Un-Flashpoint the Bat-Clan #1 - Dick Grayson

Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

This is the first of an eight part blog series that will explain why Flashpoint should never have happened to the Bat-Clan and it will start with Dick Grayson and follow through each character in order of appearance chronologically until we come full circle with Bruce Wayne at the end. (This was originally posted on my tumblr at http://mrmessyface.tumblr.com but I decided to post on here too to get your opinions as well.)

Our first entry is about, arguably, the best hero ever in DC Comics, Dick Grayson. Dick Grayson was the first sidekick ever. He was the first Robin and created a legacy. He created the Teen Titans and led the team for years. He had his own team of Outsiders. He led the freakin’ Justice League of America, TWICE.

We’ve seen him go from Robin, the little kid that distracted the villains while Batman knocked them out, to being Robin, the serious teen who didn’t like being called a sidekick and told Batman to shutup, to being Nightwing, the hotshot aerialist who stole all the redheads’ hearts, to being the Batman that made Gordon say “I don’t know which one you are but…”, to being Nightwing again and taking down his own mobs, to being the Batman that smiles.

Dick Grayson might just be the one character that has changed codenames so often that wiki sites only list him by his real name now. He has had some of the most growth in a character we’ve ever seen and one of the only characters we actually got to see grow up. Even to the point that when Tim Drake asked him to go back to being Robin, Dick basically said “I’m a grown ass man!”

When we last seen Dick before Flashpoint, he was appointed “the Batman of Gotham City” while Bruce was out being the “International Batman.” When Darkseid made everyone believe he killed Batman with his omega beams, Dick stepped up, took down all competitors, and took on the cape and cowl, and proved Batman never dies. One of the things about being Batman is you’re pretty much in charge of a whole system of roles in Gotham City. He had to oversee many decisions. This time around, Dick became the leader of the Justice League, most likely the only time anyone actually thought Batman being the leader was a good idea. He chose to make Damian Wayne his Robin so he could keep him out of trouble. He approved of Stephanie Brown becoming Batgirl. He tried to treat Tim the same way Bruce treated him when he quit being Robin.

But sooner rather than later, Bruce Wayne returned. Everyone expected him to be like “Hey Dick, take that off,” but instead the first thing he says is “Is that Damian in a Robin costume?”

I at least thought he would compliment Dick on his cool Batman logo shaped utility belt. Like always, Dick makes everything about Batman cooler. We all assumed Dick was just going to go back to Nightwing and everything was going to be like before just with a slight shift. But it wasn’t. Instead things were kinda weird. There were two Batmen running around (along with two Flashes), and it got confusing.

What should have happened instead of Flashpoint changing stuff, was just to develop a storyline that made Dick decide to become Nightwing again. (Going back to Nightwing was one of the only good things to come out of the New 52.) Yes, a Nightwing title should have returned and the first storyline should have been Dick shedding the cape and gripping the escrimas. Of course you’d have to bring in a villain that required some sort of nostalgia that made him change and feel better about it. Possibly Shrike or Two-Face would have been a good fit. Or they could have re-imagined the Saiko story (which was basically Nightwing’s version of Hush) and make him show that Dick was supposed to stand out in the first place. Everything else could have happened the same way. Finding out he was supposed to be a Talon for the Court of the Owls but was rescued by Batman before it got to happen. Being challenged by Damian as to who was the best Robin ever. All that would have fit perfectly in the Pre-Flashpoint universe.

Solution: Don’t flashpoint the universe and make Dick go back to Nightwing. And keep the blue fingerstripes. And keep Kyle Higgins as writer.

Next entry: Barbara Gordon.

#1 Posted by LuigiBat (225 posts) - - Show Bio

I definitely get your point here.

They could've handled it a little better, given that Dick's past pre-reboot has pretty much remained intact, and given an actual reason as to why he returned to being Nightwing. But I suppose we need to be grateful they didn't destroy the character like they did with Tim Drake.

P.S. Can you give me that Gordon quote in full? I can't find it in full anywhere and my knowledge of pre-flashpoint stuff isn't that detailed, and it piqued my curiosity.

#2 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat: The one where Commissioner Gordon could tell Dick wasn't the original Batman?

#3 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

This was great...like a Reader's Digest of Dick Grayson. It's so weird, though. So they never explain why Dick went back to being Nightwing? (I am a big Grayson fan but mostly kept up with his major plots on wikipedia). I remember thinking how I was hoping the comics would spend some time exploring how being Batman had changed him as a person and that that would cause him to become a bit darker (hence, the red uniform. I hoped they would at least explain it)

#4 Posted by SmoothJammin (2342 posts) - - Show Bio

@vernierhawk001: If you read Snyders 'Tec it'll help you understand the tonal shift in new 52. It can get very ominous

#5 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vernierhawk001: They mention it in Nightwing #1 but they don't explain it.

#6 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

: Thanks. I think they really missed an opportunity.

@SmoothJammin said:

@vernierhawk001: If you read Snyders 'Tec it'll help you understand the tonal shift in new 52. It can get very ominous

Tonal shift in Nigthwing New 52 or overall?

#7 Posted by SmoothJammin (2342 posts) - - Show Bio

@vernierhawk001: In new 52. Traces of Snyder's run leak into Nightwing. The two writers are also in cahoots, they share many ideas for both of their series

#8 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@SmoothJammin: @vernierhawk001: That is true. Snyder and Higgins are friends and worked together on Batman: Gates of Gotham and on the Night of the Owls crossover. They will also collaborate on the Death of the Family Joker story where Joker goes after Nightwing and the rest of the Bat-Clan.

#9 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: Yeah. I just read another Death of the Family review from another website. Got me excited all over again. Begs the question: how does one tear apart Grayson's world? Maybe another thread topic?

#10 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vernierhawk001: It's not so much him destroying Nightwing's world... Especially since he is not that strategic with his attacks... But more like, "Hi, I never really messed with you before... But now I'm going to kill you."

#11 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio
#12 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

4th paragraph from the end 0_0

#13 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

1. finger stripes - ew

2. doesn't make too much difference, red or blue. they both look good.

3. the new 52 version of nightwing sucked because of the writer, not flashpoint. I have not been enjoying Nightwing all that much other than the NOTO tie ins.

#14 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@vernierhawk001: Yeah I see what you mean. I just don't really see that in the literal sense. But that could just be me. I've been obsessed with Nightwing since he first appeared in BTAS. So I really can't see it going down like it would in Batman. But I don't know.. I could be wrong.

@sethysquare: Whoa, whoa, whoa... You don't like Kyle Higgins' writing? Blasphemy. lol

#15 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: I guees we will just have to wait. And it makes it sound like the extent to which the writers effect their characters is somewhat up to them. I think it's a really good opportunity, though, to really examine the characters, find their flaws and then put them through their paces.

#16 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: And I would be really excited for Dick to go through something like that

#17 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: Sorry I don't lol.

I stucked with it for 11 issues and I'm honestly bored. Dick used to be my favourite character, but its not so much flashpoint that changed it, but I guess Kyle Higgins writing is just not for me. I'm still excited to play as Dick on Injustice, but I am actually not so excited about his solo.

#18 Posted by Spectre108 (269 posts) - - Show Bio

@sethysquare: Finger stripes are ew? Also blasphemy!

#19 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@Spectre108: HAHA, I like Black finger stripes.

#20 Posted by Quntumking (216 posts) - - Show Bio

Will Azrael be in this? The first one.

#21 Posted by SmoothJammin (2342 posts) - - Show Bio

@vernierhawk001 said:

4th paragraph from the end 0_0

I jumped back a little after reading it. Thanks for the links. It was all very insightful. I guess it's time I do some research on Tarot interpretation and Shakespearean imagery. 10 bucks says Dick is The Sun ;)

@sethysquare said:

@TheMess1428: Sorry I don't lol.

I stucked with it for 11 issues and I'm honestly bored. Dick used to be my favourite character, but its not so much flashpoint that changed it, but I guess Kyle Higgins writing is just not for me. I'm still excited to play as Dick on Injustice, but I am actually not so excited about his solo.

I don't blame you fellow. I'll vouch for ya. Even if Kyle Higgins succeeds at nailing Dick's characterization his storytelling falls flat. I mean it's structured nicely but if Higgins applied the same formula for what he did on Deathstroke or Nightrunner we wouldn't be thrown in the same loop of ordinary Nightwing's been stuck in since the heydays of Dixon. He plays it too safe. For one, we've just dealt with a secret society of villains working under Gothams radar in an attempt to topple our heroes(Night of Owls). Do we really need to dive headlong into recycled material? As a fan, I want to feel like I'm reading about a character who's on par with Batman, who WAS Batman. Much as it pains me to say this, we haven't hit that stride. The pacing felt slow in the beginning not to mention a filler fest. No offense to readers of NW or Kyle himself I just want to see Dick took in another direction entirely, bump it over 9000 --rlly hook ppl month after month. True followers shouldn't want to see him used as an agent of Batman's, he's not anyones "pawn" either ... Nightwing is Gothams true saviour. Treat him as such.

How do you lot feel about his run so far? Has he been written extraordinarily or do you agree it's fluctuated between good and great?

#22 Posted by LuigiBat (225 posts) - - Show Bio

@SmoothJammin said:

@vernierhawk001 said:

4th paragraph from the end 0_0

I jumped back a little after reading it. Thanks for the links. It was all very insightful. I guess it's time I do some research on Tarot interpretation and Shakespearean imagery. 10 bucks says Dick is The Sun ;)

@sethysquare said:

@TheMess1428: Sorry I don't lol.

I stucked with it for 11 issues and I'm honestly bored. Dick used to be my favourite character, but its not so much flashpoint that changed it, but I guess Kyle Higgins writing is just not for me. I'm still excited to play as Dick on Injustice, but I am actually not so excited about his solo.

I don't blame you fellow. I'll vouch for ya. Even if Kyle Higgins succeeds at nailing Dick's characterization his storytelling falls flat. I mean it's structured nicely but if Higgins applied the same formula for what he did on Deathstroke or Nightrunner we wouldn't be thrown in the same loop of ordinary Nightwing's been stuck in since the heydays of Dixon. He plays it too safe. For one, we've just dealt with a secret society of villains working under Gothams radar in an attempt to topple our heroes(Night of Owls). Do we really need to dive headlong into recycled material? As a fan, I want to feel like I'm reading about a character who's on par with Batman, who WAS Batman. Much as it pains me to say this, we haven't hit that stride. The pacing felt slow in the beginning not to mention a filler fest. No offense to readers of NW or Kyle himself I just want to see Dick took in another direction entirely, bump it over 9000 --rlly hook ppl month after month. True followers shouldn't want to see him used as an agent of Batman's, he's not anyones "pawn" either ... Nightwing is Gothams true saviour. Treat him as such.

How do you lot feel about his run so far? Has he been written extraordinarily or do you agree it's fluctuated between good and great?

I'd say its fluctuated a lot, some issues were good and others were great, but in saying that Higgins is probably the only writer aside from Snyder who has put out a consistently good series.

I've quite enjoyed the last couple of issues, he's done more detective work than 'tec Batman has in the entire series, I agree that it was too early to have a new secret society but really I've been more interested in the police case against Nightwing and how that pans out. I can see where you are coming from in saying that we haven't really hit full stride yet in the series, but that being said aside from a couple of filler's at the start of the series we've been treated to a consistently good level of storytelling.

#23 Posted by SmoothJammin (2342 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat: It could even be editorial at the helm, on a massive power trip. Most likely dictating which direction to take the series despite Kyles best efforts to tell his own story. Who knows. I've heard cases from writers(George Perez, John Rozum to name a couple) who had very little say in things and their ongoings suffered for it. Static Shock was cancelled as a result and Superman turned out to be a critical failure. The storytelling isn't bad per se, it just lacks some umf! imo.

#24 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat said:

@SmoothJammin said:

@vernierhawk001 said:

4th paragraph from the end 0_0

I jumped back a little after reading it. Thanks for the links. It was all very insightful. I guess it's time I do some research on Tarot interpretation and Shakespearean imagery. 10 bucks says Dick is The Sun ;)

@sethysquare said:

@TheMess1428: Sorry I don't lol.

I stucked with it for 11 issues and I'm honestly bored. Dick used to be my favourite character, but its not so much flashpoint that changed it, but I guess Kyle Higgins writing is just not for me. I'm still excited to play as Dick on Injustice, but I am actually not so excited about his solo.

I don't blame you fellow. I'll vouch for ya. Even if Kyle Higgins succeeds at nailing Dick's characterization his storytelling falls flat. I mean it's structured nicely but if Higgins applied the same formula for what he did on Deathstroke or Nightrunner we wouldn't be thrown in the same loop of ordinary Nightwing's been stuck in since the heydays of Dixon. He plays it too safe. For one, we've just dealt with a secret society of villains working under Gothams radar in an attempt to topple our heroes(Night of Owls). Do we really need to dive headlong into recycled material? As a fan, I want to feel like I'm reading about a character who's on par with Batman, who WAS Batman. Much as it pains me to say this, we haven't hit that stride. The pacing felt slow in the beginning not to mention a filler fest. No offense to readers of NW or Kyle himself I just want to see Dick took in another direction entirely, bump it over 9000 --rlly hook ppl month after month. True followers shouldn't want to see him used as an agent of Batman's, he's not anyones "pawn" either ... Nightwing is Gothams true saviour. Treat him as such.

How do you lot feel about his run so far? Has he been written extraordinarily or do you agree it's fluctuated between good and great?

I'd say its fluctuated a lot, some issues were good and others were great, but in saying that Higgins is probably the only writer aside from Snyder who has put out a consistently good series.

I've quite enjoyed the last couple of issues, he's done more detective work than 'tec Batman has in the entire series, I agree that it was too early to have a new secret society but really I've been more interested in the police case against Nightwing and how that pans out. I can see where you are coming from in saying that we haven't really hit full stride yet in the series, but that being said aside from a couple of filler's at the start of the series we've been treated to a consistently good level of storytelling.

I feel conflicted because I feel like I want him to carve out a path of his own and not be under Batman's shadow. That includes having his own rogue gallery and supporting characters. But at the same time, he lives in Gotham, so I would not mind if he gets to have some of Batman's rogue villains and make it his own. The problem with this run is that none of it is happening. We didn't get to see a supporting cast, because after NOTO, all his previous supporting cast/villains all are either dead or went to jail, so we're back to square one. Sure those NOTO issues are fun and perhaps one of the best. But then what next then?

Also, didn't he used to have some villains and why aren't we using them? Also, I think it'll be much better if the series was actually interesting. But after issue 3 or 4, it got really stale and all. I'm still reading it, but I don't think for long.

This was essentially the same thing with Batgirl. But Barbara Gordon is someone who benefited from the relaunch. Largely due to Gail Simone. I felt like her stories are so much more compelling and she created villains after villains, after villains. All of which seemed to have a potentially to come back and really establish themselves as a major villain for Batgirl. There are also great supporting characters in Batgirl. Which is why I seem to be enjoying Batgirl much more than Nightwing.

#25 Edited by LuigiBat (225 posts) - - Show Bio

@SmoothJammin said:

@LuigiBat: It could even be editorial at the helm, on a massive power trip. Most likely dictating which direction to take the series despite Kyles best efforts to tell his own story. Who knows. I've heard cases from writers(George Perez, John Rozum to name a couple) who had very little say in things and their ongoings suffered for it. Static Shock was cancelled as a result and Superman turned out to be a critical failure. The storytelling isn't bad per se, it just lacks some umf! imo.

Yeah that's what I've been thinking as well. The guys working the Batman titles are pretty much given free reign to do whatever they want, even if it's bloody awful (Tony Daniel and The Dark Knight). I get the feeling that DC don't want Nightwing to fully come into his own and be a title that is on par or better than the Batman titles. Having read some of Higgins' other work I can't help but feel that he could give us a Nightwing title that is at the very least on par with Snyder's Batman, so the question is why hasn't he been doing so?

I think the problem is that Flashpoint didn't really change much when it came to Dick's past. His old rogue's gallery were pretty much dealt with before he became Batman, he didn't leave loads of loose ends which could've been exploited by Higgins.

Once this whole Republic of Tomorrow is over we'll get to see Dick face up to the Joker. That is something I'm really excited for, as for the first time the Joker will be gunning for Nightwing specifically, previously he's only ever gone at the other Bat-Family members to get to Batman but now he's specifically got plans for each of the family. I reckon we could see Dick really come into his own against the Joker, I mean he's still spent time as Batman in the New 52 so it should be a great match-up. Then hopefully after Joker has been dealt with we can get some new villains created, similar to the Batgirl title.

#26 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@Quntumking said:

Will Azrael be in this? The first one.

I'm sorry, no. Mostly because of the fact that the 8 characters are the only ones who were actually affected by Flashpoint and the New 52 and Azrael was not. Even the recent one didn't have any connection to Flashpoint and the New 52. The 8 characters will be: Dick Grayson, Barbara Gordon, Jason Todd, Tim Drake, Cassandra Cain, Stephanie Brown, Damian Wayne, and Bruce Wayne.

#27 Posted by SmoothJammin (2342 posts) - - Show Bio

Maybe I'm being too harsh. I'm going to reread everything from the start. Maybe then I'll gain a greater appreciation for it..

#28 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat said:

@SmoothJammin said:

@LuigiBat: It could even be editorial at the helm, on a massive power trip. Most likely dictating which direction to take the series despite Kyles best efforts to tell his own story. Who knows. I've heard cases from writers(George Perez, John Rozum to name a couple) who had very little say in things and their ongoings suffered for it. Static Shock was cancelled as a result and Superman turned out to be a critical failure. The storytelling isn't bad per se, it just lacks some umf! imo.

Yeah that's what I've been thinking as well. The guys working the Batman titles are pretty much given free reign to do whatever they want, even if it's bloody awful (Tony Daniel and The Dark Knight). I get the feeling that DC don't want Nightwing to fully come into his own and be a title that is on par or better than the Batman titles. Having read some of Higgins' other work I can't help but feel that he could give us a Nightwing title that is at the very least on par with Snyder's Batman, so the question is why hasn't he been doing so?

I think the problem is that Flashpoint didn't really change much when it came to Dick's past. His old rogue's gallery were pretty much dealt with before he became Batman, he didn't leave loads of loose ends which could've been exploited by Higgins.

Once this whole Republic of Tomorrow is over we'll get to see Dick face up to the Joker. That is something I'm really excited for, as for the first time the Joker will be gunning for Nightwing specifically, previously he's only ever gone at the other Bat-Family members to get to Batman but now he's specifically got plans for each of the family. I reckon we could see Dick really come into his own against the Joker, I mean he's still spent time as Batman in the New 52 so it should be a great match-up. Then hopefully after Joker has been dealt with we can get some new villains created, similar to the Batgirl title.

I'm very excited about the Joker run this fall. As you said, I think it is a HUGE opportunity for Dick...ya know, to catapault him to levels we hvae not previously seen

#29 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

@SmoothJammin said:

@vernierhawk001 said:

4th paragraph from the end 0_0

I jumped back a little after reading it. Thanks for the links. It was all very insightful. I guess it's time I do some research on Tarot interpretation and Shakespearean imagery. 10 bucks says Dick is The Sun ;)

@sethysquare said:

@TheMess1428: Sorry I don't lol.

I stucked with it for 11 issues and I'm honestly bored. Dick used to be my favourite character, but its not so much flashpoint that changed it, but I guess Kyle Higgins writing is just not for me. I'm still excited to play as Dick on Injustice, but I am actually not so excited about his solo.

I don't blame you fellow. I'll vouch for ya. Even if Kyle Higgins succeeds at nailing Dick's characterization his storytelling falls flat. I mean it's structured nicely but if Higgins applied the same formula for what he did on Deathstroke or Nightrunner we wouldn't be thrown in the same loop of ordinary Nightwing's been stuck in since the heydays of Dixon. He plays it too safe. For one, we've just dealt with a secret society of villains working under Gothams radar in an attempt to topple our heroes(Night of Owls). Do we really need to dive headlong into recycled material? As a fan, I want to feel like I'm reading about a character who's on par with Batman, who WAS Batman. Much as it pains me to say this, we haven't hit that stride. The pacing felt slow in the beginning not to mention a filler fest. No offense to readers of NW or Kyle himself I just want to see Dick took in another direction entirely, bump it over 9000 --rlly hook ppl month after month. True followers shouldn't want to see him used as an agent of Batman's, he's not anyones "pawn" either ... Nightwing is Gothams true saviour. Treat him as such.

How do you lot feel about his run so far? Has he been written extraordinarily or do you agree it's fluctuated between good and great?

Agreed! By the way, check out King Lear. AS I recall, there was some interesting interplay between the King and his court jester. Could be what Snyder is puling from?????

#30 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat said:

@SmoothJammin said:

@LuigiBat: It could even be editorial at the helm, on a massive power trip. Most likely dictating which direction to take the series despite Kyles best efforts to tell his own story. Who knows. I've heard cases from writers(George Perez, John Rozum to name a couple) who had very little say in things and their ongoings suffered for it. Static Shock was cancelled as a result and Superman turned out to be a critical failure. The storytelling isn't bad per se, it just lacks some umf! imo.

Yeah that's what I've been thinking as well. The guys working the Batman titles are pretty much given free reign to do whatever they want, even if it's bloody awful (Tony Daniel and The Dark Knight). I get the feeling that DC don't want Nightwing to fully come into his own and be a title that is on par or better than the Batman titles. Having read some of Higgins' other work I can't help but feel that he could give us a Nightwing title that is at the very least on par with Snyder's Batman, so the question is why hasn't he been doing so?

I think the problem is that Flashpoint didn't really change much when it came to Dick's past. His old rogue's gallery were pretty much dealt with before he became Batman, he didn't leave loads of loose ends which could've been exploited by Higgins.

Once this whole Republic of Tomorrow is over we'll get to see Dick face up to the Joker. That is something I'm really excited for, as for the first time the Joker will be gunning for Nightwing specifically, previously he's only ever gone at the other Bat-Family members to get to Batman but now he's specifically got plans for each of the family. I reckon we could see Dick really come into his own against the Joker, I mean he's still spent time as Batman in the New 52 so it should be a great match-up. Then hopefully after Joker has been dealt with we can get some new villains created, similar to the Batgirl title.

Hopefully things pick up soon. I really want to enjoy Dick's book.

#31 Edited by fodigg (6148 posts) - - Show Bio

Interesting points. I'll be reading this series of blogs from you. However, I will say that it seems like your overarching opinion on the revamp was "no, don't do it." I think that's valid, but it's not as useful when discussing how it could've been handled better. For example, for Nightwing you say they should've just had a storyline that made him Nightwing again. Well, isn't that the same as not doing a revamp?

Personally, I think that if they were going to do a reboot, they should've just gone all the way and given the Batman and Green Lantern clans the same trimming everybody else got. Much as that pains me. But this half-way approach they've taken is confusing and in many ways worse. Tim and Jason are being horribly mishandled in the revamp. Part of me wishes they'd just have been given the same treatment as Cass and Steph (who got the same treatment as Wally, Donna, Connor Hawke, and others).

The revamp has failed the Bat family by failing to simplify it, while simultaneously changing enough things to derail, poorly write, or omit beloved characters. The whole thing is undignified and the pain is ongoing. At least with Flash I can just say "would've preferred Wally a lot" without seeing Wally made into some half-way side character who was "actually never Kid Flash" or something.

If I was revamping the Bat books it would've been this:

  • Batman - Bruce Wayne
  • Nightwing - Dick Grayson (the first Robin)
  • Oracle - Babs Gordon (let her out of the wheelchair if you want, but she's still Oracle)
  • Batgirl - Cass Cain (de-aged back to her introduction, a little older than Damian)
  • Robin - Damian Wayne

And that's it. It's simple. I'm a huge fan of Tim & Steph. I think Jason's time as Robin was hugely formative for the Batman mythos. But why do a revamp at all if you're not going to simplify things? And hey, if you think my above suggestion is actually a reason to simply NOT do a reboot, well, I don't entirely disagree with you.

Edit:

Or even simpler, no Oracle, just make Babs Batgirl and cut Cass, since "oracle" isn't a household name and Cass & Damian hit a lot of the same themes.

#32 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

@fodigg said:

Interesting points. I'll be reading this series of blogs from you. However, I will say that it seems like your overarching opinion on the revamp was "no, don't do it." I think that's valid, but it's not as useful when discussing how it could've been handled better. For example, for Nightwing you say they should've just had a storyline that made him Nightwing again. Well, isn't that the same as not doing a revamp?

Personally, I think that if they were going to do a reboot, they should've just gone all the way and given the Batman and Green Lantern clans the same trimming everybody else got. Much as that pains me. But this half-way approach they've taken is confusing and in many ways worse. Tim and Jason are being horribly mishandled in the revamp. Part of me wishes they'd just have been given the same treatment as Cass and Steph (who got the same treatment as Wally, Donna, Connor Hawke, and others).

The revamp has failed the Bat family by failing to simplify it, while simultaneously changing enough things to derail, poorly write, or omit beloved characters. The whole thing is undignified and the pain is ongoing. At least with Flash I can just say "would've preferred Wally a lot" without seeing Wally made into some half-way side character who was "actually never Kid Flash" or something.

If I was revamping the Bat books it would've been this:

  • Batman - Bruce Wayne
  • Nightwing - Dick Grayson (the first Robin)
  • Oracle - Babs Gordon (let her out of the wheelchair if you want, but she's still Oracle)
  • Batgirl - Cass Cain (de-aged back to her introduction, a little older than Damian)
  • Robin - Damian Wayne

And that's it. It's simple. I'm a huge fan of Tim & Steph. I think Jason's time as Robin was hugely formative for the Batman mythos. But why do a revamp at all if you're not going to simplify things? And hey, if you think my above suggestion is actually a reason to simply NOT do a reboot, well, I don't entirely disagree with you.

Edit:

Or even simpler, no Oracle, just make Babs Batgirl and cut Cass, since "oracle" isn't a household name and Cass & Damian hit a lot of the same themes.

0_0 Cut Tim and Jason?!

#33 Posted by fodigg (6148 posts) - - Show Bio

@vernierhawk001 said:

@fodigg said:

...

0_0 Cut Tim and Jason?!

I'm not saying it wouldn't be painful, but yeah, if you're gonna reboot, be consistent across the line. Don't cut down every character to the nub of their history and then leave the Bat Family and Green Lantern Corps pretty much intact, it causes these inconsistencies and the poor character handling we've seen with all the legacy characters. Cutting Tim would hurt, but no more than cutting Wally did.

If I were handling a reboot, I would've just taken more advantage of the alternate earths setup. It would've been this:

  • Earth-0: Justice League Earth. What are we trying to sell as a movie? Who are the minimum required characters of the DC universe, and who are their core supporting characters?
  • Earth-1: Reserved for "hero-less" Earth.
  • Earth-2: Justice Society Earth. Where can we stick all the old timey versions of our characters? All the golden age versions or properties that do best in that setting (e.g., Hawkman, Shazam). I agree with killing off the Earth-2 versions of the big three to prevent overlap.
  • Earth-3: Reserved for evil versions.
  • Earth-4: Titans Earth. This is where you put all the legacy characters and just go nuts with it. The earliest Teen Titans are the primary "Justice League" style group. Everything else spins out of them. Put Jason here, put Tim here, put Cass here, put Steph, put every obscure character you can think of so nothing is cut, they don't confuse the casuals, and yet the hardcores get their continuity porn.

Cutting Jason and Tim might seem unthinkable, but what have they really done with them that was worth keeping them around in the reboot? What have we had to put up with regarding them? Now we have an unequivocally "good guy" Jason and a schizophrenic Tim in a dancer's outfit.

#34 Posted by vernierhawk001 (539 posts) - - Show Bio

Yeesh. I guess. :)

#35 Posted by DEGRAAF (7909 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat said:

I definitely get your point here.

They could've handled it a little better, given that Dick's past pre-reboot has pretty much remained intact, and given an actual reason as to why he returned to being Nightwing. But I suppose we need to be grateful they didn't destroy the character like they did with Tim Drake.

You really think they screwed Tim up that badly? I like him but it does seem like he has lost a lot of history

#36 Posted by DEGRAAF (7909 posts) - - Show Bio

I love Alfred but i think they should have Joker kill him. I hope they play Dick against Joker like they played Terry in Batman Beyond. Dick is the type that likes to talk, laugh, and make jokes. He knows the Joker better then anyone short of Batman and Harley. He should know the situation is serious but also know what gets the Joker riled up (which in turn should cause the Joker to kill someone very close to Dick) I think the biggest problem right now is Dick has no one close to him. His closest family and allies are Bruce, Tim, and Barbra.

I love Nightwing he is one of my favorite (tied for 1st with Superman) characters. They really do seem to be recycling the Court of Owls scenario already and its a shame. It seems like one of the problems with Nightwings rogues are they tend to be killed. Seiko would have been a good villain for him to keep and he had some great ones before he became Batman again too. Since Seiko is dead i would have liked to see Jason be Dick's main threat. I dont mind him facing off with other more well known villains of Gotham but my biggest problem with Dick as Batman was that every villain they put him against was like it was his first time against old villains and his first time fighting crime when facing new ones. I expected him to stumble here and there but it felt like Dick never had a handle on things and always fell in to fortunate scenarios to win. He should have known about having more defenses to keep people from tracking him back to the cave.

Even now he seems fresh still (and not in a good way). He seems like he still has alot of learning to do when he should be more of a solo hero that doesnt need so much help. I know he hasnt gotten a lot of help since returning to Nightwing but he should have blocked Batmans back hand, he shouldnt have to ask for loans (he was rich from his parents funds he ended up with, just go back to when he became Nightwing) He is very creative and should be shown to come up with new toys and tricks in his suit and weapons. Gotham is a big town with multiple villains having control over various sections of it. While Batman is dealing with Joker, Nightwing should be dealing with Two-Face and Penguin. While Bruce is dealing with Bane, Nightwing should be dealing with Clay Face or Killer Croc. There is enough to go around, there is no reason to give Nightwing no name villain that die at the end of the arcs.

I hope when it comes down to Damien taking him on he beats Damien in whatever Damien feels he has to win at.

to me Dick Grayson is an A class hero that needs to stop being restrained by the big wigs that want to keep Bruce, Kal, and Diana as their big 3. By doing so they are keeping other characters from growing in to what they rightfully should be.

#37 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@fodigg: First of all, I don't dislike every aspect of the reboot. There are some things that I thought was awesome, including Dick being Nightwing, Aquaman, Frankenstein, Animal Man, and Swamp Thing getting a push, Jonah Hex moving to Gotham City, the new Suicide Squad, and the integration of the Wildstorm characters into the DC Universe. Grifter is one of my favorite comics in the New 52 and I'm loving Stormwatch as well.

Second, I feel as though if you're going to make changes, it would be easier if they felt more organic and natural than how they actually did it, which was completely forced. I could actually do this blog series for almost every character in the New 52 but I want to keep it contained to the Bat-Clan.

I also would like to mention that I am glad that the Green Lantern universe is not very different than it was before the New 52. Everything seems organic and I love it.

Now, as far as the point of this series is to say that the reboot never should have happened AT ALL. Mostly because, everything existing in the Bat universe currently, story-wise, could have been handled without a reboot. (Except Barbara's stories as Batgirl.)

As for Jason Todd, I am actually liking where he is at in the New 52. Much better than what they did with him after Bruce "died." I never liked him as a villain. I thought he made a better anti-hero than anything. And as for his relationship with Dick, I preferred him as being his rival, rather than his enemy or villain. And with the RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS storyarcs, I'm glad they are giving him something to do without making him another up and coming mob boss like they did when he finally showed himself to Bruce. I also like the friendship between Jason and Roy. The only thing I hate the most is the confusion on Jason's age and how it corresponds with Dick's age.

Honestly, when it comes to the Bat-Clan, I don't want anyone cut from the team. I want it to be full with Bruce, Alfred, Dick, Barbara, Jason, Tim, Cassandra, Stephanie, Damian, and Harper. They all bring something to the table that keeps it entertaining.

As for the multiverse idea, that seems too convoluted to work in the New 52's structure. It would be chaos and everyone would be even more confused then before.

@DEGRAAF: Tim's history was alright for a while until Scott Lobdell decided to push more history into the toilet as we progress through the reboot.

You can never let Joker kill Alfred. People would be pissed! The only way to let Alfred die is some kind of natural way like being old or diseased. Otherwise it'd be too much to have him get murdered or something.

You're right about the Nightwing villain thing. Dick should be fighting villains like he did as Batman. Two-Face, Riddler, and Black Mask. Dick dealt with them in Bruce's absence. Nobody else did. He also needs to build up better villains for himself as well. I was a big fan of Shrike and Saiko but they're gone now. Also, a Deathstroke crossover would have been awesome. I also like to see Dick randomly show up and crossover with other characters. It looks good in Batwing. He should mix it up with Deathstroke, Grifter, Green Arrow, Red Hood, Ravagers, Catwoman, Suicide Squad, Huntress and Power Girl, and the Teen Titans. He is a very universal character. I also think there should be more Dick and Damian team ups. They work together better than Bruce and Damian. Also, Dick should beat Damian.

#38 Posted by fodigg (6148 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428 said:

@fodigg: First of all, I don't dislike every aspect of the reboot. There are some things that I thought was awesome, including Dick being Nightwing, Aquaman, Frankenstein, Animal Man, and Swamp Thing getting a push, Jonah Hex moving to Gotham City, the new Suicide Squad, and the integration of the Wildstorm characters into the DC Universe. Grifter is one of my favorite comics in the New 52 and I'm loving Stormwatch as well.

Animal Man and Swamp Thing, and the whole new dynamic with the Green, the Red, and the Gray (rot), are indeed awesome. I'm glad you're down with elements of the reboot, but--

Second, I feel as though if you're going to make changes, it would be easier if they felt more organic and natural than how they actually did it, which was completely forced. I could actually do this blog series for almost every character in the New 52 but I want to keep it contained to the Bat-Clan.

--the above definitely seems like you're saying "no reboot" even if it's just "no reboot for the bat clan." I think that's worth discussing but if you're going to break down by character what was done well and what wasn't, well, that seems odd if you just feel the whole thing was poorly handled.

I also would like to mention that I am glad that the Green Lantern universe is not very different than it was before the New 52. Everything seems organic and I love it.

Well, they have the benefit of not tying into so many other books. Teen Titans and Red Hood and those books are all a mess because of the 5-year crunch on the Bat books.

Now, as far as the point of this series is to say that the reboot never should have happened AT ALL. Mostly because, everything existing in the Bat universe currently, story-wise, could have been handled without a reboot. (Except Barbara's stories as Batgirl.)

As for Jason Todd, I am actually liking where he is at in the New 52. Much better than what they did with him after Bruce "died." I never liked him as a villain. I thought he made a better anti-hero than anything. And as for his relationship with Dick, I preferred him as being his rival, rather than his enemy or villain. And with the RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS storyarcs, I'm glad they are giving him something to do without making him another up and coming mob boss like they did when he finally showed himself to Bruce. I also like the friendship between Jason and Roy. The only thing I hate the most is the confusion on Jason's age and how it corresponds with Dick's age.

Honestly, when it comes to the Bat-Clan, I don't want anyone cut from the team. I want it to be full with Bruce, Alfred, Dick, Barbara, Jason, Tim, Cassandra, Stephanie, Damian, and Harper. They all bring something to the table that keeps it entertaining.

Yeah, so why do a reboot? I mean, I agree with you! I'm just saying, it kinda seems like you're saying the whole thing was a mistake.

As for the multiverse idea, that seems too convoluted to work in the New 52's structure. It would be chaos and everyone would be even more confused then before.

That's certainly possible. I just think it would help keep people happy if they know their characters are somewhere, even if it's limited to one or two ensemble "world' books.

#39 Posted by DEGRAAF (7909 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428:

I know they would never do it but i think they should have let him kill Barbra or let him kill one of the big name characters. I know he killed Jason but i dont want the character to come back thats why i chose Alfred. He is the least likely to come back.

I agree with alot of what you were saying. I would like to see him have more crossovers. Him being in Red Hood and the Outlaws would be crazy good. To see him hang out with Roy, see his reaction to Starfire now, and see him banter with Jason helping them in some journey and while still helping them trying to stop Jason from killing people when he finds out he isnt in the majority anymore and has to back down from facing all 3 of them. I havent been reading Green Arrow but i would like to see him team up with an archer. I always liked him and Roy teaming up. It would make sense for him to help the Titans. They could even make reference to his old team in San Francisco. I definitely think it would be cool to see him thwart one of Deathstrokes assassination attempts and end up having Deathstroke come after him or at least mention their history. I like suicide squad but im not sure if i would want to see him in it unless someone froces him on the team (say if the cops caught him with the help of the suicide squad and Amanda Waller placing him on their team for a stint. I actually didnt like the way he fought as Batman though because IMO it seemed like he was always making mistakes.

#40 Posted by LuigiBat (225 posts) - - Show Bio

@DEGRAAF said:

@LuigiBat said:

I definitely get your point here.

They could've handled it a little better, given that Dick's past pre-reboot has pretty much remained intact, and given an actual reason as to why he returned to being Nightwing. But I suppose we need to be grateful they didn't destroy the character like they did with Tim Drake.

You really think they screwed Tim up that badly? I like him but it does seem like he has lost a lot of history

I don't regularly read Teen Titans but from everything I've seen of him he's had a serious regression in the New 52. His change in origin will only add to the destruction of the character, all thanks to Lobdell. I didn't really like how pre-reboot he was made into this almost perfect character, but equally I don't think they've handled him at all well in the reboot. He's lost all his history, he's lost a lot of his unique skills, intellectually I don't think he seems all that great anymore (still no dunce though) and his constant chastising of Damian is wearing very thin now.

#41 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@fodigg: I'm sorry if my point hasn't come across clearly but I am trying to say that the reboot just shouldn't have happened at all. Yes. But like I said, I do like some of the things that came out of it but it was totally possible to make them happen without the reboot. Yes it seems as though I am being completely negative in my solutions for each character but we are only 25% of the way through here. There could possibly be some positive blogs in the future of this series. And yes, yes, YES, the whole thing was a mistake. If I had been the 4th guy in the office with Geoff, Jim, and Dan, I would have voted no and made all the new stories happen in it's place but without changing almost everything.

@DEGRAAF: Yeah those would all be awesome. Reason why I said Green Arrow is because of his major de-aging. It makes him closer in immaturity to Dick so that they could actually work together on a level. As for the Teen Titans, Dick's team was never in San Francisco. That was Tim's team. Dick's team was from NYC. As for the Suicide Squad, I actually thought it would be awesome if he fought the team and tried to disrupt one of their missions. But your idea is even more interesting. And he was supposed to mess up as Batman. He is not supposed to be as perfect as Bruce at being Batman because then that basically says that Bruce isn't really all that special like we all thought. He could just easily be replaced and nobody would really notice or care. But that's not true and they told it that way.

#42 Posted by LuigiBat (225 posts) - - Show Bio

Technically speaking Dick's Teen Titans never existed, the group of people all met up but they never were the Teen Titans. Tim's team is meant to be the very first Teen Titans team.

#43 Posted by fodigg (6148 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428 said:

@fodigg: I'm sorry if my point hasn't come across clearly but I am trying to say that the reboot just shouldn't have happened at all. Yes. But like I said, I do like some of the things that came out of it but it was totally possible to make them happen without the reboot. Yes it seems as though I am being completely negative in my solutions for each character but we are only 25% of the way through here. There could possibly be some positive blogs in the future of this series. And yes, yes, YES, the whole thing was a mistake. If I had been the 4th guy in the office with Geoff, Jim, and Dan, I would have voted no and made all the new stories happen in it's place but without changing almost everything.

Well, there's no need to apologize, I may just not be getting it. I'm trying to talk you toward the core change you feel could have been made in a reboot with Dick Grayson. Obviously you were pleased to see him go back to Nightwing, but what are some other big changes for him you would've wanted to see (even if they wouldn't necessarily require a reboot)? You mention the Talon thing, but what did you really think of it? What did you think of the return to the circus generally?

#44 Posted by DEGRAAF (7909 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428: I was thinking of the cartoon that had the tower in the San Fran bay.

@LuigiBat said:

Technically speaking Dick's Teen Titans never existed, the group of people all met up but they never were the Teen Titans. Tim's team is meant to be the very first Teen Titans team.

Who said that?

@fodigg said:

@TheMess1428 said:

@fodigg: I'm sorry if my point hasn't come across clearly but I am trying to say that the reboot just shouldn't have happened at all. Yes. But like I said, I do like some of the things that came out of it but it was totally possible to make them happen without the reboot. Yes it seems as though I am being completely negative in my solutions for each character but we are only 25% of the way through here. There could possibly be some positive blogs in the future of this series. And yes, yes, YES, the whole thing was a mistake. If I had been the 4th guy in the office with Geoff, Jim, and Dan, I would have voted no and made all the new stories happen in it's place but without changing almost everything.

Well, there's no need to apologize, I may just not be getting it. I'm trying to talk you toward the core change you feel could have been made in a reboot with Dick Grayson. Obviously you were pleased to see him go back to Nightwing, but what are some other big changes for him you would've wanted to see (even if they wouldn't necessarily require a reboot)? You mention the Talon thing, but what did you really think of it? What did you think of the return to the circus generally?

i know you arent asking my opinion but i thought it was kind of redundant to have him own the circus just bc he either owned or ran the circus before as well. I liked his whole situation and links with the Talons but i dont like this new group he is going against bc itmight as well be a knock off of the Court of Owls and htats just sad since the Night of Owls just ended

#45 Posted by DEGRAAF (7909 posts) - - Show Bio

@TheMess1428 said:

@DEGRAAF: Yeah those would all be awesome. Reason why I said Green Arrow is because of his major de-aging. It makes him closer in immaturity to Dick so that they could actually work together on a level. As for the Teen Titans, Dick's team was never in San Francisco. That was Tim's team. Dick's team was from NYC. As for the Suicide Squad, I actually thought it would be awesome if he fought the team and tried to disrupt one of their missions. But your idea is even more interesting. And he was supposed to mess up as Batman. He is not supposed to be as perfect as Bruce at being Batman because then that basically says that Bruce isn't really all that special like we all thought. He could just easily be replaced and nobody would really notice or care. But that's not true and they told it that way.

Yea and i was ok with him messing up at the beginning but i felt like he never got better. He has even been Batman before so he should have known what to expect. lol to me though Bruce isnt all that special. I like him but i think Nightwing should be able to surpass him

#46 Posted by richardjohngrayson (444 posts) - - Show Bio

@ DEGRAAF Scott Lobdell said this at the Young Justice panel at SDCC 2012- "If Red Robin just started the Teen Titans, how is the flashback with Nightwing explained? "It doesn't show the Teen Titans, it shows people who used to be on Teen Titans hanging out together. There was no reference to Teen Titans. My feeling is that in the DC New 52, yes, these characters have crossed paths before, but there was no previous version of the Teen Titans. That group you saw in flashback was there, but they were not 'Teen Titans.'" Lobdell says that originally there was going to be more history with the Teen Titans, but plans changed along the way, and might change again."

#47 Posted by LuigiBat (225 posts) - - Show Bio

- See the post below by

@ DEGRAAF Scott Lobdell said this at the Young Justice panel at SDCC 2012- "If Red Robin just started the Teen Titans, how is the flashback with Nightwing explained? "It doesn't show the Teen Titans, it shows people who used to be on Teen Titans hanging out together. There was no reference to Teen Titans. My feeling is that in the DC New 52, yes, these characters have crossed paths before, but there was no previous version of the Teen Titans. That group you saw in flashback was there, but they were not 'Teen Titans.'" Lobdell says that originally there was going to be more history with the Teen Titans, but plans changed along the way, and might change again."
#48 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat: Yes I know. I was just stating for the San Francisco comment.

@fodigg: I liked pretty much all of it. Running the circus gives him something to do outside of being Nightwing. He's not going to try to be the male Paris Hilton or be a cop again. And he's not on a team like the Justice League or the Titans anymore. Saiko was a good villain. The Talon thing was pretty good. Only thing I don't like is a lack of supporting characters that didn't already have their own books to star in. And Dick could have just became Nightwing. The reboot wasn't needed for him to do it.

@DEGRAAF: Yeah, but the cartoon wasn't accurate either. The group of Nightwing, Beast Boy, Starfire, Roy Harper, Cyborg, Tempest, Phantasm, and Omen, were just a group of friend heroes but were never the Titans. Also, I don't think of the group Dick is fighting as another version of the Court of Owls. It's more like a cult gang. He could and so could Terry McGinnis, but they still are in his shadow.

#49 Posted by DEGRAAF (7909 posts) - - Show Bio

@LuigiBat: @TheMess1428: @richardjohngrayson said:

@ DEGRAAF Scott Lobdell said this at the Young Justice panel at SDCC 2012- "If Red Robin just started the Teen Titans, how is the flashback with Nightwing explained? "It doesn't show the Teen Titans, it shows people who used to be on Teen Titans hanging out together. There was no reference to Teen Titans. My feeling is that in the DC New 52, yes, these characters have crossed paths before, but there was no previous version of the Teen Titans. That group you saw in flashback was there, but they were not 'Teen Titans.'" Lobdell says that originally there was going to be more history with the Teen Titans, but plans changed along the way, and might change again."

interesting. Thanks.

im not sure if i would say Terry could only bc he started at such an older age but anything is possible.

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