This Wednesday Robin fans will get the bird as DC kills off another Robin— The Ten yr old son of Bruce Wayne. Damian Wayne will bite the dust in Batman Incorporated #8, and DC promises that the event will "ripple throughout the DC Universe".
This is not the first time DC decided to clip Robin's wings, for good. In 1988, DC decided to hold a telephone poll to let fans decide if then Robin, Jason Todd, should live or die at the end of their Death in the Family storyline. Fans decided that Robin must go and Jason Todd met his fate at the end of the story.
Todd was the second Robin, filling in for the now grown-up Dick Grayson, the original Robin. Grayson was now working solo as a crime fighter, taking on the name Nightwing and sporting a new costume. Todd was introduced in Detective Comics #524 (1983) as the new Robin. After DC's event maxi-series Crisis on Infinite Earths, the character was re-indroduced and revamped in Batman #408 (1987).
The second Robin was not well liked and in 1988 DC decided to let fans vote on whether Jason Todd should live or die— they voted thumbs down and Todd was offed by The Jocker. Of course this is the comic book world and Todd would return in 2003 in writer Jeph Loeb's Hush storyline— although the character was revealed to be Batman villain, Clayface. Fan reaction was so positive that the real Todd was resurrected in 2005 as the vigilante Red Hood.
Tim Drake follow soon after becoming the third Robin, until DC's 52 relaunch, which rewrote history erasing Tim as Robin, instead making him a Batman sidekick called Red Robin.
The fourth Robin, Damian Wayne is the son of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul (daughter of Batman villain, Ras al Ghul). The character first appeared in the graphic novel Son of the Demon (1987) as an infant and didn't reappear until 2006 as a ten yr old assassin in Batman #655. In the story, Damian is essentially left on his father's doorstep and after some head-butting slowly begins to accept his father's way of crime-fighting, without killing.
The demise of Damian Wayne will be at the hands of "hulking assassin" that has ties to the young Wayne. "He saves the world," says writer Grant Morrison. "He dies as a hero."
Should DC kill off Robin, again? Let us know what you think.