Since Chuck Dixon returned to "Robin" – the DC Comics series he helped launch in 1993 and wrote for 100 issues -- in January, the fan favorite writer has been teasing readers of Tim Drake's solo title with sightings of one of his most popular supporting characters – The Spoiler. The high-flying heroine has also been spotted of late in the pages of Frank Tieri's "Gotham Underground" miniseries.
Trouble is, Spoiler – also known as Stephanie Brown -- died at the hands of the supervillain Black Mask in the controversial 2004 Batman story "War Games," after Dr. Leslie Thompkins chose not to save her life; a decision Thompkins made to teach Gotham's youth the lesson that fighting crime was not a wise career choice.
With solicitations for May's "Robin" #174 and June's "Robin/Spoiler Special" both hyping a big reveal for the character, CBR News contacted Dixon to see if he would play spoiler on Spoiler.
Asked point blank -- isn't Spoiler dead? -- Dixon quipped, "This is going to be a short interview. What do you think?"
And while the writer also passed on the slightly re-worded question --is Stephanie Brown back from the dead?-- he did offer up the following:
1) Spoiler is "someone you already know"
2) The Spoiler featured in "Robin" is the same one found in "Robin/Spoiler Special'
3) The special is set in current DCU continuity and
4) Spoiler will become a series regular in "Robin"
"We are planning a limited series and she will be seen in upcoming arcs in the 'Robin' monthly," said Dixon, who created the character in "Detective Comics" in 1992. "Frankly, Spoiler began as a pure plot device and evolved, because of fan interest, into a romantic foil for Robin. I'm not really certain of her intrinsic importance to the Bat-verse other than the fact that she's become a beloved supporting character.
"It's also kind of cool that Robin has someone around his own age to run rooftops with," laughed Dixon. "It's sort of a male fantasy to find a girl who shares your hobby."
Dixon, who wrote "Robin" from 1993 to 2002, admitted he needed a break from the title when he left following the release of issue #100. "I left at the right time and I think I'm coming back at a good place," said Dixon, who also writes "Batman and the Outsiders." "These characters are like family to me and it's great to be back in Gotham."
And while Dixon wouldn't say if Robin or Spoiler would be featured in Grant Morrison's "Final Crisis" miniseries, he did share a few spoilers on "Robin." "We'll see some new villains along with some old favorites, including a true badass named 666Gun who is way above Robin's weight class and poses a threat that will change the way the Teen Wonder looks at the world," teased Dixon. "Penguin will continue as a fixer in the background. A bad guy not seen in Batman continuity in 70 years will return! One half of the Trigger Twins will be back, teamed with another character from a past issue. Tim's private life is about to get way more complicated.
"Come on, the solicitation for #175 says it all 'Don't miss Part 1 of a shocking 2-part story that will irrevocably change Tim Drake's present as Robin…and his hard-won future as Batman.' Well, there are some major changes coming in Tim's world outlook."
So the rumors are true? Batman is going to die and Tim will be donning his cape and cowl in 2008?
"Again, no comment," said Dixon. "Wish I could be more forthcoming but where's the fun in that?"