Joker Didn’t Cripple Barbara Gordon, Kim Yale Did

A lot of people go on about how Batman came back after he was crippled. And the truth is, Batgirl could’ve come back, too. Heck, at the time, there was a decent chance that Killing Joke happened out of continuity.* John Ostrander is quoted as saying “There were no plans for her in the continuity at that time”, which meant that Killing Joke could’ve been ignored and written off as that sicko Alan Moore doing his sick thing in Alan Moore land. But Kim Yale decided that Babs should be resurrected as a differently-abled character. She didn’t stay crippled because sexism, she stayed crippled because diversity**[read that with a long rolling R, veemonro-style].

Holy problematic smokes, Batman!

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Kim Yale was disgusted by what was done to Barbara (and it was pretty disgusting!) but rather than bring her back good-as-new in typical superhero fashion, give her a story where she steps on Joker’s nuts or something, she and her husband John Ostrander eased her back into the continuity as a wheelchair-bound agent working in conjunction with Suicide Squad.

For all of the shit I see people give Alan Moore for the Killing Joke (a book which he’s pretty much disowned and whose most problematic elements he’s blamed on the flippancy of the DC editorial staff at the time), I never hear anyone complain about Kim Yale, the woman who actually crippled Batgirl.***

*:The DCAU continuity, for example, ignores the Killing Joke entirely, so at the same time while Oracle was hacking for Batman in the 90s, Barbara was still swinging from ziplines and taking down bad guys on TV (though more-so in the NBA season, which included the rest of the Bat Family more regularly).

**:Sarcasm.  Seriously, though, how many other wheelchair-bound badasses in comics can you name?

***:Also, this is not actually me complaining about Kim Yale and I think Oracle is a pretty awesome character; I nearly lost my shit playing Arkham City for the first few hours all “Where the hell is Oracle?!”

****:And guy who tweeted this out all “Ugh. Seriously? This isn’t humor”, yeah, it was.  Sorry you didn’t “get” it.

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One response to “Joker Didn’t Cripple Barbara Gordon, Kim Yale Did

  1. Pingback: Re: Kim Yale | Cirsova

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