I'm not a big fan of issues that promise a fight between two characters, but have it fizzle out rather quickly. Fighting other heroes due to misunderstandings CAN be done right, last month's Blue Beetle executed it spectacularly. While this one executes the FIGHT ITSELF well, it doesn't do a great job with the importance of it. I LOVE the way Batwoman enters the series, in a GLORIOUS double page spread whose layout really emulates the layouts of J.H. Williams III on Batwoman's solo title. And then when Batgirl is convinced she can take Batwoman, only to realize she's completely outmatched is fantastic. Batgirl's been saying to herself she needed to fight smarter, but lately I haven't seen that idea portrayed all that well. But when she's fighting Batwoman and noticing how Batwoman is doing exactly that but better, it just really makes that scene. Batwoman's portrayal was pretty damn good.
Something else this issue does with Batwoman is REALLY make me want a D.E.O. ongoing series. Once they round up a few more notable members. If Director Bones can recruit Blue Beetle, we've pretty much got enough of a framework to make something awesome. Batwoman's duties in the D.E.O. give her an interestingly flexible m.o.
Gail Simone also makes great use of ANOTHER character not totally her own, James Gordon Jr. The revelations about his role in this arc, as well as in the lives of several parties involved is a quite shocking, and very fitting one.
It's gotten so hard to keep hating Knightfall. She really does encompass a lot of the ideals of that whole epic storyline oozed, it's just that her naming can't be related in her own mind. It seems like her name is just TOO contrived, too conveniently connected on a meta level. But her design is AWESOME, and after Mirror, she's the first villain in this series whose parallels to Batgirl actually WORK. It does seem odd that she's so obsessed with killing Batgirl as opposed to Batman, but whatever.
In Conclusion: 4.5/5
Ardian Syaf tended to make Batgirl's face a little chubby in this issue, and there were a few more funky faces, but overall, aside from the stupid false fight focus, Batwoman was very well handled in this issue, and so was Knightfall. This was the first time in a while where I've been able to ignore how Barabara doesn't belong in this role anymore, and really get immersed in the story like the first two issues. I would still MUCH rather have Stephanie Brown back, but this is quite solid.