As anyone who has been a longtime fan of Batman and the entire bat family can attest, and as anyone who has thoroughly enjoyed watching DC Universe’s Titans can attest, the heart and soul of the Titans has to be Nightwing, aka Dick Grayson.
The boy wonder turned vigilante hero was a member of the Flying Graysons at Haly’s Circus, but tragedy struck and took his parents from him. Adopted by Bruce Wayne, he became Robin and learned his adoptive father’s teachings, eventually striking out on his own to become Nightwing. Here are ten things fans always forget about him.
10 Superman Was First Nightwing
One of the first things that may surprise fans of the character is that Dick Grayson was not the first Nightwing in DC Comics history. In fact, the first Nightwing did not originate on Earth, to begin with. Nightwing was an alias that Superman took on in the bottle city of Kandor.
After Brainiac shrunk Kandor down to bottle size, Superman and his friend Jimmy Olsen found themselves trapped inside. When Superman lost his powers and was branded an outlaw, he and Jimmy disguised themselves as Nightwing and Flamebird, two figures from Kryptonian history and mythology to help fight crime.
9 Origins Of Nightwing Extend To Kryptonian History
As previously mentioned, Nightwing was a Kryptonian legend that Superman took inspiration by. In the Post-Crisis DC Universe, Nightwing was a mythological figure from thousands of years before Kal-El’s time of birth on Krypton. He was an ordinary man who was mysteriously cast out by his own family.
When he left, he decided that he would start fighting crime and become a vigilante on Krypton, renaming himself Nightwing. Ironically enough, this history came out when Superman was talking with Nightwing, in a time when the two become friends. It was this conversation that inspired Dick to become Nightwing.
8 Had Sidekick Named Flamebird
After leaving behind his role as Robin and stepping into the role of Nightwing after his adventures with Superman, Dick Grayson became a hero in his own right. He would form and lead teams like the Teen Titans and later Titans groups, and fight crime as Nightwing alongside his sidekick, Flamebird.
Flamebird was none other than Bette Kane, a debutante from Los Angeles who became obsessed with the superhero life, in particular, Nightwing. Also later revealed to be the cousin of Kate Kane, aka Batwoman, she became Flamebird to fight crime and gain Nightwing’s attention, but too often was rejected.
7 Briefly Retired To Become Batman
After the events of Final Crisis, which saw the supposed loss of Bruce Wayne at the hands of Darkseid and his Omega Beams, Dick Grayson went on to take the cowl himself and become Batman. After the infamous storyline Battle for the Cowl, Dick was the one who took Batman’s mantle and made Bruce’s son Damian Wayne his sidekick, Robin.
The dynamic was unique as it flipped the script of the typical Batman and Robin personas. This dynamic duo was made up of a light-hearted and humorous Batman with a darker, extremely dangerous and more serious version of Robin.
6 Superman And Lois Became Nightwing And Flamebird
Years later in the Post-Crisis era, Nightwing and Flamebird would once again have to take up their mantles inside a remade version of Krypton, this time however the dynamic duo of Krypton would be Superman and his love, Lois Lane.
In a 2001 story in Superman: The Man of Steel #111, Superman and Lois are forced to travel to this remade Krypton that was a product of the evil Brainiac 13, and was based on one of Jor-El’s favorite periods of history on Krypton. Superman and Lois are quickly branded outlaws and forced to become the dynamic duo.
5 Founder Of Teen Titans
In the days before Dick Grayson became Nightwing, when he was still Batman’s kid sidekick Robin, and his yearning for some independence began to kick in, Dick teamed up with some of his fellow sidekicks to start a new young team of heroes. In 1964’s The Brave and the Bold, Robin, Aqualad, and Kid Flash joined forces to fight a villain known as Mister Twister.
Later heroes Speedy and Wonder Girl joined the other three, and together they saved their mentors from being mind-controlled. This lead to the formation of an official team of young heroes, Teen Titans.
4 Becomes Police Officer
After Nightwing’s miniseries took off and was a major success for DC Comics, the company launched a monthly solo series for the hero starting in 1996. This era saw Dick Grayson protecting Bludhaven as it’s protector and battling villains like Blockbuster and Torque. However, he decided he wanted to be able to protect the city during the day as well and became a police officer.
This move was interesting as it was rare to see a vigilante hero who was also a police officer, fighting on both sides of the law. This job allowed Dick to fight at all times.
3 Joker Destroyed Haly’s Circus
In the New 52 era of DC Comics, Nightwing was featured in one of Batman’s darkest storylines, Death of the Family. This saw the Joker return, attacking the Bat family. Nightwing faced the Joker after the villain ended the life of Dick’s friend Jimmy at Haly’s Circus who worked as a clown.
Later an old romantic partner and later foe, Raya, was broken out of prison and injected with Joker venom, then sent to attack Dick. He stopped her, but the toxin was too much and took her life as well, before the Joker completely destroyed Haly’s Circus for good.
2 Went Undercover At Government Agency SPYRAL
At one point in Dick Grayson’s career as Nightwing, Batman asks him to undertake one of the toughest missions of his life. Agreeing to the plan, Dick fakes his death and leaves behind the mantle of Nightwing, going undercover in the organization SPYRAL as Batman’s mole, after discovering the group collected organs containing DNA samples of Justice League members for unknown purposes.
Rebranded Agent 37, Dick worked with former Batwoman Kathy Kane, and is recruited under Helena Bertinelli, aka Huntress. SPYRAL leader Mister Minos of course has villainous plans for the organs, but SPYRAL high command terminates him later on.
1 Reforms Original Titans Team In DC Rebirth
When the DC Rebirth era began, a new series ran that brought together the original Titans once more. A separate team from Damian Wayne’s Teen Titans, the Titans consisted of Nightwing, Wally West’s The Flash, Aqualad’s Garth, Roy Harper’s Speedy, Omen and Donna Troy’s Wonder Girl.
When Wally returns to the DC Universe, he helps the former teammates to remember him, as their memories had been tampered with along with the rest of the universe. Dick is the first to remember, and he helps the others not only remember Wally but vows to bring the team together again once more.
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