She became not only a hero in the comics, but a hero to disabled comic book fans.
And even though they changed her back in the New 52, they didn't erase that story.
Oracle in the Birds of Prey by Ed Benes
Were it an isolated incident it would have had more power. But it was one of a long list of major female comic book characters being "killed, mutilated, and depowered", as writer Gail Simone put it. I swear I think 90% of comic book writers are misogynistic.
But one writer who was not were comic book writers Kim Yale and her husband John Ostrander. They transformed the wheelchair bound Barbara Gordon into "Oracle". They had her fight back from the depths of depression and hone her and use her intellect, her photographic memory and her computers and electronics to become a high level hacker and gatherer of information. Oracle could get info on basically anything and transmit it to the hero in need.
And they didn't let it go there. They had Richard Dragon, considered an equal with Batman, Bronze Tiger and Lady Shiva in martial arts training, train Barbara in Eskrima, and she was also known to use firearms and the trusty batarang when needed.
Not only was she a huge info-broker in the comics, but she also pretty much the leader of Birds of Prey.
And she became a hero to readers with disabilities as well.
Then came the New 52. Barbara was "cured" and returned to her status as Batgirl. Again, DC got a lot of fan outrage over this, but at least they didn't just erase her time as Oracle. That still stands even in the New 52.
|Dina Meyer as Oracle on the Birds of Prey TV show|