Robin is the name of several fictional characters that appear in comic books and animated series as the junior partner of DC Comics superhero Batman. The team of Batman and Robin will often be referred to as the Caped Crusaders or the Dynamic Duo. Robin's inclusion into the comic books received positive reviews and garnered a large group of young readers. The first incarnation of Robin, Dick Grayson, debuted in Detective Comics and then Star Spangled Comics in the 1940s. Since then, Dick Grayson has made frequent appearances in Batman related comic until the 1980, when he was recreated as the independent superhero Nightwing. After Grayson was phased out, Robin's second incarnation, Jason Todd, took over as the "boy wonder." Todd made regular appearances in Batman related comics until 1988, when the character is murdered by the Joker in Batman: A Death in the Family. After that, the character Tim Drake donned the identity of Robin until 1993. Following Drake's retirement came Stephanie Brown (also known as the Spoiler), the first and only female version of Robin. Shortly after gaining the position as Batman's sidekick, she was stripped of her title by Batman and later on killed by the supervillain Black Mask. After Stephanie's death, Tim Drake once again assumed the identity of Robin.


[edit] History

A year after Batman's start, Batman creators Bob Kane and Bill Finger introduced "Robin the Boy Wonder." The name "Robin" and the look of the original outfit were both derived from The Adventures of Robin Hood. Jerry Robinson, writer of earlier Batman adventures, states that he "came up with Robin because The Adventures of Robin Hood were boyhood favorites of mine. I had been given a Robin Hood book illustrated by N. C. Wyeth... and that's what I quickly sketched out when I suggested the name Robin, which they seemed to like, and then showed them the costume. And if you look at it, it's Wyeth's costume, from my memory, because I didn't have the book to look at." Later explanations of Robin's origins frequently say that Robin's name comes from the American robin bird instead of Robin Hood (with the exception of Frank Miller's All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder).

Althoough Robin is best known as Batman's crime fighting apprentice, three of the four Robins became members of the Teen Titans and the Outsiders, both of which were founded and led by the original Robin, Dick Grayson, and currently led by Tim Drake.

[edit] Dick Grayson

Main article: Dick Grayson

Dick Grayson is a fictional character and superhero that appears in DC Comics. Grayson is the youngest of a family of acrobats known as the "Flying Graysons." Unfortunately, he ended up an orphan after watching a mafia boss murder his parents to steal money from the circus that employed them. Bruce Wayne decided to take him in as his sidekick and legal ward after Grayson's parents were killed. And so he began his crime fighting career as Robin, the identity of Batman's apprentice. Throughout most of his youth, Dick spent most of his time with Batman. However, as he grew older, he began to spend more time as the leader of the Teen Titans. Eventually, he established his independence by donning the identity of Nightwing.

[edit] Jason Todd

Main article: Jason Todd

Jason Todd is the second character to fill the shoes of Robin after Dick Grayson left to lead the Teen Titans as Nightwing. He has blonde hair (which he eventually dyes black) and is generally cheerful. Like his predecessor, Jason was an acrobat whose parents were killed, only in his case it was by Killer Croc. Bruce Wayne adopted him and made him his crime fighting apprentice. For awhile, Jason would use his circus costume to fight crime until Dick gave him a Robin costume of his own. After a DC Universe overhaul, Jason's character was completely revamped. Instead, Jason Todd is originally a black haired boy who first encountered Batman while attempting to steal tires from the Batmobile. Batman arranged for Jason to be sent to an institution for troubled youths. However, after Jason helped Batman catch a group of robbers, Batman offered him the position of Robin. Jason was not well received by fans as the new boy wonder, and so DC Comics made a poll deciding whether or not he should be killed. The measure for his death passed by a narrow margin, and Jason is killed by the Joker in the Death in the Family storyline. Nevertheless, Jason does make several reappearances in other storylines, however as the supervillain Red Hood wanting revenge against Batman.

[edit] Tim Drake

Main article: Tim Drake

Tim Drake is the third and current character wearing the mantle of Robin. When he was a young boy, Drake followed the actions of Batman and Robin closely ever since witnessing the murder of the Flying Graysons. With his amateur but instinctive skills as a detective, he figured out Batman and Robin's identities as he began to trace their paths. He aspired to become the world's greatest detective, a goal which Batman himself said he could accomplish some day. Since the death of Jason Todd, Batman became more violent and reckless. Aware of this, Drake pleaded with Dick Grayson to fight alongside Batman as Robin again. He agreed to assist Batman, but only as Nightwing. Drake, unsatisfied with Grayson's decision, continued to argue that Batman needed a Robin. He persuaded Alfred Pennyworth to help him, taking the Robin suit from the Batcave and helping in the capture of Two-Face. Before Tim could assume the role of Batman's sidekick, a villain calling himself Obeah Man kidnapped his parents, Jack and Janet Drake. Batman hurried to rescue them but failed as Obeah Man had already poisoned them. Janet died of the poison, and Jack was left in a coma. Batman was left even more reluctant to give Tim the position of Robin since he thought his judgment would be clouded by rage and thoughts of vengeance. Tim proves him wrong when he went to save Batman and Vicki Vale who had been kidnapped by Scarecrow, however dressed in civilian clothes rather than the Robin costume, stating that he didn't want to damage the legacy of Robin should he have failed. Thus Batman allowed Tim to become the next Robin, giving him an altered costume.

[edit] Stephanie Brown

Main article: Stephanie Brown

Stephanie Brown, otherwise known as the Spoiler, is the fourth and only female in-continuity character to carry the identity of Robin. She is the daughter of a criminal called Cluemaster. However, instead of taking after her father, Stephanie decided to follow the path of crime fighting, thus the Spoiler identity was born. Her decision was primarily to stop her father whenever he escaped from jail. However, she began to enjoy crime fighting and started patrolling the streets of Gotham regularly. Her role as the Spoiler would eventually cause her to cross paths with Robin, who was then Tim Drake. They would frequently work together whenever they ran into each other, and eventually they developed a close relationship. After Stephanie and Tim began dating, Tim was forced to give up his position as Robin due to his father finding out about his identity. Stephanie, who went to the same school as Robin, caught another girl flirting with him, causing her to break up with him. Afterwards, she headed to the Batcave and demanded that Batman make her the new Robin. Batman reluctantly agrees, and the two began going on missions together. Her position as Robin is short lived, as Batman dismissed her for not following orders. Stephanie, determined to prove her worth to Batman, secretly stole criminal underworld plans. However, the plan backfired and ended up causing a huge gang war, in which Stephanie was captured by Black Mask. She was brutally tortured by Black Mask in an attempt to get information out of her. Stephanie narrowly escapes and makes it to the nearest hospital, where she unfortunately dies of her injuries with Batman by her side.

[edit] Other Versions

[edit] Earth-Two Dick Grayson

[edit] Carrie Kelly

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