DETECTIVE COMICS #359 – The Epic Debut of Batgirl

Detective Comics, Batman, Batgirl, Soda and Telepaths

We don’t always review old books, but when we do – BATGIRL!

When the old is made new again, it’s an opportunity to introduce a whole new generation to something for the first time. DC Comics Facsimile Editions, which are reprinted versions of classic stories, have been a great way for fans to read iconic DC stories without having to take a deep – and expensive – dive into the long boxes.

Batgirl #359
  • 88%
    Awesomeness - 88%
  • 85%
    Plot - 85%
  • 90%
    Characters - 90%
  • 86%
    Tone - 86%
87.3%

Summary

Batgirl’s debut is a major moment, both for its day and because she goes on to become a beloved and valued member of the Bat Family. Batman’s initial reluctance, followed quickly by his admiration, is a reflection of life in the 1960s as women sought a seat at the table among their male counterparts. 

Detective Comics #359 Facsimile is a great read for a number of reasons. Chief among them is the debut of Barbara Gordon as Batgirl. This was a major moment for comic book fans, as it marks the first time a woman dressed as a Bat fought alongside the Dynamic Duo. It’s also fun to see what was happening with Detective Comics back in 1966 knowing that the title reached its 1000th issue in 2019. 

Detective Comics, Batman, Batgirl, Soda and Telepaths

An Accidental Heroine

Barbara Gordon might be a mild mannered librarian but she’s also the police commissioner’s daughter. Fiercely intelligent and able to hold her own in a fight with her martial arts skills, she’s anything but ordinary. 

She’s on her way to the Policeman’s Masquerade Ball, dressed as a female version of Batman, when she comes upon Moth Man trying to hijack millionaire Bruce Wayne’s limo. Barbara leaps into action, and a new superhero is inadvertently born. 

Detective Comics, Batman, Batgirl, Soda and Telepaths

Too Many Bats In The Belfry?

Naturally, Bruce Wayne was never in danger and he’s actually more concerned about a new masked vigilante in “[his] crime-fighting territory.” When she shows up at another crime scene, he even remarks that he doesn’t have time to watch out for a girl

When she’s able to track Moth Man down using ingenuity alone, Batgril manages to impress Batman and while she may or may not make a habit of fighting crime, Batgirl is definitely welcome in Gotham City. 

Detective Comics, Batman, Batgirl, Soda and Telepaths

Blast From The Past

Batgirl’s debut is a major moment, both for its day and because she goes on to become a beloved and valued member of the Bat Family. Batman’s initial reluctance, followed quickly by his admiration, is a reflection of life in the 1960s as women sought a seat at the table among their male counterparts. 

The facsimile copies are exact replicas of the original comics, down to the original ads and letters to the editor. It’s fun to see what people were interested in back in 1966, and the letters to the editor reflect the questions and concerns from fans back in the day, a fascinating juxtaposition to issues on fans’ minds these days. All in all, Detective Comics #359 Facsimile is a must-read for all Bat fans, whether they’re reading it for the first time or picking it up for a walk down memory lane.