My most recent Retro Review started me thinking about the nature of the “kid sidekick” as a superhero trope.  From the debut of Robin back in the Golden Age, people LOVED the concept, leading other companies to try to duplicate the Boy Wonder’s success with the likes of Bucky, Dusty, Tim and the other Tim.  (Both Captain Wonder and The Black Terror had sidekicks by that super-heroic sobriquet.)  In these postmodern days,  it’s become a cliché to mock the very IDEA of a child fighting crime, but that sort of cynical Negative Nancy nabob nattering doesn’t fly in MS-QOTD land.  Besides, if we’re being honest, the idea of a kid partner isn’t even the most ridiculous part of the Golden Age superhero combo pack, and some of those costumed kids are pretty cool in their own right.

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) Which of the kid sidekicks (excluding Dick Grayson, who would break the curve) is the most awesome overall?

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

Previous post

SOLICITATIONS: Hickman and Dragotta take on the apocalypse

Next post

ART APPRECIATION MOMENT OF THE DAY: Phil Postma

19 Comments

  1. February 13, 2013 at 1:00 pm — Reply

    Fire Me Boy, the sidekick and son of Human Bullet from “The Tick”.

  2. SpiderLover
    February 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm — Reply

    Im thinking of sidekicks that progress into their own person. I have to say if not DIck Grayson. Wally West!

  3. SmarkingOut Adam
    February 13, 2013 at 1:38 pm — Reply

    Kitty Pryde, as Wolverine’s sidekick.

  4. Ross
    February 13, 2013 at 2:15 pm — Reply

    Speedy, not only a side kick that failed but one that came back without the help of Green Arrow support.

  5. February 13, 2013 at 2:49 pm — Reply

    Well, Aqualad was always fairly awesome, especially during the SAG run, but I suppose Kid Flash is probably the best of the sidekicks other than ‘ol Robin.

  6. February 13, 2013 at 3:39 pm — Reply

    Ironically, the “Flash” that no longer exists in the 52… Wally West. After that would be Captain Marvel, Jr.

  7. Praion
    February 13, 2013 at 3:40 pm — Reply

    Kate Bishop,

    you know Hawkguygirl

    • February 16, 2013 at 9:02 am — Reply

      She was never a sidekick.

  8. Cat Halo
    February 13, 2013 at 3:47 pm — Reply

    I’ve always been a fan of the Kid Flash. Be it Wally West, later Adult Flash, or Bart Allen, later Impulse.

  9. Robert Hulshof-Schmidt
    February 13, 2013 at 3:57 pm — Reply

    Rick Jones and Snapper Carr. Top of the idiotic curve for risking innocent lives but also pretty significant contributors to more than one story line.

    I’m also partial to Sand. As a sidekick, he was part of the idiotic longjohns version of Sandman, but he really came into his own later.

    Finally, bonus points to Stripesy and the Star Spangled Kid for inverting the trope.

  10. Ian
    February 13, 2013 at 4:34 pm — Reply

    Red Devil (pre-emo)

  11. KVH
    February 13, 2013 at 5:34 pm — Reply

    My first response after seeing the twitter banter would be @zwoolf

  12. Shush
    February 14, 2013 at 12:37 am — Reply

    After a fashion, almost all of the X-Men are or were Professor X’s kid sidekicks. Taken to a school at a young age and taught to use their powers.

  13. February 14, 2013 at 2:19 am — Reply

    Bucky, if it weren’t for the whole Winter Soldier thing

  14. Dave
    February 14, 2013 at 6:39 am — Reply

    Fall-Out Boy, as portrayed by Mickey Rooney.

    “Look Out Radioactive Man!”

  15. joe
    February 14, 2013 at 8:01 am — Reply

    Huey Dewey and Louie

  16. AllenBT
    February 14, 2013 at 8:09 am — Reply

    Gotta go with Bucky, pre-winter soldier and boy commando retcons. He was literally a fanboy war -orphan hanger-on in that incarnation, in the first Cap’s final mission, he’s the hero who diverts the New York bound buzz-bomb, not Cap. That Bucky dies the death of an unknown soldier, and with Steve’s revival by the Avengers, his loss is never far from Cap’s thoughts.

  17. February 16, 2013 at 9:04 am — Reply

    Dick Grayson breaks the curve? But not Bucky, a guy who’s both the most dangerous assassin in the world and became a bionic Captain America? A guy who’s cheated death at least twice now?

You know you have something to say, say it in the comment section