July 14, 2014

The Song that Helped Inspire the New Batgirl Has Some Interesting Lyrics

Batgirl's getting a new look. The character has taken a fascinating and meaningful journey in the recent run by Gail Simone and artists such as Vicente Cifuentes and Ardian Syaf. Barbara Gordon hasn't had an easy road, but after her experiences, it wouldn't make sense if she had it simple. But, all things must come to an end or change in comics, and a new creative team is taking over in Batgirl #35. DC Comics revealed the news in an announcement at MTV. Cameron Stewart and Brenden Fletcher will write the book, and Babs Tarr will illustrate.

As you can tell from the cover art and character look, this book will have a different tone than the Batgirl we're used to. Fletcher tells MTV, "Our take on Batgirl mixes the best elements of “Veronica Mars” and “Girls,” with a dash of “Sherlock” thrown in for good measure." This Barbara takes selfies, has a brighter uniform, and lives in the suburbs. Apparently it's not a complete reboot, which is puzzling. I'm interested to see how Batgirl transforms into what's hinted at in this new run without scrubbing over her traumas in recent years, but I'm curious enough to check it out.

At the end of the day, I prefer happy superheroes over dark and gritty. Happy does not equal perfect lives, but there's a balance that can be overlooked in favor of making "darker" content. In an ideal world though, we'd have two Batgirl books. One that leaves the character Gail Simone has developed from the launch of the New 52 intact, and one that is seemingly geared towards all ages. Stewart confirms to MTV that it's a lighter take on the character. He says, "We really wanted to make this a book with a light tone, of fun and adventure and mystery, and let the rest of the Bat-family deal with the darkness. She’s got problems, and conflict, and enemies to fight, but our priority was to make this a really fun, rollicking read."

So, given that, I was puzzled by a song that Fletcher indirectly labels as inspiration for his and Stewart's take on the character. He told MTV the following: 

"I remember the first time we talked about finding an angle that really played to the strengths of the character and Cameron and I were nearly finishing each other’s sentences. Then I played him a piece of music and said, 'Now, imagine her running across rooftops to THIS' and we both knew that we had our Batgirl! It’s really the perfect title for us to finally collaborate on as co-writers."
MTV says the song in question is "212" by Azealia Banks Ft. Lazy Jay. A friend listened to the song and played it for me. It opens with a peppy beat that I can absolutely picture Batgirl running across the rooftops to, but then it goes some place else entirely. You can read the full lyrics here and check out the video on YouTube (it is not safe for work), but here's a portion of them:

Kick it with your bitch who come from Parisian
She know where I get mine from and the season
Now she wanna lick my plum in the evening
And fit that ton-tongue d-deep in
I guess that c**t getting eaten
I guess that c**t getting eaten
I guess that c**t getting eaten
I guess that c**t getting eaten...

I could bust your eight, I’m a do one too, f**k ya gon' do?
I want you to make bucks, I’m a look-right ni**a, bet you do want to f**k
F**k him like you do want to c*m
You're gay to get discovered in my two-one-deuce
C**-a-licking in the water by the blue bayou
Caught the warm goo in your doo-rag too son
Ni**a, you’re a Kool-Aid dude

Um. Huh?
I don't have an issue with explicit language or rap, etc. Rap isn't my personal cuppa but to each his/her own. I'm just curious as to why and how this song relates to Batgirl. Did they just mean the music of the song and not the lyrics? That's my hunch because Fletcher does say "piece of music," but has he listened to the rest of it? I'd be cautious about tying a song with lyrics like this to a book that's meant to be fun and light...


  1. What an awful song choice!! I am a fan of the new costume, but can't really imagine how they'll shift Barbara to fit the new direction. To be honest, I've had this issue with most of the New52 "Soft Reboot," where the past stories happened (sometimes?), but in a much more condensed version (Damien's whole timeline is wacky now). Sometimes it just doesn't mesh, and they leave to it fans to adjust.

    Honestly, I'd have been MUCH happier with a true reboot. Same with Batgirl (though I'm getting ahead of the writers, who maybe pull it off?).

    I'm more of a "just throw a new person behind the mask," kind of guy, though. Have been since the travesty Marvel made out of the Clone Saga, which COULD have been a graceful way to bow Peter Parker out (and into parenthood), while having someone familiar AND fresh take the reigns.

    ... Yes, I'm still a bit sore about that two decades later.

    1. I completely understand about holding onto stuff like that!

  2. When I picture her running across rooftops, I hear "Feel Good Inc." by the Gorillaz.


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