Terry was born in Gotham City on August 18, 2023, to Warren and Mary McGinnis, a research scientist at Wayne-Powers and an astronomer at Astro-Tech respectively. By his own admission, Terry was once a "bad kid." A member of a street gang with his close friend Charlie "Big Time" Bigelow, Terry has his fair share of run-ins with the Gotham City Police while in his early teens, even serving a 90 day sentence for shoplifting at age 14 and a three-month stint the next year, both in juvenile hall. Years after the Batman had disappeared from the streets of Gotham, Terry finds himself on the run from another gang, the Jokerz, a street gang modeling themselves after the deceased Clown Prince of Crime. Finding himself cornered on the grounds of Wayne Manor, to his surprise an old and decrepit Bruce Wayne comes to his aid and together they defeat and chase off the gang. The strain of the fight places substantial stress on Bruce's already weak heart, and he nearly collapses. After helping Bruce make his way back to the mansion, Terry gets him his medication; with the strain from the fight having exhausted him, Bruce falls asleep immediately. On his way out Terry notices a bat stuck inside a grandfather clock. Trying to free the creature, Terry stumbles upon the secret entrance to the Batcave. Entering the Batcave, Terry realizes who the old man actually is, but his discovery is interrupted by a now-awake Bruce, who abruptly chases Terry out with his cane.
After Bruce kicks him out, Terry returns home, only to be greeted by police and his mother, and he is told that his father is dead. The apartment is covered in graffiti, which seems to clearly be the result of the Jokerz getting revenge for their humiliation earlier that day. Terry moves in with his mother, heartbroken that his last conversation with his father was a fight, just prior to his run in with the Jokerz. While looking at a small framed photo of his father, Terry discovers a small data disc hidden in the frame, left by his father right before his death. Terry takes the disc to Bruce, who checks the contents with the Batcave's computer. The data disc contains information on a biological weapon, and raises questions as to whether or not his Dad was killed by Jokerz. Bruce has a reluctant Terry take the disc to the police commissioner Gordon, but before Terry can deliver it to her, he is intercepted by Derek Powers, his Dad's boss and the one who would be exposed if the data reached the police, as well as Powers' bodyguard Mr Fixx, who attempts to capture Terry and the disc. Terry escapes, but has to use the disc to distract them, and leaves empty handed. With nothing to take to the police and no way to do anything but escape, Terry tethers Bruce's dog Ace to the perimeter fence, and goes back into the Batcave. Stealing the newest Batsuit, He heads for the Wayne-Powers headquarters, intent on taking revenge for the murder of his father. Bruce discovers the theft, and contacts Terry demanding he return the suit. Bruce admonishes him through the suit's communicator, and even shuts down the suit, leaving Terry helpless in a fight. Terry, however, is able to convince Bruce to help him confront Powers, after all, he sees himself in Terry, they both lost their parents and Terry in stealing the suit has a chance to stop Powers.. In the end, Terry stops Powers from shipping the bio-weapon, Powers shoots a canister trying to hit Terry, resulting in him becoming the radioactive Blight. Mr Fixx boards the transport and tries to escape with it and the load of gas, Terry boards it to stop the shipment and in doing so is confronted by the real murderer, Mr Fixx, and after defeating Fixx, he destroys the transport Fixx was guarding, and Fixx goes down with it.
Convinced that there is still a need for a Batman, Bruce hires Terry as his "personal assistant" and begins secretly training him for his new role as Batman. In addition, Bruce assists Terry in the field primarily by keeping in continual contact with the boy at the Batcave.
After Powers' criminal identity is revealed to the public and he finally brings retribution to his father's killers, Terry decides to continue his role as Batman to make up for his past sins, in hope that his heroic role is his chance at redemption.
Terry goes on many adventures as the Batman, growing into his role to the point where eventually even Bruce accepts him as his heir as the Bat. Eventually, he is recruited by Superman to root out a traitor in the team... who turns out to be Superman himself, under the control of the extraterrestrial creature Starro. Though initially the rest of the team distrusts him due to his perceived inexperience, Terry gains their trust by saving their lives and freeing Superman from the alien's mind control. However, he says that he would prefer to be like his mentor and only partially serve on the Justice League.
When Static is sent 40 years into the future, he is forced to work with Terry/Batman to rescue future Static from the KOBRA organization. While Terry doubts his abilities at first, he eventually develops respect for Static. Terry also sees the resemblance in both the teenage and adult version.
After chasing down and stopping the villain known as Spellbinder, Terry drops him on a bus which goes by Neo-Gotham's ninth precinct. He is then greeted by Micron who asked Terry if he would like to join up with the Justice League, only to be turned down by Terry once again. After returning to the Batcave, Terry mentions to Bruce about Micron, whom Bruce says to say no to if he ask about joining the League, saying that he never felt at home when he was serving as Batman on the team.
Just as Terry is heading off for the night, he is sent back off into the city to investigate the sudden murder of a Phillip Cobb, also known as Signalman, one of Bruce's old rouges who managed to turn from crime. Upon overhearing the GCPD reports, Bruce's begins to worry that from how they keep say the number "two" the killer might be a resurfacing Two-Face. After learning of a disturbance Terry heads over to St. James Hospital to ensure the Mad Hatter, who was moved there after Arkham dispersed, isn't the killers next victim. After verifying the Mad Hatter's safety, Terry finds the killer attacking a nurse and manages to scare the killer off, but is soon shocked when asking the nurse what the killer said to hear, and learning that he was telling her to " Hush."
Terry and Bruce begin checking up on old Batman villains since they are the ones This possible Hush is targeting. Terry is unable to stop the murder of Calendar Man by Hush. A new Catwoman appears in Gotham and is shown to be working with this Hush. Eventually, Bruce and Terry's partnership begins to become strained, as Bruce is trying to strive for perfection out of Terry. When Terry decides to search for Hush on his own, Bruce activates the Bat-Wraiths. The Bat-Wraiths were for a backup plan if Terry died, or if Bruce takes the suit from him, when a wraith finds Hush, Bruce quickly sends it towards Hush. While Hush escapes, Terry meets up with a retired and old Dick Grayson.
Dick tells Terry the reason why he quit as Nightwing and the reason why Bruce removed the cape from the batsuit; The cape was worn for two reasons: it helped instill fear and a tactical reason: it caused misdirection. Years ago, the Joker had kidnapped Alfred and when Dick and Bruce showed up, Joker attempted to shoot them. The bullets penetrated the cape, saving Bruce but critically wounding Dick in multiple shots, who was behind him. Bruce later delivered Dick to a hospital and rescued Alfred, allowing him to remove the bullets from Dick's body. Dick lost an eye during this and quit because he blamed Bruce for being too cold to care. Bruce later removed the cape, rather having himself get shot instead of someone else.
After his talk with Dick, Terry leaves. He poses as Mad Stan as Hush appears from an alleyway with Stalker's spear. A quick fight between the two ensues and Hush stabs Terry in the stomach, and he stands over Terry ripping the Gauze from his face revealing as Dick Grayson. Hush decides to leave Terry alive for what he has in store for Gotham. Catwoman appears and finds Terry unconscious. With Bruce speaking through comm link, she patches Terry up with some med supplies in the suit's belt. Meanwhile Hush hacks the Bat-Wraiths and they attack Bruce but leave soon to meet with Hush who is revealed to be a psychotic clone of Dick Grayson. As Terry regains consciousness and he makes his way to the Bat-cave where Bruce stitches him up. Hush is then seen hacking a monitor and he reveals his plans to destroy Gotham.
Upon hearing this Terry begins to head out to stop Hush. As he does so, the real Dick Grayson shows up in the Batcave to get equipment. Terry joins him and Catwoman to stop Hush from destroying the city with an armory of explosives in Mad Stan's hideout. Dick tells them to stay behind so he can deal with Hush, and he holds his own against Hush and the Bat-Wraiths but they soon gain the upper hand. Terry and Catwoman interfere in the fight and begin battling the Wraiths and Hush along with Dick. Terry grapples with Hush as he accidentally shoves him down a large hole in the ground as a Bat-Wraith is flying out, it spears Hush and they both fall down the hole where an explosion occurs killing Hush. Catwoman leaves the team while Dick destroys the rest of the Wraiths and he himself leaves. Terry returns to the Batcave where he talks with Bruce as a new understanding between them is laid out.
The Heart of the Matter
After disposing a group of Joker's, Terry meets up with Dana for a date. Bruce contacts Terry about a disturbance at a local mall. Terry heads off to get to the mall leaving Dana behind to take care of the disturbance. With the Justice League willing to risk hostages, Terry shows up saying he can't take that risk with his mother and brother in the mall. He begins a scuffle with the League showing he can hold his own against the League with a bit of help from Bruce. Unwillingly, Terry teams up with the League as they head into the mall to confront the new Matter Master. Terry let's the League fight Matter Master as he tries to free hostages who were transmuted with a layer of copper over them. Terry joins the fray in the fight Matter Master. The fight is brief as Matter Master is overloaded and the hostages are returned to normal. Terry ends up joining the Justice League.
Mad Stan is revealed to be alive. Stan is battling some of his dealers and they end up stealing his dog, Boom-Boom. Terry is sent after Stan in an attempt to restrain him but is unable to do so. The two have a brief fight and Terry even tries using tasers which brought down Killer Croc but to no avail. Stan after latching an explosive to Terry while McGinnis gets it off. Terry also learns that Dana's brother fractured their father's skull and Terry tries to help her but is forced to deal with Stan who has a device that would be able to blow up any explosive with the push of a button. Terry tries to get some info on Stan and learns of his location. So he meets there and ends up getting caught in the middle of a negotiation gone wrong. Terry takes out the arms dealers and fights Mad Stan once again in an attempt to get the remote detonator away from him. He ends up kicking the explosives themselves away and defeats Stan getting him arrested.
Abilities & Paraphernalia
Throughout his time as a delinquent and becoming Batman, Terry has shown to be an able street-fighter. Along with the training he has received from Bruce, he has become an extremely adept hand-to-hand combatant, but not to the high levels of Bruce's other surrogate sons Tim Drake and Dick Grayson, let alone Bruce himself. Terry's fighting style is also different from the original batman as he is somewhat less dependent on the formal fighting styles Bruce employed, and willing to use dirty tricks if necessary. Later in the series, Bruce sends Terry to his friend, Kairi Tanaga for martial arts training where he was complimented on several moves he used against her two black belts. Because of his age and training, Terry is in brilliant human condition and has shown to be a good gymnast and possess a high intellect. Terry has been trained to be a detective by Bruce and has learned to mix chemicals and herbs to healing agents and medicine from him (in the future, Terry has a special interest in becoming a doctor because of it). When Terry is an adult (in his late twenties), he is shown easily taking out Waller's highly trained guards, undetected, without the aid of the Bat suit (showing that his skills may be rivaling Bruce's own). Bruce later reveals to Terry that Superman wanted his assistance on a case, showing that Terry earned enough of a reputation to be the world's greatest detective like Bruce once was, and fully understands how to be Batman. Terry also possesses some talent that Bruce didn't have.
The most shining example of this was shown during his confrontation with the Joker, when Terry unsettled the villain through mind games instead of physical combat, taunting the Joker with biting wit and finally laughing at the Joker — something beyond the old Batman.
Even though Bruce wore the same suit as Terry twenty years before him it is still considered "ahead of it's time". On this suit the cape has been removed and in its place two glider wings (much like Dick's second Nightwing costume) which are under his arms, and he also has small rockets built in to the boots. These rocket boots combined with the guilder wings enable Batman Beyond to fly some distances. The suit is also very durable. He is seen taking a punch from Big Barda and remaining conscious. He was stepped on by Micron who grew to near the size of a skyscraper and it left a giant footprint in the ground, but Terry remained conscious and even made a smart comment to Bruce. The suit is also able to withstand extreme heat and cold, high voltages of electricity, water pressure, vibrations, radiation. However, the suit can be pierced if enough force is applied or using a sharp or durable enough weapon. The cutting resistance seems to come into question. It has withstood Terry's own wrist discs before, but Terry was stabbed in the stomach with a knife then Stalker's spear by Hush. However, Hush did state that he had gear that could cut through the suit making it seem like the suit is indeed highly resistant to cutting damage and he bluffed by hiding the knife. The suit can also mold to its wearers height and body shape.
The Bat suit grants Terry the following abilities:
- Increases the wearer's strength by a factor of 10.
- Increased agility, speed and reflexes.
- Night vision/infrared vision.
- Personal communicator which allows Terry to keep in contact with Bruce in the Batcave.
- Built in rebreather for under-water combat and exploration.
- Enhanced ballistic protection.
- Dispensable Batarangs with a range of auxiliary functions. These include explosive batarangs, electro shock batarangs, and energy net batarangs. However, there is a limit to the amount of Batarangs the Batsuit can dispense; Batman has run out on at least one occasion. Also, the Batsuit has discs that can be fired from the tops of the hands.
- Electrical discharge throughout the suit that can be activated by pushing a button on the suits belt. The discharge is enough to stun and hurt Big Barda incapacitating her for a few moments.
- Grappling guns built into the forearms.
- Flash grenades.
- Smoke pellets.
- Launchable tracers and scanners.
- A retractable password decipher in a key form on the right index finger.
- Retractable wings under the arms to glide on.
- The wings can dispense tear gas.
- Rocket boots for flying.
- Touch microphone in index and middle finger which allows Terry to listen in to other rooms through solid walls.
- Drug identifier, utilized by dipping his finger's into the substance.
- Built-in holographic and cloaking device that enables almost complete camouflage (this function possibly consumes a good deal of the Batsuit's power, as Batman minimizes its usage). It allows camouflage extending into the visible light and infrared frequencies of the electromagnetic spectrum. A countermeasure used by Commissioner Barbara Gordon to this in one incident where she was hunting Batman down was through tracking him using an ultraviolet light to illuminate him. The reason the invisibility plastic failed in the B:TAS episode was that sending electrical current through the material caused it to become toxic, affecting the mind as well as the body. Regardless, the original Batman may have saved samples of the plastic and/or the research notes and resolved the toxicity issues, incorporating them into the new Batsuit.
- Retractable claws which can be used to fight enemies or cling to surfaces.
- Retractable blades on the forearm that were capable of cutting through some robots.
- Can link up to his Batmobile by remote.
- Built in buzz saw on the belt buckle.
- Electoshock that can be activated by touch to defend against enemies like Inque or protect Terry when he's knocked out. The maximum output is enough to stun Big Barda for a time.
- Bat Bombs: Terry uses this to destroy ground, wall, etc. This is contained in the middle of his utility belt.
- Bat cable is contained in Terry's right forearm. He can shoot this out when his wings or boots are damaged.
- Terry mentioned the suit has sonics powerful enough to crack copper off hostages encased in the metal, but he did not use them.
- The suit is able to pick up a person's vitals and heartbeat.
- Terry is able to heat up the suit to 4000 degrees. Terry used this on Micron who stepped on him, and when Aquagirl trapped him in ice.
- Various capsules. He's used rusting agent capsules to eat away metal and special dehumidifier capsules against Inque.
- At the end of each fingertip, Terry has small taser wires that he can launch out and were said to defeat Killer Croc.
- The suit also has a remote kill function that can be activated in the Batcave to shut down the suit if anyone were to get their hands on it.
From Batman #700, Terry McGinnis is rescued by Damian Wayne, who has adopted the mantle of Batman, as a 4 month old baby who was infected by Joker venom. Years later, Damian is shown as an old man who is teaching Terry to be Batman of Neo-Gotham City.
Appearance in the New 52
Terry McGinnis also made his full debut in the New 52 with his appearance in the #0 issue of the weekly series The New 52: Futures End. Set 35 years in the future from the current DC timeline, the world has been taken over by Brother EYE and many of the worlds heroes have been turned into vicious killing machines that hunt down the remaining humans. A much older Bruce Wayne is revealed to be one of the few surviving heroes and he sends Terry back into the past in order to prevent the destructive future. However, Terry misses his target date and arrives 5 years ahead of the current DC timeline where the events that will shape the future have already begun taking place. Terry must find a way to stop the world from being taken over and prevent the apocalyptic future he knows will happen if he fails.
Terry decides to break into Terrifitect Tower in order to prevent Brother EYE from coming online, when his first attempt was unsuccessful he decided to join a group of criminals who had similar intention of breaking into the tower to perform a heist. The team consisted of Coil, The Key and Plastique. While inside Terrifitect Tower Terry hacked into Terrifitech systems to uncover the location of Brother Eye while also planning another heist in which he would hack NORAD's rocket systems and take out the satellite, he also triggered the alarms which cause the apprehension of his team mates Coil and Key.
After the events at Terrritect Terry revealed the truth about the future to Plastique later he and she became intimate. Terry later went to enlist the help of Tim Drake when they were attacked by a cyborg with a Batman-Joker rotating face. Terry deducted that the cyborg was sent by Brother EYE from the future in order to prevent him from completing his mission, while fighting off the cyborg they attracted the attention of the original Batman. Terry was forced to reveal the End Future to the Batman, sending Plastique with the original Dark Knight and Tim Drake to stop Brother Eye as he led the cyborg away from them.
Terry was able to destroy the cyborg but not without suffering some injuries in the process. He convinces Tim to take his Batman suit and time band in order to complete the mission. In his final moments Terry reveals to Tim that in the future he is from Tim didn't survive and asks him to be part of it now. He passes away in Plastique's arms.
Interactions with Bruce Wayne
Despite his role as the new Batman, Terry leads a very different, far less privileged life than Bruce. In addition to coping with his father's death, Terry struggles to keep his secret identity from his mother and younger brother, much like Tim Drake. Because of his responsibilities as Batman, he is not afforded the same privileges the Robins enjoyed and is expected to be on the call whenever he is needed. As a result, Terry is just barely successful at balancing out his dual life, on several occasions prompting both men to reconsider Terry's reliability. Terry becomes protective over Bruce.
: "I don't care what you do to me, but he doesn't deserve this. He's done too much for this city to wind up in the middle of a media circus."
: "He means a lot to you, doesn't he?"
: "Yes... he does."
In turn, Bruce treats Terry the same way he treated Dick Grayson and Tim Drake. In time, Terry grows into the cowl, and Bruce grows to accept him as his heir to the Batman legacy. It is revealed that Terry is Bruce Wayne's biological son due to Amanda Waller's "Batman Beyond" project. The project causes Terry's father to have his reproductive DNA overwritten and made Bruce's reproductive DNA dominant when Warren McGinnis had a fake flu shot. This makes Bruce Wayne the biological parent of both Terry and his brother Matt, even though Bruce had no outward connection or interaction with the McGinnises who bore them.
Project Batman Beyond
Terry discovers the shocking truth about his parentage. When Bruce requires tissue for the cloning of a kidney to transplant, Terry is checked for compatibility, and to his surprise, his DNA is similar to Bruce's. After hesitating for a time, he runs a DNA test and finds out that Bruce is his biological father. Terry accuses Bruce of orchestrating his entire life and even contemplates giving up his role as Batman, but Bruce suggests that Terry find out the truth, leading Terry to confront the elderly Amanda Waller.
Terry vents some of his frustration about Bruce and his plans to Waller, only to be surprised when Waller reveals that Bruce wasn't responsible for Terry's genetic makeup: she was. Decades earlier, Waller launched a program using her old Project Cadmus connections, code-naming it Project Batman Beyond. Despite the often antagonistic relationship she had with Batman, came to believe that the world would always need a Batman. Retrieving genetic samples from injuries Batman sustained while fighting crime, she obtained the necessary DNA for the next phase of her project.
Tests run found a compatible couple with psychological profiles nearly identical to Thomas and Martha Wayne in Warren and Mary McGinnis. When Warren went in for a flu shot, he was secretly administered a dose of nanites that rewrote the genetic code of his reproductive material into an exact copy of Bruce Wayne's. Thus, Bruce is Terry and Matt's biological father.
Waller hired The Phantasm, Andrea Beaumont to assassinate Warren and Mary, to simulate the circumstances that propelled Bruce to become Batman. However, Andrea abandoned her mission at the last minute; she told Waller that continuing the Batman legacy by such methods would betray everything Bruce stood for. Waller eventually agreed, and never again tried to have Warren and Mary killed. In spite of this, Warren was murdered years later by Mr. Fixx, under orders from Wayne Powers CEO Derick Powers. Warren had discovered that Powers planned to sell a toxic nerve gas to foreign governments. The result was Terry accidentally discovering Bruce's alter ego and himself becoming Batman. Thus the goals of Project Batman Beyond were meet.
Once he leaves Waller's home with this knowledge, Terry comes to terms with the reality that Bruce is technically his biological father, prepares to propose to Dana (who now knows his secret identity), and returns to the role of Batman.
Bruce, being the world's greatest detective, becomes aware that Terry and Matt are his genetic offspring at some point after Terry assumes the role of Batman, and figures out the machinations of Waller and Project Cadmus. However, he never brings it up out of respect for Warren McGinnis, and because he wants Terry to be his own man.
The Animated series Batman Beyond lasted three seasons containing 52 episodes. This is where the character first originally appeared.
The Zeta Project
Terry appeared in several episodes of this series which was loosely spin off from Batman Beyond.
Terry appeared in the episode "Future Shock"
Justice League Unlimited
Terry McGinnis appeared in the episodes: The Once and Future Things Part 1, The Once and Future Things Part 2, and Epilogue.
Batman Beyond: The Return of the Joker
The Batman Beyond animated movie, Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, The Joker has been reborn in the body of Tim Drake and Terry must stop him. This movie revealed the reason why Terry chose to become Batman after he avenges his father's death. He claims it is his way of redeeming himself for his previous actions, allowing him to see a decent person when he looks at himself in the mirror. However, after Terry stops the Joker's plan, Bruce tells him it's not Batman that makes Terry a good person, but the other way around, telling him that he accepts and is fond of Terry taking on the Batman mantle.