Follow

    Barbara Gordon

    Character » Barbara Gordon appears in 3670 issues.

    Barbara Gordon was the first modern age Batgirl until she was brutally shot by the Joker, rendering her paralyzed from the waist down. Barbara reinvented herself as Oracle, providing intelligence to the DCU heroes and leading the Birds of Prey. She has recently become Batgirl once again to protect Gotham City.

    Is Barbara Gordon really a Woman in Refrigerator?

    Avatar image for wolfmonkey
    WolfMonkey

    318

    Forum Posts

    1055

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 2

    User Lists: 0

    #1  Edited By WolfMonkey

    Ok, so for those of you who may not be aware, the term "Women in Refrigerators" is used to describe a female character who was killed or had their lives otherwise ruined in order to advance the character and fuel the stories for a big male character. The first woman on that list is technically Gwen Stacy.  The character who first brought about the term, however, was Alex Dewitt, girlfriend of Green Lantern Kyle Rayner. When she was killed, her body was actually jammed into a refrigerator, thus the term.  
    What I'm asking, is Barbara Gordon technically one of them? Her name is on their list. Her picture is on their wall. But is she one of them? Barbara Gordon was the original Batgirl, until she was shot and paralyzed by the Joker in order to break her father,  Commissioner Gordon. Now, normally the woman becomes the victim to strengthen the character of the leading character, aka Batman, but since Commissioner Gordon is still pretty big, I don't think that really matters. The reason I ask this is because after she was forced to give up her identity as Batgirl, she then went on to make a name for herself as Oracle, helper to Batman, his family, and many others throughout Gotham City. The Joker may have derailed her life for a moment, bt she managed to pick up the pieces and get back on a new track. It can be argued that, despite paralysis, her life wasn't really ruined because she was able to recover. The women in refrigerators all had their lives ruined. Does Barbara still belong on that list?

    Avatar image for kentheprofile
    KenTheProfile

    420

    Forum Posts

    130

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 1

    User Lists: 1

    #2  Edited By KenTheProfile

    I would say no. She never was. It really did not push Batman to his goal or even Commissioner Gordon. I would put forth that she is only still around today because she became Oracle. a much more intresting charecter then Batgirl.
    Avatar image for xerox_kitty
    xerox_kitty

    17342

    Forum Posts

    275139

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 15

    User Lists: 22

    #3  Edited By xerox_kitty

    Of course she does.  She was shot because of her connection to Batman & the Law.  It wasn't some random shooting.  It crippled her for life.  She's not only in the fridge, but she's chilling in the ice cube tray.

    Avatar image for jordama
    jordama

    4701

    Forum Posts

    41169

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 5

    User Lists: 13

    #4  Edited By jordama

    It isn't that their lives were permanetly ruined and they never recovered, but because they had to go through the trauma in the first place
    Avatar image for fadetoblackbolt
    FadeToBlackBolt

    23389

    Forum Posts

    8725

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 25

    User Lists: 6

    #5  Edited By FadeToBlackBolt

    In the Killing Joke she was, after that, she wasn't, as DC used the incident to develop and improve Babs' character, not just the rivalry between Bruce and the Joker.

    Avatar image for mercy_
    Mercy_

    94943

    Forum Posts

    83653

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 2

    User Lists: 15

    #6  Edited By Mercy_
    @KenTheProfile said:
    " I would say no. She never was. It really did not push Batman to his goal or even Commissioner Gordon. I would put forth that she is only still around today because she became Oracle. a much more intresting charecter then Batgirl. "
    But it was her connection to not only Batman, but to James that resulted in this happening. She (other than Alex Dewitt) is the very definition of a WIR. I like her better as Oracle, but that still doesn't take away from the fact that she is a WIR.  
     
    @xerox-kitty said:
    "She's not only in the fridge, but she's chilling in the ice cube tray. "
    Nicely put. 
    Avatar image for fadetoblackbolt
    FadeToBlackBolt

    23389

    Forum Posts

    8725

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 25

    User Lists: 6

    #7  Edited By FadeToBlackBolt
    @The Dark Huntress said:
    " @KenTheProfile said:
    " I would say no. She never was. It really did not push Batman to his goal or even Commissioner Gordon. I would put forth that she is only still around today because she became Oracle. a much more intresting charecter then Batgirl. "
    But it was her connection to not only Batman, but to James that resulted in this happening. She (other than Alex Dewitt) is the very definition of a WIR. I like her better as Oracle, but that still doesn't take away from the fact that she is a WIR.  
     
    @xerox-kitty said:
    "She's not only in the fridge, but she's chilling in the ice cube tray. "
    Nicely put.  "
    See now, sorry but I have to disagree, she WAS the very definition. Alan Moore is a pretty big mysoginist, it's evident in most of his works, particularly the Killing Joke. 
    Once that was done with though, Barbara has shown to be more than capable as a person and as a hero, moreso than when she had the ability to walk. Her crippling may have been gratuitious and pointless originally, but it has served a purpose to her character now, far more than it did Batman's or the Joker's. WIR involves the abuse of a female character in order to strengthen the story of male characters. This was the case, but it's not anymore. 
    Avatar image for sc
    SC

    18454

    Forum Posts

    182748

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 25

    User Lists: 0

    #8  Edited By SC  Moderator
    @FadeToBlackBolt said:
    " @The Dark Huntress said:
    " @KenTheProfile said:
    " I would say no. She never was. It really did not push Batman to his goal or even Commissioner Gordon. I would put forth that she is only still around today because she became Oracle. a much more intresting charecter then Batgirl. "
    But it was her connection to not only Batman, but to James that resulted in this happening. She (other than Alex Dewitt) is the very definition of a WIR. I like her better as Oracle, but that still doesn't take away from the fact that she is a WIR.  
     
    @xerox-kitty said:
    "She's not only in the fridge, but she's chilling in the ice cube tray. "
    Nicely put.  "
    See now, sorry but I have to disagree, she WAS the very definition. Alan Moore is a pretty big mysoginist, it's evident in most of his works, particularly the Killing Joke.  Once that was done with though, Barbara has shown to be more than capable as a person and as a hero, moreso than when she had the ability to walk. Her crippling may have been gratuitious and pointless originally, but it has served a purpose to her character now, far more than it did Batman's or the Joker's. WIR involves the abuse of a female character in order to strengthen the story of male characters. This was the case, but it's not anymore.  "
     
    I agree with this. (that being said, I am not sure DH said anything that contradicts our stance either?!?!)  
     
    A characters definition is slippery slope in that regard. Some instances, moments for a character can tend to cast a shadow of their character no matter how much they have progressed past it. Not always for negative reasons either, its how people assign iconic value. Like Jean Grey and Dark Phoenix saga, I definitely agree that Bab's has come a long, long way and that many writers have taken a lemon, out of the fridge and made lemon juice... lol thats horrible analogy lol (so I think its perfectly valid to both consider her defining Woman in Refrigerators BUT, Woman in Refrigerators not defining her, where as with say Alex Dewiit it does define her, and probably always will.)
    Avatar image for xerox_kitty
    xerox_kitty

    17342

    Forum Posts

    275139

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 15

    User Lists: 22

    #9  Edited By xerox_kitty

    The fact that she "isn't anymore" doesn't mean she should be removed from the WiR list.  She's included on the list because of what happened...   
     
    She's well & truly in the refrigerator & drinking all your milkshake!

    Avatar image for kentheprofile
    KenTheProfile

    420

    Forum Posts

    130

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 1

    User Lists: 1

    #10  Edited By KenTheProfile

    @FadeToBlackBolt said:

    "See now, sorry but I have to disagree, she WAS the very definition. Alan Moore is a pretty big mysoginist, it's evident in most of his works, particularly the Killing Joke.  Once that was done with though, Barbara has shown to be more than capable as a person and as a hero, moreso than when she had the ability to walk. Her crippling may have been gratuitious and pointless originally, but it has served a purpose to her character now, far more than it did Batman's or the Joker's. WIR involves the abuse of a female character in order to strengthen the story of male characters. This was the case, but it's not anymore.  "


    Wow, I get your point but my real problem with this is your thoughts on Alan Moore. he is not a mysoginist. In fact  he is a feminist. when you consider that many of his works have a female hero. also just because he shows women getting hurt means nothing. From Hell is a complete bashing of victorian additudes on woman. and his work the Lost Girls is more proof, no mysoginist would ever write a work on the sexual awaking of young woman. I don't mean to jump on you but it 's this kind of that makes me mad. to many people use the word mysoginist for persons who are not. Sam Peckinpah, Sergio Leone, have been called this there not.  But lets talk about real mysoginist people like David Hume, Nietzche, and Tom Cruise 

    Avatar image for kentheprofile
    KenTheProfile

    420

    Forum Posts

    130

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 1

    User Lists: 1

    #12  Edited By KenTheProfile
    @aztek the lost: 
     
    Is it not Strange that often sometimes the work one is best known for not something the artist actually likes?
    Avatar image for fadetoblackbolt
    FadeToBlackBolt

    23389

    Forum Posts

    8725

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 25

    User Lists: 6

    #14  Edited By FadeToBlackBolt
    @KenTheProfile said:
    "

    @FadeToBlackBolt said:

    "See now, sorry but I have to disagree, she WAS the very definition. Alan Moore is a pretty big mysoginist, it's evident in most of his works, particularly the Killing Joke.  Once that was done with though, Barbara has shown to be more than capable as a person and as a hero, moreso than when she had the ability to walk. Her crippling may have been gratuitious and pointless originally, but it has served a purpose to her character now, far more than it did Batman's or the Joker's. WIR involves the abuse of a female character in order to strengthen the story of male characters. This was the case, but it's not anymore.  "


    Wow, I get your point but my real problem with this is your thoughts on Alan Moore. he is not a mysoginist. In fact  he is a feminist. when you consider that many of his works have a female hero. also just because he shows women getting hurt means nothing. From Hell is a complete bashing of victorian additudes on woman. and his work the Lost Girls is more proof, no mysoginist would ever write a work on the sexual awaking of young woman. I don't mean to jump on you but it 's this kind of that makes me mad. to many people use the word mysoginist for persons who are not. Sam Peckinpah, Sergio Leone, have been called this there not.  But lets talk about real mysoginist people like David Hume, Nietzche, and Tom Cruise 

    "
    His work on Watchmen and the Killing Joke is seriously mysoginistic. The only female characters are either sexually depraved and mentally weak (Silk Spectre I), basically there as eye candy and to serve as a link to humanity for a male character and jumping from one sexual partner to another (Silk Spectre II), or brutalised and objectified in the most repugnant way possible (Barbara Gordon). He may not be a mysoginist, but those works are mysoginistic.
    Avatar image for xerox_kitty
    xerox_kitty

    17342

    Forum Posts

    275139

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 15

    User Lists: 22

    #15  Edited By xerox_kitty
    @FadeToBlackBolt said:
    "His work on Watchmen and the Killing Joke is seriously mysoginistic. The only female characters are either sexually depraved and mentally weak (Silk Spectre I), basically there as eye candy and to serve as a link to humanity for a male character and jumping from one sexual partner to another (Silk Spectre II), or brutalised and objectified in the most repugnant way possible (Barbara Gordon). He may not be a mysoginist, but those works are mysoginistic. "
    To be fair, you're citing two examples, one of which Aztek has already pointed out that Moore didn't actually want to write.  That leaves the Watchmen.  So one series in his prolific career doesn't mean that he's a misogynist. 
     
    This thread has strayed into a debate about Alan Moore's work.  Not about Barbarba Gorgon. 

    As both Aztek & I have pointed out.  The fact that Barbara has overcome the fact that she's been crippled does not mean that she comes off the WiR list.  Once you're on the list, you stay there.  The ladies don't come off the list because their life improved.  Otherwise we'd lose count of the amount of resurrected ladies who bounce off & back on the list.
    Avatar image for fadetoblackbolt
    FadeToBlackBolt

    23389

    Forum Posts

    8725

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 25

    User Lists: 6

    #16  Edited By FadeToBlackBolt
    @xerox-kitty said:
    " @FadeToBlackBolt said:
    "His work on Watchmen and the Killing Joke is seriously mysoginistic. The only female characters are either sexually depraved and mentally weak (Silk Spectre I), basically there as eye candy and to serve as a link to humanity for a male character and jumping from one sexual partner to another (Silk Spectre II), or brutalised and objectified in the most repugnant way possible (Barbara Gordon). He may not be a mysoginist, but those works are mysoginistic. "
    To be fair, you're citing two examples, one of which Aztek has already pointed out that Moore didn't actually want to write.  That leaves the Watchmen.  So one series in his prolific career doesn't mean that he's a misogynist.  This thread has strayed into a debate about Alan Moore's work.  Not about Barbarba Gorgon.  As both Aztek & I have pointed out.  The fact that Barbara has overcome the fact that she's been crippled does not mean that she comes off the WiR list.  Once you're on the list, you stay there.  The ladies don't come off the list because their life improved.  Otherwise we'd lose count of the amount of resurrected ladies who bounce off & back on the list. "
    Last line, X-K :)
    Avatar image for longbowhunter
    longbowhunter

    9425

    Forum Posts

    0

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 4

    User Lists: 1

    #17  Edited By longbowhunter

    No I dont think so.
    Avatar image for wolfmonkey
    WolfMonkey

    318

    Forum Posts

    1055

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 2

    User Lists: 0

    #18  Edited By WolfMonkey
    @xerox-kitty: @aztek the lost: I'm not saying she should be removed from the list because without a doubt, in the Killing Joke she was definitely stuffed into a fridge. If I was talking about removing her I would have just done it myself and had my edit rejected by someone like you (by that I mean a moderator, because by all means that edit should be thrown out). I was merely asking if she should still be considered one today.  
    That being said, i think @KenTheProfile has a good point. To paraphrase what he said, she was definitely in the fridge at one point, but I think she rolled her way out. You can't let her past define her. 
    Not asking to take her off the list, just saying she threw out her membership card to that club.
    Avatar image for reaperkenswolf
    reaperkenswolf

    45

    Forum Posts

    0

    Wiki Points

    0

    Followers

    Reviews: 0

    User Lists: 0

    #19  Edited By reaperkenswolf
    @jordama said:
    " It isn't that their lives were permanetly ruined and they never recovered, but because they had to go through the trauma in the first place "
    Actually, I'm pretty sure that WiR has the whole "Dead Men Defrosting" thing as the statement that even though men are also traumatized or killed for story purposes, they are brought back to "status quo" whilst very few women are. I disagree with this whole idea of Women in Refrigerators, though. The reason women seem to be so often targeted is because the death needs to provide motivation for the hero. Since often the hero is male, his lover and usually other members of his family are targeted. It's not about being sexist. It's about putting a fire in the hero. Joker did this in his attempt to drive Jim Gordon insane. If I remember correctly, JIm only had Barbara as a close person at that point, so it makes sense Joker would attack her.

    Plus, if we are considering Barbara being able to walk as her "status quo" the only reason she has not been healed I believe is that DC is doubtful about how the community might take it since she is considered a role model of overcoming a handicap. I, for one, think that her being able to walk again would allow her to achieve even greater heights now that she was able to do so much as Oracle, but that is a discussion for another forum. Terribly sorry for my little rant, there.

    This edit will also create new pages on Comic Vine for:

    Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

    Comment and Save

    Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Comic Vine users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.