The Batman & Robin Adventures #21
DC Comics (August, 1997)
“Why Is A Raven Like A Writing Desk?”
WRITER: Ty Templeton
PENCILER: Joe Staton
INKER: Terry Beatty
COLORIST: Lee Loughridge
LETTERER: Tim Harkins
ASSOCIATE EDITOR: Darren Vincenzo
EDITOR: Scott Peterson
The Riddler’s riddles lead to Commissioner Gordon getting kidnapped. With Batman out of town on a case, Batgirl takes up the cause to find her father. Following the clues she hits numerous dead ends until she follows the riddles themselves right back to Arkham and the Riddler. She rescues her father and captures the Riddler.
What they got right: It’s good to see this version of Batgirl. She may not be Batman but she’s still able to put clues together and has earned her costume. And the police aren’t stupid even if the Riddler did trick them with one of his red herrings. I like seeing the proper version of Renee Montoya instead of the angry lady she is in the current comics.
What they got wrong: Okay, Batman is out of town, but where’s Robin? Did Dick go back to college? Gordon says that Batman went on a case but didn’t mention Robin. They did have the Batsignal going at one point, I would assume he’d answer it. I know they don’t respect Robin like they do Batman but they would have worked with him.
Other notes: The first riddle, which is also this issue’s title, comes from Alice In Wonderland and was said by the Mad Hatter, the influence of another Bat-foe. The riddle is unsolvable by design as it has no answer but Nigma added a second line to his letter to Gordon, that the “answer will drive you to madness”, which is the actual clue leading back to an unused part of Arkham.
Recommendation: A really good Batgirl and Riddler tale. Worth picking up.