When should Batman have a Robin?

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TheHunkWonder

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Hey, all. New user here. Have no idea if I'm doing this whole category thing correctly, so sorry if I look like a noob here.

Anyway, I was thinking about a Batman chronology the other day, as I usually start my Mondays, and I kept going over and over in my mind when Batman should take on a Robin. Specifically, I'm trying to figure out in a career that spans 10 years, when would be the year that Bruce takes Dick on to be Robin? Usually in chronology, Bruce is understood to have been fighting alone (with Alfred) for his first 2 years (Arkham Origins; Batman Years 1, 2, and 3; etc.) before picking up Dick Grayson as Robin in his third. This really does make a lot of sense, and is even the absolute minimum of Batman taking on the first Robin in a limitless career chronology.

However, if one were to limit the entire career of Batman to 10 years -- let's say he puts the cowl on in the first year and puts it to rest at the end of the tenth -- when exactly would it be the best time for him to pick up Dick Grayson as Robin? Let's put aside canon and canonical years for a second (merge Year One with other early stories, etc.). What got me thinking about this was watching the Flash and Arrow and learning that they would both have their sidekicks in their second season. See, if we were to have a Batman show and all 3 lasted 10 seasons (just assume for the sake of comparison), would it be a good idea to have Robin in Season 2? The pros would be that it would work with the compressed 10 years and that it gets the rest of the chronology all catalyzed (assume that the other members of the BatFam will have their stories in the 10 years, just like on a 10 season show). The cons are, obviously, that it would take the focus way off of Batman quicker than if he was introduced after 20% of the timeline, and may seem a little rushed. Even after watching Flash and Arrow and being huge fans of Roy and Wally, I still felt like they had just become superheroes and that it was less of an Arrow or Flash show and more of an ArrowFam or FlashFam show.

Yet, with Batman, containing 7+ characters of near sequential order and decades of history, I feel like Dick would have to arrive in Year 2 and spin it as "his parents up and got killed with terrible timing so Bruce didn't really have a choice other than to let him into the fold." Because if we were to leave an arbitrary year off during the tenth year for everything to close up the tenure, by my calculations the time that we're in right now (what would be the New 52 era) would be the 8 or 9th year. So Robin would kind of need to be Year 2. It's just that it conflicts with having only Bruce as Batman for his first two years. See what I'm saying? And in case you were wondering, I chose 10 years as the limit because, although I like the idea of a long 20-year career under the cowl, it is much more realistic to have it be about 10 years [and have the Dark Knight Returns be doable (yes, I know it's not canon)], and compares perfectly with the Flash and Arrow shows. For anyone who still thinks the career should be longer than that, I feel ya... but I just want to keep it to 10.

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RDClip

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Trying to fit Batman's entire history with all Robins into 10 years is ridiculously difficult.

In my perfect Batman timeline, he starts fighting crime at 25, takes Dick in at 30, takes Jason in at 36, Tim at 40 and Damien at 45. Batman dies at 60 while still donning the cowl.

That gives him enough time to train from 18-25, enough time alone to gain experience, enough time with each Robin to forge a strong bond, long enough career to become legendary, and dies before his body is too old and withered.

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TheHunkWonder

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#3  Edited By TheHunkWonder

@rdclip: You are absolutely right. 10 years is extremely difficult to fit all of the history in. I also think that 15-20 years is about the time it would take for his career. Even in www.therealbatmanchronologyproject.com it estimates post-crisis-pre-New-52 tenure as 23 years. But also, I forgot to mention that in these parameters I'm giving (honestly, it's my headcanon and I'm just stuck on the early years), not all of the stories are canon. In the timeline, only the major stories (Year 1, Long Halloween, Death in the Family, Knightfall, etc.) are there, yet if they cross over each other, the minor points are somewhat... changed in order to work. More modernized than retconned. Mostly to fit the realistic tone. This would include the Robins being around 15-17 when they start (other than Damian, of course) and ultimately maturing into their real personas at 18 or 19 (similar to the New 52, but not forced to be compressed to a few months with Batman before setting out on their own. Instead, they get a couple years in). So with that in mind, what would the better year for Batman to have a Robin? Year 2 or 3?

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