Meet Silver, he's got some money, he lives in Gotham, and he's crazy. Silver isn't a fan of vampires, presumably because he doesn't like the Twilight franchise, but who knows... Because he's another bat-shit crazy Gothamite, he just so happens to think that the "Bats" of Gotham are oppressive vampires, the villains of Gotham are freedom fighters, and he's the one who has to rid Gotham of its Bat problem... another well balanced individual.
Elsewhere in Gotham, Batgirl is on the trail of some copycat killers of the gang we saw ALL the way back in #1, but someone is also tailing her, which she's aware of, but taking down the copycats are priority. Fortunately for Babs, by the time she descends into the alley where the copycats are, they've already been taken out by Babs' tail... Strix, or for those who haven't been following Birds of Prey, the Talon known as Mary. Unfortunately, Mary sneaks up on Babs, and ends up getting a punch to the face, but once Babs realizes who it is, she stops and immediately apologizes.
Turns out there's been an abducted girl in Gotham, and Mary wants Babs to find her. Why? Well, because like Strix, the girl is mute, and you know... connection. So feeling sympathetic towards Mary, Babs agrees to help find the girl, but unfortunately needs some help. See, the girl was abducted from the Cherry Hill neighborhood, which is where Knightfall makes her base, so Babs reluctantly calls her, telling Knightfall she'd owe her one. Knightfall on the other hand, who believes she and Batgirl are on the same time, tells Babs she'll do it pro bono, which is... interesting.
After Babs and Mary leave to go investigate, Silver, who had been watching the entire thing, walks up to the copycats that were taken out by Mary and Babs... They've been "infected" according to Silver, and you know how "vampire" hunters deal with "vampires," right?
Once Babs and Mary find something appropriate to wear (not their costumes), they show up at the mother of the missing girls' house, posing as GCPD detectives. Apparently the cops think that the woman's ex-husband, and father of the child committed the kidnapping, but the mother doesn't buy it. While all of them talk, turns out for some reason Silver has the placed bugged, and deduces that he's looking at his two vampires, so he lays in wait for them.
When Babs and Mary leave, it doesn't take long for Silver to show up, and proclaim he knows they are bats. Babs doesn't take Silver too seriously... until he whips out a gun and straight razor to attack. While he and Babs fight, Mary gets to fight Silver's assistant, and you know... fighting happens. This goes on until the police show up, and Silver says something about Babs thinking she's won, but he has their queen, with an incediary device attached to her, ready to blow at dawn... And by Queen, of course he means the missing girl.
This is just what I wanted from a new arc in this book, just good, action packed fun. I've made it clear that I wasn't a fan of the melodramatic "Batgirl: Wanted" arc, so getting something that's just sort of weird and crazy really scratched an itch so to speak. I've said it before, but Gail Simone makes great crazy villains, and Silver is pretty nuts, but his whole schtick makes sense for Gotham crazy. Of course someone would think the Bats are big crazy vampires or whatever, of course he'd go around sticking wooden stakes in the hearts of criminals taken down by the Bats. It's super ridiculous, but it works. Strix was also a welcome addition to this issue, as I'm just generally a fan of how Simone writers her and Batgirl. I really did like that first Annual, so seeming more of that was pretty nice here. Also interested to see if there's more of a reason as to why Knightfall was so willing to help Batgirl. Seems fishy.
Finally, last short note... I know I've said I'm not Pasarin's biggest fan, I think he's fine, but not remarkable. That said, I think aside from a few panels with weird faces, this was probably his strongest issue so far.
I like Babs and Mary's interaction, but sometimes it just sounds like Babs is talking to her like a child. I know it got brought up that Mary is like a child that never got to grow up, but I could use a bit less of calling Mary "baby."
Also for all of Silver's craziness, kind of wish we got to know why he thinks the little girl is the vampire queen. I guess we'll learn about that next issue, but without knowing it here, it just seems... kind of mean, haha. I just can't support that kind of crazy without a reason, you know?
The Bottom Line:
There's been a good deal of woe is me going on lately, but with this issue, Batgirl has gotten back on track for me. Gail Simone introduces us to a new crazy in the man known as Silver, who fits right in to Gotham's crazy population, and was pretty entertaining to read. Meanwhile, the great dynamic between Batgirl and Strix, that was explored in the previous Annual, was picked right back up and continues to prove that there's a place for these Court of Owl exiles in Gotham. Something fun, kind of weird, and kind of goofy is really what I wanted out of this issue, and it's what I got, so consider me happy with the first part of this arc.