Review: Birds of Prey #8
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

Writer: Kelly Thompson
Art: Javier Pina and David Lopez
Colors: Jordie Bellaire
Letters: Clayton Cowles

Reviewed by: Matthew B. Lloyd




Dinah and company go to a fashion show and a fight breaks out, but there’s a surprise once Meridian (Maps) shows up and… … things get worse.


The art by Javier Pina and David Lopez is really good and probably the single best aspect of Birds of Prey #8.  There’s some good action moments and iconic poses here and there, and the overall look is pleasing.  The pull off they “tough” and the “sexy” equally well in this fashion show turn brawl issue.   

It’s good to see Babs as Oracle in this issue, it pushes this run closer to what the core concept of Birds of Prey has always been.  It’s not a team with a name, it’s what Barbara Gordon does.  Unlike the first arc in this series, the two-parter that concludes this issue is closer to the target.




Like last issue, Vixen’s (Mari McCabe) plan feels weird.  With Birds of Prey #8, it becomes clear it is indeed a contrivance.  It’s an excuse to get the ladies into sexy clothes and have a fashion show in order to include Vixen.  The connection to the Red and Green is a much stronger way of making Vixen relevant to this story.  The fashion aspect is forced and remains awkward. 

This two-parter is supposed to connect the previous arc with the upcoming one and doesn’t really feel like a separate story.  There’s no real end to it.  The cliffhanger if anything demonstrates it’s the middle chapter of something else.  That something else is what Thompson poorly set up in the first six issues, someone is trying to kill the Birds of Prey and Barbara is the most vulnerable.  As stated in previous reviews, the story is told all out of order.  It isn’t pulling off the mystery element as it should.  Coupled with the tone of the writing detracts from the seriousness of the main plot.  This isn’t Booster Gold and Blue Beetle in the “bwa-ha-ha” era of Justice League.

The tone of this issue and indeed the entire series is not quite right.  The humor isn’t in the right vein, and Thompson has a trouble finding the right voice for Dinah and Barbara.  This ends up detracting from the inclusion of Barbara in the issue.  Sin seems particularly pointless as the inner monologue with Megeara is neither humorous or interesting.  It already feels like a MacGuffin for how Barbara will eventually be saved.  Additionally, Meridian/ Maps is beginning to feel like the villain of the piece…or maybe just an oblivious pawn.  One would think that after her admission of culpability last issue, someone would realize she needs to stay away from them instead of leading the bad guys to them.



After an improvement last issue, Birds of Prey #8 slides backwards.  The tone isn’t right, the plot feels forced and the mystery isn’t playing out in an interesting manner.  Putting Barbara Gordon in danger has been done before, and done better- “The Hunt for Oracle.”  Thompson still doesn’t seem to get what makes Birds of Prey work as a concept.  The time travel works against it, the lack of character focus is missing…at least the art in this issue is nice.


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