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I’ve just now come up with the ridiculously awesome headcanon that Barbara Gordon’s favorite person from history is Ada Lovelace.
I mean think about it:
- Lovelace is often thought of as the first computer programer
- She was insanely smart
- When she was younger she got really sick and was paralyzed for a while
- She knew in her heart and mind that she could do whatever she put her mind to and then she did it
- She worked with one of the smartest men at the time
I 100% endorse this headcanon! <3
Ada also had a really complicated relationship (non-relationship, really) with her father Lord Byron, who left when she was just a baby. Now, Babs and Jim have always had a great relationship, but if you go by the canon that her biological father was Jim’s brother who was an alcoholic and died when Babs was a little girl…
… Yeah, Babs had some definite abandonment issues over that.
On the post of the scene between Martian Manhunter and Oracle are:
1) No one in a wheelchair would say no that quickly…really, the technology they’d use would be as natural as possible…check out what they’d done with Roy’s arm
2) The fact that she is able to walk again in the New 52 felt like her wish came true. A medical breakthrough that allowed her to walk again.
That being said, I support her New 52 mobility 100% and screw the ones who keep whinning about wanting her back in a wheelchair.
MY thoughts on the scene when she calls Dick after knowing about Damian’s death:
1) He said he really wanned to talk to her, but he couldn’t in the moment. And he kinda knew she should focus on bigger problems. Felt like consideration, not coldness.Well I think at another point Babs said she didn’t want to do any procedure that normal people wouldn’t have access to (meaning she didn’t want to do anything she could only get done because she was important to Batman/the JLA/etc). So I think it was a combination of that fact and that she didn’t want to so anything unnatural that prevented her for wanting to do anything pre-new 52.Personally, I’m okay with Babs regaining the ability to walk. Although I will say I am very disappointed for any disabled readers out there who could look to Oracle for representation. But I think the problem a lot of fans have with the new 52 isn’t Babs regaining the ability to walk, it’s the fact that DC made her jump right back into the Batgirl role. Many felt like that was an identity she outgrew long ago (like how Dick outgrew Robin). I personally would have loved her to be something original, especially when she saw how many more people she helped as Oracle compared to Batgirl. I’m not saying she wouldn’t be itching to get back out there (I mean could you blame her?) but I would have liked to see her become something new (ideally a combination of a more mature Batgirl and Oracle — using her skills and knowledge to fight substantial crime online and with her operatives but then being able to go out on missions here and there). That’s just how I would have pictured a rehabilitated Babs.As for the call about Damian I definitely agree it didn’t feel cold. I actually think the OP used a good term, the interaction just felt stiff. But I am glad that they acknowledged the first thing Babs would do upon hearing the news is make sure Dick is okay. And hopefully they’ll get their interaction during the Nightwing title
I’m sorry, I just have to rant about this a bit.
"Screw the ones who keep whining about wanting her back in a wheelchair"? No, I’m sorry, screw YOU. Not because you like New 52 Babs, which is fine. But because apparently, in your mind people who are disabled have no right to want to see a hero like them, a superhero who sends a message that heroism isn’t about which body parts you can and can’t move. In your mind, there is apparently no reason such a hero is inspiring or worth keeping. There is no worth in giving representation to characters outside of the able-bodied norm.
I’ve said numerous times that it’s not just about the wheelchair - as the mod of this site very rightly points out, it’s really about character growth. Whether Babs regained her mobility or not, it still makes no sense to me that she’d go back to being Batgirl, a role she had clearly outgrown. She is no longer a leader or a mentor as she was before the reboot. Her friendships outside of the Batfamily no longer exist. That is all worth getting upset about, wheelchair or no wheelchair.
But even if this were just about wanting representation for disabled people? How dare you invalidate that. How dare you act superior to fans who miss what Oracle used to represent.
I am so, SO tired of seeing people imply that fans who prefer Babs as Oracle are somehow not “real fans”. I am SO tired of hearing them make these same old arguments over and over again. Here, let me help you guys out, okay? Next time, before you open your mouth and make some comment about “the ones who keep whining about wanting her back in a wheelchair, maybe you could go and read this first:
And you don’t have to agree, okay? You really, really don’t. You can love Babs being Batgirl again, and I won’t think any the lesser of you for it. But please, treat the Oracle fans with a little more respect. Because honestly, a lot of the bashing I see approaches outright ableism. Babs is not inherently “better” now that she can walk. And the fans who prefer her that way aren’t “better”, either.
Dafuq, Dick, who are “Miggie” and “Emily”? You were married TWICE?
You`re breaking my heart you know.
Nightwing #25 (1998)
Miggie Webster was a civilian who Dick briefly dated during the 1995 Nightwing miniseries. Their relationship (such as it was) never really went anywhere. (It should be noted that this was shortly after Dick and Kory broke up, so I tend to think he wasn’t really ready for another relationship yet.)
Emily Washburn was a woman Dick married as part of investigating a case in Nightwing Annual #1 (a comic which, in my opinion, looks good only because Nightwing Annual #2 managed to surpass it in mind-boggling awfulness, but I digress…) Basically, she had three husbands who died mysteriously in three years, so Dick suspected that she’d murdered them and married her as a way of finding out. She turned out to be innocent. Their marriage was never legal (Dick had Donna destroy the marriage certificate), and they never had sex or anything, but I just hate the whole thing because it’s so incredibly cruel on Dick’s part to play with Emily’s feelings that way. I mean, seriously? He was trained by the World’s Greatest Detective, for goodness’ sake! He doesn’t need to manipulate a possibly-innocent woman into believing that he truly loves her in order to solve the case. And more to the point, Dick wouldn’t do that, because he (a) has more respect than that for the institution of marriage, and (b) isn’t a jerk.
Anyway, after Emily turned out to be innocent Dick offered to stay with her and make a go as a real couple, but she didn’t want to. (Can’t blame the girl. If someone used me that way, I’d be pretty peeved with them, myself.)
So, that’s Miggie and Emily. If you count what happened with Emily as a real marriage, Dick’s been married once. He and Kory nearly got married, but Raven (who had gone evil at the time - I believe she was possessed by Trigon, unless I’m mis-remembering) sabotaged the wedding. And of course, he and Babs were engaged until that was hastily shoved under the rug post-One Year Later.
It should also be noted that while Nightwing #25 is a favorite issue of mine (Dick and Tim are adorable), that whole exchange is basically a terrible summation of Dick’s romantic history. Kory meant a LOT more to Dick than just “answering a need for affection” - he was head-over-heels in love with her. It’s impossible to read classic New Teen Titans and not understand that those two meant to each other. Dixon has this really annoying tendency to minimize Kory’s importance to Dick in his writing in favor of promoting Dick/Babs, which bugs me because aside from how disrespectful it is to Dick and Kory’s history, speaking as a Dick/Babs shipper there’s absolutely no need to do that. The fact that Dick loved Kory in the past doesn’t take away from the fact that he loves Babs now.
And “Donna and I never really dated, we just… hmmm” makes the whole thing sound unnecessarily complicated when really, it isn’t at all: Dick and Donna are best friends. They’ve never been anything but best friends. Dick’s described her as being like a sister to him. Where is the “hmm” in any of this? It’s just throwing around implications which have nothing to do with the actual reality.
Then we come to Dick describing getting involved with Helena as “dumb”, which… kind of rubs me the wrong way. Don’t get me wrong, I do think Dick and Helena were wrong for each other as a couple, and it probably was a mistake on both of their parts, but… the way he says it here kind of makes it sound like he’s blaming her for it, or saying getting involved with her was a terrible idea because she’s so awful, or something. I’ll admit I might be reading too much into that one, but it just doesn’t sit right with me.
And more generally, “I just fell into those situations”? Seriously?! I cannot even get over how cringe-worthy that line is. What ‘situations’ did you fall into exactly, Dick? Did you ‘fall into’ being Donna’s best friend? Did you ‘fall into’ almost marrying Kory? WTH does that even mean? It makes Dick sound like a complete airhead, who just falls into relationships without ever using his brain. Which is absurd. Even if he looks back on some of this history with regret now (and I would hope that he does regret the way he treated Emily, at any rate), he was an adult who decided to get involved with the people he got involved with. I literally cannot find words to express how utterly stupid I find that line.
What’s interesting is that there’s a similar scene in Nightwing: Secret Files #1, which is (IMO) better in literally every way:
- Dick’s connection to Kory is not minimized. Dick acknowledges that she “woke things up in me” and “taught me so much about myself, so much about love”, which is all completely true. He also admits that he sometimes still wonders if things could have turned out differently if they’d stayed together, which makes sense to me considering that they were together for years and Dick at one point considered her the love of his life.
- For people who didn’t read Nightwing Annual #1, what happened with his ‘marriage’ to Emily is made much clearer: “That was a case, and you know it. We were never really married.”
- Similarly, there are no misleading implications about his relationship with Donna tossed around just for the sake of it. Instead, Dick actually seems rather annoyed by “everyone thinking we were an item”, and what he says about their friendship is (IMO) quite beautiful: “I love her. I’ve probably always loved her. But she’s almost like a sister to me. Someone I somehow always knew rather than someone I discovered. She never made my breath catch, so much as… well, she almost makes it easier to breathe.” Lovely writing, I think. (I also love the detail of Babs commenting on how Dick smiles every time he says Donna’s name.) There are different kinds of love in this world, and Dick absolutely loves Donna deeply. It just isn’t romantic love. And I think what he says about her here is so much more meaningful than waffling that they “never really dated” (which misses the point of their relationship completely).
- Although Dick (as in the Nightwing #25 scene) admits that his fling with Helena was a bad move, he very clearly doesn’t put the blame on her for it - and, in fact, jumps to her defense when Babs makes a disparaging comment about her: “Why is everyone so down on Huntress? I admit now that getting involved with her may have been a mistake, but it’s not because she’s a bad person.” Exactly. Dick and Helena don’t always see eye-to-eye, but he likes and respects her as a person. There’s no need to demonize her just because their relationship didn’t work out.
Nightwing: Secret Files #1 came out a year after Nightwing #25, and the correlation between the two scenes is so striking that I almost have to wonder if the writer of the second scene (Devin Grayson) was similarly bothered by Dixon’s original scene, and decided to write her own version to “fix” it.
In which case, although we all know I’m not always a fan of Ms. Grayson’s work, I have to say: Well done, Devin Grayson. Thanks for setting the record straight.
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