Alternate versions of Robin


Alternate versions of Robin

Robin is a fictional character, a superhero in publications from DC Comics. Robin has long been a fixture in the Batman comic books as Batman's sidekick. Since 1940, several different youths have appeared as Robin. In each incarnation, Robin's brightly colored visual appearance and youthful energy have served as a contrast to Batman's dark look and manner.

This page is a list of the alternate versions of Robin in comic books, including DC Comics, the multiverse, Elseworlds, et cetera.

In mainstream comics continuity

*Dick Grayson is the original Robin. Though he stops being Robin in the comics, Grayson is the most commonly portrayed version in other media. Dick Grayson later assumes the name Nightwing.
*Jason Todd becomes Robin after Grayson, though his superheroic career is ended by his untimely death at the hands of The Joker. Jason Todd is later resurrected and assumes the name Red Hood, and later Red Robin.
*Tim Drake assumes the Robin identity after Todd, but quits at the request of his father. After his replacement is killed, he reclaims the mantle and has remained the current Robin.
*Bruce Wayne briefly assumed the role when de-aged during the "Sins of Youth" storyline.
*Stephanie Brown, Drake's girlfriend who is a superheroine known as the Spoiler, briefly takes on the Robin name in place of Drake.

Pre-"Crisis on Infinite Earths" a number of Robins lived on different "Earths" in the original multiverse (which was destroyed during the "Crisis").

In a "Batman" story from the 1950s, Bruce Wayne assumes the identity of Robin. Richard Grayson of Earth-Two carried on his Robin mantle long into adulthood. Post-"52", an entirely new finite multiverse was discovered and created, and as such, a number of Robins may exist now on other alternate Earths. In one frame of the final issue of "52", a new Earth-2 is depicted, along with a character that resembles the original, adult Earth-2 Robin. Whether it is that character or not remains to be seen, as this Earth-2 is not identical to the one that existed before Crisis on Infinite Earths. In another case, Talon is an analogue of Robin, from the new Earth-3 where his relationship with Owlman mirrors that of Batman and Robin in the mainstream universes and maintained a romantic relationship with Duela Dent. "Batman" #666 depicts a future in which Batman's biological son Damian Wayne becomes Batman, having previously served as Robin.

Alternate versions

Rick Grayson (Dark Angel)

In Dark Angel, Dick Grayson is portrayed as a freelance detective named Rick Grayson. After helping Batman arrest Clayface, he decides to join Gotham PD, making frequent appearances with Jim Gordon later on.

Dick Grayson (Earth Two)

The Robin of Earth-Two is a parallel version of the fictional DC Comics superhero, who was introduced after DC Comics created Earth-Two, a parallel world that was retroactively established as the home of characters which had been published in the Golden Age of comic books. This allowed creators to publish comic books featuring Robin while being able to disregard Golden Age stories, solving an incongruity, as Robin had been published as a single ongoing incarnation since inception.

Robin's origin and history begins the same as the classic version except the timeframe occurs when the "Detective Comics" #38 was originally printed: 1940.

*Richard Grayson's parents are killed by Anthony Zucco.
*After a period of training, a young Dick Grayson becomes Robin. His first printed story is "Robin, the Boy Wonder." ["Detective Comics" #38]
*Robin participates in the war-time only All Star Squadron. His distant cousin is Charles Grayson, the scientific assistant of Robotman.

Bruce Wayne Junior

In a story from 1961, Alfred writes a tale about an imaginary future: Bruce Wayne married Kathy Kane and they had a son named Bruce Jr. As Bruce Sr. retires from being Batman, that post is filled by Dick Grayson. Dick's post as Robin is filled by Bruce Jr.The future dynamic duo wear the same costumes as the present versions, but with a II added on the chest of each. The villains featured in the story are the Joker and his son.

Robin's mantle was also carried on by Bruce Wayne Jr. in the epilogue of the "Batman/Captain America" crossover from 1996; this Robin is a red-head and resembles a male Carrie Kelly. Characters similar to the Batman/Dick Grayson and Robin/Bruce Jr./"BJ" also appear in the miniseries I and II.

Robert Chang

In the digitally rendered tale "Digital Justice", James Gordon the grandson of his namesake, Commissioner Gordon, takes on the mantle of the Batman. A character named Robert Chang, who is somewhat reminiscent of the post-Crisis Jason Todd, takes on the mantle of Robin.

Deathwing

Introduced as an alternate Dick Grayson from a timeline when his Titan teammate, Donna Troy, had a son who was driven mad, took on the mantle of Lord Chaos and conquered his world. This version of Dick stayed in his identity of Nightwing and helped train squadrons of superpowered teenagers that became known as the Team Titans. He was involved with the much younger Titan, Mirage, during this time. This alternate-future Nightwing came back in time and briefly joins the Team Titans when their mission takes them to their past, our present. This version of Nightwing, attacked and corrupted by a dark version of Raven shortly after his arrival, changes his name to Deathwing, and serves as her assistant. He becomes so twistedly evil, he at one point tracks down his one time lover, Mirage, and rapes her. She becomes pregnant and has a child named Julienne

During the Zero Hour event that retroactively erased this timeline, Mirage, Terra and Deathwing survive. It is later established that they are from the current time-line, and were shunted through time and given false memories by the Time Trapper, who wished to use them as sleeper agents against the time travel villain, Extant.

It wasn't revealed until one of the later runs of the Teen Titans that this was not Dick Grayson, in fact his true identity was never uncovered. After this storyline, this version of Nightwing has not been seen since. Whether this verison existed at all, after the events of Infinite Crisis or would later to be revealed to be an alternate Dick, Jason, or Tim, is unknown.

Red Robin

In "Kingdom Come", a middle-aged Dick Grayson reclaims the Robin mantle and becomes Red Robin, not at the side of his former mentor Batman, but rather with Superman's League. His uniform is closer to Batman's in design, rather than any previous Robin uniform. Age has not slowed him down, as he possesses all of his stealth and fighting skills. In this story he has a daughter with Starfire; Mar'i Grayson (Nightstar). Starfire has apparently died by the time of the story, according to the Elliot S! Maggin novelization, and Nightstar calls Bruce Wayne "Grandpa", despite no blood relation. At the end of the comic and the novel, Bruce and Dick had reconciled.

Red Robin is slated to appear in the DC "Countdown" event; however, Dan DiDio revealed it will not be Dick Grayson, but rather Jason Todd who will appear under the cape and cowl. [ http://www.newsarama.com/NYCC/2007/DC/DCU.html NYCC '07: DC NATION PANEL] by Kevin Huxford, Newsarama.com] He then retracted this statement in March 2007. [ [http://comicnewsi.com/article.php?catid=144&itemid=9449 Wonder Con 07 - DC Nation - Comics News, Reviews & Discussions ] ] DiDio recently came clean and clearly stated that Red Robin will be Jason Todd. [ [http://forum.newsarama.com/showthread.php?t=118774 Dan Didio Comes Clean On The Countdown Teaser Image - Newsarama ] ] [Comic book reference|Title = Justice Society of America|Story = DC Nation|Volume = 3|Issue = 7|Date = (July 2007)|Publisher = DC Comics] He has appeared in promotional material for Countdown, including a two page image of various Superheroes amidst the ruins of what is presumably New York, given the head of the statue of liberty in ruins on the ground, and in a second ad/poster, wearing a button that reads: "I found Ray Palmer". The Red Robin costume is stated to be more symbolism, than an actual costume choice, as Jason has been both the "Red" Hood and "Robin", being shown as "Red Robin".

However, in Countdown to Final Crisis #16, a Red Robin costume can be seen in a display case of the "Bat Bunker", the Batman of Earth-51's equivalent to the Bat Cave. In the following issue, Jason dons the Red Robin suit as he and Batman join the fight raging on the Earth above the bunker. He then keeps his new suit and identity for the rest of his tenure as a "Challenger of the Unknown", to discard it on his return to New Earth, on which he returned to his "Red Hood" street clothing.

During the "Scattered Pieces" tie-in to Batman R.I.P., a new "Red Robin" makes his appearance, at first only as a glimmering image following Robin and suspected to have stolen a briefcase of money given from Tim Drake to the Penguin in exchange for information on Batman's fate, then breaking up a scuffle between Tim and Jason Todd, arguing over the stolen money.

Even before the simultaneous appearance of Red Robin and Jason Todd, Jason always claimed his innocence, supposing that someone may have stolen his suit when he discarded it earlier.

tan Lee's Robin

DC did a version of Robin for Stan Lee's "Just Imagine..." line of comics, where a few DC Comics characters were re-imagined by Marvel Comics luminary Stan Lee. Robin was an orphan who had been controlled by Reverend Darkk, the series' main villain, into becoming a thief and a murderer. He met Batman, when Darkk assigned Robin to kill him. Batman survived the attack and in return showed Robin what kind of a man Darkk really was. Robin joined the good side for a time, but in the crisis issue it was revealed that Robin had in fact been working with Darkk the whole time; in the end he was transformed into a Hawkman, before being reborn through Yggdrasil as the Atom.

DC One Million

In the 853rd Century, the current Batman is aided by the robot called Robin the "Toy" Wonder. This Batman's parents were guards on the prison planet of Pluto and died in a prison riot that turned into a mass slaughter of the guards. Robin is programmed with the personality of this Batman as a boy and acts as a foil/source of perspective so that he will not become consumed by darkness in his quest for justice. This Robin believes this was the same reason Bruce Wayne brought Dick Grayson into his life.

The Dark Knight Universe Robins

These stories are set in Frank Miller's Dark Knight Universe, which is not considered canonical. Miller has stated that the Dark Knight Universe consists of: (the only book canonical to the DCU as well), All Star Batman and Robin, the Spawn/Batman crossover, The Dark Knight Returns, The Dark Knight Strikes Again and the upcoming Holy Terror, Batman! [ [http://comics.ign.com/articles/685/685820p1.html IGN: Comics in Context #119: All-Star Bats ] ] Holy Terror, Batman! has since been disassociated from Batman.

In this version, Batman looks upon his sidekicks as employees rather than proteges (although he refers to Robin as a protegé in All Star Batman and Robin #9), whom he threatens to "fire" from their "jobs" and even does so in the case of one of them.

Richard Grayson

In Frank Miller's Dark Knight Universe, Grayson's origin differs in various ways to the official DC Comics Universe. As seen in the "All Star Batman and Robin" title, he is a twelve-year-old boy who performs in the circus with his two parents, as the Flying Graysons. Bruce Wayne had come to the show many times to watch him perform his stunts. One night, while Wayne watched the show with reporter Vicki Vale, the Graysons performed an amazing feat. The audience began to cheer and clap when suddenly a man arrived and shot Dick Grayson's parents in the head. They fell to the floor and died.

Batman took out the gunman while some corrupted Gotham City Police officers took young Dick Grayson into custody, and absconded with him. They took him to a place outside Gotham City, into a deserted stretch of forest where they tortured and/or executed people, but Batman came to the rescue, and attacked the corrupt cops, forcing them into flight.

Batman rescued Dick and took him in the Batmobile and asked him to join him in his crusade against crime in Gotham City. Dick agreed to join the crusade. Upon arrival in the Batcave, Batman intended Dick to survive in the cave without any help. However Alfred Pennyworth took pity on Dick and gave him food, and a decent place to sleep. Batman is displeased, as he wants Dick to go through the same things he did, whether Dick likes it or not.

Later, Batman brings in the killer of Dick's parent, a man called Jockoboy Vanzeti. Batman tells him that even though Vanzeti killed his parents, someone else hired him to do so. Batman gives Grayson, who at the time had an axe, the choice of whether to kill Jockoboy or not. Grayson cuts the tape in his mouth and asks him who hired him to kill his parents. The answer, much to Batman's disgust, is the Joker.

Batman orders Grayson to make himself a costume. He does so using Robin Hood as an inspiration. He becomes an archer and wears a cape with a hood thus calling himself "The Hood". Batman, upon seeing this, pulls his hood down, telling him that anyone could do simply that. Upon hearing this advice, Grayson loses the hood and decides to call himself Robin. With his new alter-ego confirmed, he accompanies Batman to confront Green Lantern, as Batman and Green Lantern talk in one of Batman's safe houses which Robin had painted yellow in order to keep Hal Jordan from using his power ring.

After a lengthy discussion in which Jordan loses his composure and strikes Batman, Jordan accuses Batman of kidnapping Grayson and dressing him up as his sidekick. Batman tells Jordan that Robin is not Grayson, but in fact a boy he met six years ago on a trip to Istanbul. He eventually retracts the lie and merely assures Jordan that Grayson is not Robin. Robin then reveals he took Jordan's power ring and after a short fight, Robin accidentally hits Jordan in the throat, cutting his air supply. Batman then hits Grayson to make him 'stay down' unmasks and performs a tracheotomy, saving Jordan's life. After this, Batman reflects on the event, saying that he didn't do a very good job of teaching Robin and then takes Robin to his parent's grave to grieve, claiming that is where it started. Dick cries and punches the headstone, after which Batman consoles his grieving and mournful young ward.

Years later, in the "", it is revealed that after a rocky relationship, Batman fires Grayson for disobedience, replacing him with the much preferred Jason Todd.

After Todd's death caused Batman to retire, Wayne remained inactive as a superhero until a crisis in Gotham forced him to don the cape and cowl once again at the age of 50. At this time Batman calls out to Grayson while delirious, implying a sense of fatherly love otherwise not shown. He later fakes his own death and re-emerges in order to fight a corrupt regime led by Lex Luthor. Grayson for his part re-appears as a genetically altered and seemingly unkillable supervillain, allying himself with Luthor and taking on the persona of the recently deceased Joker. After maiming and killing a number of famous DC characters such as Guardian, the Creeper and the Martian Manhunter, he seeks out Carrie Kelly "(see below)", the new Robin/Catgirl, intending to kill her in order to exact his final revenge on Batman. His plan fails, however, when Batman arrives to save Catgirl and eventually kills Grayson, activating the cave's self-destruct system and dropping Grayson into the lava pit below the cave, thus totally disintegrating him.

In this version Batman shows no sympathy at all for Grayson in spite of his pleas; when Grayson protests that he would have done anything for Batman, Bruce simply states that Grayson couldn't cut it, and, with no qualms whatsoever, sets about the motions to kill him. However in both "Dark Knight Returns" and the later "All Star Batman and Robin The Boy Wonder", Batman shows signs of fatherly love towards him, but decides to hide them. Grayson is called "Joker Boy" by several people including Oliver Queen.

Carrie Kelly

The 1986 limited series ' (1986), written and drawn by Frank Miller, introduced Kelly"' as the first female Robin in the Batman franchise's history. In that series, which takes place in the non-DC continuity Dark Knight Universe, Kelly was a schoolgirl whom Batman saved from muggers on the night of his sudden return.

She then spent her lunch money on a Robin outfit and set out to attack petty con-men and to find Batman. He accepted her as Robin when she saved his life just as he was on the verge of being killed by a gang known as the Mutants. She impressed him with the way she helped tend to his injuries, having learned first aid in the Girl Scouts. Later, when Batman was overwhelmed by police who were out to arrest him, she hacked into the Batcopter computer and used it to get him away. Batman had threatened to sack her if she touched the controls, but was grateful and impressed enough not to.

Kelly later played a crucial part in the battle that led to the death of the Joker, and in the final fight with Superman who had been sent by the government to take Batman into custody.

In this series, Todd's death had led to the Dark Knight's retirement, but Batman still accepted Kelly.

Unlike the previous Robins, Kelly was not an orphan, but she appears to have rather neglectful parents who are never actually seen (one of them mutters "Didn't we have a kid?" while their daughter is witnessing the fierce battle between Batman and the Mutants.) It is hinted through their dialog that they were once activists and possibly yippies during the 1960s, but have since become apathetic stoners.

By the time of the 2001 sequel "", Kelly had taken the identity of "Catgirl", but was still Batman's able second-in-command. She led the rescue missions that led to the release of the Atom and the Flash from captivity, and subsequently accompanied Batman on later missions. At the finale of the series, Batman reflects that he loves her like the daughter he never had.

Other versions of Kelly

*In an scene in "Teen Titans" Vol. 4, #18, when the Titans were transported 10 years into the future, they are shown a graveyard full of deceased Batman allies and villains. One tombstone reads "Carrie Kelly".

*In "The New Batman Adventures" episode "Legends of the Dark Knight", a girl named Carrie, who closely resembles Carrie Kelly, is one of three kids telling what they believe the Batman is really like. The story she tells is similar to the scene where Batman drives up in his tank and battles the mutants in Frank Miller's "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns", and includes herself as Carrie/Robin. She is voiced by Anndi McAfee.

*In the Alex Ross-illustrated "Kingdom Come" graphic novel, Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman meet for lunch in a superhero-inspired restaurant. They are served by a waitress dressed as Robin and who may have been modeled on Carrie Kelly. She introduces herself as Robin, and Bruce quips, "Of "course" you are."

*In Catwoman #14, Volume One's story, Broken Mirrors, the story ends with Catwoman in a room full of broken mirrors that show alternate lives of Selina Kyle, alternate destinies, and broken reflections and refractions of Catwoman. An adult version of Carrie is seen looking back through the mirror at Selina, evidently just as surprised. However, this story was wiped from continuity by the Zero Hour event.Fact|date=July 2008

*The character has also crossed over to a Marvel comic, "New Mutants", as a background character. She can be seen in one of the Mojo stories watching the circus with her best friend.Fact|date=July 2007

Elseworlds

Alfred Pennyworth

Alfred is a familiar character in the Batman books as Bruce Wayne's elderly butler. However, in "Batman: Dark Allegiances", set in the World War II era, Batman, Catwoman, and Alfred were recruited to fight behind enemy lines in Nazi Germany in the winter of 1940. Alfred is given the codename Robin.

uperman & Batman: Generations

In , Dick Grayson is Robin until he goes to college. The role is then taken up by Batman's son, Bruce Wayne Junior, against his mother's wishes. However, he gives up the role when Dick is murdered, in order to become Batman. Several years later, Clark Wayne takes on the role of Robin, before becoming Knightwing.

Richart Graustark

Set in the 1960s, "Thrillkiller" was written and drawn by Howard Chaykin and Dan Brereton and published in 1997-98. It has Bruce Wayne as a detective in the Gotham Police after his family was ruined by the Great Depression. Wayne Manor has been taken over by the rebellious, and a little demented, Barbara Gordon, daughter of police Commissioner James Gordon. Her live-in boyfriend is Richart Graustark, who goes under the name of "Dick Grayson", presumably to cover his German origins (World War II being still fresh in people's minds at the time).

Barbara and Graustark fight crime as Batgirl and Robin, though, in true 1960s anti-establishment style, their main targets are corrupt cops, in particular those led by the Two-Face-like Detective Duell and the Joker-like but very feminine Bianca Steeplechase.

In this version, Grayson's family are still circus acrobats, but their deaths are caused as a result of his activities as Robin rather than the traditional other way round. He is overcome by grief and rage over their murder and his subsequent recklessness leads to his own death.

He is replaced as Barbara's partner by Detective Bruce Wayne, who takes the identity of Batman, but the memory of him drives even Barbara to the point of insanity and she adopts the Robin guise as part of seeking revenge.

Robin Drake

The main character in "JLA: The Riddle of the Beast", young Robin Drake brings together all the heroes of The World to battle the Beast (Etrigan).

Rochelle Wayne

In the French Revolution set "Batman: Reign of Terror", Bruce Wayne's sister learns his secret identity, and designs a Robin outfit to aid him.

"Rodney"

"Dark Knight Dynasty" features three generations of Waynes, past, present and future. In the future section, Brenna Wayne is aided by an ape with augmented intelligence in a Robin costume, who goes by the name 'Rodney'.

Redbird

In the American Civil War set "The Blue, The Gray and the Bat", Captain Bruce Wayne is aided by a Native American named Redbird. Redbird's family were killed by white men, and, until he got his revenge, he wore war paint in a design similar to a domino mask.

Robin 3000

In the futuristic "Robin 3000", Earth is controlled by despotic aliens. Batman (Bruce Wayne the 20th) is killed trying to stop them, but his mission is continued by his nephew, Tom Wayne. This was originally written as "Tom Swift 3000", Fact|date=July 2008, but rewritten as a Robin story when the original plans fell through.

Tengu

In the "Robin" 1996 Elseworlds annual, an unnamed young warrior in 16th century Japan, is raised by the Bat-Samurai, and nicknamed Tengu, after the bird-spirits, by a female Cat-Ninja. Tengu loses his mentor in battle. Tengu was later revealed to be the rightful heir to the imperial throne, and the usurper (believing he knew this and plotted against him) attempted to kill him. He killed the usurper in self-defense but, since he had already sworn loyalty, was constrained to suicide as a result of this dishonor.

Robin Redblade

In the "Detective Comics" 1996 Elseworlds annual, an orphan on the streets of 17th century Kingston, who became cabin boy to Leatherwing the pirate.

Tris Plover

In the "Robin" 1998 Legends of The Dead Earth annual humanity is trying to reach other worlds in generation ships. On one of these, a group called the Proctors have seized control and everyone else are slaves who are executed on their 30th birthdays to conserve the ship's resources.

Tris Plover, a 29-year-old slave, rebels against the Proctors. She meets another rebel, called the Batman, who gives her the Robin identity. At the cost of their lives, they succeed in defeating the Proctors and Robin sets the ship on a course for the planet New Gotham.

Bird Dark

This is the name of Batman's partner in the somewhat garbled fables told on another colony world, as featured in the Legends of the Dead Earth "Batman" Annual #20.Fact|date=October 2007 While the name is based on Nightwing, the costume is in Robin's colors.

References


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