminded me too much of Charlies Angels.

    I know occasionally she did field work and stuff.. just not the ones I read. So it doesn't sound like her 'normal' role.

  5. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dataweaver View Post
    I agree with all of this, with one caveat: now that N52 has taken Barbara Gordon out of her wheelchair, Doctor Bifrost's first paragraph takes on new significance. Do you now put her back into a wheelchair?
    I wouldn't do that. Too much toggling back and forth trivializes the whole thing. (I think they already trivialized it by reversing it and de-emphasizing it so much, but this would be even more so.) Unless all of The New 52 is a dream (something that I admit I think about from time to time...), Barbara's out of the wheelchair. Now do something new with her.

    But I wouldn't mind somebody else being Batgirl. Doesn't Barbara get to grow up, at least as much as Dick Grayson did?
    Doctor Bifrost

    "If Roy G. Bivolo had seen some B&W pencil sketches, his whole life would have turned out differently." http://doctorbifrost.blogspot.com/

  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    Easy question: I think of her first as Batgirl.

    I was born in the early 1960s, and among the early Batman comics I got as a kid was:


    I watched the Batman TV show with Adam West when it was originally run on ABC.

    I loved when she and Dick (as Robin) would both star in Batman Family.


    So, as interesting as it might have been when John Ostrander's Suicide Squad took a broken Barbara Gordon and remade her into Oracle, she'll always be, first and foremost, Batgirl (or, at worse, "former Batgirl") in my mind.
    She was "former Batgirl" when she was Oracle. There's no contradiction there. I notice that the covers you posted have Dick Grayson as Robin. How do you feel about the fact that he's Nightwing now (again, I think)?
    Doctor Bifrost

    "If Roy G. Bivolo had seen some B&W pencil sketches, his whole life would have turned out differently." http://doctorbifrost.blogspot.com/

  7. #37
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cgh View Post
    Anyway, I disliked Oracle for the simple reason that what she did was ridiculous. If you know low-level details about computers and networking, and I do, then every time she "hacked" into eg a security camera, it was cringe-inducingly awful. In fact, every time she used a computer for anything, it was absurd. I know it's comics and most people are thinking it's all so technical and cool but in terms of taking me out of the story, you might as well have Bat-Mite show up, snap his fingers to fix whatever mystery is afoot and then sit down to a nice game of Yahtzee with Batman.
    Interesting, never really thought of it in these terms, mostly because I'm not a computer geek and all the technical jargon just goes right over my head. I'm guessing a lot of Oracle's hax abilities are a big load of BS to someone more knowledgeable?

  8. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by cgh View Post
    Anyway, I disliked Oracle for the simple reason that what she did was ridiculous. If you know low-level details about computers and networking, and I do, then every time she "hacked" into eg a security camera, it was cringe-inducingly awful.
    If this gap between DCU technology and technology in The So-Called Real World™ is enough to sour you on a character, you must be very sour on a lot of characters and a lot of storylines. Which is entirely your privilege, of course. (There are times when it goes to far for me too, but Oracle seemed like the least of it.)

    By the way, this is one reason why I can't take many of the Marvel movies seriously: they often hinge on strong artificial intelligence (eg Jarvis and pretty much everything in Tony Stark's lab), which, were it treated even halfway realistically, would completely transform human existence in ways we are only starting to come to grips with.
    So would first contact, frequent alien invasions, healing nanobots, GLC rings, memory downloads and uploads, the verifiable presence of deities, and about a hundred other things. Neither DC nor Marvel does a very good job of (a) extrapolating the changes they've introduced into their worlds, or (b) building in restrictions to those changes so the world can still resemble, on a macro level, the world we're used to. World-building - which includes considering the implications of any change or advancement you introduce into your fictional setting - is a huge topic for science fiction and fantasy. But most comics, along with many TV series and movies, just skip the effort so they can get to the punching and blowing things up part. Which I think is regrettable.
    Doctor Bifrost

    "If Roy G. Bivolo had seen some B&W pencil sketches, his whole life would have turned out differently." http://doctorbifrost.blogspot.com/

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    I DID read some Birds of Prey... but I was not a fan of powerless Dinah and hated Huntress, so that was an uphill sell for me.
    Powerles Dinah? Gail treated her scream like a mini-nuke.

  10. #40
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    And not too mention played her up as a kung fu master.

    But initially in BOP, till her dip in the Lazarus pit, she didn't have her cry.
    Last edited by Godlike13; 04-27-2016 at 05:56 PM.

  11. #41
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Bifrost View Post
    I wouldn't do that. Too much toggling back and forth trivializes the whole thing. (I think they already trivialized it by reversing it and de-emphasizing it so much, but this would be even more so.) Unless all of The New 52 is a dream (something that I admit I think about from time to time...), Barbara's out of the wheelchair. Now do something new with her.

    But I wouldn't mind somebody else being Batgirl. Doesn't Barbara get to grow up, at least as much as Dick Grayson did?
    I always saw Dick and Barbara as very different entities. Robin was the sidekick. He was the child who grew up in a costume that Bruce designed for him, and honestly, as much as I REALLY do like classic Robin drawn in the classic suit... Especially his New Teen Titans days... There is kind of a 'get out of batman's shadow' kind of thing going. It was like dick's name was literally "AND Robin" as in Batman AND Robin...

    Batgirl I don't really see that need. She created her own costume. Her own identity. Usually against both Batman and her father's wishes. She was included in the 'bat-family' books, but in the 'old days' I'm not even sure she went to the cave or knew he was Bruce Wayne... I know she didn't in the tv series. She wasn't the 'automatic' sidekick like Robin was. She was kind of her own thing from the beginning. It's like saying Huntress or Supergirl or Spider-man need to 'grow up' and change identities...



    Quote Originally Posted by Carabas View Post
    Powerles Dinah? Gail treated her scream like a mini-nuke.

    She started powerless as she was since longbow hunters... and sometime in that series she got Lazarus Pitted to get it back. But yeah, when it started it wasn't my cup of tea.

  12. #42
    Incredible Member cgh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post
    Interesting, never really thought of it in these terms, mostly because I'm not a computer geek and all the technical jargon just goes right over my head. I'm guessing a lot of Oracle's hax abilities are a big load of BS to someone more knowledgeable?
    Yes, it's all ridiculous. The world simply isn't that connected, it's not possible to break provably strong encryption with a few keystrokes, and so forth. She may as well be using magic. In fact, I'd find Zatanna more believable.
    Last edited by cgh; 04-27-2016 at 10:44 PM.

  13. #43
    Incredible Member cgh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Bifrost View Post
    If this gap between DCU technology and technology in The So-Called Real World™ is enough to sour you on a character, you must be very sour on a lot of characters and a lot of storylines. Which is entirely your privilege, of course. (There are times when it goes to far for me too, but Oracle seemed like the least of it.)
    Not at all. I know it sounds nuts, but I can accept a guy from a distant world who can somehow transform solar radiation into stupendous feats of strength or whatever. I can accept a guy who can run at near light speeds but somehow isn't subject to special relativity. But I have to grit my teeth to get through anything to do with Oracle, simply because it's my area of expertise.

    Let me put it this way: imagine if Batman stole a biplane and flew it to one of Jupiter's moons, where he got out and hiked around for a while. You'd probably put down the comic, give your head a slow shake and have visions of The Fonz strapping on his waterskis. Such a "technology gap" would exceed some boundary of believable physics, even DCU physics.

  14. #44
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cgh View Post
    Not at all. I know it sounds nuts, but I can accept a guy from a distant world who can somehow transform solar radiation into stupendous feats of strength or whatever. I can accept a guy who can run at near light speeds but somehow isn't subject to special relativity. But I have to grit my teeth to get through anything to do with Oracle, simply because it's my area of expertise.

    Let me put it this way: imagine if Batman stole a biplane and flew it to one of Jupiter's moons, where he got out and hiked around for a while. You'd probably put down the comic, give your head a slow shake and have visions of The Fonz strapping on his waterskis. Such a "technology gap" would exceed some boundary of believable physics, even DCU physics.
    I will admit I HATE seeing Flash do anything on a computer. All that super-speed typing and web searching... when my computer freezes and buffers all the time... regardless of internet connection?? Totally unbelievable.


    I remember a nightwing issue where he gotten beaten, kidnapped and unmasked. THe bad guy was trying to run his fingerprints, and oracle suddenly got an alarm in time to insert a false identity for him.

    That kind of thing... whether it is even possible or not... REALLY annoys me. It just takes too many threats off the table. Oracle was just this guardian angel hovering around to correct all the mistakes with a wave of her magic keyboard...

  15. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    Batgirl I don't really see that need. She created her own costume. Her own identity. Usually against both Batman and her father's wishes. She was included in the 'bat-family' books, but in the 'old days' I'm not even sure she went to the cave or knew he was Bruce Wayne... I know she didn't in the tv series. She wasn't the 'automatic' sidekick like Robin was. She was kind of her own thing from the beginning. It's like saying Huntress or Supergirl or Spider-man need to 'grow up' and change identities...
    Well, I never said "need." And, although I'd never suggest it for Spider-Man or the Huntress, I would for Supergirl after a while. (I never expect to see it, but for corporate, not in-story, reasons. Clark managed to go from Superboy to Superman, in some continuities at least.)

    "Batgirl" is a kid's name. Or a 1950's name, when all women were "girls."
    Doctor Bifrost

    "If Roy G. Bivolo had seen some B&W pencil sketches, his whole life would have turned out differently." http://doctorbifrost.blogspot.com/

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