Bruce Wayne is lost in time. He is using every bit of his strength, wits and training to get
back to the present. If anyone can do it he can. But Gotham City hasn’t shut down in the meantime. Criminals have seen that the Batman is gone and have tried to strike while
Gotham’s protector is gone. Fortunately, Bruce Wayne has a family that has stepped up to
pick up the slack while Bruce is gone. Each member of the Bat-Family has evolved to be
better than they were. Absence in the Family will detail that evolution. I will talk about what
the character’s were doing before Bruce was taken and how they have changed since Bruce’s disappearance. First up Dick Grayson.
Dick Grayson was the first Robin and saw how isolated Bruce Wayne was and knew that he couldn’t become that. Dick didn’t want to become the person that Bruce was so he decided to strike it out on his own. He had grown out of Robin’s little green shoes and become his own hero; Nightwing. Don’t misunderstand Grayson’s hesitance to become Batman as dislike for Bruce. If Batman ever needed anyone, Nightwing would be the first person in line. Before Bruce was taken away from Gotham, Dick Grayson was making his own way in the world and cementing his own legacy.
The biggest change in Dick Grayson’s life since Bruce went missing is his new responsibility and how he is handling it. If Dick had his choice he would still be Nightwing. He never wanted to have the burden of the cowl on his shoulders. It shows his character that he took that burden despite his own objections. He knows that no one can fill the hole that Bruce left but he is trying his best to do just that.
Dick is a much different Batman than Bruce Wayne. He is less serious and has a sense of humor. He shows his emotions to Robin and the rest of the Bat Family. He is a softer Batman to those he loves than Bruce was. Don’t let that fool you into thinking that his light-heartedness makes him less effective at doing his job. Dick Grayson’s fighting skills are damn near on par with those of his teacher and he has no qualms unleashing them on the criminals of Gotham. His detective skills have also developed and are boosted by the fact that he has been fighting this war on crime since he was a kid. Batman’s legacy is being held high by Grayson and Bruce would be proud.
Early in his new career as the Bat, Grayson said that he felt like a cheap imitation of Batman. Alfred told him to remember his roots. Grayson came from a family of performers, high flying acrobats. Alfred told Dick to think of Batman not as a burden to carry, but as a role to play. A role that he can adjust to his strengths. Dick is doing just that and excelling as Gotham’s new Dark Knight.