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  1. #1
    Fantastic Member
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    Default Relationships between the Robins/Batgirls

    A couple years ago now I made a thread about Bruce's relationship with the other people in the Bat Family and that was very informative and helpful.

    But I'm curious about how the different sidekicks see one another? A summary be welcome or maybe even some recommended comic books depicting interactions or detailing how they feel about one another.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Extraordinary Member dietrich's Avatar
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    DC continuity is all over the place so with some characters it's difficult to say.
    The only relationship I can comment on with confidence is Dick and Damian. They have a father/son, sibling relationship see Nightwing Rebirth Nightwing must die arc

  3. #3
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    Depends a little bit on the continuity, and there are in general members who interact quite often with each other, some that have next to no interaction and some that have at least since flashpoint barely interacted.

    Since I don't really want to do relationship analysis I think I go over the ones that barely interact (even if I probably for get some members).

    Dick has barely any interactions with Steph, Cassandra and Kate.

    Jasons barely interacts with Steph, Cassandra, Kate and Helena. And his relations with Dick and Barbara suffer a little from the fact that it is not really clear what their relation were like before he died (there wasn't much interaction in his original run as Robin).

    Tim used to have interactions with every body in the family before flashpoint, but since then we have only seen him interact much with Jason and Steph.

    Damian had sofar not much interaction with Barbara, Cassandra, Kate and Helena.

    Barbara and Kate had also not interaction sofar.

    Duke is imo still to new to really say much about his relationships.

  4. #4
    Caperucita Roja Zaresh's Avatar
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    Duke had an issue with Jason, a one-shot, in some talent showcase special. And Dick was the one he interacted the more in his I troduction, I think.

    Kate is Kate Kane? If that's the case, I would count her interaction with Tim in Detective Comics and Jason in RHATO, and Jason too once in that Tec bad future and then Bombshells. Seems like DC is kind of trying to closer their relationship somehow.
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  5. #5
    Extraordinary Member dietrich's Avatar
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    Duke and Damian seem to have an amicable relationship see Robin war especially the end for the two going out to catch a movie and also Rebirth Nightwing where Damian is missing Duke.

    Duke and Cass get on and have a friendly relationship. Duke seeming to have the most connection with Cass see Batman and the Outsiders issue 2

  6. #6
    Incredible Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    As others said, it varies wildly by era. I'm most familiar with the post-COIE era, and even then only certain eras. Pre-COIE is simpler, and I have a good grasp on that, I think. New 52 is weird because it rewrote and changed so much and has been changed since. I'll be answering primarily from a pre-52 standpoint.

    In my perception (which tends not to factor in very many retcons, and some of these relationships have had major retcons) of the ones I think I know well enough to comment on:

    In early years, Robin and Batgirl (Dick and Barbara) regarded each other as fellow crimefighters. Barbara was not a protege of Bruce's then. Dick and Bruce didn't know her identity, and she didn't know theirs. They worked together on occasion, but she often worked separately from them. They became more professional friends in time. She and Dick became personal friends in the mid-70s Batman Family title, and flirted a bit. She didn't seem to be a close friend with Bruce. Then Dick left college and Barbara got voted out of Washington, and she and Dick seemingly drifted apart as friends. I expect there was still some off-panel contact sometimes - they both attended some parties at Wayne Manor, as I recall. But they were no longer close. Barbara became more involved with the Batfamily again in the early-to-mid 1990s (more consistently starting in 1995 or 1996). That's when Barbara and Dick's first real romantic relationship started developing (not a retconned one, I mean). That's dominated their dynamic since, IMO, though they haven't always been romantically involved, of course. I can cite issues for Bronze age or '90s early '00s material, if you like.

    Dick and Jason, of course, had a very different dynamic pre and post-COIE. I have actually deliberately avoided reading most of Jason's pre-COIE stories, because the character was so different, and I knew that when I started reading DC. Mostly, Dick and Jason didn't have that much of a relationship before Jason died. With the retcon to how Dick became Nightwing, the relationship between Bruce and Dick worsened, so Dick spent 18 months completely estranged from Bruce before he found out Jason existed. Rocky first meeting, but then Dick gave him a uniform and told him to call if needed to. They did work together sometimes after that. I'm unsure if Jason's New Teen Titans appearances (one set in 1986, one in 1987) were really written with pre-COIE Jason in mind, but they were shown together in Gotham in "The Last Batgirl Story" (which I thought a poor story, but that's irrelevant), so they did know each other somewhat. Certainly I don't think they regarded each other as brothers, and Jason wasn't being rejected by Dick or anything like that when it originally happened (I see Dick cast as the "bad big brother/jerk" a good bit in fic, so maybe it was retconned later - haven't read if so). Jason wasn't really interested in meeting Dick, and he felt threatened by the idea Dick might want his old job back. Bruce did compare Jason to Dick sometimes, and Alfred said that was a problem. A reasonable cause for later resentment. Of course, interaction right after Jason came back from the dead was very negative. I haven't read much New52, but I understand they've had some good moments.

    Barbara and Jason - I am honestly unsure if they ever spoke to each other on-panel before he died. She came to the funeral. But there's nothing I can think of that indicated they had a significant relationship at that time. I'm aware that has changed in New 52, if not earlier.

    Tim and Steph are two more dominated by their romantic history. Of course, originally, she was the pursuer and him the pursued. He did care about her quite quickly after meeting, but that wasn't romantic. He had a girlfriend, but was attracted to Steph. He sort of instructed Steph a bit on moral lessons sometimes. Gave her some equipment. Didn't have much faith in her and kept telling her to quit being Spoiler. Then he did want to pursue a relationship, and broke up with his girlfriend to date Steph. But Tim told her before they started dating that he couldn't tell her his identity, and she said she was okay with that (which she was, for a while, until she wasn't). Right after that she found out she was pregnant with her ex's child. Tim stayed the supportive boyfriend. Was her partner at birthing class. But he certainly (very reasonably, IMO) wasn't even contemplating ever acting the role of father, even when Steph was having second thoughts about putting the child up for adoption. And she did put her up for adoption. Steph and Tim pretty much continued like they had, and she went back to being Spoiler. But then, after a while, Steph started get antsy about not knowing his real name, and feeling insecure in the relationship (which was reasonable, IMO). She tried to find out his identity, and that led to a tiff, but no major issue. Then Batman told her because he was too much of a jerk/coward to get the info he needed via any means that might involve interacting with Alfred (who'd left Bruce's home and was working as Tim's valet). Tim had continuing efforts to keep his life compartmentalized, then it all blew up and Steph "died" (death retconned later to faked). By time she came back, there was a lot of baggage and mixed feelings. Then the universe rebooted. I can cite issues for the pre-death stuff, if you like.

    Steph and Cass - These two seemed to click very quickly. Cass, like everyone else, seemed to have no respect for Steph as a crimefighter. But they were friends. For me, Cass was much closer to Steph than Tim, but that's undoubtedly because I read more of the pre-Steph-death-era comics than the later post-COIE ones. At first, Tim found Cass a bit creepy, IIRC. Later, she was his sister.

    Barbara and Cass - Barbara was a mentor figure for Cass, but Cass never seemed, to me, to regard her with the same level of respect/reverence that she sometimes showed Bruce. Barbara certainly cared very, very much about Cass. She and Bruce would both project their own wants onto Cass at times. Barbara could be controlling, and Bruce much more so.

    Tim and Damian - Obviously hostile to start, to say the least. I mean, Damian attacked him. And then supplanted him as Robin (I hate Dick acting like Bruce so very much). Then later, after Tim came back, they did some coordinated stuff (after some butt-kicking). There seemed to be less true hatred and a more hostile-out-of-habit-and-irritation vibe for a bit, until Damian saw Tim's list (I hate Tim acting like Bruce so very much), when a murder attempt followed. After that, it's kinda hazy to me. Certainly they moved past the actual violence again. I can't really comment on their New 52 dynamic. While I've read a little with each, I'm not sure I've seen them together more than a couple times.

    Tim and Dick - These two are very much brothers in the 1990s. And this is well before Tim was adopted by Bruce. There are several issues that show them hanging out together. And Dick explicitly regards him as "the closest thing to a brother [he'll] ever have" if my memory doesn't fail me. Tim starts off not seeing Dick as a person. He expects Dick to drop his entire life and go back to being Robin to because "Batman needs a Robin" (and despite that being Tim's quote it was used earlier in another context that shows just how much that serves Batman's needs, rather than Robin's). Dick doesn't do that, of course. But he does think Tim is the right one for job. Tim does respect Dick back then, but he doesn't hold him in the same awe as Batman. There's actually some really good panels that if you look at show how disturbing that degree of faith in Batman is (which I'm not sure were meant to, but think might have just been intended to blame Jason for his own death). Fortunately, that view of Batman fades as Tim gets to know him better. But Dick is definitely the one he maintains the more personal relationship one in that era. I'm not really sure how the relationship is depicted as writers change, except in when Dick took Robin away from him. They see it so differently. Dick says Tim is his peer, not his protege. That's exactly what Dick has wanted to hear from Bruce since he was 18 years old (maybe earlier, but definitely by then). But it's not what Tim wants. And, of course, there was Tim's anger at his job being given to the person who attacked him, and at Dick not believing him about Bruce being alive. But then Bruce came back. And the universe rebooted. And I don't know their New 52 dynamic, except that Tim seemed to have a lot of respect for Dick-as-Robin in Gotham Academy. I can cite issues for the 90s relationship, if you are interested.

    The strongest relationship I noticed with Duke was him working with Damian earlier on. He didn't like the kid, but acknowledged his skill and there was some interpersonal relationship building as story progressed. I know he and Cass are in Batman and the Outsiders right now, so I assume that relationship is being built up.

    There are several others that I don't think have particular significant personal one-on-one dynamic with each other, but that maybe have changed with New 52. Still others I know had important dynamics (Damian and Dick, Damian and Steph, Barbara and Steph), but haven't read enough of the era to knowledgeably comment on.

    I intentionally left out Kate, as she's never been a sidekick or junior contributor.
    Last edited by Tzigone; 08-19-2019 at 07:04 AM.

  7. #7
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    Based on the current continuity:

    Dick and Damian get along well. Damian is also on good terms with Duke.

    Barbara gets along with everyone.

    Tim gets along decently with his Dick and Jason. He and Damian dislike each other. I'd say that Tim is the closest to Stephanie out of all the Bat Family members.

    Speaking of Steph, she feels like the outsider of the Bat family right now. Excluding Tim, everyone else just seems to tolerate her.

    Duke and Cassandra are slowly becoming friends.

    Jason's relationship with the rest of the Bat family is obviously strained but things are a lot better than he cares to admit.

  8. #8
    ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦ Godlike13's Avatar
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    Dick and Damian very close
    Dick and Babs very close, want to do each other close.
    Dick and Jason varied and inconsistent
    Dick and Tim use to be close
    Dick and Cass not close
    Dick and Steph not close
    Dick and Kate cordial
    Dick and Duke cordial
    Last edited by Godlike13; 08-19-2019 at 09:19 AM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by king81992 View Post
    Speaking of Steph, she feels like the outsider of the Bat family right now. Excluding Tim, everyone else just seems to tolerate her.
    That was for the most part also the case pre flashpoint. She had of course her friendship with Cass, and Barbara became a mentor for her when she became Batgirl (but that was pretty late in that continuity).

    But she was never really close to Bruce or Dick.

  10. #10
    Incredible Member Blue22's Avatar
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    Dick and Damian is one of my favorite mentor/student relationships in comics. He really stepped up in the short time that Bruce was away, to the point where I'd consider Dick more of a father to Damian than Bruce is...or at least I used to think that. Which is why it's a shame those two don't interact as much as they used to. And even bigger shame that Dick has been out of commission for this long and yet we haven't gotten a single reaction from Damian about it. Given how....less than perfect the family's been lately, I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't even know.

    Another pretty nice dynamic is Damian and Tim. I've really enjoyed seeing these two go from hating each other's guts to actually, somewhat, getting along and respecting each other. I doubt they'll ever be really close. But it's nice seeing how far they've come.

    Much like the character, himself, Jason's relationship with the rest of the Batfam is all over the place. Sometimes he's friendly with everyone. Sometimes he's hostile. Sometimes he's paranoid over whether or not he's being kicked out the family. Sometimes he does things that suggest he doesn't care. Sometimes he and Bruce aren't on speaking terms. Sometimes they're going out to eat together and he's being invited to secret meetings between immediate Batfam members. I can't even tell who he likes or dislikes the most. I'm tempted to say Dick is his favorite just because Dick tends to be the default favorite. But I don't know for sure lol. Watching him and Babs verbally tag team Bruce in Tec was pretty neat though. That's the kind of things I like seeing. Two characters who don't have much of a relationship finding a common ground xD

    Then there's Cass, who I think has really suffered because of the New 52. Sure she still has her relationship with Steph, and now Duke. But her relationship with Bruce isn't nearly as good and I don't even know if her relationship with Babs even exists anymore. Honestly, I'd love seeing her work alongside Jason and Damian in, like, a mini series or something. That just sounds like it'd be all kinds of badass.
    Last edited by Blue22; 08-19-2019 at 10:09 AM.

  11. #11
    Astonishing Member Jackalope89's Avatar
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    Steph, in recent continuity, simply hasn't had much interaction with the others outside of Tim (and the two are maybe dating? I don't know).

    Cass gets along with Duke, but much of her pre-Flashpoint relationships simply are not there.

    Babs does well enough, and one of the few from the Bats that Jason isn't hostile towards at the moment. During New52 (before Rebirth) the two even had a minor "will they/won't they" thing going. But ultimately, remained friends.

    Dick (NOT Ric), since Flashpoint, has at least a positive rapport with the others. Before being shot, even had a better thing going with Jason (RHATO annual Rebirth).

    Duke gets along with Damian and Cass, but hasn't had much to do with the others.

    Tim and Jason, especially compared to pre-Flashpoint, seem to get along well enough. Jason even looking out for him a few times. Obviously close to Steph.

    Damian is still close to Dick, and gets along with Duke. Otherwise... Well, he hasn't exactly made friends with the others since. Some (Jason) he attacked without warning.

  12. #12
    Incredible Member kaimaciel's Avatar
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    I can't only speak for Jason after the New 52 and Rebirth.

    Jason and Dick - complicated, Jason admitted he both admired and envied Dick, but Dick was too mad at Bruce for replacing him and Jason was mad at Dick for being compared to the "golden child". They never developed the brother relationship Dick built with Tim and Damian, and after Jason came back from the grave they were hostile towards each other. Things seem to be improving, as we've seen them both during patrols talking about Dick's love life and Dick helped Jason during the first Rebirth annual, even admitting that Jason is a better older brother (to Bizarro) than he was to him.

    Jason and Tim - their relationship was initially hostile because of Jason's feelings of betrayal and abandonment after finding out that Bruce had replaced him after his death. Tim, however, was one of the only people who reached out to Jason and tried to understand him (one of the reasons he didn't take the name Robin in the New 52 was out of respect for Jason). When Jason was estranged from the family with the Outlaws, they traded intel and had breakfast together and Jason slowly warmed up to Tim, who he now considers as a little brother and the only member of the family who "doesn't make him wanna puke" (sic). Jay likes to tease Tim and take him to bars, Tim still helps him out with Tech.

    Jason and Damian - Oh boy... right now they have the worst relationship out of the Robins. Damian was hostile towards Jason, who he considers unstable and dangerous, but they seemed to get along during the Titans run when Jason was providing Damian intel on criminals. After his team almost died, Damian was convinced Jason had betrayed him and attacked him, prompting Jason to defeat him and leaving. Currently, Damian has accused Jason of being the murderous Leviathan.

    Jason and Barbara - their interactions were usually a bit hostile on Barbara's part, she usually mocked him and Jason took it in stride, except for Batman Eternal when she flirted with him (Dick was presumed dead and working as a spy), but Jason turned her down, claiming he would never be Dick, though he admitted that he used to have a huge crush on her and some lingering feelings.

    Jason barely interacted with Steph or Cassandra. He trained with Duke and they seemed to get on well enough.

  13. #13
    Extraordinary Member TheCape's Avatar
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    Tim and Damian - Obviously hostile to start, to say the least. I mean, Damian attacked him. And then supplanted him as Robin (I hate Dick acting like Bruce so very much). Then later, after Tim came back, they did some coordinated stuff (after some butt-kicking). There seemed to be less true hatred and a more hostile-out-of-habit-and-irritation vibe for a bit, until Damian saw Tim's list (I hate Tim acting like Bruce so very much), when a murder attempt followed. After that, it's kinda hazy to me. Certainly they moved past the actual violence again. I can't really comment on their New 52 dynamic. While I've read a little with each, I'm not sure I've seen them together more than a couple times.
    There is not hostility anymore, but they aren't really close either, they treat each other as coworkers and that's more or less it.
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  14. #14
    Incredible Member Bat-Meal's Avatar
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    Kate and Babs have teamed-up a couple of times, but I can't find any relevant scans. She has a the best relationship with Nightwing, who welcomed her into the Bat-Family. She seems to get along with Red Hood as well. Not sure what her status is with the former Gotham Knights though. And so far Damian and Kate have never spoken that I am am aware of.

    52_NightwingBatwoman.jpg

    batman_eternal_18.jpg

    RedHoodBatwoman.jpg
    Last edited by Bat-Meal; 08-20-2019 at 07:31 AM.

  15. #15
    Incredible Member Bat-Meal's Avatar
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    And a tiny bit more, since the panels explain it best:

    52_1.jpg

    batman_eternal_19.jpg

    RedHoodBatwoman2.jpg
    Last edited by Bat-Meal; 08-20-2019 at 07:52 AM.

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