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Marv Wolfman tells us about the essence of Nightwing

Comic Books

Marv Wolfman tells us about the essence of Nightwing

The legendary writer returns for this week’s ‘Nightwing’ #113.

In July 1984, Marv Wolfman and George Pérez created Nightwing, with the hero re-debuting in issue #44 of Tales of the Teen Titans. With this new moniker, Dick Grayson became a full fledged solo hero in the DC Universe, and has been one ever since. But a lot has changed for Dick Grayson since 1984, and so has the world around him.

The ongoing Nightwing series from Tom Taylor and Bruno Redondo is a vital part of that long and robust history. The book has not just sought to grow Nightwing into a new lead among this latest era of DC Comics, but also to explore those ideas and energies central to Nightwing and his core identity and mythos. As such, the newly-released Nightwing #113 (also considered legacy #300 for the series) serves as a proper celebration of the character’s past, present, and future. And for this momentous occasion, Wolfman has returned to writing duties, where he masterfully crafts an emotional and heartfelt short story to the character while also honoring the late George Pérez.

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Nightwing #113 is out this week (April 16). To extend the celebration of the hero, we were able to catch up with Wolfman for a quick chat. The iconic scribe spoke about the importance of Nightwing, his collaboration and relationship with Pérez, and returning to write the character. 

Nightwing

The cover to Nightwing #113 by Bruno Redondo. Courtesy of DC Comics.

AIPT: What is it like to be able to return to writing Dick Grayson after taking a break for several years? 

Marv Wolfman: In the 1940s, when Dick Grayson was created, it was OK for Batman to have a young kid partner. But as time passed, I thought that Dick needed to grow up. He was trained by Batman, learned everything Batman could teach him, but he didn’t have any of Batman’s angst. Where Batman sought to punish criminals, Dick wanted to protect the innocent, which made him a great character to write and explore. I was thrilled to work with him again, even if it was only for two pages.

AIPT: You gave a brilliant and emotional nod to the late George Pérez in this short story, which must have been overwhelming to write. How did you decide on how to recognize his instrumental work in such a beautiful way?

MW: Tom Taylor and company put this all together and made it possible for all of us to honor George’s legacy. George was not only a brilliant artist but a truly wonderful human being. I was honored to get this chance to let the world know what those of us who worked with him already knew.

AIPT: The story you wrote was a brief window of time in the overarching issue. How did you decide to land on this love letter to the character rather than another avenue?

MW: Honestly, that was all suggested by Tom and everyone else on the Nightwing team. My job was to take their suggestions and put it in writing.

Nightwing

Art from Nightwing #113. Courtesy of DC Comics.

AIPT: What was it like working with Tom Taylor [and Bruno Redondo] on this major celebration of the character?

MW: They were great and very much open for me to take their idea and making it mine. 

AIPT: In all your time writing Dick Grayson, what story are you most proud of?

MW: I think it was probably the issue of New Teen Titans: The Judas Contract story where Deathstroke invaded Dick’s apartment. That really showed how good he was on his own, without superpowers.

AIPT: If you could summarize the importance of a character like Dick Grayson in a brief elevator pitch to a new reader, what would you highlight?

MW: As I said earlier, unlike most heroes who seek to punish the bad guys, Dick is purely about protecting the innocent. We want him, [we] need him, to be on our side.

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