Nightwing Finally Admits He Let Down The Future Robins

Warning! Spoilers for Robins #1 ahead!

The first issue of Robins sees Nightwing confront the nuanced reality of the impact that he’s had on his successors to the Robin mantle. Dick Grayson is one of Batman’s greatest family members, but in this issue he comes face to face with a serious flaw in the way he has dealt with his family. He comes to admit that he has in many ways failed his brothers and sisters as a predecessor and mentor.

The idea of a child superhero sidekick, from a real-world perspective, is beyond the point of being problematic. As such, it is valuable and fascinating when mainstream superhero stories attempt to grapple with the implications of the concept. Robins #1 sets what appears to be the driving question for the rest of the miniseries, which is whether or not being Robin was good for those who took the name.

Related: The New Superman Reunites With Robin For One Last Mission

Robins #1 by Tim Seeley and Baldemar Riva depicts the Robins gathering for a meeting, following a mission in Blüdhaven, to discuss this subject. The Robins all summarize their basic starting perspectives, with Dick speaking first. Opening up to the rest, Dick talks about how as the first and oldest Robin, he believes very strongly in the work they’ve done and the influence they’ve had on each other and Batman. However, he acknowledges, he’s gotten wiser with time, and has come to realize that he hasn’t been supportive enough of complaints his peers have made over the years. Even though he’s often considered the best hero in the Bat-Family, he still has things to improve about himself. As he puts it, he used to get “mad when anyone implied being Robin wasn’t always the greatest thing,” and that he’s organized this meeting to make amends for not listening enough or working to make things better in the past.

As the meeting continues, it seems that for the moment, every Robin agrees that being Batman’s sidekick has been a mostly good thing for them, but they all struggle with it in some way. This is especially true for Jason Todd, who went down the darkest path of all the Boy/Girl Wonders due to his time in the role and is still struggling with how to be a good person because of it. It sets up a promising, strong conflict for the rest of the story, but most of all for Dick Grayson, who has already shown immense emotional maturity by recognizing his past mistakes and attempting to set a better standard for himself now.

Hopefully, Dick Grayson will be able to come to terms with his experiences guiding his successors through their times as Robin. While the Bat-Family has remained strong in spite of hardship, it’s clear in Robins #1 and the rest of the ongoing Batman saga that there is still room for healing amongst them. Nightwing has had the unique perspective of seeing every single Robin (except Damian) grow into adulthood and he is finally taking responsibility upon himself to make sure they all grow positively in the future.

Next: Nightwing, Red Hood, Spoiler & Red Robin Get Steamy Variant Covers

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