This week’s Ten Things topic goes out to Ashley V. Robinson, #1 Robin fan who will likely be mad that her favorite isn’t on this list! Welcome to Ten Things: Ten Robins!
Whooshman-Bicarbonate Films, in conjunction with An Amateur Comics Historian and Holey Rusted Metal, Presents:
TEN THINGS: TEN ROBINS!
Boom with the smoke bombs and Birdarangs!
Bo staff hitting, steady doin’ my thang!
Robin Robin the leader, Robin Robin in charge!
(Show ’em your baby hands!)
Nah, Robin Robin’s are large!
It may not be for everyone, but Teen Titans Go! is a lot of fun.
After extensive training by an elderly Scottish Batman, Dick Grayson found himself traumatized, quitting the hero biz to become a police officer in Gotham City. That all goes to hell in a handcart when he encounters a half-demon girl and reforms the Teen Titans to keep her safe. Fighting his own murderous urges, Robin eventually gathers a huge team of Titans, only to abandon them. After a run-in with Deathstroke helped him to understand his own PTSD, he took on the new role of Nightwing.
Or course, by that time, he’d already been replaced as Robin by our next contestant…
Dick’s successor as Batman’s sidekicks, Jason Todd was dispatched to find his predecessor with a message from Batman about the murder of Dick’s old circus pals. Falling in with the new Titans team, Jason began a creepy relationship with Deathstroke’s daughter, Rose, and came to terms with his limitations as a costumed vigilante. Though not the detective that Grayson was, he’s still a pretty good Robin, and will apparently be graduating to Red Hood status in the upcoming season 3.
7) RED ROBIN
After his unexpected resurrection, the comic book incarnation of Jason Todd ended up working with Donna Troy and Kyle Rayner, jaunting across the multiverse to find the missing Ray Palmer. An encounter with the Batman of Earth-51 ended with Jason being gifted a new costume and identity by said Dark Knight, making him the second of three Robins to wear the same costume and alias, after Dick in Kingdom Come and just ahead of Tim Drake, who became Red Robin after Battle for the Cowl.
6) ROBIN II
In a speculative reality created by Alfred Pennyworth while breaking in his new typewriter, Bruce Wayne retires and marries Batwoman Kathy Kane. Dick Grayson takes up the mantle of Batman (with a hilarious roman numeral chest emblem designating his status as replacement) with Bruce Wayne, Junior taking up the role of Boy Wonder. Initially unsure of his skills, Brucie Junior eventually gets his act together to save his partner from future mobsters, earning his role and his big yellow emblem. Alfred’s creations are one of the more unique takes on the ‘Imaginary Story’ from ’60’s DC, and later influenced the official Bat-folk of Earth-3839, as seen in Superman/Batman: Generations.
On Earth-37, during the 1960s, young Barbara Gordon was traumatized by the death of her mother, leaving her estranged from her father, now police commissioner. Buying up the abandoned mansion of the Wayne Family, whose fortune was wiped out during the depression, Barbara set out to solve her mother’s murder with the help of her sidekick, Robin. After Dick’s death at the hands of the Joker, Barbara gave up her Batgirl identity to memorialize him as Robin, with Bruce Wayne joining her as a junior Batman. It all gets very complicated.
The 2003 Teen Titans series never came out and said that this Robin was Dick Grayson, but context clues (and the fact that his fifth dimensional imp was named Nosyarg Kcid) make it clear that this is, in fact, Master Grayson, with elements of Tim Drake in his costuming and personality. Having given up his sidekick role to lead the Titans team, Robin is successfully leading a new team, having a romance with an alien princess and even outsmarting Slade (AKA Deathstroke, The Terminator), something that his prime Earth self had many issues with.
3) MR. SARCASTIC
When the team coffers of Young Justice ran low, the team took up an offer from muckraking news goober Ace Atchinson to star in their own reality show. This made a problem for Robin Tim Drake who, along with Batman, was in one of their periodic “only an urban legend in Gotham” states of being. But our man Tim is a loyal friend who didn’t want to abandon his pals, cobbling together his own edgy ’90’s persona, Mr. Sarcastic to explain the appearances of the kid with the cape on the team. It’s a short-lived gambit, but one that shows both Tim’s skill as an actor and his quick-thinking nature, as well as his keen tribal tattoos.
The kids of Mystery Inc. once made their way to Gotham City to try out for the prestigious Mystery Analysts of Gotham, they encounter the Batman (the one from Batman: The Brave and The Bold, whose reality is as yet undesignated.) The Dark Knight finds himself overwhelmed by a villain called The Crimson Cloak, who tries to frame Velma Dinkley and her friends for his crimes, but the team goes undercover in Bat-costumes from the Batcave. Say what you will about Dick, Jason and Tim, none of them are quite as groovy a Robin as Velma D. #Jinkies
In 1977, Filmation Studios brought back Adam West and Burt Ward for a short-lived cartoon adaptation that served as a quasi-continuation of their live-action adventures from the ’60s. Since they weren’t held to the restrictions of live-action, this Robin and his Batman faced Bat-Mite, as well as their usual gang of Arkham idiots. They even had a Batgirl, though the lovely Yvonne Craig did not return to reprise her role. I vividly remember Lou Scheimer as the voice of literally half the characters on the show, slowing his voice down for the Bat-Computer, speeding it up for Bat-Mite and doing literally everything he could to avoid paying actors other than Dick Grayson and Bruce Wayne.
Once again, this week’s topic, Ten Four-Letter Words is all me (with the influence of my Canadian sister from another mister) but feel free to follow along @MightyKingCobra to suggest your own! There’s always more Ten Things madness on my Twitter or check out the full Twitter archive here! As with any set of like items, these aren’t meant to be hard and fast or absolutely complete, if only because Bruce Wayne keeps offering young orphans a red bulletproof vest. Either way, the comments section is below for just such an emergency, but, as always: Please, no wagering!