Stephanie Brown: New 52 Comeback.
DC dropped a pleasing knowledge bomb at NYCC: Stephanie Brown is poised and ready to return/introduced (however you want to look at this) to the new 52 universe.
For people who know me personally, I am amazingly attached to Stephanie Brown (for rather vain reasons, but hey!) and when DC launched a universal reboot, announcing Barbara Gordon would be back as Batgirl, I wasn’t sure if I was happy or concerned. At that time Stephanie Brown was in her own ongoing series as Batgirl, and she wasn’t in a story arc that would kill her- again? Which left me with the question of: what the fuck was going to happen to my favorite Batgirl?
DC finished Stephanie Brown’s series as Batgirl with no blood shed; her arc simply ended. With the launch of the new 52, Stephanie was working as a undercover Bat family corporative, investigating an all girls-which turned out to be aliens, I think?- school and in the end she just POOFED- vanished off the face of the comic book universe.
Nobody hasn’t heard much in regards to Stephanie Brown since; however, when Damien died, you could feel the community stirring with possible Robin replacements. Among the list of many candidates was Stephanie. Still, with the death of Damien, many people thought HE would be back (I mean, when your mom has a Pit of Lazarus as her finger tips, you think she would bring back her own son. Then again, she kinda killed him.) But, it seems Damien is going to stay dead (at least for a while) and the position of Robin is WIDE OPEN.
Back to my point: DC announced Stephanie Brown would be returning to the DCU, and since the character has played so many roles- Spoiler, Robin, Batgirl- her comeback role is a bit of mystery..Let’s also take in the fact that Batman Inc. is a global operation, and Bruce Wayne has openly backed the Batman.
-A new member of the Batman family, or Batman Inc.
And though I hate to say it, she is clearly not returning as Batgirl. Barbara has that mantle on lockdown.
What would I like to see Stephanie return as? Honestly, ANYTHING. The above roles are all amazing options for Stephanie, and her reintroduction to the DCU. Though, it has been pretty much, confirmed by DC, Stephanie will definitely be picking up the Spoiler mantle. But let’s play with the possibilities.
If Stephanie were to come back as Robin, I think I would enjoy her in that role. Why not? She was Robin for very brief time, and though she was one of my favorite Batgirls, I don’t think she grew into the mantle the way Barbara and Cassandra did. Having Stephanie revert back to being a side kick, I don’t see as an insult, as she still needs a lot of character growth before taking on another solo act. Yeah, she was Spoiler for the longest time, and she originally started out by herself, but how many times did Spoiler fumble something because she lacked discipline and detective work? Having her become Robin again would be good character growth for her. On a more personal level, Stephanie got along very well with Damien. They had a very brother/sister bantering relationship, and upon learning of Damien’s death, I think Stephanie would pick up the Robin mantle with honor, knowing she was upholding Damien’s Robin legacy. I could be totally wrong though, haha (I’m still betting on Harper become the new Robin some time down the road)
Returning as the Spoiler, this could go a few directions. Stephanie can either run the streets with her own vigilante agenda, allowing us watch her new 52 backstory unfold; or she could enlist in Batman Inc. family as a Bat agent. Personally, if Stephanie were to return as the Spoiler, I would like for her to be part of the Batman Inc., or become an agent. This does mean she will not get her own comic as the Spoiler, the character is too minor and too unknown (even amongst some readers), to launch her own self title. This would be a ton of cameos and appearances for the time being, until Spoiler becomes better developed and well known. the only thing I would like to be changed about Spoiler is: PLEASE GIVE HER COSTUME A NEW UPDATE.
The possibility also remains that Stephanie can get a total reboot as well: a clean character slate. Meaning, she could put Robin and Spoiler, behind her and become something entirely new. This is rather tantalizing, I would like to see a new hero addition to the Bat universe, but I don’t think DC will invest that much creative time into Stephanie quite yet. She is still a pretty minor character, even to long term readers.
Regardless of DC’s decision for Stephanie’s role, I am excited to see her return, and I do hope that they continue to invest more time in her and grow her character, because she is an excellent addition to the Bat universe. Stephanie has a great potential to draw in readers, and her personality is winning when you read it on the pages. I just hope they don’t fucking kill Stephanie again.