“Oops!” and Tim Drake’s Robin Past
As new content editor here at titanstower.com, I thought long and hard about what my first post should be.
Then I remembered one statement from Scott Lobdell at the “Young Justice” Panel at SDCC 2012 that really got some fans pretty riled up:
“…as near as I recall, as it is now Tim goes straight from being Tim Drake to being Red Robin in that there was no official period of time where he was Robin. We keep most of the origin intact in that he was one of the few people who could get very close to learning who Bruce is…but it will be a much updated version of his origin.”
So it appears Tim was never Robin, and only assumed the Red Robin identity. This runs contrary to Tim’s long-standing history, and even to some references made less than a year ago in the DCnU.
However, this isn’t the first time that DC has done the “Oops! I didn’t say that!” or say something and then later need to retract it. However Tim Drake’s news is a bit unique in some regards. Here, the same writer that is asserting Tim Drake was never Robin also established Tim was indeed Robin… Let’s go to the evidence from the comic books themselves…
Teen Titans #1:”I used to be well-known as Robin”
Batman #1: Tim Drake “former Robin”
Even more recently in Batman and Robin #10 & #11, the “War of the Robins”, Tim Drake is considered a Robin.
Yes, the reality-altering “Flashpoint” storyline reset the DC history for the most part.
However, time master Rip Hunter established in the Booster Gold series that some events in history and time cannot be changed. I think some of Tim’s past in the former history is the same. His connection to Wonder Girl is still there, there are reasons why Bart and Conner are with him in Teen Titans, and even his connection to the Batman family is still there.
But longtime Batman fans will recall two seminal storylines in regards to the history of the Robins. “A Death in the Family”  brought about the brutal slaying of second Robin, Jason Todd, at the hands of the Joker – while “A Lonely Place of Dying”  introduced readers to new Robin, Tim Drake. With DC Comic’s official site now referencing Jason Todd as “presumed dead,” readers are left to wonder if the events of these previous stories remain intact. Same with Tim Drake’s origin. Does “A Lonely Place of Dying” still “happen” in this streamlined continuity? When Tim stands at the side of Jean Paul Valley during his Batman tenure, is it as Robin or Red Robin? What about Jack Drake? Could Tim’s father still be alive if Tim was never Robin in “Identify Crisis”? Also, how did Tim get the design of the Red Robin costume? Could there have been another Red Robin previous to Tim’s tenure?”
Other avid fans may remember the DC New 52 FAQ, where the question came up of the multiple Robins all fitting into the new “5 year timeline”. Answered: “Robin is an intern program -and a very intensive one at that.” DC posted a picture of this:
This revelation may be the next step to help DC answer their own question on how Dick, Jason, Tim and Damien could all be Robins in 5-10 years. However, given Damian’s age (10 years old) and now with Tim “not being a Robin officially”, there may have been a longer time that Batman was not with a Robin. It also opens another confusing door as “Batman: Year One” still exists…. yet when was Damian conceived if he is now ten years old and Talia the boy’s mother?
Maybe it is another “Oops! We did it again!” slip from DC as DC did say the Batman Universe was not going to change that much in the DCnU. However, a year later, it seems we’ve got some updates on various Batman character histories. Time and maybe Teen Titans #0 in September will fill in some gaps.
Like sands thru the hourglass, only DC can let us know what the days of Tim Drake’s past looks like now.
Until the next “Oops!,” that is.
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