"Oracle: Year One: Born of Hope": After being shot in the spine by the Joker, Barbara Gordon lies in the hospital, full of pain and self loathing as she remembers her history leading up to the Joker's attack on herself and [[James Gordon (New
- A little over a year has passed since my old life ended, since I died and was reborn. The shadows remain, but only to give contrast to the light. I am no longer a distaff impersonation of someone else. I'm me -- more me than I have ever been.
Appearing in "Oracle: Year One: Born of Hope"
- Oracle/Barbara Gordon (Narrator) (Flashback and main story) (Origin)
- Interface (Final appearance)
- Sylvia Kandrey (Final appearance) (On a TV or computer screen)
- Oracle of Delphi (In dream sequence only)
- Joker (Flashback only)
- Riddler (Flashback only)
Synopsis for "Oracle: Year One: Born of Hope"
After being shot in the spine by the Joker, Barbara Gordon lies in the hospital, full of pain and self loathing as she remembers her history leading up to the Joker's attack on herself and her father. Batman surprises her at the window, and Barbara bitterly hurls recriminations at him for using her as a pawn in his game with Joker. She ends by asking if his laughter with the Joker was about her. Silently, Batman leaves.
Ten weeks later, Barbara returns home. She finds her disability humiliating and frustrating. She even blames her father for refusing to exercise his power and have an armed police guard when the Joker invaded their house. She begins six months of therapy, and fights through her fear to try to make a new life for herself, using a Wayne Foundation grant to build herself a powerful computer. Using her newfound affinity for hacking, she makes some money and finds an online community in the early days of the internet.
One day, her father tells her of a metahuman cybercriminal named Ashley Mavis Powell, aka Interface. Babs decides to take the case, since she had nothing else to do, and Powell's crimes disgusted her.
A few days later, as she wheels around Gotham, Powell sneaks up on Barbara and threatens to murder her if she doesn't stop her investigation, then pushes her into traffic. Enraged at Powell's attack, Barbara seeks out martial arts training tailored to her disability, and an internet user by the name of "Matches" (who is really Batman) points her towards Richard Dragon. Dragon helps her to stop reaching for the past, and look to her future with the art of escrima. As a result of her training, Barbara dreams of the ancient Oracle at Delphi, finding a woman with a green mask who reveals herself as Barbara herself, inspiring her codename and symbol.
Using her new identity as Oracle, Barbara sets a trap for Powell, and when Powell uses her psychic link with computers to come after Oracle, she finds herself stuck in a logic loop, unable to break free. Barbara sets Powell free, but uses her new power over the criminal to force her to turn herself in.
A year has passed since Joker's attack, and Barbara finds herself with a new life, a new mission, and she embraces it with joy.
Appearing in "Decoys"
- Lieutenant Gordon (Narrator)
- Gotham City Police Department
- Lieutenant Paul Pendergast (Single appearance)
- Neiland (Only appearance; dies)
- Officer Kling (Only appearance; dies)
- Officer Rice (Only appearance; dies)
- Sergio D'Gioia (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "Decoys"
Jim Gordon has been promoted to lieutenant after only a few weeks in Gotham, but his promotion comes with a new partner: Lieutenant Paul Pendergast, who everyone knows only got his promotion because his uncle is the DA.
The two are assigned to transport Sergio D'Gioia, a mafioso who turned state's evidence, to the courthouse where he'll testify. They are driving through the Grove when their van is ambushed by shooting gangsters, and Gordon crashes the van, forcing him and Pendergast to leave the car and return fire.
Neiland arrives as backup, but the gangsters throw a grenade under his car and it blows up. The surviving officers take shelter in a building with D'Gioia and a female bystander. The officers make a break for the elevator as the gangsters continue shooting at them.
The GCPD make it to the roof where the gangsters are waiting for them. Pendergast falls to pieces, but the bystander opens up her briefcase and pulls out two guns, which she uses to help Gordon fight off the five ambushers.
The bystander embraces D'Gioia, who calls her honey and compliments her work, and she tells him that he taught her everything she knows. The two escape in a helicopter as the woman calls out that Gordon deserves a better partner.
Pendergast tries to pin the blame for their escape on Gordon, but Gordon mocks him for depending on his uncle while thinking, "Unlike Chicago, Gotham forgives -- mark my words."
Appearing in "Of Mice and Men"
- Konik (Single appearance)
- Harry (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "Of Mice and Men"
Alfred Pennyworth tries to tender his resignation after a week working at Wayne Manor, but when Bruce Wayne returns from school with a black eye and his father sends him to bed without dinner, Alfred is moved to bring him something to eat and a Zorro comic book that Bruce (whose parents disapprove of comics) accidentally left in the library.
Bruce asks Alfred whether big things always beat little things, and Alfred tells him by using their minds, humans can not only decide between right and wrong but also by deciding what they want and using their minds to achieve it.
The next day, Bruce packs a jar of molasses in his backpack, telling Alfred that it's for a school project. At school, Bruce sees a bigger boy named Konik bullying his classmate Harry. Bruce confronts him and punches him before he takes off running. He leads Konik into a trap, and the molasses falls on his head, causing the other students to laugh at him.
Back at Wayne Manor, Bruce tells Alfred the story of his triumph before asking Alfred to stay on as butler. Before he can answer, Martha comes in with the Zorro comic and asks Bruce what it was doing in his room. Alfred claims the comic is his and rescinds his resignation as Bruce grins.
- "Oracle: Year One: Born of Hope" is collected in Batgirl: A Celebration of 50 Years and "Of Mice and Men" is collected in Batman: The Greatest Stories Ever Told Vol. 2.
- "Oracle: Year One: Born of Hope" includes a quote by American-Romanian writer and Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel.
- Batman Recommended Reading
- Batman (Volume 1)
- Batman (Volume 2)
- Batman (Volume 3)
- Batman and Robin (Volume 1)
- Batman and Robin (Volume 2)
- Batman Confidential (Volume 1)
- Batman: Gotham Knights (Volume 1)
- Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight (Volume 1)
- Batman: Shadow of the Bat (Volume 1)
- Batman: Streets of Gotham (Volume 1)
- Batman Incorporated (Volume 1)
- Batman Incorporated (Volume 2)
- Batman/Superman (Volume 1)
- Batman/Superman (Volume 2)
- Batman: The Dark Knight (Volume 1)
- Batman: The Dark Knight (Volume 2)
- The Brave and the Bold (Volume 1)
- Detective Comics (Volume 1)
- Detective Comics (Volume 2)
- Superman/Batman (Volume 1)
- World's Finest (Volume 1)
- Batgirl Recommended Reading