Monday, May 13, 2013

You Don't Know Dick

No this blog hasn't taken a turn for the salacious, I am of course referring to Dick Grayson.

Dick Grayson, the original "Boy Wonder" and the guy who has single handedly made male gymnasts manly! I'm not claiming to be an expert on all things Nightwing but I do have a fondness for the character and am in someways familiar with all his iterations. From Robin to Nightwing to Batman to Nightwing back to Batman and now (Finally?) Nightwing again.

Some of these eras I've only read the glancing single issue  or 2. Others I have read whole arcs and even complete runs! So I have enough background on the subject to tell the WB, they don't know Dick.

 For the most part I believe Master Richard has been handled wonderfully. Wolfman and Dixon immediately come to mind as 2 of his Seminole writers. With great pacing and respect Dick has gone from sidekick to Titans team leader and was elevated to full time Top-Tier hero. I am especially impressed with current writer, Kyle Higgins run. Higgins is a Rock-Star-Writer in the making and he has not just helped Nightwing come into his own in DC's new52, he has helped him step completely out of the shadow of his one time mentor and adoptive father Batman. Nightwing is a cash cow on the verge thanks to the fine minds at DC comics.

So who is it then that doesn't know Dick?

Everyone at Warner who doesn't work on the 4 color side of things it seems! In their minds Dick Grayson's destiny as a non-comic book exclusive property is still intertwined with Batman's. The problem with this is the TV and movie going audience doesn't like Robin and the Dubya-B can't separate Dick from the red, green and yellow even 30 years after he ditched those threads for a black and blue leisure suited costume.
Dick Grayson/Nightwing should from here on out stand on his own. I'm not suggesting you ignore his history or even rewrite his origin but there must be a way to bring him to the masses not as a former Robin, but as a superhero that just so happened to be Robin a LOOOOONG time ago.

This is what I propose...

Nightwing is ripe for the small screen. He has teeny bopper appeal with his youth and good looks and also is bad ass enough for the 18-40 crowd to rally around and adopt as they have Ollie Queen in CW's Arrow.

(Which brings me to my next point)

My suggestion to distance the boy wonder from the main event hero Dick Grayson has become, is for a guest-spot on Arrow to see gage the reception and monitor Nightwing's prime time presence. We know that fanboys would mark out for it, but how will the other half of the shows audience react? This would be my litmus test. From there on out respond accordingly. Does he recur? Get a spin-off? or does he forever get tied to Batman in which this experiment would fail miserably. The hints have been dropped, Bludhaven has been mentioned during season 1 and his style (no powers) fits the tone of Arrow perfectly.

But what do I know?


  1. Frankly, if any Batman property is going to ported to television, I'd like it to be Gotham Central. But I do think a Nightwing show or even a movie could stand on its own. Kyle Higgins is kind of doing this by extracting him from Gotham on a regular basis--and I agree, he's doing a bang-up job.