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Comic Book / Robin Series
aka: Red Robin

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Tim Drake as Robin (left) and Red Robin (right)

"Look, I never wanted this for myself... but I wanted Batman and Robin back together the way they should be. And if Dick won't become Robin again... someone else has to!"
Tim Drake, Batman #442

In 1993, after the success of three separate miniseries chronicling Tim Drake's tribulations as the third Robin, (succeeding Dick Grayson and Jason Todd), Tim was given his own monthly ongoing series that began in 1993 and ran for more than 15 years, until it ended in early 2009. The series is notable for depicting Tim's personal life with his family and friends, and him balancing a delicate act between his superhero and civilian identities. The first 100 issues of the Robin series were written by Chuck Dixon, which was acclaimed at the time for a high-profile Teen Pregnancy arc involving Tim's girlfriend, Stephanie Brown (Spoiler). In 1998, Wizard magazine ranked the series as the best ongoing comic book of the year.

As the series went on, Chuck Dixon left the book and different writers came on-board. The first was Jon Lewis, whose short tenure on the Robin series built a stable relationship between Tim and Stephanie and had fondness for writing slightly sci-fi plots, which was jarring in a Batbook that focused more on street-level crime. Next was Bill Willingham, who forcibly retired Tim from being Robin after his dad found out his secret, and killed off Stephanie in the War Games crossover. Adam Beechen took over the series with Robin: One Year Later and had Tim leaving Gotham for a while and temporarily staying in Bludhaven with Cassandra Cain. Dixon then briefly took over the series between issues 170 - 174 to resurrect Stephanie Brown, but was promptly fired and replaced with Fabian Nicieza, who wrote the last arc in the series before it was cancelled in the wake of "Batman R.I.P."


After a brief hiatus, the Robin series was succeeded by Red Robin, written by Chris Yost and depicting Tim Drake's search around the world to find evidence that Bruce Wayne was still alive after cutting himself off from the rest of the Bat Family. He was approached by Ra's al Ghul's assassins, who were also interested in finding out what happened to Batman. After the resolution of this story, Fabian Nicieza took over as writer with issue 13. The series lasted for 2 years, being truncated by the New 52 reboot in 2011. With the reboot, Tim became a main character in the Teen Titans series.


The Robin series provides examples of:

     Robin series (1993-2009) 

  • Aborted Arc: It was heavily implied at one point that Alfred was falling for Tim's stepmother, Dana. Then Blüdhaven blew up and Dana was never seen again.
  • Abuse Mistake: When Tim’s friend Ives is working as the mascot at a Suck E. Cheese's, he comes to school so bruised that Tim and their friend Callie suspect he is being abused.
  • Academy of Adventure: Brentwood Academy. Lampshaded by Tim himself when he comments on the weirdness of the school.
  • After-Action Healing Drama: An entire issue of the Batman: Contagion storyline was dedicated to Tim being treated for the Clench in the Batcave's medbay following a riot during which he was infected. Dick tries and fails to get Tim to call his father before he looses lucidity and Alfred considered himself to be treating the boy on his deathbed as there was no known cure and very few known survivors.
  • Age-Appropriate Angst: The Robin series does very well at handling Tim's teenage love troubles and his own methods of coping with his mother's death, the crippling of his father, and subsequent death of said father in a way an average 15-year-old boy would do in those situations (the Robin thing not withstanding).
  • Attempted Rape: Both Ariana and Stephanie had a near-rape experience before, and both confessed it to Tim. It's no wonder that Tim has the 'Lets Wait Awhile' mentality in the first place...
  • Autopsy Snack Time: While a coroner at the Kane County morgue is worrying about the evidently misplaced body of Johnny Warren one of his superiors is casually eating lunch while prepping a cadaver. Johnny wasn't actually misplaced, he just got up and left.
  • Batman Gambit: Inherited from the man himself, Tim does this once to Lady Shiva in the last arc of the Robin series. He drugs her food before their fight and wins easily against her.
  • Battle Couple: with Stephanie/Spoiler.
  • Betty and Veronica: Tim had a brief love triangle in the early in the series. He was dating civilian Ariana Dzerchenko (Betty) but was attracted to vigilante Stephanie Brown (Veronica) at the same time. Ironic, because Ariana has Veronica's physical appearance and bitchiness, and Stephanie has Betty's physical appearance and tomboyishness. Ultimately, Stephanie wins the triangle, with her becoming his most high-profile (and longest) relationship in the series.
    • Even after Stephanie and Tim's breakup, her fake 'death', Tim dating a new girl called Zoanne and later Stephanie's subsequent return to Gotham — Stephanie was still the Veronica, this time to Zoanne's Betty. And again, Stephanie wins the triangle (technically), with Tim breaking up with Zoanne on the phone, and then calling up Stephanie to try and patch things up with her.
    • In Red Robin, Tam is now the new Betty to Stephanie's Veronica. And Lynx is the Third-Option Love Interest.
    • Any of Tim's civilian girlfriends will end up being the 'Betty' by default due to his working partnership/love-hate-on-off relationship with Stephanie (who is always the Veronica).
  • Big Bad: In the original Robin miniseries and its sequel, King Snake. Then for a brief time Johnny Warlock. From the end of the first ongoing into Red Robin, Anarky II.
    • War Games and the brief gang conflict instigated by Jason Todd and then Anarky.
  • Big Brother Worship: Tim Drake adores Dick Grayson. Prior to Jason's violent return and Tim's actual adoption into the family he looked up to Jason too.
  • Blood from Every Orifice: After getting hit with an electrical weapon Lock-Up had set up Tim is left with blood seeping from his ears, nose, mouth and nail beds. He's still able to kick Lock-Up over a railing from his spot on the floor when the villain arrives with a message he wants Robin to deliver to Batman.
  • Bomb Throwing Anarchist: Initially Deconstructed by Lonnie Machin, Anarky I, who was a Well-Intentioned Extremist on his bad days,and generally a Hero Antagonist when not. Then parodied by Anarchy II, who was actually a fascist seeking to cause enough chaos to justify a military takeover. However, after a Spanner in the Works decision by a policeman leads to him killing his own brother and sister, he arguably plays it straight.
  • Broken Pedestal: Bruce preventing Stephanie from visiting Tim while she was Robin, hiring Steph and then unceremoniously firing her in an attempt to manipulate Tim back into the role, and preventing anyone from even telling Tim that she was missing while she was being tortured to death permanently altered the lens through which Tim views Bruce in a way little else could and is the reason Tim went to such great lengths to keep from being adopted by Bruce following Jack's death.
    "During my visit it took every bit of discipline I could conjure to keep from asking Bruce that one terrible question I'm stone cold certain our relationship can't survive. 'What happened in those last moments between you and Stephanie, and why did you keep me from being there?'"
  • Cain and Abel: Out of the three brothers Tim gains from being adopted by Bruce two have made repeated attempts on his life. Tim gets to play Able to both Jason and Damian's Cain, with Jason seeming to think shooting in his general direction is an acceptable way to say he disagrees with Tim's way of doing things without considering it to be picking a fight and Damian regularly sabotaging his equipment and trying to break into his room and files. His sister Cass Cain has also viciously attacked him, but she was mind controlled at the time and ends up being the sibling Tim trusts the most.
  • Chew-Out Fake-Out: After losing nearly all of his biological family Tim sets up an actor to pretend to be his fake uncle so that he doesn't have to go into the foster care system. Batman, being Batman, naturally finds out, and Robin assumes he's about to be reamed out for going behind Bruce's back... but all Bruce can say is that he's so proud of Tim for taking the initiative, and gives him some tips on how to make the deception foolproof.
  • Clark Kent Outfit: He wore glasses for a while during his short tenure at Brentwood Academy, as sort of a precaution.
  • Color-Coded Characters: Tim's initial costume was primarily green and Steph's was eggplant purple. Tim's narration boxes were given a green drop-shadow or green filled while Stephanie's were purple cursive on light lavender paper making them clearly green and purple coded respectively. Tim's green association became less consistent after his costume lost its green to make it better match his red and black DCAU costume but by this time Steph was "dead" and he was the sole narrator and protagonist of the book.
  • Comfort Food: When Steph is reacting to her father's (reported) death and is irritated with herself to realize she's grieving she confides in Tim that mashed potatoes are the ultimate comfort food for her as he buys her a plate of them.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: The series chronicles his progression from a naive 14-year-old boy to a jaded, cynical 17-year-old brooder.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: At his third high school Tim befriends a fellow student named Bernard who has a number of interesting theories. His most amusing one is that "Batman owns a bunch of secret orphanages all over the world — where he gets his Robins from." since he earnestly tells it to Tim, who was Robin.
  • Cool Car: Tim's Redbird.
  • Costume Evolution: Tim's primary Robin costume (he has others for specified situations like extreme cold weather) was initially mostly green, with green pants, green gloves, a green mask and a red leotard with green sleeves, eventually it was decided to change his costume to the red and black one from Batman: The Animated Series and get rid of the green altogether despite green having been his associated color across the DCU up until that point. The change was given the in universe justification of being a reaction to his best friend Superboy's death, who had at the time of his death been wearing a black and red costume.
  • Cuteness Proximity: Tim, who has a reputation for being quite serious in comparison to the previous Robins, has a habit of talking to cats he comes across on patrol as long as he has the time to.
  • Dangerous 16th Birthday: in which Batman manipulated Tim on his 16th birthday into believing the existence of a Bad Future, in order to 'train' him to become a better Robin.
  • Depraved Kids' Show Host: Crocky, a Barney parody and cereal mascot. It's zig-zagged in the one issue centered around him, actually: ONE of the guys who played him used the suit as a disguise to knock over convenience stores, and later took a kid hostage, but the original actor was a wrongly-accused good egg who ultimately helped catch that guy.
  • Detachable Lower Half: Tapeworm can leave behind part or all of the flat segmented tail he has in place of legs and just regrow it.
  • Diary: Stephanie keeps a diary of her adventures as Spoiler and briefly Robin. When she is the focus of an issue purple cursive excerpts from it are used in place of the green (later red) Inner Monologue boxes Tim gets allowing her time to reflect on the events and describe them after the fact instead of reacting in the moment like him.
  • Dishing Out Dirt: Badlands can create localized tremors by sending his powers rippling through the earth beneath him.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: After having to declare bankruptcy, sell his mansion and move into his condo in the city Jack Drake refuses to leave his bed for anything but to grab a bottle, change the music or grab a book leaving his wife and son to have to do all the paperwork involved in liquefying his assets and keeping the family afloat.
  • Easter Egg: Tim always has band posters up in his room which tend to change with the artist.
    • Wonder what class Tim’s Advanced Egyptian Algebra textbook is for.
    • When Tim is reminiscing about a toy store he used to beg his parents to go into to no avail there is a Godzilla figure among the generic toys in the window.
  • EMP: Tim's staff has a built in EMP emitter with a range of 20 yards. He doesn't use it much as it can disable out his own gear too, and it takes a second to set up as parts of the staff have to be shifted around.
  • Everyone Loves Blondes: Ariana caught Tim staring at Stephanie during Karl Ranck's funeral, and proceeded to bleach her hair because she was jealous and thought that Tim preferred blonde girls. (He doesn't, but Ariana was insecure and paranoid at the time) Ironically, blonde Ariana became really popular with the boys at school and that pissed off Tim.
  • Evil Smells Bad: Pretty much every hero that has to fight Tapeworm comments on how terrible he smells.
  • Explaining Your Power to the Enemy:
    • Tim straight up thanks Dark Rider for indignantly shouting things about his powers that will help Tim defeat him as they're fighting. This of course just pisses Dark Rider off, but does nothing to keep him from continuing to do so.
    • Blue Devil lampshades this tendency in villains when Cenotaph loudly explains the source of his powers while trying to choke him.
  • Extra-Dimensional Shortcut: In the Ozarks Tim meets and befriends Stephen, whose "shortcuts" through the woods allow him to walk places faster than anyone could drive there, and take him through an alternate forest full of flora and fauna that don't belong in the American north-east. If he brings anyone with him and they lose sight of him they'll be lost there forever.
  • Eye Scream: Recurring villain Lynx has one of her eyes ripped out by King Snake as punishment for failing to kill Robin.
  • Fanservice: Mostly averted (surprising for a teenage book), but there are a few exceptions: Ariana coming out of her room in skimpy lingerie, and Tim's various shower scenes.
  • Fighting Your Friend: Happened with an evil Cassandra Cain in Robin:OYL.
  • Forgotten Fallen Friend: Tim addresses the Batfamily's habit of forgetting the fallen. It annoyed him when Jason started to only be brought up as an example of what not to do, and ticked him off when it came to Stephanie, who didn't even get a memorial in the cave. He also refuses to forget Harold existed after the mechanic's murder by Hush even though the rest of the family seems to as soon as their one-time ally is buried. He averts this constantly, as he refuses to let his memories of fallen friends fade.
  • Genius Bruiser: Tim himself ends up as a nightmare for any poor mook he comes across, but is still outclassed by the heavy hitters like Ra's Al Ghul and Lady Shiva, and must rely on Brains to score a victory against them.
  • Goofy Suit: When Tim’s friend Ives is working as the mascot at a Suck E. Cheese's he wears a "Rat" costume.
  • Good Stepmother: Dana Winters helps resolve disputes between Tim and her new husband Jack after they marry. She goes out of her way to get Tim's side of the story when his father refuses to allow him to speak for himself, and reminds Jack that he said he was going to spend more time with Tim. She gets along great with Tim and regularly acts as a voice of reason to him with regards to his father, but they never grow too close due to his age when she joins the family, as well as her untimely death.
  • Grounded Forever: Jack decides to ground Tim indefinitely after hearing from Ari's uncle that Tim and Ari had sex (which they didn't) and furiously cuts off Tim's attempt to explain what actually happened. Luckily Dana goes to get Tim's side of the story, which includes Ari's uncle trying to kill Tim because Ari was wearing lingerie, which was not Tim's idea at all.
  • Happy Flashback: After Jack bankrupts Drake Industries and sequesters himself in his room refusing to speak to his wife or son Tim reminisces about spending time with his mom while she was still alive and going to the opera with both his parents on the rare occasions they were home in Gotham.
  • Hero Harasses Helpers: A large part of Tim’s job when working with Batman seems to be smoothing things over when Bats does this.
  • I Didn't Mean to Turn You On: Hilariously depicted between Tim and Lady Shiva in the Robin miniseries when he goes to Hong Kong. Lady Shiva wakes him up at night for their martial arts training, telling him that she'll bring him to a "whole new world". Tim's response? "Um... I don't think I'm ready for this". Lady Shiva then nonchalantly replied that they can do that later, after the training.
  • I Have This Friend...: Subverted in Robin #58:
    Robin: Could I ask you for some non-professional advice?
    Oracle: Talk to Doctor Babs, Robin.
    Robin: I have this friend…
    Oracle: Hold on. This friend isn't you, is it?
    Robin: My friend is pregnant.
    Oracle: Oh.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: "Dodge" stole a prototype personal teleportation device from his Star Labs scientist father because he wanted to be a hero. After his arrogance and lack of training gets him injured when he endangers a group of hostages and the device malfunctions and starts to fuse with him he decides to turn villain instead. Evidently super-hero to super-villain is not a big jump for Dodge as long as he gets to be some type of super.
  • Jack of All Trades: To quote Fabian Nicieza:
    "What I love about Tim is that he shares some of the strongest traits of various Bat-family members. The intellect and detective skills of Bruce, the ability to lead others and be a friend to others like Dick has and even the ability to make cold, harsh decisions like Jason does."
  • Kid Sidekick: to Batman.
    • And Spoiler is the kid sidekick to the kid sidekick.
  • Keeping Secrets Sucks: Tim hates having to lie to his father and Steph about being Robin, though he only really pushes Bruce to let him tell Stephanie his id.
  • Knee-capping: Tim took out Mister Mayhem by kicking his knee the wrong way during a melee in Bludhaven where Robin, Ragman and Blue Devil were fighting thirty villains lead by Tapeworm. This had the added benefit of having the gadget Mayhem was about to throw in Tim's face hitting one of Tapeworm's crew instead.
  • Lamaze Class: Disguised himself as Alvin Draper and accompanied Steph to birthing classes when she was pregnant.
  • Legacy Character: Obviously, but issue #10 highlighted the difference between Tim and Dick; the issue was a crossover issue of Zero Hour!, and worked together with Dick!Robin. Tim realized that Dick's Robin was far more physical — a former acrobat — while Tim was far more of a detective.
  • Local Hangout: The teens of the Gotham Heights neighborhood, especially the group Tim hung out with, tended to spend time at the local O'Shaughnessy's, an Irish themed fast food joint.
  • Magic Ampersand: Tim plays a tabletop RPG called Wizards & Warriors with his Gotham Heights pals.
  • Making a Splash: Monsoon II nearly drowned Tim when she used her abilities to suddenly move a mass of water into a Bludhaven alleyway. He'd have died if he hadn't been accompanied by Shadowpact at the time.
  • Near-Rape Experience: Darla Aquista is revealed to have prepared a bed for the two of them on the night Tim has Superboy intervene in the date she'd forced Tim on. Her chillingly out of touch words later that night imply she's only giving him room instead of forcing herself on him further because he saw her commit a murder that evening and she still thinks it's an eventuality he'll come to her on his own.
  • Not a Date: Back when Tim was still dating Arianna he would occasionally team-up with future girlfriend Stephanie Brown to fight criminals on the street. He keeps on insisting that "it's not a date," but that does not stop Stephanie from shamelessly flirting with him. It doesn't help that he was giving out mixed messages and his relationship with Ari was well past failed at that point.
  • Off the Wagon: Dylan Prescott has a number of issues he's just learning to manage without alcohol so he can try to live a more fulfilling life. Unfortunately his problems are suddenly exacerbated by contact with Noctura whose drug like meta-human ability mixes very poorly with his psych meds. He grabs a bottle of alcohol instead of his pills after spending two days hallucinating.
  • Off to Boarding School: One of the arcs in Chuck Dixon's run. Tim gets sent to Brentwood Academy by his dad who is worried about him being a rebellious and secretive teenager.
  • Parents Walk In at the Worst Time: In Robin #40, Ariana wanted to have sex with Tim, but he told her that they weren't ready and ended up just hanging out together on the couch. Her uncle walked in on them and saw her still in lingerie, got the wrong idea and chased him out of the house.
  • Pick on Someone Your Own Size: There was a period in The ‘90s, mostly but not entirely in comics by Chuck Dixon, where Two-Face decided he hated Robin more than Batman. While this mostly meant Nightwing, he wasn't averse to taking shots at Tim Drake.
  • Put on a Bus: Ariana Dzerchenko, Tim's First Love. Although she starred in the first 50 issues of the series, she was quickly dropped in favour of the more popular Stephanie. After her breakup with Tim, she only appeared once and was never mentioned again. Heck, barely no one remembers Ariana nowadays.
  • Rage Against the Mentor: Tim has called out Batman several times — first when Batman revealed Tim's identity to Stephanie without his permission, and the second time when Batman pulled an elaborate, dysfunctional plan to test his dedication as a Robin on his 16th birthday.
  • Real Men Cook: After moving into the condo Tim starts asking Dana to help him figure out how to cook things for Stephanie and helping Dana in the kitchen while his father is busy drinking and moping. He is never seen trying to cook again after Stephanie's death.
  • Rearing Horse: Dark Rider is pictured atop his rearing shadow mount with his magic lance bearing down on Tim on the cover of issue 137.
  • Retcon: Stephanie's death in War Games — it turns out that she was just hiding in Africa.
  • Reunion Kiss: After finding out that his girlfriend wasn't actually dead Robin sweeps her into his arms and gives her a surprise kiss. Right in front of Batman, no less.
  • Revealing Skill: In Tim’s backstory, this is how he learned the secret identities of Batman and Robin (Dick Grayson): by watching news coverage of the Dynamic Duo's escapades, during which Robin performed a complicated gymnastics move (a quadruple somersault) — which it had been established could be performed only by a small handful of people, including the orphaned circus artist Dick Grayson.
  • Rogues Gallery: Tim was the first Robin to acquire his own before graduating to another identity.
  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: Tim Drake/Robin (goal-oriented, serious introvert) with Stephanie Brown/Spoiler (plucky, street-smart people person).
  • Second Love: Following his adopted father's footsteps, Tim's first love was Ariana Dzerchenko and his second love was Stephanie Brown. In fact, Tim is Stephanie's second love — her first boyfriend, Dean, got her pregnant and abandoned her after he found out.
  • Secret Identity Identity: He sometimes addresses himself in the third-person in his thought dialogues, either as 'Robin' or 'Tim Drake'.
  • Secret Keeper: Thanks to his spot as the resident Smart Guy, he knew who both Huntress and Spoiler were well before they knew who he was. This annoyed them both, naturally.
  • Secret Relationship: Tim and Steph started dating as costumed crimefighters (because he was not allowed to reveal his true identity to her, Batman-related issues and all) and spent a long time only knowing each other as Robin and Spoiler. Tim would also go out of his way to avoid bumping into Steph at school, and lied to his parents when they asked him if he was seeing anyone.
  • Ship Tease: Arguably played between Cassandra Cain (Batgirl II) and Tim shortly after War Games. Also, briefly with Wonder Girl after the deaths of Superboy and Stephanie.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Stephanie Brown (Spoiler/Batgirl IV) was in a relationship with a sleazy douchebag who knocked her up and left her to fend for herself. Her next boyfriend was nice guy Tim Drake who supported her decisions, took care of her during her pregnancy, brought her to birthing classes, and even crossed hundred of miles in one night just to see her at the hospital during her labour. Heck the only reason they "broke up" was because she let him think she'd died for over a year, and as soon as she returned Tim realized he needed to break off his current attempt at dating because he was still in love with Steph despite her letting him think she'd died the same week his father was murdered so it wasn't fair to Zoanne even if Steph didn't want him back.
  • Six Student Clique: Tim's high school buddies at Gotham Heights fit:
    • The Head: Ives, who gets high scores on tests, helps mediate problems between the rest of his friends and introduced most of them to each other
    • The Muscle: Callie Evans, a jittery outspoken tomboy who loves basketball
    • The Quirk: Tim, a weird rich kid who is secretly Robin and gives out random strange excuses for leaving
    • The Pretty One: Ariana, an attractive girly girl and Tim's girlfriend
    • The Smart One: Kevin Hudman, a Black and Nerdy roleplayer who unknowingly solves a case Robin is working on
    • The Wild One: Hudson, who has a number of random interests including computers and movies and at one point surprised his friends by deciding to bring a gun to school note  and another time decided he, Ives and Callie should investigate and catch on camera an apparent monster in an abandoned building.
  • Smooch of Victory: Tim kisses Stephanie after she rescues him from being Buried Alive. As she had been flirting with him since nearly their first meeting this is quite nice for her, though Tim realizes quickly that despite the relationship having long since fallen apart he's still technically dating Ariana and prevents things from going any further till he's actually single. He and Steph are dating before the week is up.
  • Soup Is Medicine: When Steph gets a cold Tim decides to fix home-made chicken soup for her and bring it over even though he doesn't have a car anymore. With Dana's help he's able to fix the soup and then he has to take it by subway to get to Steph's house where she is appreciative of the food. It helps her nose clear up right away and she recovers from her illness the next day.
  • Spider-Man Send-Up: The Redback Spider may be a villain rather than a hero, but her costume is very similar to that of Spider-Man, though she's traded out the wrist web-shooters for venomous needles.
  • Strong Girl, Smart Guy: When Cass came to Bludhaven to help out Tim, Batgirl and Robin had this dynamic.
  • Sudden Name Change: Stephanie Brown's mother was named "Agnes" when she originally appeared in Detective Comics, but her name was later changed to "Crystal." According to Scott Beatty (who was the first to rename her), he had asked DC editors about the name of the mother but no one could remember, leading to an accidental name change that stuck.
  • Suck E. Cheese's: Ives got a job at one, he was too embarrassed to tell his friends about it at first since he was a mascot wearing a rat costume.
  • Swiss Army Weapon: Tim's staff contains an EMP emitter, and as Red Robin he added a retractable blade for emergency use. He doesn't use either often as the EMP disables his own gear and the entire reason he chose the staff rather than a bladed weapon was for its non-lethal applications.
  • Telescoping Staff: One was given to Tim by Lady Shiva.
  • The Call Knows Where You Live: The reason Tim is now an orphan and permanently dedicated to crime-fighting.
  • The Masquerade Will Kill Your Dating Life: The reason why his relationships with Ariana and Zoanne went sour, he kept not showing up for dates or falling asleep during them.
  • There Are No Therapists: In addition to the benefits the various members of the Batfamily could reap from a visit to a good therapist (Dick has actually gone to one) Tim’s first girlfriend could undoubtedly use some therapy after seeing her father murdered, being kidnapped and forced to help manufacture drugs, and having a classmate try to rape her. Of course it is understandably difficult to trust anyone in that profession working in Gotham.
  • Through His Stomach: Tim only starts trying to figure out how to cook things from scratch in order to give them to Stephanie.
  • Trauma Conga Line: starting from War Games on Tim experienced his girlfriend's death, his father's death, his stepmother's possible death, his best friend's death, his other best friend's death, and all capped off by the apparent death of adoptive father and mentor Bruce Wayne. All these tragedies caused Tim to go down the angsty, jerkass route right up until he takes up the Red Robin mantle.
  • Training from Hell: His training arc with Lady Shiva in Paris and Hong Kong.
  • Villain Episode: Issue #85 focuses entirely on The Joker, who gives a warped-but-mostly-accurate rundown of his history with all three Robins so far.
  • Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: A major component of the series before Tim grows out of it.
  • Watch the Paint Job: Jerk Jock Karl Ranck has a nice sports car from his father he's quite proud of, so of course it gets stolen and damaged during a school dance.

     Red Robin series (2009-2011) 

  • Aborted Arc: Almost all major plot threads remained unresolved thanks to the DC reboot.
  • Alliterative Title: Red Robin.
  • The Alternet : Final Crisis makes brief mention of a supervillain-created Unternet, which exists alongside the normal Internet. The heroes use it to communicate after Darkseid takes control of all Earth's media and uses it to broadcast Anti-Life. It also made an appearance in Red Robin where Tim gained a new costume while inside it.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Tim finds Damian quite annoying since Damian cruel and rude even after he (mostly) stops trying to actually kill Tim. At one point when he tries to keep Damian out of a computer file the password he sets is cousinoliver.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Tim pulls this off during Anarky II's rampage, and receives one from Cassandra Cain and Dick Grayson at different times.
  • Bishōnen: Marcus To draws a really pretty Tim Drake with fabulous hair.
  • Charity Ball: Tim and Steph team up to protect Dr. Leslie Thompkins at a charity ball where they rightly expect some ninjas to try and assassinate to good doctor.
  • Chest Burster: Sac of the Council of Spiders has thousands of poisonous spiders eat and claw their way out of one of his victims.
  • Cool Bike: Tim is also a Badass Biker and has grown to prefer a bike to his old Red Bird. It's probably easier to acquire new ones as he travels.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: A group of spider themed villains attack Red Robin. One nearly kills him. When they attack him en masse, he kicks their butts.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Russian industrialist and hobbyist super-villain Mikalek from Red Robin.
  • Darker and Edgier: Averted. The series seems to start off as this, but Tim makes away with his brooding while combating Ra's attack on the Bat-family. It still is more straight-faced in nature compared to the original Robin run though.
  • Dating Catwoman: Lynx III. Batman even wanted to give Tim advice on how he had handled Catwoman over the years.
  • Death Seeker: Despite Tim's introduction into the Bat mythos as helping Bruce out of this by the time Tim has switched ids to Red Robin he is being accused of falling to self destructive tendencies himself, and his responses are telling non-answers. Cassie and Dick are given two different flavors of misdirection, but it's the way he brushes off Steph rather than answer her that seals the deal, since she's on the short list of people he wouldn't feed that type of misdirection to. He starts getting better by the end of the series after Kon-El, Bart and Bruce return but even the last issue had overtones of Tim skirting around Not Afraid to Die.
  • Funny Background Event: Cassandra investigating a metal panel and being shocked by it. Then punching the still sparking panel in retaliation.
  • Gambit Roulette: In issue #12, Dick saves Tim in the nick of time from falling out a skyscraper. Later in the Batcave, Dick questions him whether he had planned it all along, and Tim replies with a: "You're my brother, Dick. You'll always be there for me."
  • Guile Hero: the only Robin to have inherited this particular repertoire from Batman.
  • Hollywood Atheist: His dad was Jewish and mom was Catholic, but after their deaths Tim became jaded with religion.
  • Love Triangle: At one point, Tim was juggling multiple love interests at the same time. He was casually dating Tam Fox out of costume while flirting with Lynx in costume, and all the time still having UST with Steph (they would have probably gotten back together if Steph hadn't refused the kiss). FabNic had plans to build the triangle/polygon/harem a bit more, but was cut short by the DC reboot.
  • Milholland Relationship Moment: After Tim’s best friend Conner dies, Tim and Conner’s girlfriend Cassie share a single kiss that could be interpreted largely as Sex for Solace (except without the sex, because, you know, Tim Drake). They don't do anything further, but after Conner comes back to life both are worried what he'll think of them. He doesn't care; it's not like they knew he was coming back, after all.
  • Multiarmed And Dangerous: Goliath of the Council of Spiders.
  • Murder, Inc.: The Council of Spiders.
  • Obligatory Earpiece Touch: In issue #20, Stephanie touches her earpiece, even though it's built in as part of her cowl, while fighting the villain Romeo Void when Tim contacts her to warn her about Calculator being on the move.
  • Orifice Invasion: Sac of the Council of Spiders has his poisonous spiders crawl inside of one of Ra's Al Ghul's trusted workers (trusted in the sense that Ra's had the man's family hostage at gunpoint) in order to force him to divulge information about Ra's' location. When the Council are done with him Sac has his spiders and the thousands of young in the eggs they'd laid in the man kill him by eating and clawing their way out of him.
  • Renamed the Same: Robin to Red Robin. He didn’t really give up the name by choice anyway so this let him hang on to it regardless of Dick’s decision.
  • Rescue Romance: Tim Drake and Tam Fox are both made prisoners of the League of Assassins. When they escape in the chaos caused by Tim defeating the Council of Spiders and hurting the League, Tam gives Tim a big ol' smooch and continues to have tension with him in the series.
  • Running Gag: This series lampshades just how many attractive females have attacked Tim only to form alliances with him running from the good to the tense to the ugly.
  • Secret Chaser: Vicki Vale — she figured out 3/4 of the Batfamily identities, with the exception of Steph, Cass and Damian.
  • Secret Test: Turns out that Ra's combined this with Xanatos Gambit in the first arc. Tim is pitted against the Council of Spiders and then the League of Assassins itself. If he fails, he's dead and Ra's has one less Bat-Clan member to worry about. If he succeeds he proves himself worthy to Ra's Al Ghul's sister. Goes a long way to explain Ra's apparent use of the Villain Ball in the arc.
  • Shout-Out:
    • In the Ünternet Tam Fox decides to wear her hair in an afro and dresses an awful lot like Misty Knight.
    • Tim accidentally creates a 60's Batman Riddler with his subconsciousness in the Ünternet. He's not fond of the implications when it becomes clear the Riddler is acting as a representation of his subconscious.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: With Damian Wayne, fifth Robin and Bruce Wayne's biological son.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: Tim started as an idealist as Robin, and slowly went down the cynical route after Identity Crisis.
    • Ironic, since his on-again, off-again girlfriend Stephanie Brown went the opposite direction, starting out cynical before becoming an optimist.
  • Spider Swarm: "Sac", one of the members of the Council of Spiders, is a pest controller who is always covered in spiders and who can have his spiders lay eggs in people and then kill them while eating their way out.
  • Stalker with a Test Tube: One of Ra's Al Ghul's sisters. As Tim puts it, he's about to be attacked by her in a "after school special" kind of way.
  • The Chessmaster: Tim Drake. And how.
  • The Cowl: He is after all, the closest to Bruce in terms of personality.
  • Time Abyss: Turns out that whoever runs the Assassination tournament Tim interferes with is an immortal with a laser equipped "ancient Babylonian" hideout in the sewers of Paris, and is old enough to consider Vandal Savage a near contemporary. It's a shame he had to destroy the place.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Tim, Stephanie Brown, and the General all show how much they've grown in Red Robin.
  • Was It All a Lie?: Tam Fox breaks up with Tim at the end of the series when she find out that he's been lying to her about Lucius Fox being dead.
  • Will They or Won't They?: The premise of the entire Red Robin/Batgirl crossover arc.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • Stephanie calls him out in Red Robin #10, in which he admits that she's right and promises to be better in the future.
    • Comes from Tam Fox when he fakes her father's death-without telling her.

Alternative Title(s): Red Robin