Batgirl 18 Play-by-Play

February 17th, 2011 by | Tags: , , ,

Valentine’s Day craziness with no romance.

Stephanie is on her own for Valentine’s Day.  She talks a bit about wanting some air, and a quiet night out, and so she immediately stumbles across a guy with his heart torn out.  Several hookers (you can tell they’re hookers because lady superheroes to bare their midriffs and lady superheroes do wear fishnets but only hookers do both) are traumatized nearby.  They say that a ‘what’ and not a ‘who’ tore out the guy’s heart.

Stephanie follows bloody footprints around the corner to see Klarion, the heart in his hand, tracing out symbols in blood on the sidewalk.  It looks bad.  It looks, as Stephanie says, “Lik a blue-skinned pilgrim has a dead pimp’s heart in his hands.”  Klarion says he’s not a pilgrim and throws some magic at her to put her in a bubble.  A small bubble. 

I would not be able to resist doing a Glinda impression.  I mean, yes, panic, but if you are in a pink bubble next to a magic user, you have to make your voice sickly-sweet and say, “Are you a good witch or a bad witch?”

Stephanie is holding it together enough to get the story out of Klarion.  He’s distraught that he’ll ‘never find him again,’ and explains to Stephanie that ‘he doesn’t know what he’s doing.’  Stephanie tells him to leave his boyfriend because he’s ripping out hearts, and Klarion laughs and explains that it isn’t his boyfriend, it’s his cat.

When Stephanie agrees to help him out, he happily throws out his arms and exclaims, “An alliance!” as he turns her back to her normal size, and I have to say, Dustin Nguyen is nailing this art home.  It appears that this whole thing started when the cat, Teekl, found a true love and Klarion ‘stopped the coupling.’  Now Teekl’s is looking for a ‘heart of his own.’

Right down the block, where he’s menacing a couple having dinner. 

Stephanie bat-tasers Teekl, and Klarion reluctantly puts him to sleep.  Not like that.  Just sleeping.  In a pink bubble.  Klarion can’t make him stop killing, and since he’s a were-cat, it’s hard for him to find a mate.  Klarion’s solution is, “I suppose Teekl will just have to keep murdering people,” which is just about the reaction I would expect from the average cat owner.  Also, although I love this Batgirl book, I do kind of wish that Batman were here because I’d love to see his reaction to that.  It would probably be something like, “And I thought Selina was bad.”

Stephanie suggests finding Teekl a proper mate, and Klarion takes her to Limbo, his magic-gray-pilgrim town.  Stephanie, I have to say, looks absurdly cute in her – wimple or whatever.  I don’t know what pilgrim gear is called.  I didn’t even know what hoodies were until I saw Hot Fuzz. Anyway, it all just confirms my suspicion that the entire batfamily would look great dressed as pilgrims, except for Damian, who should be dressed as the devil.  They’re there to steal another person’s familiar.  I can’t see this going badly in any way.  I hope it works out for Teekl, though.  I’ve loved him ever since I saw him in Frazer Irving’s issue of Robin.  Loved that issue with its great grumpy cat art.  They see a woman nearby with a cat on her lap.  It’s time to get to work.

Because she’s Stephanie Brown, and wherever she goes people don’t want her there.  She solves it by punching.  Always.  The woman goes down long enough for Klarion to drop out of a tree and declare, “The coupling has begun!”

Yes.  This entire issue has been about getting a were-cat laid.

The two bolt back to earth, with the magic pink love bubble containing both cats.  They end up on a fair ground, and run into Jordanna and Francisco.  Klarion likes them about as much as I do.  Stephanie has to distract him with a kiss to keep him from starting something.  He likes that even less.  Stephanie gives him those awful candy hearts that are the plague of Valentine’s Day and the shame of the civilized world.  And they go off into the sunset while the narration tells us, “They lived happily ever after . . . for exactly three minutes . . .  at which p0oint he turned Jordanna into a frog.”


Overall Awesomeness Level:  Through the roof.  Great art.  Fun story.  Cats.  A witch boy.  Pilgrim outfits.  This had it all. 

Suckiness Advisory Warning:  Jordanna is still in there, but she was turned into a frog.  And Francisco is also still there, and still hanging out with Jordanna, but he was holding hands with a guy on the few panels he showed up in, and so is definitely gay, and so won’t be Stephanie’s boyfriend.  So, the warning is very low.

Random Irrelevant Detail:  A request!  Why, when Stephanie punches the witch-lady, does she say, “Accio Fist,” and then correct it to “Accio Face.”  Is that a Harry Potter thing?

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7 comments to “Batgirl 18 Play-by-Play”

  1. Yes. Accio is a summoning spell!

  2. Have you read Seven Soldiers? It’s a great book, and goes into much more detail on Limbo and Klarion’s witch-boy antics

  3. @Claire: Ah. Thank you.

    @Erik Shalat: I’ve heard that Seven Soldiers is really good, but that it’s also a bit complicated. Is Klarion characterized in the same way he is here? And how much Teekl is there?

  4. @Esther Inglis-Arkell: I’ve got all four books if you get really curious. It’s not that complicated in that format, since everything’s printed in order. It rewards rereading, too.

    I haven’t read Batgirl, but Klarion’s series was pretty creepy/funny. Some fish out of water (or I guess “blue pilgrim from underground in modern day new york”) antics, too.

  5. Seven Soldiers is terrific. Teekl’s in the Klarion chapters a fair bit. Klarion is pretty delightful as a little jerk who might as well be a villain, but isn’t, exactly.

  6. @Patchworkearth: You and David are making him sound a little like Damian 1.0, with a cat.

    I’m not saying that that’s a bad thing, but would that be accurate?

  7. So, funny coincidence, but guess who showed up on the last episode of Young Justice?