For some reason there has been a lot of questioning as to why Dick Grayson hasn’t taken on the mantle of Nightwing yet in DC Universe’s ‘Titans‘ and Geoff Johns is sharing why. Grayson may have famously cried out “F*CK BATMAN” in the trailer that took the Internet by storm, but that doesn’t mean he is fully ready to step out from behind the long shadow of The Dark Night quite yet. The Caped Crusader has molded Robin to this point and Brenton Thwaites‘ character has clearly shown he is still discovering who he is without his mentor.
To clarify this a bit, Johns stated:
“We talked a lot about starting Dick Grayson as Nightwing. We all got to a point where we’re going to miss and hop over what I think is a really interesting period of Dick Grayson’s life where he left Batman, and he was struggling to find a new identity and who he was.”
Executive Producers Greg Berlanti and Akiva Goldsman agreed with Johns that it would be more interesting to see Grayson evolve into Nightwing much as we’re seeing Rachel become Raven:
“We took a sliver of the comics that dealt with Dick Grayson post-Batman a little bit and amplified that even more, exploring what that period for Dick Grayson was really like. Nightwing is such a stable, confident, emotionally balanced character—he’s Dick Grayson when he’s found his place in the world. We wanted to build up to him becoming Nightwing.”
Rachel’s darkness is the driving force of the first season and helping her is what gets Grayson to start to figure out who he is.
“When we looked at Raven’s story it’s really about a young girl struggling with this internal darkness,” Johns said. “She lives and comes from a world that is more in the supernatural and horror vein. We decided to lean into that and have Dick Grayson’s journey mirror that. He has his own darkness that he’s struggling with and trying to overcome.
When he meets Rachel, they’re both on a similar path of confronting this darkness that is within each of them and trying to move beyond it, control it, understand it. It’s really only with the help of other people who are lost and trying to find their place in the world that they can all come together and help one another. That’s what the DNA of Titans is—a surrogate family. The characters and the best runs have always been about that. But the tone of it is really dictated by our first story, Rachel and Dick’s story.”
As to the famous line which he shouted and has lead him on a journey to self-discovery? That isn’t going to be ignored moving forward:
“It’s what we set up in the pilot. It’s really about Rachel and helping Rachel, trying to find out what she’s dealing with and help her come to terms with that. At the same time, all the other characters are dealing with their own issues. Dick Grayson is dealing with his past with Batman, and we’ll reveal what that really was and what happened.”
To get attached to these takes of the characters you do need to deconstruct them and pull back just far enough so we can see them built up into the ‘Titans’ that fans know they’ll become. Without humanizing them first, it is hard to empathize with them, and this will help set the emotional foundation to potentially enjoy these characters for years to come.
Do you agree with how Geoff Johns and the DC Universe production team has introduced us to the ‘Titans’ so far? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Source: DC Comics