Your web-browser is very outdated, and as such, this website may not display properly. Please consider upgrading to a modern, faster and more secure browser. Click here to do so.
Pairing: Dick Grayson/Barbara Gordon
Notes: Dick and Babs fluff, fluff, fluff. Or, “How things totally should have gone.”
Commission for Emeroo. Let me know if you need anything changed.
Dick catches sight of her again, across the room. Between the men and their immaculately pressed suits and the women in their designer dresses, her own dress putting them all to shame. Everything about her putting them all to shame: her perfectly curled red hair, the elegant arch of her neck, her sly and clever side-smile as she eyes someone and opens her mouth for some sharp comment that will undoubtedly do the same.
I concur with “How things totally should have gone”.
And did, in my head.
This fanfic is lovely and beautifully written and I highly suggest that all of you read it.
Hiya I just wanted to ask, how long was Barbara Batgirl for? And when did she become Oracle?
Do you mean in the real world, or in-universe?
In the real world, Babs was Batgirl from 1967 to 1988, or 21 years.
In-universe is more complicated, as comic-book continuity tends to be. First of all, how old Barbara was when she became Batgirl has been retconned several times. In the original continuity, she was a twenty-something with a PhD when she became Batgirl (around 23, by my estimation - by the 1970’s, she was officially 25). This is still my preferred canon. Secret Origins #20 (1987) retconned this to her starting out at more like 20 (out of college, having skipped several grades, but no longer with a graduate degree), and Batgirl: Year One further retcons her age down to 18 or so (still out of college, though).
Then we come to how old she was when she stepped down as Batgirl. To my knowledge, her age was never exactly given at that time period. However, we can calculate by roughly how old Jason (14-15 years old) and Dick (20-21) were at the time. If we go by the original age differences between these characters, that makes Babs around 27-28 when she stepped down as Batgirl. That works for me, although if you take later retcons into account she could be somewhat younger than that.
Personally, my canon is that Babs was Batgirl from age 23 to 27, or four years. (Remember that her Batgirl run spanned the tail end of Dick’s Robin career, and almost the entirety of Jason’s.) This fits with the fact that Batgirl Special #1 (the issue where Barbara retires as Batgirl), has flashbacks which appear to be happening at the beginning of her Batgirl career (she describes herself as “an innocent hero”) taking place four years ago.
She became Oracle in 1989. In-universe, this was a year after her paralysis (see Oracle: Year One), making her around 28 at the start of her Oracle career.
As always: These ages are not exact, they are guesstimates based on the canon and on my personal preferred continuity. You could construct an alternate timeline that would probably make equal sense, but this is what works for me.
Had the reboot not occurred, and Barbara had been given the chance to regain partial use of her legs, would there have been any way to frame that opportunity without it be a 'magical cure'? And would Babs have taken the chance?
Your second question is easy to answer: Yes, Babs herself stated that she would love the opportunity to be able to walk again:
The first one is harder. Personally, I think ‘curing’ Babs, however they’d gone about it, would have been a mistake, simply because what Oracle represented as a disabled superheroine, a minority representative and a symbol of resilience was too important. Restoring her mobility, while it certainly could have made sense in-universe, would have been a disappointment to me because it would take away what she represented to the disabled community, among others.
That’s how I see it, anyway. Like I’ve said in the past - what’s best for a fictional character as a person is not always what’s best for them as a character. If Babs were a real person, of course I’d want her to get the chance to walk again. But as a fictional character who represented something so important, I don’t think it would have been the best decision.
Do you see Dick and Babs getting married and having children?If you were writing them, in the long run, how would you have their relationship play out?
Absolutely. It’s clear from both of their histories that they believe in marriage and consider marriage desirable for themselves, so I think in both of their minds, that’s the endgame.
And contrary to what large parts of fandom seem to think, Dick is not a commitment-phobic playboy, and Babs certainly is not, and they are two mature adults who I think have a pretty healthy, stable relationship and could make a marriage work if they were willing to work at it.
BUT, I think the thing you have to remember is that between them (pre-reboot), they have a total of three broken engagements. One to each other, and one each to other people. I don’t think that’s something either of them takes lightly, and I think for that reason neither of them would be quick to rush into another engagement. I think it would be the kind of thing where they’d have to sit down and be like “Okay, if we’re going to do this again, we’re getting it right this time. This is it. So we need to consider the issues involved, and we need to figure out if we could actually make this work.”
Which… you know, I think that’s actually a very good, healthy thing. I think a big part of why they broke up in the Devin Grayson era is that (for whatever reason), they were not communicating properly. And that’s something that would have to change if they were to make it longterm. They’d have to be totally open with each other and they’d have to listen to each other and not brush those issues aside.
When it comes to children, I think they’d take that even less lightly.
The first thing you have to recall is that based on where Babs was shot, it’s likely (I’d argue almost certain) that there was damage to her uterus. Possibly she can’t carry a child to term at all. Or possibly she can, but it would be a difficult pregnancy.
Now, even if she couldn’t, that wouldn’t rule out adoption or surrogacy, but the more basic question is whether Babs or Dick would take the risk of having a child in their lives at all. It’s no secret that the children of superheroes tend to be an endangered species, even if they never enter into the ‘family business’ themselves. All it takes is one enemy figuring out one of their secret identities, and their children might as well be walking around with giant targets on their backs. Neither Dick nor Barbara would take that risk without careful consideration, although I do think they’d want children were that risk not a factor.
If I were writing Dick and Barbara (preboot canon, of course), I’d have them just be friends for a good long while. And I do mean a long while. Let’s say, two years in comic-time (which would, of course, be even longer in the real world). Just focus on how they support each other as friends, how they can talk to each other, how they have fun together. Get them to a really good, solid place. With some lingering feelings, obviously, but mostly just the two of them as really good, close friends. Maybe even have Babs date Ted Kord or somebody for a while. (Dick could also have Mar’i if you want to bring her into the main canon - I go back and forth on that.)
And then after a while I think I’d have things take a turn for the romantic - they have an emotional moment, they end up kissing, etc. - and it kind of takes both of them by surprise, because they’ve both been very much in denial that their feelings for each other are anything but platonic. And Babs freaks out somewhat - a very “NO, we are NOT going down this road again” reaction. Because things didn’t go well for them romantically in the past, and they’re in a really good place right now and she doesn’t want to ruin that. But after they’ve calmed down a bit, I think it would again be a situation where they’d need to sit down and just say “Okay, can we make this work?”, and talk very honestly about their hesitations, and the things they did wrong in the past, and what they can do differently if they did decide to try again.
I think once they did get back together, they’d take it very slowly - they rushed straight from being broken up to getting engaged the last time around, which was obviously an incredibly stupid way to go about things. And I think Babs, especially, would kind of be holding back - because she got hurt by their relationship in the past, and Babs, far more than Dick, puts up walls when she’s afraid of getting hurt. Dick would probably be more sure of his feelings and want to totally invest in the relationship, but he’d hold back as well so as not to make Barbara feel pressured.
And I think as time went by they’d both feel more comfortable and more secure in the fact that, yes, they really can make this work. And I think that’s when the topic of marriage would come up, and like I said, I think they’d think very carefully about it. Because things have gone so wrong in the past, and they don’t want them to go wrong again. But I think they would decide to go for it in the end. They are both the marrying kind, like I said. And I think it would kind of come from an awareness of how they’ve both learned from their mistakes, and it’s not going to be easy but they’re going to invest 110% into making it work. A really good, solid place.
Which isn’t to say that they wouldn’t still have some insecurities and jitters, because of course they would. But they’d talk honestly about them, and I kind of imagine that Dick would call up Kory and Babs would call up Jason B. and they’d have these long talks about what went wrong with those relationships as well - just, you know, getting some closure there. Which I think is really necessary.
Their wedding would be amazing, of course, because they have so many connections in the superhero community. Dinah would be Barbara’s Maid of Honor. Donna would be Dick’s ‘Best Person’. I could seriously write an entire post on my Babs/Dick wedding headcanons, but this post is long enough.
If I were in charge of DC, I think this is how I’d write them for a good long time - just as a happily married young couple, supporting each other, facing realistic obstacles together, struggling to manage work and friends and crimefighting and family and still make time to be a couple.
The decision to have children also isn’t something I think they’d rush into, but Babs would be, say, 34 years old by this point, so I don’t think they’d take too long, either. Like I said, they’d talk about it. Weigh the issues involved. Figure out how to keep any children they’d have as safe as possible. Once they did start trying, Babs might miscarry because of what the Joker did to her which would obviously be devastating. If so, they might hesitate a while before trying again. I do think they’d have kids in the end, though (I say ‘in the end’ but I wouldn’t have it take too long - maybe a year or two at the most, comic-time. And my headcanon is they’d have twin daughters named Dinah and Donna).
And obviously, aside from everything else having kids would just be exhausting, considering that they were already working overtime even before you bring babies into the equation. But they’d work to manage it. I think they’d divide the parenting very evenly - whenever Dick wasn’t on patrol or police duty, he’d be there with the kids. Sometimes they’d have one of the younger heroes (Tim, Steph, Cass, Kara, etc.) help out and babysit for a while. Roy and Wally would try giving them parenting advice. At the beginning, it would be incredibly hard, as it always is when you have a newborn (let alone two), but after a while things would calm down a bit.
Then the big question would be whether they’d let their kids enter the ‘superhero biz’. Now, of course DC would probably never let these characters age that much - because they can’t let Bruce get too old to be Batman, and Bruce would have to be in his mid-fifties by this point - but just theoretically. Again, they know the risks here. What happened to Jason would never be far from their minds. Or heck, even the things they’ve been through. In the end, I think they’d figure that they don’t have the right to forbid their children to do something that they do themselves - but they’d wait until the kids were old enough to really understand the risks before letting them out in the field. (Like, say, twelve years old - they wouldn’t be letting their kids run around before they were old enough to make a clear-headed decision, training or no.)
And that’s my endgame. :-) From there of course I could tell you more about my headcanons for their daughters - but this post is really long enough.
hi! sorry to bother you, but i love your icons alot and the insight you seem to have on the characters. so i was wondering if its ok if i could request a nightwing and batgirl icon set? seeing as how youve already done robin/batgirl and nightwing/oracle. again soo sorry if im bothering you
You are not bothering me, but I’m afraid I’m going to have to turn down your request. And I’m really sorry about that, because ordinarily I’d be delighted to do something like this for you. (And if anyone else has any requests, please, don’t hesitate to send them in!)
The reason I’m not going to do it is this: In the comics, Dick and Barbara were never a couple when she was Batgirl and he was Nightwing. And it bothers me that in spite of this being the case, people continue to depict them as such in fanart, etc. - far more than they depict Babs as Oracle. I understand when you’re talking about an animated ‘verse such as Batman:TAS or Young Justice, where they were in fact together as Batgirl and Nightwing. But when you’re talking about the (preboot) comic-verse - it smacks of ableism to me that it’s so rare to find her depicted as Oracle, despite the fact that that’s the role she was in when she and Dick actually got together.
1) It erases Kory from the equation. During the very short period of time when Dick was already Nightwing but Babs had not yet moved on from being Batgirl, he was with Kory. Not only was he with Kory, but Kory was the only woman he had eyes for. I find it disrespectful to both Kory and her history with Dick when that is ignored.
2) It allows Dick to move on but not Babs. Whatever ‘verse we’re talking about, what bothers me about Nightwing/Batgirl in general is the implication that Dick gets to move on and create his own identity but Babs has to stay Batgirl. Babs actually chose to leave the Batgirl role before she was shot by the Joker, and even had that not happened, I believe she would have chosen to create her own superhero identity sooner rather than later.
3) As I said, it smacks of ableism. It implies that Dick and Babs would be a ‘better’ couple were she not in a wheelchair, a mentality that no one would disagree with more vehemently than Dick Grayson, who has quite clearly stated that he considers her the strongest person he knows and that the chair doesn’t matter to him. Barbara herself said MANY times that she had no desire to go back to being Batgirl and that she did more good for people as Oracle, so I’m not sure why everyone is so eager to shove her back into a role that she had CLEARLY outgrown, unless it’s that they think she’s somehow ‘better’ if she’s not in a wheelchair.
Let me be very clear on one thing: I am NOT, at all, accusing you of ableism, or trying to disrespect Kory, or anything else because you made this request. And I think as a general rule, fandom should be fun and people should get to create whatever they want, even if it’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea. By all means, you should go and see if someone else will make this icon set for you if you still want it. I’m not trying to censor anyone here.
But on a personal level, this is why I consider the fact that Nightwing/Batgirl is so much more prevalent than Nightwing/Oracle (despite Dick and Barbara’s preboot history making this utterly nonsensical) to be problematic, and why I’m not going to contribute further to that. And I’m sorry to turn down your request, and I really hope you don’t feel attacked by this. But that’s where I stand.
On the post of the scene between Martian Manhunter and Oracle are:
1) No one in a wheelchair would say no that quickly…really, the technology they’d use would be as natural as possible…check out what they’d done with Roy’s arm
2) The fact that she is able to walk again in the New 52 felt like her wish came true. A medical breakthrough that allowed her to walk again.
That being said, I support her New 52 mobility 100% and screw the ones who keep whinning about wanting her back in a wheelchair.
MY thoughts on the scene when she calls Dick after knowing about Damian’s death:
1) He said he really wanned to talk to her, but he couldn’t in the moment. And he kinda knew she should focus on bigger problems. Felt like consideration, not coldness.Well I think at another point Babs said she didn’t want to do any procedure that normal people wouldn’t have access to (meaning she didn’t want to do anything she could only get done because she was important to Batman/the JLA/etc). So I think it was a combination of that fact and that she didn’t want to so anything unnatural that prevented her for wanting to do anything pre-new 52.Personally, I’m okay with Babs regaining the ability to walk. Although I will say I am very disappointed for any disabled readers out there who could look to Oracle for representation. But I think the problem a lot of fans have with the new 52 isn’t Babs regaining the ability to walk, it’s the fact that DC made her jump right back into the Batgirl role. Many felt like that was an identity she outgrew long ago (like how Dick outgrew Robin). I personally would have loved her to be something original, especially when she saw how many more people she helped as Oracle compared to Batgirl. I’m not saying she wouldn’t be itching to get back out there (I mean could you blame her?) but I would have liked to see her become something new (ideally a combination of a more mature Batgirl and Oracle — using her skills and knowledge to fight substantial crime online and with her operatives but then being able to go out on missions here and there). That’s just how I would have pictured a rehabilitated Babs.As for the call about Damian I definitely agree it didn’t feel cold. I actually think the OP used a good term, the interaction just felt stiff. But I am glad that they acknowledged the first thing Babs would do upon hearing the news is make sure Dick is okay. And hopefully they’ll get their interaction during the Nightwing title
I’m sorry, I just have to rant about this a bit.
“Screw the ones who keep whining about wanting her back in a wheelchair”? No, I’m sorry, screw YOU. Not because you like New 52 Babs, which is fine. But because apparently, in your mind people who are disabled have no right to want to see a hero like them, a superhero who sends a message that heroism isn’t about which body parts you can and can’t move. In your mind, there is apparently no reason such a hero is inspiring or worth keeping. There is no worth in giving representation to characters outside of the able-bodied norm.
I’ve said numerous times that it’s not just about the wheelchair - as the mod of this site very rightly points out, it’s really about character growth. Whether Babs regained her mobility or not, it still makes no sense to me that she’d go back to being Batgirl, a role she had clearly outgrown. She is no longer a leader or a mentor as she was before the reboot. Her friendships outside of the Batfamily no longer exist. That is all worth getting upset about, wheelchair or no wheelchair.
But even if this were just about wanting representation for disabled people? How dare you invalidate that. How dare you act superior to fans who miss what Oracle used to represent.
I am so, SO tired of seeing people imply that fans who prefer Babs as Oracle are somehow not “real fans”. I am SO tired of hearing them make these same old arguments over and over again. Here, let me help you guys out, okay? Next time, before you open your mouth and make some comment about “the ones who keep whining about wanting her back in a wheelchair, maybe you could go and read this first:
And you don’t have to agree, okay? You really, really don’t. You can love Babs being Batgirl again, and I won’t think any the lesser of you for it. But please, treat the Oracle fans with a little more respect. Because honestly, a lot of the bashing I see approaches outright ableism. Babs is not inherently “better” now that she can walk. And the fans who prefer her that way aren’t “better”, either.
Page 1 of 20