Tim Drake Almost Replaced Nightwing, DC Created ‘Ric Grayson’ Instead

One of DC’s most prolific writers just revealed how Tim Drake‘s Robin would have been involved in one of Nightwing’s most divisive storylines. Recently the Twitter account @DC_moments, which posts trivia regarding “crazy” moments in DC history, spotlighted the controversial run where Nightwing Dick Grayson took on the moniker “Ric Grayson” from 2018 to 2020. This story arc took place during Tom King’s run on Batman.

Tom King himself responded on Twitter by mapping out what the original plans were for the Ric Grayson storyline. The Eisner Award-winning writer revealed that the arc would have involved Tim Drake taking over the mantle of Nightwing while Dick was recovering from his headshot and learning to be himself again. “It would be a story of two brothers bonding, caring for each other in the shadow of the Bat,” King pontificated. Most interesting is that this arc was originally slotted to last merely six issues, rather than the two years it did last. It would appear that the decision to take the story in such a drastically different direction was a decision from the higher-ups at DC.

Tim Drake Would Have Become Nightwing

In 2018’s Batman #55, written by King and drawn by Tony S. Daniel, Dick Grayson is shot in the head by KGBeast. Miraculously, he survives, albeit with amnesia that would last the next two years. With most of his memories gone beyond the day his parents died, Dick spends these years between 2018 and 2020 under the name Ric Grayson, sporting an edgier personality completely detached from Dick. He distances himself from the Bat-Family to start a new life, until he regains all of his memories during the events of the Joker War and officially becomes the Nightwing of old again.

Tim and Dick’s Identity Crises Would Have Brought Them Closer

Tim Drake is no stranger to having an identity crisis of his own, often trying and failing to pull himself out of the Robin name. His most significant attempt was when he became Red Robin, after which he becomes just Drake, a move that actually took place in 2019 during Dick’s time as Ric. Even today, he grapples with his identity as DC has teased Tim Drake becoming something other than Robin. There’s a possibility that if Tim Drake had spent some time in his Bat-brother’s skin, so to speak, he would have come closer to finding out who he himself is. Maybe he wouldn’t have even become Drake if he became Nightwing, however brief that period may have been.

This also begs the question if Dick Grayson would have even had time to become and develop himself as Ric Grayson if he had Tim there for him, especially if the arc only lasted six issues. More importantly than the what-ifs, it brings together two characters who, oftentimes in DC lore, feel far more distant from each other than one would expect from two characters driven by their attempts to pull out of Batman’s shadow. This arc would have gone into deeper depths of directly linking the former Robin and the current Robin together, hitting at the main core that Batman has always been about: family. Both Tim Drake‘s Robin and Nightwing are doing just fine for themselves right now in DC, but it’s fascinating to think about where their characters would be now had Tom King’s original plans not fallen through.

Source: Tom King

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