|Real name:||Damian Wayne al Ghul|
|First Appearance:||Batman: Son of the Demon|
|Created by:|| Grant Morrison|
|Affiliations:|| Batman Family|
League of Assassins
|Abilities:||Exceptional martial artist|
Damian Wayne is a fictional character in the DC Universe. Damian is the child of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul and thus the grandson of Batman's villain, Ra's al Ghul. The character was created by Mike W. Barr, and first appeared in Batman: Son of the Demon (1987).
Having spent his gestation in a laboratory, Damian was raised by his mother until ten years of age, at which point she left him in the care of his father, who had not been aware of his son's existence until that point in time. Damian is violent and self-important, and was trained by the League of Assassins, learning to kill at a young age. After the events of Batman R.I.P. and Batman: Battle for the Cowl, Damian has taken up the identity of Robin, becoming the fifth and current person to use the Boy Wonder's identity. He worked with Dick Grayson, who replaced Bruce as Batman for a certain time period. Morrison's Batman #666 (2007) depicts a future wherein Damian has become Batman, but in Batman Incorporated #8, Damian is killed by his clone, The Heretic.
HistoryBatman was not aware of Damian's existence for a considerable time. Genetically perfected and grown in an artificial womb, Damian was intended to be a formidable warrior. He is raised by Talia and the League of Assassins. He becomes a talented martial artist by the time he is a pre-teen, at which time Talia reveals Damian's existence to his father and leaves him in Batman's custody in an effort to disrupt his work.
Precocious, spoiled, and violent, Damian battles Robin (Tim Drake), whom he wants to replace as his father's sidekick, and sucker punches him off the T-Rex of the batcave. Grounded by Batman, he escapes, dons a variant Robin costume made of Jason Todd's old tunic and assorted League of Assassin gear, and gets into a fight with and decapitates the villainous Spook. Although misguided and malicious, Damian seems to genuinely want to aid his father's war on crime.
Eventually, Batman confronts Talia, but both Talia and Damian are soon caught in an explosion. They survive the explosion, but a badly injured Damian requires transplants of harvested organs, which his mother orders her physicians to carry out. He made a full recovery.
Talia takes Damian to the Australian Outback where he is tutored in the secret history of his grandfather, Ra's al Ghul. Talia is unaware that a former servant of Ra's, named White Ghost, plans to use Damian as a shell for the soul of Ra's to return to Earth. This process would, of course, kill Damian. Talia is able to save her son from his fate at the last minute.However, Ra's is still able to return, as a rotting, shambling undead corpse, still needing Damian to stabilize his form. Damian flees to alert Batman, but he's still pursued by his evil grandfather. Upon entering Wayne Manor, Damian attempts to relay to Robin the fact that Ra's has returned. However, Robin, suspicious of Damian's intentions, does not believe his story and begins a fist fight. Damian flees and encounters Alfred. Before he can effectively relay his news he is attacked by Robin, who perceives Damian's attempt to help a tripping Alfred as an attack, and renews their battle.
As they fight, members of the League of Assassins approach the manor with the intention of killing all others within and bringing Damian back to Ra's alive. Damian and Tim fight side-by-side against Ra's and his minions. However, their collaboration is hindered by their very different philosophies of battle, not to mention their strong dislike - even hatred - of each other. Damian is willing to betray Tim at any moment for his own safety. Ra's captures the two and tells Batman that he will use one of them for his own body. Batman offers his own body instead. Ra's refuses the offer, feeling that he needs someone of a younger age.
Batman offers a third alternative: "Fountain of Essence," which contains the qualities of a Lazarus Pit. Batman and Ra's go in search of the fountain, leaving Tim, Damian, Nightwing, Alfred, and Talia to battle the Sensei. Damian leaves his mother and Tim to an unknown fate, while he goes off to be with his father. Unfortunately, he ends up captured by Ra's and nearly loses his life. Batman and the others manage to save him, and Talia takes her son and escapes.
Batman R.I.P. & Battle for the CowlSoon after these events, Talia and Damian take up residence in one of the League of Assassin's many bases, where Talia continues to monitor Batman's activities, such as his relationship with a woman named Jezebel Jet. Meanwhile, Damian continues to train under the eye of the archer-villain Merlyn. Both Damian and Talia become concerned when they catch wind that a group known as the Black Glove is targeting Batman.
The pair of them fly back to Gotham, where they save Commissioner Gordon from a booby-trapped Wayne Manor and ask to pool their resources. Damian meanwhile steals a Batmobile with Alfred in order to rush to Batman's side. Damian, uncaring of basically everyone, runs an ambulance off the road, unaware that he had taken out the Joker as a result. Alfred admonishes the boy, who threatens to kill him in response. Once they arrive at Arkham, they learn that Batman is again missing in action. Although Batman survived the events of R.I.P., he would later be killed by Darkseid during the events of the Final Crisis.Damian apparently decides to stay in Gotham following his father's supposed death, and takes up residence with Alfred and his adopted brothers Nightwing and Robin. While joy riding in the Batmobile one night, he is attacked by a group of villains. Oddly enough, Damian's previously cruel and aggressive behavior is replaced with a more childlike and fearful persona (going so far as to call for his mother when attacked by Killer Croc and Poison Ivy). He is saved however by Nightwing, but unfortunately, the pair of them end up being attacked by a new gun toting Batman revealed to be Jason Todd. While in pursuit of Jason, Damian is shot point-blank in the chest, and rushed to the Batcave by Nightwing and the Birds of Prey.
Despite his intensive injuries, Damian refused to be sidelined and almost attacks Alfred in order to help Dick battle Jason. Alfred however, does not stop Damian, but instead encourages him to pull his own weight, and even offers Damian the old Robin tunic that he once stole and asks that the Squire help Damian. Together, the pair locate and rescue an injured Tim Drake from nearly being killed in the explosion.
The New Boy WonderFollowing a final confrontation with Jason Todd, Dick Grayson finally accepts the mantle of Batman. Unfortunately, much to Tim's shock, Dick does not continue to take him on as Robin. Stating that Tim is more of an equal and an ally rather than a protégé, Dick instead offers the mantle of Robin to Damian, who he feels needs proper training to ensure they don't run the risk of seeing him turn into a killer. Damian, of course, revels in the fact that he has usurped Tim's previous role. Feeling betrayed and infuriated, Tim punches Damian, leaves, and takes on the mantle previously worn by Jason Todd: Red Robin.
During their first week as partners, Damian proves himself to be a much different Robin than Tim or Dick were, though somewhat similar to Jason Todd. Argumentative and arrogant, Damian often disputes with Dick and undermines his authority as Batman, even going so far as to claim that he might not be worthy of the Batman mantle. Damian expresses a strong willingness to take over the Batman identity himself if Dick is not "up to it." He makes it known that he has no respect for Grayson, and tells him that he needs to earn it.
It is later revealed that Damian has begun to visit his father's former friend and enemy Thomas Elliot, also known as Hush, in the prison at the top of Wayne Tower. Dick and Tim put him in and engage him in chess games. Damian claims that these visits are purely out of his curiosity to find out why Hush would alter his appearance to that of Bruce Wayne's. But Hush suspects that the visits are Damian's form of grieving for Bruce and a way to "spend time with your old man."
After leaving the Bat Family, having been usurped of his position of Robin to his dismay, Tim takes on the mantle of Red Robin and begins searching the globe for Bruce Wayne, who he feels is still alive. After his first fight alongside Dick, Damian gets upset with Grayson and goes looking for the villain Professor Pyg himself. The Professor captures him, or rather, is led to believe so by Damian, who is in complete control of the situation, waiting for the right moment to make his move. Despite his good intentions, however, Damian is still overpowered by a large number of Dollotrons. Bent on catching Pyg, he is saved only by the timely intervention of Dick Grayson. While pursuing Pyg, he overlooks an earlier promise he had made to Sasha (a promise to save her and take her to safety), the only Dollotron who has an intact personality. As a result, the young girl's sanity is bent by her traumatic ordeal and disfigurement, ripe for the Red Hood to sway to his side, as her opposite number in the Red Hood battle against crime
After Bruce's skull was taken from his grave, Damian and Dick decide to bring the rest of his skeleton, along with those of Damian's paternal grandparents, to the their base beneath Wayne Tower. Damian is quite shaken by the sight of the bones of his family. On the way to the cave, Dick's body is possessed by Deadman, whom Damian lashes out at in confusion. Deadman then possesses and leaves Damian's body, subsequently passing his knowledge of the attack of the Black Lanterns onto him. The two heroes then prepare for the Black Lantern's assault on Gotham. After raiding the Army Reserve National Guard Armory, Dick, Damian, and the arriving Tim Drake, are able to save Commissioner Gordon, Oracle, and the surviving police officers at Gotham Central from the reanimated versions of the original Dark Knight's deceased rogue gallery members. However, they then find themselves having a horrific encounter with Batman and the Red Robin's parents - the Flying Graysons and Jack and Janet Drake - reanimated as Black Lanterns. Dick eventually orders Damian through their comm-links to send one of his Wingers with Mr. Freeze's gun, which he complies and Grayson uses the weapon to cryogenically suspend himself and Tim, forcing the Black Lanterns to retreat as they are unable to read any sign of life of them. Deadman later revives the former Boy Wonders.
Battling the Red HoodAfter Blackest Night, Dick Grayson and Damian went to track down Jason Todd/the Red Hood. Jason is shot twice by a new villain called the Flamingo, who begins to overpower him, even when Batman and Robin arrive, although Damian is critically injured by Flamingo. Sasha, now as the Red Hood's sidekick Scarlet, manages to cut Flamingo's face open, allowing Jason to kill him. Dick realizes that Damian is paralyzed from the waist down, but will recover due to his mother's influence and ability to replace Damian's damaged organs with harvested ones. Commissioner Gordon arrives and arrests Jason, who asks Dick why Talia al Ghul had not tried resurrecting the real Batman in the Lazarus Pit.
Resurrection Gone Wrong
Taking Jason's suggestion into consideration, Dick and Damian enlist the aid of England's Squire and Knight to help him locate a Lazarus Pit. After saving the Pearly Prince from destroying London, Dick believes that the Pearly King can give him information on the location of the Lazarus Pit. Pearly refuses to, however, the Knight has already located the pit. After arriving at the Pit, they fight King Coal's men, who were already taken down by Knight.
They encounter Batwoman, who tells them Coal's men planned to sacrifice her to a new god of crime that is supposed to rise on that night. Dick remarks that there is no god of evil in the Pit, only the "real" Batman. The charred body of Bruce Wayne is reanimated and rises from the Pit, but is unable to speak and begins attacking all that he sees. Dick sees that this being's rage is murderous, which conclusively proves that the body could not be Bruce Wayne's, but instead a maddened clone.
The corpse of "Batman" is in fact that of a perfect clone of Bruce Wayne that was created by Darkseid during the Final Crisis. Most of the clones were euthanized due to them being driven insane from the genetically inherited trauma of Bruce Wayne, but Darkseid claimed one perfect clone of Batman could be useful to him. The dead clone is in fact the body recovered by Superman in the climax of Final Crisis after Darkseid sent the real Bruce Wayne, alive and well, into the distant past with his Omega Sanction.
Outside, King Coal sets off explosions that cause the cave to implode around everyone. The Batman clone escapes and flies to Gotham City while Dick and a severely injured Batwoman are separated from Knight and Squire. Injured and paralyzed, Batwoman realizes that Dick is the new Batman and tells him that she is dying, but has a plan. Knight and Squire finally get to them but Dick claims that Batwoman has died. However, they do succeed in resurrecting the heroine in the Lazarus Pit. Meanwhile in Gotham, Alfred Pennyworth discovers Bruce Wayne's body appears to be missing. Extremely worried, he meets a wheelchair bound Damian, returning from his spinal reconstruction. Alfred informs Damian that Dick has taken the body. Damian looks into Dick's files and finds the plan for resurrecting the original Batman by use of a Lazarus Pit. At that moment, the door opens and the Bat-Clone beats Alfred and hurls him aside, and confronts Damian. Being unsure of who he was seeing, Damian simply asks, "Father...?"
The Clone Batman is fended off by Alfred and an injured Damian, who is convinced it is not, in fact, his father. Damian lures the clone onto a patch of gasoline and ignites it, but the clone continues his attack. Dick takes a plane suborbital, and is able to make it to Gotham in 25 minutes—just in time to catch Damian, who has been cast off the top of Wayne Towers by the Cloned Batman. The cloned Batman is decaying, and Batwoman and Dick defeat it. Back in the Batcave, Dick apologizes for taking the mission on his own, stating that he didn't want to get anyone's hopes up. He then states that Tim Drake was right, Bruce Wayne must still be alive.
Clues From the Past
With the newfound knowledge that the corpse that Superman had recovered in Final Crisis and later was used in Blackest Night is not the corpse of Bruce Wayne, and that Bruce may truly be alive, Dick Grayson obtains information from the Justice League of America that the "Omega Effect" Darkseid used on Batman may have sent him back through time, and Tim Drake is convinced Bruce is using clues in the past to help his protégés and Alfred recover him. Talia al Ghul, meanwhile, is upset that Damian wants to stay with Dick Grayson.
Alfred discovers a new lair in the Batcave, while dismantling booby traps set up by The Black Glove, and discovers portraits of Bruce's patrilineage. A "Bat" theme is recurring in many of these portraits, causing Damian Wayne to suspect that if his father is truly in the past, one of the ancestors in the portrait may be Bruce himself.
Suddenly, Damian unwillingly attempts to behead Dick Grayson. It is revealed that Talia Al Ghul had been controlling Damian via a device attached into his reconstructed spine. He then flees into a cemetery, where he meets Oberon Sexton, a best-selling author and "amateur" detective, who has supposedly been blackmailed into attempting an assassination attempt of Batman. Sexton goes to Wayne Manor, where he helps Damian Wayne fight several assassins who have been sent to kill him. Damian deduces that Sexton is not really British, but is faking his accent. He asks Sexton if he is really Bruce Wayne. Sexton denies this, saying he is worried that Wayne is the target of a serial killer, but he does say he is not really who he seems. Then, Damian is once again taken control of, this time by Slade Wilson under the instruction of Talia, who attempts to use him to kill Dick. Damian manages to warn Dick, and Dick incapacitates him and uses an electrical charge to shock Slade out of Damian's body.
The two travel to Talia's secret fortress, where she threatens to disown Damian if he does not give up being Robin. To back her threat up, she introduces Damian to a clone of him. The clone is an exact replica except for the fact that he is ten years younger than him. Although hurt by his mother's words, Damian refuses to give up the Robin mantle, and meets back up with Dick, who was confronting Slade.
The two return to Batcave, where they along with Alfred discover a Bat Totem that seems to confirm that Bruce Wayne really is trapped in the past. With this information, Dick goes to confront Sexton, who is under police protection. Sexton then reveals himself to be The Joker. Damian tortures the villain by savagely beating him with a crowbar in order to get information, considering it to be self-defense since the Joker planned to attack him. However, the Clown Prince of Crime's apparent helplessness is revealed to be another ruse and he incapacitates Damian with his hidden Joker venom. The villain intends to use Damian and Dick in his fight against their common enemies: the Black Glove. Help arrives in the form of the original Batman. After Bruce Wayne helps Dick and Damian defeat the Black Glove and the Joker, Wayne accepts his son in additions of his role as Robin. Despite Bruce's parental responsibilities to Damian, he decides that he prefers Damian to continue working with Dick (who maintains the Batman mantle and whom Bruce sees as a positive role model for his son) rather than being with himself primarily, due to his plans with Batman Inc..
Possible FutureBatman #666 (2007) features an adult Damian Wayne as Batman. He takes on the mantle after he is unable to save Batman from being killed. This Batman is darker than his father, more willing to injure and kill opponents if he judges it necessary to do so. He also has a pet cat he calls Alfred. He seems to have developed a rivalry with Commissioner Barbara Gordon (who strongly condemns his actions, claiming that he killed someone close to her) and possesses some form of supernatural ability; most visibly, the ability to heal catastrophic wounds in moments.
It is implied that, in this possible future, Damian made a literal deal with the Devil: his soul in exchange for the immortality and healing abilities he felt he needed to protect Gotham. Damian states he knew he could not match his predecessors, Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson, but makes up for it by "cheating" as he calls it. By setting up booby traps throughout the city (mostly prominent buildings), Damian turned Gotham itself into a weapon. Even further into this future in Batman #700 (2010) he battles Two-Face-Two and rescues a young Terry McGinnis from him.
Years later, he is seen mentoring Terry, who takes the mantle of Batman. In Superman/Batman #75, Damian appears with Conner Kent, who is now Superman. Unlike Damian's father and the original Superman, Conner is apparently completely at odds with the new Dark Knight due to his disapproval of Damian's violent approaches as Batman. In Issue #80, it also shows Damian as Batman and another Superman of the future.
During the Flashpoint event, Professor Zoom creates an alternate timeline that removes the Flash while destroying his own legacy. In this version of history, Bruce Wayne dies instead of Thomas Wayne and Damian is never born. Eventually they find a way to repair the timeline from this dystopia, but Pandora alters the DC Universe even further.
Born to Kill
In this new timeline, Bruce Wayne and Damian patrol Gotham City as Batman and Robin for the first time together. They struggle with the exploration of their father-son dynamic, as Bruce tries to become a more positive role model. Trying to instill trust and compassion in Damian, he buys him a dog named Titus. They're targeted by the assassin NoBody, a son of Bruce's former mentor Henri Ducard who believes that the super-hero crusade is insane and all criminals must be murdered. Taking advantage of Robin's brutal nature as a trained killer, he tries to convince the young vigilante to switch sides and join his cause. Damian later kills NoBody with his bare hands.
Pulling the trigger, the gun is found to be unloaded. NoBody returns to his hideout with Damian and the diplomat, interrogating the man before deciding to kill him by dunking him in a tank of acid. Damian objects to this, attacking Morgan, but is quickly overpowered. He reveals that he had been leading Morgan on the whole time, making note of his R symbol's GPS tracker and radio transmitter that he had been using to broadcast their location to his father the whole time. Enraged by the betrayal, Morgan begins to slowly torture Damian, describing the acts to Batman as he makes his way to the boat they are on.
Before Morgan can kill the boy, Batman drives through the side of the ship and begins battle. He ultimately defeats Morgan, only stopping from killing the man after the realization that Damian is still watching what is happening. As they begin to leave, Morgan taunts Damian, saying he will return some day to kill the both of them, further angering Damian by provoking him to kill him. Ultimately, Robin decides to end the man's life, apologizing to his father for killing once again.
They return to Wayne Manor, injured. Damian is severely injured, and is cared for by Alfred. When Alfred voices concern for Bruce's wounds, Bruce snaps at Alfred and demands he focus on Damian. In attempt to show Damian he cares, Bruce leaves recordings he made while searching for him. Damian listens to all of them.
For the first time ever, Bruce shines light upon his father's den. Damian asks him what he is doing, and he responds finishing what he started: getting rid of the darkness. Bruce acknowledges that he wanted to kill Morgan in London after he shot him, and for what Morgan did to Damian. He explains that for years he has held back to urge to kill, even though it would make it much easier. But he made a promise to himself to never kill and to live by certain principles. Damian tries to understand, saying he wants to be like Bruce, and has "always wanted to be like [him]..." establishing the father-son bond they had seldom felt before. Damian describes it as "And here I thought we didn't like each other." But Bruce describes it as "We don't understand each other." Damian asks Bruce to not give up on him, and Bruce says he has no intention to.
Bruce wants Damian to feel like a true son, and decides to engage in regular household activities together. Damian is confused as to what they could do, but after a moment of thought, Bruce says something mundane, which turns out to be fetch with their newly-named dog Titus. After a fun game of fetch, Damian, Bruce, and Alfred notice the Bat-signal in the sky, and despite Alfred's wishes, they run off into the night.
During the Night of the Owls, Batman is preoccupied with the court of owls, and it is up to Damian to stop one of the Talons from killing Major General Benjamin Burrows. Without Bruce's help, Damian must protect Burrows and his squad from the Talon. Robin assumes leader of the squad, and gives them orders as to how to survive. They question him, and even attack in hopes to secure him, but after he has proven his skills, they listen to him. The Talon has Burrows at the tip of his sword, but Robin lassos him to a branch and decapitates him with a sword. Burrows asks if it's really dead, and Robin replies "That thing died a long time ago, General."
It has been revealed that Ra's has stolen his body from Wayne Manors graveyard as well as producing multiple clones of Damian to use in his war against Batman.
Powers and Abilities
- Skilled Martial Artist: exceptional martial artist, trained by the League of Assassins.
- Strength level: Damian possesses all the strength of a normal human male who engages in intense regular exercise.
Damian possesses all the weakness of a normal human male though has been trained to resist them for longer than most pre-adult human males.
Katana sword, grappling hooks, brass knuckles with spikes, Robin mask with assorted lenses for various situations.
Many in his training as an active assassin.
Real World History and Other Versions
- Damian is suggested to be the New Earth counterpart of Ibn al Xu'ffasch from Kingdom Come, who is actually the biological son of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul, the daughter of Ra's al Ghul of an alternate Earths. According to statements in the recent encapsulated "Origin of Ra's al Ghul" (Countdown 4 (week 48)) Damian is actually Bruce Wayne's biological son. However, no other source confirms this in the actual storyline and many of these compact origins in Countdown are told from the standing as a "general composite overview" of the characters they show, whereby they mix many elements of several differenct incarnations of the character. Thus this reference may not apply as actual reference of this specific incarnation of character.
- Batman: Brotherhood of the Bat, Tallant Wayne is the son of Bruce Wayne and an unknown mother, who's possibly Talia.
- The earliest incarnation of the character was called Bruce Wayne, Jr..
In Other Media
Damian appears in the 2014 animated movie Son of Batman. He is voice by Stuart Allen.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold
LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes
Damian appears in LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes as a pre-order exclusive.
Injustice: Gods Amoung Us
In the prequel comic to the game, Damian praises Superman's actions especially that of killing The Joker. Damian eventually sides with Superman and warns him of Batman wanting to intervene to stop Superman's plans involving killing the villains in Arkham Asylum. Damian inadvertently kills Dick Grayson before joining Superman's regime. For this act, Batman disowns Damian.
In Injustice: Gods Among Us, Damian appears as the Regime Nightwing after he accidentally killed Dick Grayson he took the mantle for himself and aligned with Superman. He is eventually defeated by that world's Batman, who claimed that Dick was his son and Damian is dead to him.
In his single player Battle Mode ending after defeating Superman, he begins challenging anyone who crosses his path. Seeing his ability to inspire fear, Nightwing is chosen by a yellow power ring and recruited into the Sinestro Corps.
Damian's in-game costume is loosely based on Nightwing's New 52 costume.