Boy, oy boy, Robin gets abused a lot, doesn’t he?
When DC opted to send Dick Grayson off to Hudson University at the end of 1969, the immediate, intended result was to make Batman a loner once again. The byproduct of that is that Neal Adams didn’t really do much with the character. And when he did, Robin seemed to always be getting the short end of the Batarang.
So, during our lengthy interview that spawned this series of columns, I posed it to Neal: “Robin was a character you didn’t work all that much with.”
“Mostly because of Denny (O’Neil),” he responded. “I really loved Robin, because Jerry Robinson’s Robin was really a boing-y Robin, always smiling and grinning all the time. I thought he was a great, great character and I haven’t seen him like that (lately). And I did it in Batman: Odyssey and nobody else does Robin like it ought to be. He ought to be this boing-y character that does all this stuff and gets himself in the line of fire all the time. And magically manages to get away. I love that about Robin.
“In this story (by Len Wein and Marv Wolfman), because I love Robin … I could feel the pain because I have kids,” he continued. “I have five kids. So this idea of losing Robin to me is a terribly tragic concept for Batman because he took on this kid and the kid’s parents were killed. My God, you’ve taken on that responsibility and now he turns to dust in your hands. It’s a terrible thing.”
But that’s not all!
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