Birds of Prey: Of Like Minds
Distributed By: DC Comics
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
Birds of Prey: Of Like Minds is a compilation of issues #56 – 61 of the comic book series. Oracle receives a tip about a businessman who is planning on stealing his employees’ retirement funds. She sends Black Canary out to teach Andrew Fisher a lesson he won’t soon forget and to warn him against any further illegal activities. She is successful. Too successful it would seem, as Oracle discovers that Fisher is about to kill himself out of guilt for what he has done. Black Canary races off to stop Fisher from committing suicide and realizes that it was all a trap.
A mysterious man who identifies himself only as Savant captures Black Canary with the help of a behemoth known as Creote. The seriously deranged Savant incapacitates Black Canary by breaking both of her legs and Creote punches her in the throat, virtually ensuring that she cannot use her Canary Cry against them. Savant then contacts Oracle with an ultimatum – Batman’s true identity in exchange for Black Canary’s life. Torn by her need to keep Black Canary safe and her loyalty to Batman, Oracle reluctantly enlists the help of Huntress to help rescue Canary from Savant’s clutches before the dreaded deadline.
The reader soon realizes that Savant is plagued with the inability to distinguish the passage of time. He is often confused, sometimes believing that certain events in his life that occurred years ago are happening in the present. Although he is psychologically marred, his intellect is incredible, giving him the ability to learn quickly. Unfortunately, his illness makes him unable to see things through, making him a literal jack of all trades, yet master of none.
Savant’s grudge against Batman began four years ago when Savant tried his hand at heroism. Savant was quite proud of himself, having caught a gang of arsonists who had just set fire to a building. However, Batman admonished Savant for his sense of priorities. Savant was too content to be kicking the spit out of the villains to realize that there were people inside the burning building that needed rescuing. Savant took exception to the way Batman spoke to him. His skewed sense of time keeps his anger at Batman stoked as he is certain that the day he met Batman occurred in the present instead of four years ago.
The storyline in Birds of Prey: Of Like Minds is so intriguing as to be addictive and readers will find themselves hard-pressed to put the trade paperback down until the last frame has been read. Writer Gail Simone is a refreshing addition to the Birds of Prey staff. The banter between Oracle, Black Canary and Huntress is everything we’d expect from Birds of Prey and more. The storyline is truly edge-of-your-seat enjoyable. Just when you think that the case is closed, a new twist works its way into the plot, throwing readers for a loop and keeping them mesmerized, dying to know what will come next. And Simone’s writing gives the characters even more depth than they had previously. Readers sympathize with Black Canary as she struggles with old wounds made fresh by her new plight, memories of the last time she was so broken and helpless in the clutches of criminals flooding her mind. They will laugh at Huntress’ plight as she agrees to go on a date with a geek in order to get information that could lead her to Black Canary’s whereabouts (the sacrifices friends will make for one another – yikes!). Oracle’s frustration at being unable to keep her closest friend out of harm’s way tugs at the readers’ heartstrings. Birds of Prey: Of Like Minds is a rollercoaster ride – action, emotion, and pure unadulterated fun – that leaves you craving for more.
For more about Birds of Prey, check out these links:
Birds of Prey
Black Canary / Oracle: Birds of Prey
Birds of Prey: Old Friends, New Enemies
Birds of Prey: Of Like Minds
Birds of Prey: Sensei & Student
Birds of Prey: Batgirl / Catwoman & Catwoman / Oracle
Birds of Prey: Between Dark & Dawn
Birds of Prey: The Battle Within
Birds of Prey: Secret Files & Origins 2003
Birds of Prey Television Series