The Internet fan community is in agreement: Do not, under any circumstances, put Robin anywhere near Christopher Nolan's Batman universe, a world grounded in reality, where the laws of physics apply to hero and villain alike, where bullets wound and punches bruise. An acrobatic little kid in tights? Do it and I walk, Christian Bale even reportedly said recently.
Which is a little ironic, considering that one of Bale's favorite Batman comics is "Dark Victory," by fan-favorite creators Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale. And who do you think appears as a critical character in "Dark Victory"? (Hint: He wears a red and yellow costume.)
So how do you reconcile the two disparate viewpoints?
"Take the time to tell the story properly," Loeb told MTV News. "There is a story of Dick Grayson and how he becomes Robin that is extremely moving and very helpful."
In the events of Loeb's "The Long Halloween," which preceded "Dark Victory" and served as a partial inspiration for "The Dark Knight," the main characters are all left alienated and alone, bereft of even a little hope. It's Robin's presence that can change that for Bruce, Loeb argues, creating a father/son dynamic that can mirror Wayne's relationship with his own dad. In short, Robin can teach Bruce how to be more human, Loeb insisted.
"It's all about building the relationship between Bruce and Dick. Dick hates Bruce. He doesn't understand why it is that he needs to do this and Bruce doesn't understand why he's doing it either because he's not a parent. He doesn't know how to be a parent," Loeb said. "And together, they make each other better people. So that for me would be the next step."
But for all the fans already crying out in horror just at the thought of it, Loeb isn't actually talking so much about Robin as he is about Dick Grayson. In fact, the best Robin story might not actually have "Robin" at all.
"I wouldn't let him become Robin until the third act, if that. I think that's the other problem when you tell that story is that there's this rush to put him in a costume by the end of the first 20 minutes and in that case I think it's a disaster," Loeb said. "So if you look at 'Dark Victory' Tim and I went nine out of twelve chapters before you even started to talk about putting him in a costume and he doesn't put the costume on until the last chapter of that book."
What do you think? Could Nolan and company take another page from Loeb and actually create a Robin that works? Or is the character completely and totally dead to you? Sound off below.