The new Birds of Prey roster worried many DC Comics readers when Oracle was not on the team. Along with Black Canary, Oracle was one of the two founding members of the BoP. While there have been many incarnations of the team, the most successful centered around the friendship of Dinah Lance and Barbara Gordon. Thankfully, a preview of Birds of Prey #1 has explained why the original Batgirl is absent.
The New Birds of Prey Have a Secret Mission
The opening pages of Birds of Prey #1 by Kelly Thompson, Leonardo Romero and Jordie Bellaire reveal Black Canary assembled the new Birds for a secret personal mission. She also is revealed to have deliberately excluded Oracle from the new team, for unspecified reasons. This seems likely to be a major mystery as the series continues.
The full five-page preview can be read below:
The mention of Sin, Canary’s adopted sister, could offer some explanation for why secrecy is so important. Sin was introduced during the Gail Simone Birds of Prey run as a fighting prodigy recruited by the League of Assassins. Black Canary tried to give Sin a normal home life, but ultimately agreed to have her raised in hiding elsewhere. It is possible Dinah Lance fears attracting attention by putting Oracle on the case. It is also likely she fears offending Barbara Gordon’s strong sense of morality, mentioning tough choices to be made.
The mention of Sin and the League of Assassins also explains some of the recruits for the new Birds of Prey. Two characters, Cassandra Cain and Zealot, have their own histories with the League. The other two recruits, Harley Quinn and Big Barda, are known for not being against killing when necessary.
Birds of Prey #1 releases on September 5, 2023.