Ends and Beginnings
The cover to Batgirl #73.
I've been in a depressed funk recently thanks to the possibility that DC is killing off my favorite bat-femme, Batgirl AKA Cassandra Cain. Well, last night I finally got some closure with the final issue of the series.
I have to say that the ending surprised me in some ways, disappointed in some ways but in the end I got what I was looking for.
Issue 72 ended with Cassie obviously DEAD (that happens when someone shoves a knife through your chest). It also ended with a regretful Shiva taking Batgirl's body and apparently heading off to a nearby Lazarus Pit.
I had actually been running so many scenarios in my head... what if the Lazarus Pit fails to revive Cass? What is something stops Shiva from using the pit? What if Cassie emerges from the pit like the most recent dunkee, Mister Freeze's wife... a raving, insane and dangerous monster?
Well, to my mixed relief and disappointment, Cassie comes back from the dead via the Lazarus Pit with no more ill effects than a momentary urge to strangle Shiva. She calms down fast enough for the rest of the issue's revelations to unfold.
All throughout this final arc, readers have been teased on the identity of who Cassie's mother is. The latest speculation was that it was the deceased Carolyn Woo-San, sister of Sandra Woo-San AKA Shiva. But it turns out that the easy answer was the right one- Shiva is Cassie's mom. The revelation also shows how twisted Shiva really is- having the child and sparing the man who killed her own sister and then becoming a ruthless killer afterwards.
Finally, the two old foes- Cassie and Shiva- have their final battle. They fight, and the duel ends with a SNAP. I am shocked that they would actually kill off Shiva, a major Bat-villain, but then again she's been so overexposed lately she's long overdue for an absence. From how it was framed, this death looks to be permanent, but you never know- Cassie DID leave her body hanging over the Lazarus Pit, and bodies left hung tend to fall off eventually... I would much rather that Shiva stay dead though and pass the torch of the Deadliest Female Alive in DCU to Cassie.
Now where to? Cassie has obviously shed the Bat-mantle now, given the events in the finale. She's now simply known as Cain, the most skilled martial artist in the DCU. Obviously, such a powerful figure won't or can't be quiet or inactive for too long. I'm almost certain that Cassie will be joining Birds of Prey, which is great since I am already buying that title anyway.
Which leaves to question just who the upcoming 'Batwoman' is... and who the heck is wearing the Batgirl costume in the upcoming issues of Robin?
Anyway, all things said, I am finally out of my Batgirl depression funk. I'm probably gonna go off to get some Batgirl trades of the early issues, and the Batman: War Games TPBs. Sigh. Moving on, moving on. Heh.