Tim Drake and Stephanie Brown Finally Get Closure in Robin’s Pride Special
As part of Pride month, not only have DC released a special Pride anthology in the form of DC Pride, but they’ve also given Tim Drake the spotlight with his own collected book. DC Pride: Tim Drake Special #1 collects all three parts of his coming out story from Batman: Urban Legends as well as his holiday story from the same ongoing comic. On top of those two tales, there’s a new story included too, and it finally addresses an issue DC has been avoiding for some time.
Before coming out, Tim was dating fellow Bat-Family member Stephanie Brown, aka Batgirl. The two have a long romantic history, switching from friends to lovers and back fairly frequently. They were dating just before Tim’s coming out story began in Batman: Urban Legends, so hearing that they split up off-panel was a little shocking for some. Even stranger was seeing them team-up in Fear State with no mention of their breakup. The newest story in this Tim Drake Pride collection finally addresses that, with a very awkward reunion of the two.
Young Justice were trying, and failing, to handle a mysterious ghost elephant rampaging through Gotham City in the new story, “The Elephant in the Room” (by Meghan Fitzmartin, Belén Ortega, Luis Guerrero and Pat Brosseau). Both Superboy and Impulse suggested Tim call for some local backup, specifically in the form of a couple of former Young Justice members – the Batgirls. After the awkward break-up and the fact that he’s already dating someone new, Bernard, Tim wanted to avoid Steph at all costs. Too bad for him, her and Cass figured out something was up and joined them. Understandably, the meeting was awkward for everyone and the ghost wasn’t the only elephant in the room.
Tim’s break-up with Steph has been weighing heavily on him, and not just in this story. As he tried to figure out who he was in his coming out story, he couldn’t understand why he broke up with Steph in the first place during that time. It was so out of the blue that even Superboy contacted him at the start of the story to ask if everything was ok. Although Tim figured that the reason he broke up with Steph was because he was discovering his sexuality, he still hadn’t gotten the chance to tell her that. For that reason, figuring out how to tell her just became more and more awkward.
During this case though, Robin and Batgirl managed to resolve some of their issues. Steph felt abandoned by Tim, not because he broke up with her but because of how he did it. Going virtually no contact hurt the most, as they’ve always been friends and not just colleagues. However, they managed to sort things out in the end. Tim was able to explain everything that he’s gone through recently to Steph, and she was able to finally understand. With the two getting the closure they both needed, they mended their friendship and became best friends again.
In the final page of the story, she even got to meet Bernard. Steph’s total acceptance of him at that moment felt like the perfect way to round out the story. It showed that not only did Steph accept that her and Tim weren’t a couple anymore, but also that she embraced who Tim really was and that she was glad to see him happy.
For the purpose of the original Batman: Urban Legends story, it made sense for Tim and Steph to suddenly break up. It even played into the feelings of confusion in Tim at the time. However, this latest story was always going to happen at some point. Therefore, by having Robin and Batgirl resolve their issues amicably, and for her to fully embrace his new boyfriend, it sends a powerful message. It’s love and acceptance no matter what, which is something people need to see in stories like Tim’s.
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