Demythify: DC Comics Reveals Batman’s Robins (3 of 4) New 52 Relationships

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DC Comics later revealed ALL (4 of 4) of the relationships between Batman’s Robins, which can be found here. And, as a bit of a shock, it has been revealed that Tim Drake was never a “Robin”, but was always “Red Robin”. More on that here.

First off I will just say that if you are not reading the Scott Lobdell penned and the Kenneth Rocafort penciled / inked Red Hood and the Outlaws you are missing out on one of the best comic books on the shelves today across the entire medium.

The title is a genre bending or perhaps blending series with a mix of high drama, comedy, sci-fi, fantasy, mystery and naturally super-heroics.

Also, in addition to the Red Hood and Nightwing New 52 reboots that have been revealed so far, some more flashback fleshing out the DC Universe, particularly the Bat-corner.

In addition to the main narrative in Red Hood and the Outlaws that finds the book’s protagonists — Red Hood (Jason Todd, Batman‘s second Robin), Arsenal (Roy Harper, presumably a former ally of Green Arrow), and Starfire (Princess Koriand’r of the planet Tamaran) — writer Scott Lobdell has peppered in flashbacks throughout the series that (a) flesh out the relationship between three of Batman‘s four Robins plus (b) also explain events that lead into the New 52’s Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 and Teen Titans #1.

These are not huge spoilers impacting the main narrative of the books, but are nice Easter Eggs that fill in some continuity and emotional crevices of the New 52.

Recently, in Red Hood and Outlaws #8, we learned through a flashback (see two interior pages to the right) that Jason Todd and Tim Drake (Batman‘s third Robin and current Red Robin of the Teen Titans) have a friendly relationship and that they helped each other in ways that helped advance the plotlines kicked off in each title’s inaugural New 52 issues.

This follows the events in Red Hood and the Outlaws #6 which was billed as revealing “Starfire & Red Hood… First Encounter!” A lot was revealed in that issue.

In that issue we learned about the adversarial relationship between Jason Todd and Dick Grayson (Batman‘s first Robinand current Nightwing).

In addition to showing us the New 52 tweaked Jason Todd’s Robin costume, we also gleaned Dick Grayson’s first Nightwing costume sans pre-Flashpoint 1980s lapels! :)

We also learn about the relationship between Princes Koriand’r, Dick Grayson with Roy Harper. They were on a mission, maybe not as a team or maybe as the Teen Titans. You decide… ;) … since Lobdell isn’t telling.

Lastly, we see the post Death in the Family events (where the Joker killed Jason Todd) and see a returned Jason Todd first donning his Red Hood persona (which interesting was the Joker‘s first alias) and lashing out at Batman for not saving him or avenging him.

With that all having been established, how does the New 52’s current Robin, Damian Wayne – Bruce Wayne / Batman‘s son, related or not to Red Hood? I don’t know as I don’t think it’s yet been established. If there’s a book it’s been addressed in let me know, but if it hasn’t been then perhaps the Night of Owls event in June 2012 may offer several opportunities. And, more directly, it would seen in June’s Batman and Robin #10 (see cover on the right) appears to show a battle of DC’s Robins. So, THAT seems like a book that will reveal Damian and Jason’s relationship and likely how all four relate to one another and to Batman. Here is the solicit to Batman and Robin #10:

    • Someone calls a meeting of the ROBINS, but who and why? And will the exiled and egotistical RED HOOD answer the call?

    • RED ROBIN learns of DAMIAN’S betrayal – but how long will the youngest ROBIN’S lack of discipline stand?

    • Many of Gotham City’s villains blame BATMAN for their downfall, but what happens when they stand together in a pact to bring the DARK KNIGHT down?

I wonder… could this be the launch for the rumored The Robins series by writer Jeff Lemire as reported on by Bleeding Cool? Hmmm.

And, how does this all impact the existing logic bombs in the Bat-verse? Time will tell.

What we know for sure is that the New 52’s Batman Family books are the strongest of the line with even better things seemingly to come.

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John is a long-time pop culture fan, comics historian, and blogger. He is currently the Editor-in-Chief at Comics Nexus. Prior to being EIC he has produced several column series including DEMYTHIFY, NEAR MINT MEMORIES and the ONE FAN'S TRIALS at the Nexus plus a stint at Bleeding Cool producing the COMICS REALISM column. As BabosScribe, John is active on his twitter account, his facebook page, his instagram feed and welcomes any and all feedback. Bring it on!

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