Hey everyone! So, I didn’t really want to make a habit of expressing my opinion on our blog, but people seemed to like my post on the divisive comic book community. Since then, I decided that I wanted to address what’s happening to my favorite character of all time: Nightwing!
Last year was filled with change for Dick Grayson, in comic and beyond the page. Tim Seeley left Nightwing after a good run with the character and sort of swapped places with Sam Humphries who was finishing up The Green Lanterns. Seeley did a great job of bringing Dick Grayson back to Bludhaven and establishing him as a hero.
When Humphries worked on the character, it was only for a brief time because DC was looking for a long term writer. In my opinion, he did an amazing story with Nightwing. Honestly, read it for yourselves because I loved every bit of it. Plus, the art by Bernard Chang was pretty slick.
However, he left and Benjamin Percy was hired to write the character in the hiatus. Ugh. If anyone has read one of my reviews on Percy’s Nightwing story, then you know exactly how I feel about it. Percy is a great writer and the art was pretty good too, but the story was not built for Nightwing. For those who haven’t read the bleeding edge arc, it’s basically about how technology is taking over our lives and also affecting our realities. The villain is a rogue intelligence who wants to control all knowledge, including super secret identities that heroes might want to keep hidden. All in all, it’s a good story with a strong message about the dangers of technology. However, is it really a Nightwing story?
I would argue that it’s not. Nightwing is always pushed aside in the arc to spread this message condemning evil tech and how it could be used to take advantage of others. The audience only gets brief snippets of Dick Grayson’s life in Bludhaven and it tears away everything Seeley and Humphries worked on. Bludhaven is no longer the whaling-town-turned-Las-Vegas. It becomes the forefront of digital advancement and urbanization. So, why did he do that?
The only reason I can think Percy would choose Nightwing as the herald of this story is because of the early 2000 run by Peter Tomasi. Similar to that run, Percy’s Nightwing is not tech savvy and prefers a landline. It’s a small thread, but I think both interpretations of Dick Grayson are pretty similar. No wonder I wasn’t a fan of the story…
The only thing that I will give credit to Percy for was Dick’s relationship with Barbara. It’s been a while since we’ve seen that dynamic in the comic and I was starting to miss it. There was a lot of development between these two and I was happy for them. Of course, Nightwing #50 destroys all of that when Nightwing got shot in the head in Batman #55.
Ugh. And now we’ve reached the point where Ric Grayson is now a thing. Sorry, but I really dislike what’s going on in the comics right now. Scott Lobdell and Fabian Nicieza are writing “Nightwing” without Dick Grayson or his version of the vigilante. Instead, we have a team of first responders who take on the role of Nightwing while Ric Grayson drinks himself to death and is a massive douche to everyone he meets. Also, Scarecrow is running around claiming that he is the one true villain of the first Robin or something like that?
Look, the idea was clever but the execution has been poor in my opinion. When it comes to writing Nightwing, you have to be careful. Every fan has their own interpretation of what Nightwing is because he has changed so much over the years. To appeal to all of them can be super difficult and throwing Ric Grayson in the mix is not helping. I think what makes this story even worse is that, in a few months, this whole entire thing is going to get rewritten and it will have no lasting effects on the future Nightwing. Maybe that’s a good thing since Ric is such a @#$%&. Secondly, the only connection to the earlier Nightwing Rebirth arcs is that it takes place in Bludhaven and Detective Svoboda is still there. That’s pretty much it. It seems that the writers wanted to distance themselves from everything Nightwing previously was in the comics.
Plus, it’s like he’s cut himself off from every other hero in the DC Universe. I’ve always thought of Nightwing as one of those characters who brings heroes together, like the Titans or the Batfamily. Without him, its hard to imagine teams sticking together. So, it’s no surprise that Titans (the comic) has been cancelled. However, that’s a rant for another day.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that I miss the old Nightwing and Ric Grayson is a bland retcon which should never have happened. He’s probably my favorite character and it upsets me that the comics have twisted him so much in the last few months. I’m sure that there are few people out there who might argue that Ric Grayson is the most ‘Nightwing’ story written since he’s always been in a constant state of change in the comics or some bullshit like that. Fine. Think what you want to think. I just wish that someone could bring back the good guy Nightwing in comics soon because I might take a break reading him.
Thanks for reading! Tell me what you think of Ric Grayson in the comments below. Until next time…