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The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – Robin Doesn’t Trust Batgirl With His Secret I.D.?

by  in Comic News Comment
The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – Robin Doesn’t Trust Batgirl With His Secret I.D.?

Every week, we will be examining comic book stories and ideas that were not only abandoned, but also had the stories/plots specifically “overturned” by a later writer (as if they were a legal precedent). Click here for an archive of all the previous editions of The Abandoned An’ Forsaked. Feel free to e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.

Today we look at a controversial story involving Batgirl and her knowledge of the secret identities of Batman and Robin…

For the first decade or so of her existence, Batgirl did not know Batman and Robin’s secret identity. That changed in Batman Family #3 in 1975 (written by Elliot S! Maggin)…



Well, technically she just knows Dick’s secret identity, but come on, obviously you know the one you know the other.

So anyhow, in 1980’s Detective Comics #489, writer Jack C. Harris (almost certainly because someone higher-up told him that they did not like Batgirl knowing Batman and Robin’s secret identity) changed things. In the issue, a bad guy steals her memory, piece by piece…




As these things are wont to do, though, it blows up in the face of the guy trying to sell their secrets and he ends up dead before the sale went down.


So Robin gets the tapes to play them for Batgirl to give Batgirl her memory back…


(Kind of weird to refer to yourself as “Babs,” no?)

But he purposely withholds the tape that has his and Batman’s secret identities on it, asking her to consider NOT playing this tape. Messed up stuff, right? And why would she agree to it? Well, she did…


This was met with a number of complaints, including other DC writers even. So a few years later, in 1983’s Detective Comics #526, Gerry Conway has the Joker put together a team of Batman rogues and in the process of the story, reveals that Babs just made Dick THINK that she lost her memory of their IDS…





I think the change was a good one by Conway. Batgirl should know their IDs.

Feel free to e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.