For the British band, see Nightwing (band). For the Marduk album, see Nightwing (album).
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Superman as Nightwing:
Superman #158 (January 1963)
Created by Edmond Hamilton (writer)
Curt Swan (art)
Characters Kal-El/Clark Kent
Dick Grayson
Tad Ryerstad
Jason Todd
Kara Zor-L/Karen Starr
Cheyenne Freemont
Lor-Zod/Chris Kent
Nightwing (vol. 1) #1 (September 1995)
Featuring the Dick Grayson version of the character.
Art by Brian Stelfreeze.
Series publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Schedule (vol 1)
(vol 2)
Monthly (1-100, 107-153)
Bi-weekly (101-106)
Format (vol 1)
Limited Series
(vol 2)
Ongoing series
Genre Superhero
Publication date (vol 1)
September – December 1995
(vol 2)
October 1996 – February 2009
Number of issues (vol 1)
(vol 2)
154 (includes an issue numbered 1000000)
Main character(s) Dick Grayson
Creative team
Writer(s) Chuck Dixon
Devin Grayson
Bruce Jones
Marv Wolfman
Peter Tomasi
Artist(s) Scott McDaniel
Greg Land
Trevor McCarthy
Rick Leonardi
Patrick Zircher
Mike Lilly
Phil Hester
Joe Dodd
Dan Jurgens
Jamal Igle
Rags Morales
Don Kramer

Nightwing is a name that has been used by several fictional characters in the DC Comics Universe. It was conceived as a Kryptonian analogue to the character of Batman, with Nightwing's frequent partner Flamebird based on Robin. The Nightwing persona originates with a Kryptonian vigilante taking the name of the "nightwing", a bird native to the planet Krypton.

Prior to DC's continuity-altering 1985 limited series, Crisis on Infinite Earths, the Nightwing identity was depicted as an invention of Superman's during a time when he and Jimmy Olsen act as vigilantes in the Kryptonian city of Kandor; Superman draws inspiration from his encounters with Batman and Robin. Post-Crisis, the name is attributed to a historic Kryptonian crimefighter; this hero serves as an inspiration for Dick Grayson when he sheds his Robin identity and assumes the name and a new costume. Grayson was featured in an ongoing Nightwing series between 1996 and 2009. The most recent character to assume the name Nightwing is Superman's adoptive son Chris Kent, who - like the original Nightwing - is also Kryptonian.


Fictional character biography



As first depicted in the story "Superman in Kandor" in Superman (vol. 1) #158 (January 1963), Nightwing is an alias used by Superman in Edmond Hamilton-penned pre-Crisis adventures in the city of Kandor, a Kryptonian city that was shrunken and preserved in a bottle. In Kandor, Superman has no superpowers and, in the story, is branded an outlaw there due to a misunderstanding. To disguise themselves, Superman and Jimmy Olsen create vigilante identities inspired by Batman and Robin. Because neither bats nor robins lived on Krypton, Superman chooses the names of two birds owned by Superman's Kandorian friend Nor-Kan: "Nightwing" for himself and "Flamebird" for Olsen. The Dynamic Duo of Kandor create costumes evocative of the birds' plumage. Nightwing and Flamebird rename Nor-Kan's underground laboratory as the "Nightcave", and use it as their secret headquarters. They also convert Nor-Kan's automobile into their "Nightmobile", and use "jet-belts" to fly into battle.

Superman and Jimmy as Nightwing and Flamebird respectively. From Superman #158 (1963). Art by Curt Swan.

In Jimmy Olsen #69 (June 1963), "The Dynamic Duo of Kandor" introduces Nightwing's dog Nighthound. In "The Feud Between Batman and Superman" in World's Finest #143 (August 1964), Batman and Robin themselves visit Kandor with Superman and Olsen and the two Dynamic Duos team up.


In Superman Family #183 (May/June 1977), Superman's look-alike second cousin Van-Zee and his niece's husband Ak-Var take up the Nightwing and Flamebird identities. The vigilantes take on crime in their city as had Superman and Olsen before them.

Dick Grayson

Both Nightwing and Flamebird team up with Batman and Robin for an adventure in Kandor that proves important to the young Dick Grayson. When Dick later gives up his role as Robin in 1984, he recalls the Kandorian adventure and renames himself Nightwing, in homage to both Batman and Superman.[1] After the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths re-boot the DC Universe, Superman no longer has knowledge of Kandor; instead, he remembers Nightwing as an urban legend of Krypton, which he shares with a young Dick Grayson.[2] Grayson, who considers Superman his favourite superhero[citation needed], takes the identity in his honour.


Kryptonian mythological figure

Post-Crisis, there is a different originator of the Nightwing identity. Several hundred years before the birth of Kal-El, there was an unnamed Kryptonian man who was cast out from his family and decided to take on crime as the vigilante Nightwing.[3] When Superman tells Dick Grayson of this story, Dick takes the name for himself.

Dick Grayson

Dick Grayson became Nightwing after he was dismissed from the role of Robin at eighteen. Grayson's Flamebird was Bette Kane. He was featured in a Nightwing series from 1996 to 2009; after Wayne's apparent death, Grayson became the new Batman, subsequently retiring his Nightwing mantle temporarily.

Grayson's Nightwing costume was a high-tech suit specially designed for his high-flying acrobatic style. His gauntlets and boots each contained eight compartments in which he could store items. They had a self-destruct feature built into them, similar to the ones in Batman's utility belt, and, as another security measure, the suit contained a one-use-only taser charge, which automatically emitted a high-voltage electrical shock when someone attempted to tamper with either the boots or gauntlets. Each gauntlet's sections could contain a wide array of equipment, such as sonic or smoke pellets, modified batarangs ("Wing-Dings"), knockout gas capsules, and throwable tracers. The right gauntlet was also equipped with a 100,000-volt stun gun. Like the gauntlets, his boot compartments could carry vital equipment such as flares, a rebreather as protection against any airborne non-contact toxins, a mini-computer equipped with fax, modem, GPS, and a minidisk re-writable drive. Other items were lock picks, a first-aid kit, a mini-cellphone, flexi-cuffs, antitoxin assortment, wireless listening devices, and a small halogen flashlight. After coming to New York, Dick added a black utility belt to his costume, eliminating the need for his boots and gauntlets. Held in spring-loaded pouches in the back of his costume, Dick carried a pair of Eskrima truncheons made from an unbreakable polymer that were wielded as both offensive and defensive weapons. Some depictions displayed these tools with the mechanism to shoot a grappling hook attached to a swing line (like Daredevil's billy clubs), while, in other instances, he was either seen using a "line gun" like the one Batman uses or using the grappling/swing lines either stored in or able to be launched from his gauntlets.

After the events of Flashpoint as part of the 2011 DC Universe reboot Grayson returns to the role of Nightwing. He remains in Gotham after his stint as Batman covering for Bruce Wayne whilst he was 'away'. He returned with a new costume in red and black reflecting a costume he previously wore whilst working with the villain Deathstroke. [4] Dick along with all other members of the Batfamily are a few years younger. Dick despite being in his early twenties as opposed to his mid-late twenites, is drawn a bit shorter than in his pre relaunch frame. This is likely due to adding believability to his acrobat past.[5]


In 2001's Superman: The Man of Steel #111, Superman and Lois Lane travel to a version of Krypton later revealed to have been created by the villainous Brainiac 13 and based on Jor-El's favorite period in Kryptonian history.[6] Labeled as criminals, Superman and Lois become fugitives, adopting the Nightwing and Flamebird identities to survive, just as had Superman and Olsen in Superman #158.[7]

Tad Ryerstad

In Blüdhaven, a sociopath named Tad Ryerstad becomes a superhero, inspired by the retired hero Tarantula. He takes his name, "Nite-Wing", from an all-night deli specializing in chicken wings. Unstable, Nite-Wing beats people for minor offenses. Nite-Wing is shot on his first night out and Dick Grayson, as Blüdhaven's protector Nightwing, defends him from Blockbuster's gang, who think it is Nightwing who has been injured. After Nite-Wing is released from the hospital, he kills the gang who put him there. Not realizing how violent Ryerstad is, Grayson agrees to train him. The two attack Blockbuster's organization, but are captured and separated. After an undercover FBI agent frees Nite-Wing, Ryerstad beats him to death, and when he realizes what he has done, Ryerstad flees.[8] Nightwing subsequently tracks down and incarcerates Nite-Wing.[9] In prison, Ryerstad is cell-mates with Torque (Dudley Soames), but the two escape by drugging the prison guard Amygdala.

Jason Todd

Bruce Jones' Nightwing (vol. 2) #118-122[10] run features Jason Todd prowling the streets of New York City under the guise of Nightwing, copying Grayson's costume.

Cheyenne Freemont

Cheyenne Freemont as Nightwing counterpart.

The "One Year Later" storyline features a metahuman fashion designer named Cheyenne Freemont donning a modified Nightwing costume to help Grayson.

Power Girl

Power Girl as Nightwing. Art by Ed Benes.

In Greg Rucka's Supergirl (vol. 5) #6, Power Girl and Supergirl assume the identities of Nightwing and Flamebird in a story set in Kandor, just as in the original pre-Crisis stories featuring Superman.

Chris Kent

Chris Kent, son of General Zod was Nightwing during Superman: New Krypton, in which Superman was coming to terms with the death of his adoptive father while also dealing with 100,000 Kryptonians now living on Earth as a result of the shrunken cities that he recently recovered from Brainiac's ship which contained the lost Kryptonian city of Kandor. At the end of the fourth issue of the arc, a new Nightwing and Flamebird appear in Superman's Fortress of Solitude to stop two of Zod's followers (who were living on Kandor) from releasing the Kryptonian General from his Phantom Zone imprisonment. While guarding the projector in order to prevent any Zod loyalists from freeing him from the Phantom Zone, both Flamebird and Nightwing exhibit powers that are not inherent to normal Kryptonians. Flamebird exhibits flames that project from her hands, while Nightwing uses "natural tactile telekinesis". The pair seem to be stronger than normal Kryptonians as they knock out the two Zod loyalists with one blow apiece. In a later appearance, the duo is seen in Gotham City. Nightwing casually hovers in the sky as Flamebird instructs him to stop flying and states that he isn't "the only one with a secret to keep." Unlike previous portrayals, it seems Flamebird believes herself to be the dominant partner. Furthermore, when the Kryptonians, on Zod and Alura's command, flee on a rebuilt Krypton circling the Sun, Nightwing and Flamebird stay in Gotham. The arc is ongoing. It is revealed in Action Comics #875, that Nightwing is none other than the son of Zod and Ursa, Chris Kent. The "Nightwing" identity is revealed to be based on a mythical Kryptonian creature, whose existence is intertwined with that of its partner beast, the Flamebird. Inside the Phantom Zone Chris' mind interfaced with a piece of Brainiac technology, awakening a long-dormant connection to the Nightwing, and linking his mind to that of Thara Ak-Var, who had a connection to the Flamebird.[11]

Other uses in comic books

  • In the DC Comics "Tangent Comics" fifth-week event, "Nightwing" is a mystical society.
  • In the Elseworlds series Superman & Batman: Generations, "Knightwing" is the identity adopted by Clark Wayne (Superman's biological grandson, adopted by Bruce Wayne, Jr.) after he grows out of the Robin identity. Bruce had wanted Clark to take on the Batman identity, but Clark declines, saying that only true members of the Wayne family should be Batman, revealing that he knew he was adopted. When Superman is brought back from the Phantom Zone and discovers the Ultra-Humanite's cure for Gold Kryptonite, he gives some to Knightwing, which gives him powers comparable to his grandfather, but weaker as he is only a quarter-Kryptonian.

Ongoing series

Story arcs

Based on Nightwing's increasing popularity, DC Comics decided to test the character's possibilities with a one-shot book and then a miniseries.

First, in Nightwing: Alfred's Return #1 (1995), Grayson travels to England to find Alfred, who resigns from Bruce Wayne's service following the events of KnightSaga. Before returning to Gotham City together, they prevent a plot by British terrorists to destroy the undersea "Channel Tunnel" in the English Channel.

Later on, with the Nightwing miniseries (September 1995 to December 1995, written by Dennis O'Neil with Greg Land as artist), Dick briefly considers retiring from being Nightwing forever before family papers uncovered by Alfred reveal a possible link between the murder of the Flying Graysons and the Crown Prince of Kravia. Journeying to Kravia, Nightwing (in his third costume) helps to topple the murderous Kravian leader and prevent an ethnic cleansing, while learning his parents' true connection to the Prince.


In 1996, following the success of the miniseries, DC Comics launched a monthly solo series featuring Nightwing (written by Chuck Dixon, with art by Scott McDaniel), in which he patrols Gotham City's neighboring municipality of Blüdhaven.

At Batman's request, Dick journeys to this former whaling town-turned-industrial center to investigate a number of murders linked to Gotham City gangster Black Mask. Instead, he finds a city racked by police corruption and in the grips of organized crime consolidated by Roland Desmond, the gargantuan genius Blockbuster.

With a defenseless city to call his own, Nightwing decides to remain in Blüdhaven until Blockbuster's cartel is broken. This allows him to be close enough to Gotham to still be part of the Batman Family, and far enough as well to have his own city, adventures and enemies. He takes a job as a bartender to keep his ear to the ground and worked closely with Oracle (Barbara Gordon) in an effort to clean up the town. Blockbuster places a sizable contract on Nightwing's head shortly thereafter, while Grayson plies the unscrupulous Blüdhaven Police Inspector Dudley Soames for information on the kingpin's dealings. Also during his time in Blüdhaven, Nightwing helps train a violent but enthusiastic street fighter called Nite-Wing.

Titans Reunited and "No Man's Land"

After Nightwing settles in Blüdhaven, a galactic threat comes to Earth, reuniting former members of the Titans together to save their friend Cyborg, and prevent him from putting the Earth in jeopardy. They enter into conflict with their mentors and friends in the Justice League, but are able to come to a truce and save Cyborg while preserving the safety of the planet. After this adventure, the group decides to re-form, with Nightwing returning to the role of leader.

Meanwhile, Dick joins the Blüdhaven Police Department in efforts to rid the city of its corruption from the inside. On the personal side, Dick and Barbara's once flirtatious Robin/Batgirl relationship is changing. When Gotham is quarantined from the rest of the United States and becomes a virtual "No Man's Land", Nightwing is sent to secure Blackgate Prison. Afterwards, Dick recuperates at Barbara's clock tower, and the two grow even closer, entering into a romantic relationship.

Last Laugh and killing the Joker

When the Joker is told he is dying by his doctor, he unleashes Joker juice on the inmates at the Slab, causing a breakout. At the end of the arc, Nightwing is responsible for killing the Joker against the wishes of Batman and Oracle. Nightwing becomes depressed and Oracle tries to bring him out of it.[12] Soon after, Batman manages to resuscitate the Joker.

Leader of the League

Some time after "No Man's Land" ends, the JLA disappears on a mission to locate Aquaman and Atlantis (The Obsidian Age). Before they vanish, Batman instigates a contingency plan, in which a handful of heroes would be assembled to create a new JLA, consisting of Nightwing, Green Arrow, the Atom, Hawkgirl, Major Disaster, Faith, Firestorm and Jason Blood. Nightwing is chosen to be leader until the original JLA are found, leading the group against the powerful Atlantean sorceress Gamemnae and helping to revive Aquaman to ask for his help in sinking Atlantis, but subsequently returns to the reserve list.

Graduation Day and the Outsiders

For several years, Nightwing leads various incarnations of the Titans and becomes the most respected former sidekick in the DC Universe. However, in the Titans/Young Justice: Graduation Day crossover, a rogue Superman android kills Lilith and Troia, an event that tears apart both Young Justice and the Titans. At Troia's funeral, Dick declares he is tired of seeing friends die and disbands the team, officially ending the Titans. A few months later, Arsenal persuades Nightwing to join a new pro-active crime-fighting team: the Outsiders, who would hunt villains, acting as co-workers rather than an extended family. He reluctantly accepts.

Outsiders writer Judd Winick takes a more Batman-like approach with Nightwing as team-leader, making him refuse any other kind of relation with his teammates than the direct work.

Death of Blockbuster

Dick plays a key role in exposing the corruption in the Blüdhaven Police Department. Despite reaching his original goals, Dick continues as a police officer during the day while spending nights as Nightwing, pushing himself to his limits and straining his relationships. The line between his police work and his vigilantism began to blur, and ultimately Amy Rohrbach (his friend and superior officer, who knew his secret identity) fires him rather than let him continue using questionable methods.

Wrongfully blaming Nightwing for the death of his mother, the mob boss Blockbuster bombs Dick Grayson's apartment complex and promises to kill anyone in Dick's life. When the vigilante Tarantula arrives, Nightwing chooses not to stop her when she shoots the villain dead.[13] He enters in a catatonic state after this action, and Tarantula takes advantage of his emotional trauma to have sex with him—essentially a rape.[citation needed] At length, Nightwing shakes himself from his depression and takes responsibility for his inaction. He captures Tarantula and turns himself in to the police. Amy, however, feels the world needs Nightwing free and so prevents him from being charged.

Dick has destroyed the police corruption and removed the greater part of organized crime from this city, but his role in Blockbuster's death is still a source of tremendous guilt for him. He retires from crime fighting, with Tim Drake and Cassandra Cain as his replacements.

Grayson moves to New York, where he works closely with the Outsiders. After "insiders" threaten both the Outsiders and the newest incarnation of Teen Titans, however, Nightwing realizes that the team has gotten "too personal" and quits.

Infinite Crisis and 52

Due to a crisis of conscience, Dick adopts the new villainous persona of Renegade in order to infiltrate Lex Luthor's Secret Society of Super-Villains. This ruse includes Nightwing aligning himself with his long-time enemy Mr. Freeze in order to track the manufacturing and distribution of Bane's venom serum and to keep tabs on the Society's activities in Gotham and Blüdhaven. He also begins training (and subtly converting) Deathstroke's daughter, Ravager.

Deathstroke takes revenge on Nightwing when Blüdhaven is destroyed by the Society. The Society drops the super villain Chemo on the city, killing 100,000 people. Dick tries to rescue survivors but is overcome by radiation poisoning, only to be rescued himself by Batman. Nightwing confides that he let Blockbuster die and asks Batman to forgive him. Batman tells him that his forgiveness doesn't matter; Dick has to move beyond Blockbuster's death. Inspired by his mentor, he proposes to Barbara Gordon, who tearfully accepts his proposal with a kiss.

Batman then entrusts Nightwing to alert other heroes about the danger that the Crisis poses. Dick flies to Titans Tower, but due to the chaos resulting from the Blüdhaven disaster, the OMAC onslaught and other Crisis related events, the only hero who answers his call is Conner Kent. Together, they locate and attack Alexander Luthor's tower, the center of the Crisis, only to be repelled by Superboy-Prime. Prime is ready to kill Nightwing when Conner intervenes, sacrificing himself to destroy the tower, ending the destruction of the Universe.

During the Battle of Metropolis, Nightwing suffers a near-fatal injury from Alexander Luthor when he attempts to save Batman's life. Originally, the editors at DC intended to have Dick Grayson killed in Infinite Crisis as Newsarama revealed from the DC Panel at WizardWorld Philiadelphia:[14]

It was again explained that Nightwing was originally intended to die in Infinite Crisis, and that you can see the arc that was supposed to end with his tragic death in the series. After long discussions, the death edict was finally reversed, but the decision was made that, if they were going to be keeping him, he would have to be changed. The next arc of the ongoing series will further explain the changes, it was said.

Saved by the Justice Society, Nightwing recovers with Barbara at his side. As soon as he's able to walk again, Batman asks him to join him and Robin in retracing Bruce's original journey in becoming the Dark Knight. While Nightwing is hesitant, due to his engagement with Barbara, she encourages him to go and returns his engagement ring so he can make an honest decision for himself. Barbara feels that it is important he rediscover himself, and until he does they're not yet ready to be married. They part on good terms, though before he departs Dick leaves her an envelope containing a photograph of them as Robin and Batgirl, along with the engagement ring on a chain and a note promising he'll come back to her one day.[15]

Soon after his journey with Batman and Robin ends, Nightwing returns to Gotham, following Intergang's trail. He works with the new Batwoman and Renee Montoya to stop Intergang from destroying Gotham, shutting off dozens of fire-spewing devices spread across the city.

"One Year Later"

One year later, Dick Grayson returns to New York City (his previous home base with the Teen Titans) in order to find out who has been masquerading as Nightwing. The murderous impostor turns out to be the former Robin, Jason Todd. Grayson leads the Outsiders once again, operating undercover and globally.

Nightwing follows an armored thief named Raptor, whom he suspects is responsible for series of murders. Later, Raptor himself is murdered in a manner similar to the other victims by an unseen contract killer, who proceeds to bury Grayson alive. Nightwing frees himself, wondering the relation between his experience and a mysterious voice who tells him that he is "supposed to be dead". Nightwing is having trouble finding things to keep him busy during the day due to the cast on his right arm. Incapacitated from his injuries, he tries without luck to find jobs and continues to research into the mysterious assassin.

At one point, Dick agrees to attend a party for Bruce and their relationship seems to flourish. Bruce praises Dick for his success on the Raptor case, and also mentions to look into the Landman Building which hosted ex-Lexcorp scientists; most likely those who worked on the Raptor project. Dick also continues to keep a close brotherly relationship with Tim Drake, and helps Tim deal with his many losses during the last year.

After dealing with the Raptor issue, NYC is plagued by a villainous duo called Bride and Groom. Nightwing begins pursuit of these two after some grisly murders, including that of the Lorens family (close friends of his after the Raptor incident). Dick began to get obsessed with finding them, not knowing how far he was willing to go to take them down. Eventually, he formed a makeshift team with some "villains" to find them. They located them, and after killing some of his "team," Nightwing chased them to a cave, where Bride began a cave-in and the two are trapped there.

Nightwing, along with a group of former Titans, are summoned again by Raven to aid the current group of Teen Titans battle against Deathstroke, who was targeting the latest team in order to get at his children, Ravager and the resurrected Jericho. Nightwing and the other former Titans continue to work with the current team soon after the battle with Deathstroke so as to investigate the recent murder of Duela Dent.

When the Outsiders were targeted by Checkmate, Nightwing agrees that his team will work with the organization, so long as their actions in Africa are not used against them in the future. The mission however does not go as well as intended, resulting in Nightwing, the Black Queen and Captain Boomerang being captured by Chang Tzu. Later, Batman is called in by Mister Terrific who then rescues Nightwing and the others. Afterwards, Nightwing admits to Batman, that while he accepts that he is an excellent leader, he is not suited to lead a team like the Outsiders, and offers the leadership position to Batman.

Batman accepts the position, however he feels that the team needs to be remade, in order to accomplish the sorts of missions that he intends them to undertake. As such, he holds a series of try outs for the team. The first audition involves Nightwing and Captain Boomerang who are sent to a space station under attack by Chemo. During the mission, a confrontation erupts between Nightwing and Boomerang, who has grown tired of fighting for redemption from people like Batman and Nightwing. After taking a beating from Nightwing, he manages to throw him into a shuttle heading for Earth and quits the team. Afterwards, Nightwing furiously confronts Batman. Batman does not deny his actions, and states that this is the sort of thing that the new Outsiders will have to deal with. At this, Nightwing resigns completely from the Outsiders, which Batman feels is best, judging Nightwing too good for that sort of life.

In order to help himself regain a sense of purpose, Nightwing opted to stay in New York City again, and play the role of the city's protector. He takes on a job as a museum curator; and uses the museum as his new base of operations. During his short time there, Dick finds himself once again confronted with Two-Face, who years ago delivered Dick's greatest defeat. This time however, Dick soundly defeats Two-Face.

"Titans Return"

Nightwing joins a new team of Titans, with the same roster of the New Teen Titans, to stop an as of yet unnamed offspring of Trigon from enacting his vengeance over Raven and the Titans, of every generation. Nightwing yet again leads the team, and they manage to stop the sons of Trigon from accomplishing their first attempt at global destruction and again a few days later.

Following the defeat of Trigon's sons, the Titans are approached by Jericho who had been stuck inhabiting the body of Match, Superboy's clone. The Titans managed to free Jericho, but found themselves once again in trouble, due to the fact the Jericho's mind had become splintered due to all the bodies he had possessed in the past. Torn between evil and good, Jericho possesses Nightwing's body in order to keep from being captured. During this time, Jericho forces Nightwing to relive all of his greatest pains. Soon after the JLA arrived intent on taking Jericho in. Unfortunately they fail to apprehend him.

Following this, Nightwing decides to leave the team again, due to the events of the "Batman R.I.P." storyline, and due to Batman's apparent death, Nightwing feels his attention should be better aimed at protecting Gotham City.

"Batman R.I.P" and "Battle for the Cowl"

As a precursor to "Batman R.I.P.", at the New York Comic Con 2008, DC Comics gave away pins featuring Nightwing, Jason Todd, and Hush with the words "I Am Batman" beneath them. During the storyline, Nightwing is ambushed by the International Club of Villains. He is later seen in Arkham Asylum, frothing at the mouth and presumably drugged, believed by the staff to be Pierrot Lunaire, a member of the Club. Scheduled for an experimental lobotomy by Arkham himself, he's spared by the ICoV taking hold of the Asylum, wanting to use him and Jezebel Jet, Bruce's fianceè at the time, as bait.

As Jezebel's capture is revealed to be a red herring, due to her being a part of the Black Glove, Nightwing's lobotomy is still pending, but he manages to escape by besting Le Bossu, and joining the fray between the Batman Family, the International Club of Heroes and the Black Glove itself. While he's forced to witness Batman's dragging down Simon Hurt's helicopter and seemingly die in a fiery explosion with his foe, he's shown holding Batman's cape, discarded during the fight.

Following the events of Batman's apparent death during Final Crisis, Nightwing has closed down shop in New York so as to return to Gotham. He has opted to give up on having a normal job, and instead intends to put all his effort into protecting the city. After his returns he confronts Two-Face and Ra's al Ghul, proving two of his mentor's greatest enemies that he is an equal to Batman after he defeated them. He also find himself being tasked to raise Bruce's biological son Damian with Alfred.

During the events of the Battle for the Cowl, Nightwing is said to have become unapproachable and less emotional. He is seen by the Bat-Suit display cases, still mourning the loss of Batman. Nightwing is said to be resisting the idea that someone needs to take up the mantle of Batman, in spite of arguments from Robin and Alfred Pennyworth that it is necessary.[16] It is later revealed he has no objections to becoming the new Batman, but was ordered not to in Bruce's prerecorded message for him, saying that Nightwing and Robin could carry the torch.

Robin later informs Grayson that someone is masquerading as Batman, using similar weaponry to their own. Nightwing is later forced to rescue Damian after he is ambushed by Killer Croc and Poison Ivy. However, Nightwing's glider is shot down, and the two are forced to crash land into a skyscraper. In order to give Damian time to escape, Nightwing offers himself up to the hit squad that is after them. He is about to be shot when he is rescued in a hail of gunfire by the Batman impersonator.

This eventually leads to Dick confronting Jason Todd, who has been posing as Batman. After a long battle between the two, Jason refuses Dick's help, while hanging on to a protruding ledge over Gotham's bay, Jason lets himself fall into the water.[17] After returning to the cave, Dick assumes the identity of Batman, with Damian as the new Robin.[18]

Collected editions

After a 4-issue miniseries, and as commented above, in 1996 DC launched a monthly solo series featuring Dick Grayson as Nightwing that ended in February 2009. During DC's Infinite Crisis, DC considered killing Dick Grayson, but at the last minute reconsidered this decision.[19] An attempt to revitalize the character by bringing back the writer who wrote the original Robin-to-Nightwing story, Marv Wolfman, had mixed response.[volume & issue needed] The final change to writer Peter Tomasi and artist Rags Morales did much to reassert the character, with him operating in New York as a respected solo hero, and taking full advantage of the fact that his early start makes him one of the most experienced superheroes, and one of the best connected thanks to his many former teammates and the friends he has established in his career. Nightwing has now been canceled, with Dick Grayson having become the new Batman. With his new position, this leaves the Nightwing name available to Christopher Kent, Superman's foster son.

Nightwing has also starred in several miniseries and one-shots. This material has been collected in several trade paperbacks.

Title Material collected ISBN
Pre-series trade paperbacks
Nightwing: Ties That Bind Nightwing: Alfred's Return #1; Nightwing #1-4 (miniseries) 978-1563893285
Regular series trade paperbacks
Nightwing: A Knight in Blüdhaven Nightwing #1-8 978-1563894251
Nightwing: Rough Justice Nightwing #9-18 978-1563895234
Nightwing: Love and Bullets Nightwing #1/2, #19, #21-22, #24-29 978-1563896132
Nightwing: A Darker Shade of Justice Nightwing #30-39; Nightwing: Secret Files and Origins (one-shot) 978-1563897030
Nightwing: The Hunt for Oracle Nightwing #41-46; Birds of Prey #20-21 978-1563899409
Nightwing: Big Guns Nightwing #47-50; Nightwing: Secret Files and Origins (one-shot); Nightwing 80-Page Giant (one-shot) 978-1401201869
Nightwing: On the Razor's Edge Nightwing #52, #54-60 978-1401204372
Nightwing: Year One Nightwing #101-106 978-1401204358
Nightwing: Mobbed Up Nightwing #107-111 978-1401209070
Nightwing: Renegade Nightwing #112-117 978-1401209087
Nightwing: Brothers in Blood Nightwing #118-124 978-1401212247
Nightwing: Love and War Nightwing #125-132 978-1401214630
Nightwing: The Lost Year Nightwing #133-137, Annual #2 978-1401216719
Nightwing: Freefall Nightwing #140-146 978-1401219659
Nightwing: The Great Leap Nightwing #147-153 978-1401221713
Dick Grayson as Batman
Batman: Battle for the Cowl Batman: Battle for the Cowl #1-3; Gotham Gazette: Batman Dead?; Gotham Gazette: Batman Alive? HC: 978-1401224165
SC: 978-1401224172
Batman: Long Shadows Batman #687-691 HC: 978-1401227197
SC: 978-1401227203
Batman and Robin: Batman Reborn Batman and Robin #1-6 HC: 978-1401225667
SC: 978-1401229870
Batman and Robin: Batman vs. Robin Batman and Robin #7-12 HC: 978-1401228330
Batman: Life After Death Batman #692-699 HC: 978-1401228347
Batman: Time and the Batman Batman #700-703 HC: 978-1401229894
Batman and Robin: Batman Must Die! Batman and Robin #13-16 HC: 978-1401230913
Nightwing/Huntress Nightwing/Huntress #1-4 (miniseries) 978-1401201272

Issues #19-20 are collected in Batman: Cataclysm.[20] Issue #53 is collected in Batman: Officer Down.[21] Most of the issues of Nightwing #61-100 have yet to be compiled into a trade paperback. Issues #65-66 are collected in Bruce Wayne: Murderer?[22] Issues #68-69 are collected in Bruce Wayne: Fugitive, Vol. 1.[23] Issues #96-98 are part of the "Batman: War Games" story arc.[24][25][26] Issues #138-139 are collected in The Resurrection of Ra's al Ghul.[27] The last issue in the series is #153.

Prestige one-shots
  • Nightwing: The Target
  • Batman/Nightwing: Bloodborne


The following writers have been involved in the ongoing Nightwing series:

Writer Tenure Issues written
Chuck Dixon 1996–2002 #1-52, #54-70
Chuck Dixon, Scott Beatty 2005 #101-106
Devin Grayson 2001–2006 #53, #71-100, #107-117
Bruce Jones 2006 #118-124
Marv Wolfman 2006–2007 #125-137
Fabian Nicieza 2007 #138-139
Peter Tomasi 2008–2009 #140-153
Devin Grayson 1997 Nightwing Annual #1
Marc Andreyko 2007 Nightwing Annual #2


On September 21st in 2011 DC Comics relaunched Nightwing with issue #1, where Dick Grayson, with a slightly different costume design, resumed the role of Nightwing following the return of Bruce Wayne.[28]

In other media

To date, Dick Grayson has been the only character to use the codename "Nightwing" outside comic books.

Batman Forever

Nightwing is made reference to in the film Batman Forever when Robin, Dick Grayson (played by Chris O'Donnell) suggests "Batboy, Nightwing..." as a name for himself. In the next film Batman & Robin, the costume Robin wears closely resembles the costume of Nightwing from the comic books, except the main symbol across his chest and arms is red instead of blue and this costume includes a small cape.

DC Animated Universe

Nightwing from The New Batman Adventures. Art by Bruce Timm.
  • Grayson appears as Nightwing in The New Batman Adventures, voiced by actor Loren Lester, the actor who had voiced Grayson as Robin in Batman: The Animated Series. Grayson's Nightwing debuts in the end of the episode "Sins of the Father". Bruce, Barbara and Alfred react to the grown up crime fighter as Dick remarks "Hey, no one can be a boy wonder forever." In "You Scratch My Back", Nightwing makes his full episode debut, and finds an unlikely ally in Catwoman in trying to expose a South American gun smuggling operation into Gotham City. This episode highlights Nightwing, hints at his relationship with Barbara and illustrates his tense relationship with Batman. The episode also contains a sequence - showing Nightwing in his loft headquarters and charging into the night on his motorcycle as his theme music plays, culminating in a shot where he stands silhouetted against the moon. The episode "Old Wounds" explains that Grayson, as Robin, fought with Batman over the latter's controlling nature and what the former saw as an unnecessarily harsh approach, causing Grayson to leave Gotham as a result. However, he returns years later as Nightwing. Although he works with Batman several times during the course of the series, he never fully reconciles with his former mentor. Nightwing also appears in series episodes "Joker's Millions", "Over the Edge", "Animal Act", and "Chemistry".
  • In the television series Batman Beyond , which is set many years in the future of earth 12, the Nightwing uniform (or at least one copy of it) still hangs in the Batcave. Terry McGinnis (the new Batman) borrows the mask from that costume in the episode "Lost Soul", when the Batsuit is reprogrammed with the personality of a dead businessman. In Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, McGinnis asks Commissioner Barbara Gordon (the former Batgirl) if all of the original Batman's associates were bitter when they left. She replies "...look up Nightwing someday. Has he got stories," implying that he is still alive and using the identity in the timeframe of the series.
  • Grayson appears again as Nightwing in the 2010 direct-to-film animated movie "Batman: Under The Red Hood". In the movie he's voiced by actor Neil Patrick Harris. He first appears in the movie helping Batman defeating Amazo. Later, in the Batcave, he's shown helping Batman by trying to figure who is the Red Hood. The last he's seen, he is running with Batman toward the Red Hood.

Teen Titans

In the Teen Titans animated series episode "How Long is Forever?", Nightwing appears as the future identity of Robin. He also appears in the Teen Titans Go! comic series based on the series.[29]

The Teen Titans story arc The Judas Contract in which Robin becomes Nightwing is currently being adapted as a direct-to-video movie. A planned 2008 release date has been delayed.

The Batman

The Batman animated series episode "Artifacts", in a different storyline where he still works with Batman, set in the year 3027 with flashbacks to the year 2027. The flashback sequences feature Nightwing, voiced by Jerry O'Connell. Although Dick has been active for ten years as Nightwing, Batman and Oracle persist in calling him "Robin." Nightwing later appears in season 5 in the episode "The Metal Face of Comedy" in his original Nightwing costume. In this episode, he is Dick Grayson's video game character in an online role playing game.

Batman: The Brave and the Bold

Robin makes his transcendence to Nightwing in the end of the episode "Sidekicks Assemble!" in the animated series Batman: The Brave and the Bold and appears as Nightwing in later episodes.

Video games

  • Nightwing appears in LEGO Batman: The Video Game.[30] as a playable character
  • Nightwing appears in Batman: Rise Of Sin Tzu
  • Nightwing also appears in DC Universe online.
  • The Dick Grayson Nightwing is a downloadable character Batman: Arkham City.


Entrance to one of the Nightwing rides at Six Flags.

A Nightwing ride was in operation at Six Flags New England, but was recently replaced with the ride "Joker's Wild Card".


  1. ^ Tales of the Teen Titans #44 (July 1984)
  2. ^ Nightwing (vol. 2) #102 (March 2005)
  3. ^ Secret Files and Origins #1 (October 1999)
  4. ^ Nightwing #1 (2011)
  5. ^
  6. ^ Kelly, Joe (w), Ferry, Pascual (p), Smith, Cam (i). "Return to Krypton II, Part Four: Dream's End" Action Comics 793: 20 (September 2002), New York: DC Comics
  7. ^ Schultz, Mark (w), Mahnke, Doug (p), Nguyen, Tom (i). "Return to Krypton Part Three: The Most Dangerous Kryptonian Game" Superman: The Man of Steel 111 (April 2001), New York: DC Comics
  8. ^ Birds of Prey #20
  9. ^ Nightwing (vol. 2) #47
  10. ^ "Nightwing: Brothers in Blood". DC Comics. Retrieved September 14, 2010. 
  11. ^ Action Comics Annual #12
  12. ^ Birds of Prey #37
  13. ^ Nightwing (vol. 2) #93
  14. ^ WizardWorld Philadelphia: DCU panel[dead link]
  15. ^ Nightwing Annual #2
  16. ^ Batman: Battle for the Cowl #1
  17. ^ Batman: Battle for the Cowl #2
  18. ^ Batman: Battle for the Cowl #3
  19. ^ Batman #687
  20. ^ Batman: Cataclysm. DC Comics. June 1, 1999. ISBN 978-1563895272. 
  21. ^ Batman: Officer Down. DC Comics. August 1, 2001. ISBN 978-1563897870. 
  22. ^ Batman: Bruce Wayne - Murderer?. DC Comics. August 1, 2002. ISBN 978-1563899133. 
  23. ^ Batman: Bruce Wayne - Fugitive, Vol. 1. DC Comics. December 1, 2002. ISBN 978-1563899331. 
  24. ^ Batman: War Games, Act One - Outbreak. DC Comics. March 1, 2005. ISBN 978-1401204297. 
  25. ^ Batman: War Games, Act Two - Tides. DC Comics. July 1, 2005. ISBN 978-1401204303. 
  26. ^ Batman: War Games, Act Three - Endgame. DC Comics. October 1, 2005. ISBN 978-1401204310. 
  27. ^ Batman: The Resurrection of Ra's Al Ghul. DC Comics. May 12, 2009. ISBN 978-1401220327.  (TPB). ISBN 978-1401217853 (Hardcover. May 20, 2008).
  28. ^ DC Comics Relaunch: Nightwing Writer Kyle Higgins All A-Twitter About Dick, Inside Pulse, June 7, 2011
  29. ^ "''Teen Titans Go!'' guide". Retrieved 2010-09-29. 
  30. ^ "LEGO Batman: Character Gallery". Game Informer (186): 92. October 2008.  Features a two-page gallery of the many heroes and villains who appear in the game with a picture for each character and a descriptive paragraph.

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