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|As a result of the New 52 in 2011, the entire line of DC characters was relaunched, incorporating properties belonging to the company's imprints: Wildstorm, Milestone, and Vertigo. As such, elements of this character's history have been altered in some way from the previous incarnation. For a complete list of all versions of this character, see our disambiguation page.|
Early Life and Career
Barbara Eileen Gordon left her family when her daughter was a young teen. A few years later, the Batman debuted. This inspired young Barbara to become Batgirl. Soon, she began working with Batman and his teen partner Robin. After about a year as Batgirl, Barbara retreated from her role. Shortly after, she was shot in the spine by the Joker.
Looking for other ways to fight, Barbara became a hacker and information broker, donned the Oracle identity and founded the Birds of Prey. After three years her father found a clinic where Barbara could be cured. Barbara underwent surgery and received a cybernetic implant on her neck's nape. She fully recovered and returned to her position as Batgirl.
The Miraculous Killer
Shortly after her return as Batgirl, Barbara moved in to an apartment owned by Alysia Yeoh and came into contact with a villain calling himself the Mirror. The Mirror was attempting to kill a criminal who had survived a near death situation the previous night. After killing the criminal, the Mirror fled to a graveyard where Batgirl intercepted him. She was beaten by the Mirror before the cops arrived and the murderer fled.
While researching into the Mirror, Barbara discovered that he was an ex-soldier whose family died in a car crash but miraculously survived. After Batgirl located his hideout a screen activated and Mirror told Batgirl that due to his family's deaths he took up the mantle of the Mirror. His aim was to kill all those who had survived due to a 'miracle', as he saw them as curses instead of blessings. He then told her of his next targets and she rushed to save them, however she was too late as one target was blown up with a train. Batgirl then went on to lure Mirror to an amusement park where she was finally able to end the killer's reign of terror. After defeating the Mirror, Barbara's mother showed up on her door step for the first time in years.
One night while patrolling the city, Barbara came across a family of gangsters who were supposed to be laying low committing an act of terrorism. Upon investigating, Batgirl discovered all four of the men chanting "338", then the father killed his three sons and attempted to commit suicide. Batgirl was then attacked by a woman calling herself Gretel who fled the scene almost immediately after. Gretel then attacked Bruce Wayne and when Batgirl tried to intercept, Gretel put Bruce under her spell causing him to chant "338" and attack Batgirl. She was eventually able to get through to Wayne and free him from the spell, however Gretel was gone. Upon returning home she discovered that Gretel was a journalist who had been shot in the head by a 38. caliber bullet when she was investigating a crimelord. Upon surviving the gun shot she discovered she could control men. Gretel then made another attempt on Wayne's life but was stopped by Batgirl and Batman, before being sent to Arkham Asylum.
While on patrol Batgirl came across a hostage situation at a gala. She fought against the Metahuman villain Grotesque until he and his henchmen were forced to flee. Upon entering the sewer she came across the two henchmen, taking off the mask of one of them, under it she found a terror from her past- Danny "The Weasel" Weaver- one of the Jokers thugs on the night he took her legs. Batgirl then let him go for reasons she couldn't explain. Upon returning to her apartment her mother told her that the reason she left was because James Jr. had killed the family cat and told her that if she didn't leave, Barbara would be next. Upon tracking Grotesque to his lair she was attacked by the villain who had the upper hand. However Weaver shot at Grotesque long enough so Batgirl could defeat him, after taking a mortal wound from Grotesque the Weasel died.
Birds of Prey
Batgirl assisted the Birds of Prey on a mission when they went after the super-villain Choke. She helped them take down Choke's sleeper agents known as the Cleaners. They tracked down their leader, a psychic named Trevor Cahill, and Batgirl was finally able to reconnect with Black Canary as close friends.
Night of the Owls
While on patrol Batgirl witnessed an explosion - she went to help the survivors but was attacked by a figure in an owl costume. The figure easily defeated Batgirl but instead of finishing her off she fled the scene, leaving behind a piece of paper. Upon examining the paper Batgirl discovered that it contained a date in kanji - November 1944 - as well as a balloon bomb. Barbara realized that the bomb and the paper was from WW2, when Japan sent balloon bombs across the ocean in hopes they would go to America and explode. Barbara then rushed to GCPD Headquarters as several balloon bombs had gone off there. At that moment a message was sent out by Alfred which said the Court of Owls - a secret society - had sent out their Talons to assassinate high profile targets who opposed them, and one such was Jim Gordon. Batgirl was able to intercept and defeat the Talon before it could reach its target.
Later on in the night Batgirl travelled to assist the Birds of Prey with another Talon. However this Talon was a lot more skilled and sent the Birds of Prey on the retreat. The team then attempted to lock him in a freezer, as cold was the Talons' weakness. However he overpowered all of the Birds until Poison Ivy arrived and locked him and herself in the freezer - defeating him in the process.
Shortly after the Night of the Owls, Batgirl was taking down a group of car thieves at a charity gala run by billionaire Charise Carnes when one of the car thieves, Ricky, was caught in a bear trap. The gala security then took over the situation. When she was patrolling later that night she saw the gala security in costumes about to drop Ricky off a roof. The leader explained they are a group called the Disgraced who deliver punishment to criminals and kill them afterwards. The leader then dropped Ricky off the building and as Batgirl went to rescue him she was attacked by a flying woman named Kartharsis. Upon dropping her she said "Knightfall has risen" and that they would eradicate crime in Gotham. Batgirl was then surrounded by the Disgraced, headed up by their boss Knightfall. She deduced that Knightfall was Charise Carnes as she was their boss at the gala. She was overpowered by the vigilantes but was saved by Detective McKenna and they fled the area.
McKenna explained that Charise Carnes was forced to watch her family being butchered for three hours which left her mentally scarred. She was then found guilty of the murders and sent to Arkham. There, she was involved in another massacre, this time of Arkham guards. When she got out of Arkham she declared a deadly war on criminals and recruited many police officers to her cause. Batgirl and Detective McKenna were then attacked by Batwoman, who was attempting to have McKenna arrested for corruption. After convincing Batwoman to help them, the group travelled to Knightfall's base where she had Ricky hostage. Batgirl, Batwoman and McKenna were able to take down the Disgraced and Knightfall. McKenna went on to provide proof of Knightfall's crimes, however the villain was able to evade capture.
The Return of Talon
Batgirl was investigating the burning down of many buildings by the homeless. Her investigation led her to a member of the Court of Owls. Upon spying on the meeting he was having with Catwoman, she noticed that the Talon from the G.C.P.D. building was present. Catwoman had delivered the Talon to the Court from Blackgate Penitentiary but was having some ethical issues with the job. Batgirl then rushed into the building to save Catwoman from the Talon and her brethren. The Pair were outmatched by the four enhanced warriors until Batgirl was able to convince the Talon change allegiance to change sides. The triplet then took down the Talons and the Court member killed himself. Catwoman then distracted the authorities while Batgirl brought the Talon- Mary to safety.
An Estranged Marriage
While Barbara was on the phone to her mother she went silent. Determined to find out what happened she was contacted by who she thought was the Joker. The door then burst down and three of the Joker's thugs came in.
After dropping them (much to Alysia's shock) she was given the location of her mother by the would be Joker who revealed that he knew Barbara was Batgirl. She then travelled to the location that the Joker informed her of found her mother bound. It was at this time that Barbara realised the person on the phone wasn't the Joker as he revealed himself to be her brother James Jr.-escaped from Arkham. The Joker then revealed the severed ring finger of Barbara's mother and proposed with it. After being forced to accept the proposal by Joker she was given another location to be at within an allotted time.
After rendezvousing with Batman and the Robins Batman informed them that Joker had been gone for a year but had come back and slaughtered 19 police officers, he had then proceeded to commit crimes mirror several of his early crimes. He had also kidnapped Alfred and was torturing him, and had had his own face cut off by Dollmaker as a calling card for Batman. After fanning out to look for the Joker she received a message from Red Robin that the Joker had kidnapped him and that she should advice the Teen Titans on where to look. After doing that Batgirl travelled to the church the Joker had instructed her to and he revealed his plan- to kill all of Batman's allies who were making him soft and weak. She was about to be killed when James Jr. walked in with a grenade telling her that their mother was free. This tipped the scales allowing Batgirl to beat the Joker, she was about to kill him when James Jr. knocked her out as he wanted her out the picture for his plans. When she woke she was at a dinner table with Alfred and the Robins. There Joker tried to convince Batman to give up on hi family, not convinced, Batman broke free and defeated the Joker- seemingly killing him.
In the aftermath of Jokers return Barbara was helping the authorities apprehend many of the Joker's thugs. During this point she was contacted by James Jr. who said he would enact his plans soon. While searching for several henchmen Batgirl came into contact with the flame based villain Firebug. After her encounter with Firebug she was informed that Robin had died, and decided to track down Firebug instead of her brother. After locating Firebug she was able to take down the villain. Barbara's mother then told Barbara that James Jr. wanted her to come to the peer alone or he'd kill Barbara. Batgirl then followed her mother to the peer where he was shot James Jr. by their mother. After a brief struggle with her brother he told her that he killed because of Barbara and how perfect she was. He then attacked the pair once more which forced Barbara to fling him off the peer to his seeming death. However Commissioner Gordon witnessed this and blamed Batgirl for his son's death.
Batgirl of Burnside
After successfully taking down Knightfall, Barbara was emotionally worn-out and in need of a change of scene. Barbara moved to Burnside, one of the wards of Gotham City and started operating there.
Although she became unexpectedly popular quickly, Barbara had to deal with someone sending villains after her and looking to ruin her reputation. Eventually Barbara discovered her mysterious enemy was an A.I. gone mad that she herself created. Batgirl managed to shut it down before it brought about a bloodbath.
Barbara started getting memory lapses and nightmares created by a villain called Fugue whom she had put away some while ago. Using mind-scanning technology, Fugue learnt all Batgirl's secrets and mind-controlled several more villains into planting bombs across Burnside, hoping to blame it on Batgirl. Batgirl retaliated by recruiting several fellow heroines to stop the villains and she successfully took Fugue down.
In the meantime, Barbara started up her own green energy business, although she needed to step down from day-to-day management.
After defeating Fugue, Barbara decided to take a vacation to Japan. However this turned to out to be anything but relaxing when she ran into Kai, an old acquaintance of hers who had got himself into trouble with several Asian criminal gangs. Batgirl saved him, but she wasn't thrilled with Kai using her civilian identity to protect himself, and told him to never bother "Barbara" again before returning to Gotham.
The Return of the Birds of Prey
Son of the Penguin
Back in Burnside, Batgirl discovered that the Penguin's bastard son Ethan was setting up shop in the town, flooding Burnside with nonsensical mobile apps as part of a plan to take over the place and destroy his father. In spite of his techno-suit, he wasn't a match for Batgirl.
The Phantom Zone
Tracking down a villain led Batgirl to National City where she met Supergirl. The younger hero asked Barbara's help to break into a Cadmus black site and rescue an imprisoned telepath named Gayle Marsh (Psi). Barbara and Kara teamed up to free Gayle, but Gayle used Supergirl to enter the Phantom Zone. Both heroines managed to escape, but they agreed that the story was not over.
Several days later, Barbara attended a clean energy expo in National City sponsored by TychoTech, a firm that used Kryptonian technology stolen from the D.E.O. to create a device powered by energy siphoned from the Phantom Zone. During the unveiling, Barbara met Supergirl again, and the Girl of Steel recognized her right away. Magog attacked Supergirl during the event and their battle broke the device down. Both Batgirl and Supergirl were thrown into the Zone. There they were captured by Xa-Du, the Phantom Zone's first inmate. Xa-Du had captured Psi, intending to coerce her into opening a rift to escape from the Zone, but she encased herself into a psionic bubble. Therefore, Xa-Du was boiling other Phantom Zoners over and turning their souls into fuel for his armor in order to make himself powerful enough to break Psi's shell. Batgirl and Supergirl managed to escape, and while Supergirl reached Psi out, Batgirl engaged Xa-Du. Both girls managed to defeat the villain and Psi sent them back home. After their adventure, Barbara and Kara praised each other, and Barbara assured Kara that she could ask her help whenever she needed her.
The Aqua Ghost
Batgirl went to investigate a supposedly haunted swimming pool. According to the workers an ethereal being would show up in the swimming pool but not harm anyone, and once the people left the pool it would disappear. Barbara went to get the water tested, but after the results came back normal she was redirected to Professor Radden. Before meeting with him she researched him and discovered his theory on Hydroportation - as well as the fact that one of his students went missing around the same time he published his papers. Upon investigating the missing student's apartment she discovered that the student had in fact come up with the theory. Batgirl then deduced that Radden had used his student's theory against her by trapping her in an alternate dimension, and then took credit for her work. She then realized that the student was the ethereal being and she was trying to cross over but couldn't because her anchors, the pool's visitors, always left before she could materialize. Batgirl then gathered a group of people and brought the student back.
The Red Queen
Batgirl and Nightwing both received a message luring them to the same spot. They were ambushed by two identically dressed women, who delivered a threatening message to the heroes before committing suicide. Batgirl and Nightwing believed they strongly resembled a woman named Ainsley Wells whom Barbara had been friends with while she was at high school. Years ago, Batgirl and Robin discovered Ainsley was creating a nanotech drug which she sold to the Mad Hatter in order to fuel her own drug addiction. Ainsley ended up suffering from an overdose and fell out of contact with Barbara.
Batgirl and Nightwing suspected the Mad Hatter was responsible but discovered that he was in the hospital and hadn't ordered the attack against them. Mad Hatter awoke in a crazed state, warning the heroes of someone called the "Red Queen". In the hospital, Batgirl discovered a doctor who appeared to have gone berserk. They later discovered that nanobots were responsible for her behavior. Batgirl and Nightwing discovered that Ainsley died homeless, and they deduced that the Red Queen was her sister, Edith, who was using the drug Ainsley had developed for her own malicious purposes.
Batgirl and Nightwing tracked down the Red Queen, who infected Nightwing with the nanobot drug. Red Queen instructed him to kill Batgirl, blaming her for failing to save her sister from her death. Batgirl was able to restore Nightwing's sanity using her electromagnets and her neural implant, temporarily paralyzing her legs in the process. Together, the duo managed to defeat the Red Queen and she was apprehended. Nightwing helped Batgirl restore her mobility before the two heroes went their separate ways.
Further Burnside Adventures
A while afterwards, a sudden blizzard left Burnside covered with snow. When the Penguin rushed into offering his assistance to solve the crisis, Batgirl found his sudden altruism suspicious and decided to investigate why the Weather Administration hadn't foreseen that blizzard. Batgirl found someone had sabotaged the local weather station and created a false trail to get her out of Burnside.
Batgirl came back to Burnside and found out Blacksun had returned and stolen a mind-control device from a lab. Batgirl guessed Blacksun was now working for his father, and she soon discovered the Penguin intended to use the stolen device to boost his future election campaign. Batgirl managed to stop both Cobblepots and turned them over to the police.
Shortly after, as facing a domestic abuser, Batgirl was hit by a hypnotic beam which trapped her mind into a loop. Batgirl looked for ways to break her mind out of the loop, finally realizing she had to act in completely unexpected ways to catch her own brain off guard. Batgirl broke free, woke up and took the abuser down.
The Brightest Star in Heaven
As investigating a cluster of similar murders, Batgirl noticed the murderer's modus operandi reminded her of her brother. Batgirl checked James, Jr. remained behind bars, but her brother hinted that those deaths had been committed by some fan of his. James offered his fan mail in return for Barbara coming back and visiting sometimes.
Barbara didn't intend to return until she tracked the murderer down and learnt that the woman wasn't a fan but rather her brother's disciple. James, Jr. had reached out to her in order to instruct her and goad her into a confrontation with Batgirl. Barbara agreed to visit her brother occasionally, resigning herself to the idea that she was doomed to get tangled with her brother forever, and ignoring James' scheming to corrupt her.
Art of the Crime
Batgirl started investigating a number of gruesome murders committed by her old enemy Grotesque, who had escaped from Blackgate and was no longer satisfied with merely stealing art. Batgirl caught him right after he killed an elderly couple, but he escaped and Batgirl chased after him.
Although Batgirl caught up with Grotesque, his electrical batons damaged her neural implant during their fight. Despite being dazed and barely able to walk, Batgirl chased him all the way to a safe house. However she soon suffered from a sequence of strange visions and suddenly found herself falling off the building. Batgirl managed to save herself, but she barely remembered what she had seen in Grotesque's safe house, and Grotesque torched the place down and ran away before she had time to return. Batgirl knew he was planning something big, though, so she sneaked into the GCPD Headquarters and hacked into their database to gather information. She was greeting her father when she collapsed all of sudden.
Barbara was taken to Gotham General Hospital where she was told they needed to replace her implant. Her father implored her to come back to his house and rest while waiting for the surgery. Batgirl pretended to agree, but as soon as she went up to her old bedroom, she pored over the data copied from the GCPD. Barbara learned the disturbing fact that Detective Evans, the officer assigned to the case, had stopped looking for Grotesque, and she got a list of safe houses to look around.
Despite risking permanent brain or physical injury, Batgirl headed out to stop her mass-murdering enemy. She discovered Phillipe Rianne, the original Grotesque, had been murdered a while ago. Batgirl confronted the new Grotesque and found out that he was someone who hated Gotham's wealthy families, so he was murdering them and selling their art collections while the police blamed and looked for his predecessor. Batgirl managed to take him down, but when she was calling the police she suffered another seizure. When she woke up, she found the police had come and Detective Evan was blaming Phillipe Rianne's murder on her.
- Computer Operation
- Dancing: Barbara took up being a ballerina as a young girl.
- Driving: Barbara can drive a car as well as her motorcycle with skill.
- Genius Level Intellect
- Indomitable Will
- Lock Picking: Batgirl is skillful at manipulating locks. She keeps at least one lockpick hidden in the lining of her cape.
- Martial Arts
- Psychology: Barbara holds a degree in Forensic Psychology.
- Throwing: Batgirl is accomplished at throwing Batarangs.
- Restricted Mobility (Formerly): Barbara was paralyzed for three years after being shot by the Joker. However, she managed to overcome her paralysis with the help of groundbreaking medical treatment and returned to fighting crime.
- Neural Implant: Barbara had experimental surgery after her shooting. She has a neural implant at the base of her brain that connects to her lower spine, which bypasses the missing section of spine and allows her to use her legs. If the implant is damaged or malfunctions, Barbara could become paralyzed and/or suffer brain damage.
- Barbara Gordon was created by Gardner Fox, Carmine Infantino, and Julius Schwartz, first appearing in Detective Comics #359. However, in the Prime Earth continuity Barbara Gordon first appeared as part of the New 52 DC Universe in Batgirl (Volume 4) #1 by Gail Simone and Ardian Syaf.
- Batgirl Recommended Reading
- 380 Appearances of Barbara Gordon (Prime Earth)
- 306 Images featuring Barbara Gordon (Prime Earth)
- 97 Quotations by or about Barbara Gordon (Prime Earth)
- Character Gallery: Barbara Gordon (Prime Earth)
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #25
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #0
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Batgirl and the Birds of Prey: Rebirth #1
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #1, 2, 3, 4
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #1
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #2
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #3
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #4
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #5
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #6
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #7
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #8
- ↑ Birds of Prey (Volume 3) #4
- ↑ Birds of Prey (Volume 3) #6
- ↑ Birds of Prey (Volume 3) #7
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #9
- ↑ Birds of Prey (Volume 3) #9
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #10
- ↑ 19.0 19.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #11
- ↑ 20.0 20.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #12
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #13
- ↑ Batgirl Annual (Volume 4) #1
- ↑ 23.0 23.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #14
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #15
- ↑ Batman (Volume 2) #15
- ↑ Teen Titans (Volume 4) #15
- ↑ 27.0 27.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #16
- ↑ Batman (Volume 2) #17
- ↑ 29.0 29.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #17
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #18
- ↑ 31.0 31.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #19
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #39
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #40
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #49
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #50
- ↑ 36.0 36.1 Batgirl (Volume 4) #51
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #1
- ↑ 38.0 38.1 Batgirl (Volume 5) #3
- ↑ 39.0 39.1 Batgirl (Volume 5) #5
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #7
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #10
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #11
- ↑ Batgirl Annual (Volume 5) #1
- ↑ Supergirl (Volume 7) #9
- ↑ Supergirl #10
- ↑ Supergirl (Volume 7) #11
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #12
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #14
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #15
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #16
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #17
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #18
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #19
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #20
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #22
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #23
- ↑ Batgirl Annual (Volume 5) #2
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #25
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #26
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 5) #27
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #0
- ↑ 62.0 62.1 62.2 62.3 62.4 62.5 Batgirl (Volume 5) #2
- ↑ Supergirl (Volume 7) #10
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #3
- ↑ Batgirl (Volume 4) #35
|Batman Family member |
This character is or was an incarnation of or an ally of Batman, and a member of the Batman Family. This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the "Batman Family members" category.
Birds of Prey member