The Future Of The GCPD Hangs In The Balance In Batgirl #30

by Josh Davison

[*Mild Spoilers Ahead]

Batgirl is looking to get back into the swing of things after recent issues with her spinal implant. She starts off by looking into the rally for Gotham politician Luciana Alejo. Alejo has built her platform on rooting out the corruption in the GCPD. Commissioner Gordon doesn’t like internal affairs and the FBI digging through Gotham’s police, but Barbara is actually a fan of Alejo. At the rally, suspicious individuals start a riot in the crowd, culminating with a bomb detonation. Both Batgirl and Commissioner Gordon want to know the truth of what happened, but the latter is ready to pin it on Alejo and her followers.

Batgirl #30 cover by Paul Pelletier, Norm Rapmund, and Jordie Bellaire
Batgirl #30 cover by Paul Pelletier, Norm Rapmund, and Jordie Bellaire

Batgirl #30 has a bit of a political tinge to it, but it’s able to weave it into the narrative of what’s happening in Gotham. It feels organic within the universe. Plus, an art theft ring inside a city’s police department is relatively tame compared to the corruption that takes place in real-world police department.

Beyond admitting that police departments can do wrong sometimes (that is a political statement to some), the comic makes some claims about how a rally can be turned into a riot by the opposition. Again, that’s not an especially bold statement, but it does feel rooted in the modern American political atmosphere.

I linger on the politics because, well, they’re worth talking about and are among the first things a reader will notice about Batgirl #30.

The story itself–which is to say how it plays out exclusively within the narrative of the comic without outside context–is good. The conversation surrounding Alejo sparks conflict between Barbara and Jim Gordon. We get to see the self-doubt of Barbara in regards to all of this compounded by her attempts to return to the role of Batgirl.

Batgirl #30 art by Paul Pelletier, Norm Rapmund, Jordie Bellaire, and letterer Deron Bennett
Batgirl #30 art by Paul Pelletier, Norm Rapmund, Jordie Bellaire, and letterer Deron Bennett

Paul Pelletier’s artwork serves the book well, as he is a high-quality talent that has stuck with DC for years. The new Batgirl digs continue to look good, and he’s quite good at accentuating the emotion and mood of characters through body language and facial expression. Norm Rapmund boosts the quality with his inkwork, and Jordie Bellaire once again proves why she is one of the great coloring talents in the industry.

Batgirl #30 is an engaging read that finds Batgirl once again at odds with Commissioner Gordon over a conflict with a political spark to it. It’s not the most exciting DC read from the week, but it is a solid one nonetheless. It’s worth a recommendation; feel free to pick it up.

Batgirl #30 comes to us from writer Mairghread Scott, artist Paul Pelletier, inker Norm Rapmund, color artist Jordie Bellaire, letterer Deron Bennett, cover artist Pelletier with Rapmund, and Bellaire, and variant cover artist Joshua Middleton.

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