A man's got to go his own way.
"Because when you get down to it, my life isn't about the costumes or the bad guys. It's not about cities or symbols. It's way simpler than that. I mean, I grew up in a circus. It's always been about catching people when they fall."
Nightwing is the solo codename of Richard "Dick" Grayson, the first Robin
. After years of training under Batman
the Then-a-Teen Boy Wonder decided that, as the image quote says, "A man's got to go his own way"
. Thanks to the nature of Comic Book Continuity, this was either after a long over-due fight with Batman where Bruce fired Dick, Dick quit, or they happily shook hands, acknowledged the need to grow up, and shared some Alfred-made Bat-cocoa. In any case, Richard came upon the name Nightwing after hearing the tale of a Batman & Robin-esque pair of Kryptonian vigilantes from Superman
named Nightwing and Flamebird. Taking the name, he made his debut in Teen Titans
during The Judas Contract
story-line. The Nightwing persona debuted in Tales of the Teen Titans
#44 (July, 1984)
Eventually he was given his own self titled series. A 4-issue Nightwing mini-series turned up in 1995 and was well-received. An ongoing naturally followed. Lasting for 153 issues, from October, 1996 to April, 2009. Nightwing
was a series starring Dick Grayson, the original Robin, graduated to become protector of Gotham's neighboring city of Bludhaven. The series was initially written by Chuck Dixon
. Quite well received, it started creating a Rogues Gallery for Dick Grayson and helped distinguish Nightwing's solo methodology from Batman's own. The series was eventually taken over by Devin Grayson.
Controversies abounded in the title and it was eventually cancelled as a preparation for Infinite Crisis
and rebooted. The city of Bludhaven was destroyed by the Secret Society of Supervillains and Dick Grayson was relocated to New York City. The new series was even more poorly received and eventually canceled. Dick Grayson graduated to become the new Batman in Battle for the Cowl
With the company wide New 52
relaunch in 2011, Dick has returned to being Nightwing and had another solo title, and moved to Chicago following Death Of The Family
. Following Forever Evil
, his solo series ended. A new series titled Grayson
began in July, which with the character as a Secret Agent
alongside another famous Faking the Dead
character: Helena Bertinelli
Not to be confused with the killer bat
flick of the same name.
Nightwing has appeared in several media, usually Batman
related:Comic BooksVideo GamesWestern Animation
The character exhibits the following tropes:note
The various Nightwing series contain examples of:
- Big Bad:
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Raya Vestri, his Childhood Friend-turned-Love Interest
- Bound and Gagged: Sylph◊ pretty much had this as a superpower.
- Beware the Nice Ones: During the infamous "Born Again" Arc Nightwing is so enraged he Curb Stomps all of Blockbuster's hired help when most of them had given him a hard time before. It was even worse in One Year Later when they tried to make Nightwing into DC's Spider-Man (!?).
- Doomed Hometown: Blüdhaven was destroyed in Infinite Crisis.
- And again in Battle for Blüdhaven
- Double Standard: Rape, Female on Male: In Devin Grayson's run, who then went on to claim that it wasn't rape, just "nonconsensual" sex. Right. After the character Tarantuala forced herself on him in the middle of the street, afterward it was treated as though he was simply uncomfortable dating a criminal than anything and the whole "sexual assault" thing was glossed over completely. A few years earlier Nightwing slept with an obscure Titans character by the name of Mirage, who had disguised herself as Starfire. When she revealed the ruse not long after, the only real reaction it got was a shocked look, without a whole lot of follow-up, in fact it's mostly been played for laughs since. Rape is Irrelevant When It's Female On Male?
- Expy: At the risk of being disingenuous, the entire Bludhaven period of Nightwing's career is just Dick Grayson as Batman-Lite. He was actually called Junior Batman at least three times during Dixon's run. And was called Batman-Lite in The New Batman Adventures.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Blockbuster loved his. And he makes Nightwing pay dearly for it when he indirectly causes her to have a fatal heart attack.
- Go Seduce My Archnemesis: Saiko's plan with his girlfriend, Raya. This being Dick Grayson, it works.
- High Heel-Face Turn/Sex Face Turn: Flip-flopped in that Raya doesn't fall in love with Dick, but she does betray Saiko after he goes too far.
- Hijacked by Ganon: Has happened repeatedly with the 2011 series.
- The opening arc, where Nightwing is being hunted by Saiko and inherits Haly's Circus before finding a mysterious ledger with his name in it, was revealed to part of the Night of the Owls storyline that had been building in Detective Comics as it turned out Haly's Circus had routinely given a child to the Court of Owls to become a Talon, and Dick was being groomed to be next in line before his parents died.
- The overarching plot of Dick setting out to rejuvenate the Amusement Mile in Gotham with Haly's Circus as the centrepiece, was brought to an end thanks to Death Of The Family (Which saw Joker attack the circus to get at Nightwing in part of his larger plan to destroy Batman) and the subsequent and unrelated death of Robin.
- After re-establishing himself as an independent hero away from Gotham & the rest of the Bat Family, Nightwing is promptly unmasked by the Crime Syndicate in Forever Evil. However, rather than having the Nightwing series tie-in to the story, the story is instead told in the main Forever Evil series & the Justice League tie-ins, with Nightwing instead telling a completely unrelated tale that solicits are hyping as taking place in the final days before Forever Evil began. That's right, the story with major developments for the character has been hijacked from the book altogether.
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Subverted by Nite-Wing. There are few idiots bigger than him in comic books but he's still a monster.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: Tarantula killing Blockbuster came off like this.
- Meaningful Name: Saiko ("Psycho")
- Oh, Crap: A number of them. Including the time Dick came home to find Deathstroke waiting for him.
- Outlaw Couple: Bride and Groom
- Pet the Dog: Tarantula becomes leader of a street gang during War Games, not to stake out a territory for herself, but to keep its young members alive.
- Poke the Poodle: Dick Grayson during the Renegade arc. Deathstroke the Terminator, of all people, finds it embarrassing.
- Poorly Disguised Pilot: Issue #30 of the New 52 series is very clearly meant to serve as one to the Grayson ongoing, giving the context for the series. That, and it in no way relates to the previous arcs, and it's the last issue.
- Red Skies Crossover: The "Zero Year" tie-in.
- Servile Snarker: Alfred makes a few appearances. The trope image is from a Nightwing issue in in fact.
- Too Dumb to Live: Lampshaded in Issue #150. One of Two-Face's mooks was standing right behind a guy Two-Face wanted to shoot. Two-Face points out that this isn't a good place to be, and the guy needs it explained to him: "I can't afford to lose any red shirts." When the mook doesn't get the reference, Two-Face has had enough, declares him too dumb to live, and blows him away.
- The Unmasking: In Forever Evil #1, Nightwing is promptly beaten to a pulp and publicly unmasked as Dick Grayson in a show of force by the Crime Syndicate.
- Weapon of Choice: The Eskrima Sticks. Simple metal poles which may or my not contain various gadgets built in, which he's capable with of similar skill to Batman with his Batarangs.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Tarantula really wants to help Bludhaven, and is perfectly fine executing crime bosses to do it.
- What the Hell, Hero?: The entire Renegade arc is meant to be this.
- Wretched Hive: Bludhaven is (or was) probably the worst city in the DCU after Hub City.