NIGHTWING #16 by Tim Seeley, Javier Fernandez, and Chris Sotomayor
The "Nightwing Must Die" arc begins with Damian coming to Blüdhaven to confront Dick on who should be the next Batman. Writer Tim Seeley continues to impress with the character of Nightwing. His Damian Wayne is less desirable and actually brings the character back to a time when he was a real pain. Artwork for the action scenes by Javier Fernandez is crisp and sharp. Overall, NIGHTWING #16 is a comic for every Nightwing fan to read.
88 %
Robin's a Dick
User Rating 5 ( 1 votes)

In NIGHTWING #16, our titular hero is finally at a good place in his life. He has a steady girlfriend, Shawn Tsang, and feels at home in Blüdhaven. Nightwing’s good times, however, come to a sudden halt and everything he’s worked to achieve may be taken from him! Writer Tim Seeley kicks off Nightwing’s latest arc with the ominous title “Nightwing Must Die.” Seeley proves once again that he’s a master at pushing Nightwing to grow and change while still staying true to his core personality.

READ: Want to know more about the previous arc? Catch up with our review of NIGHTWING #14!

NIGHTWING #16 opens with Dick Grayson reveling in how well his new relationship is going. Shawn, however, feels uneasy as she has some news she needs to share with Nightwing. Meanwhile, at the Teen Titians headquarters, Damian looks through comments on Chirper (aka Twitter) regarding who should take the mantle of Batman when he retires. Damian’s furious when he learns that his own teammates unanimously agree that Nightwing should be the next Dark Knight. Robin rushes over to Blüdhaven to confront Nightwing on the matter. At first, Dick is only mildly annoyed at Damian, until Shawn tells Dick some surprising news. Now distressed, Nightwing angrily pushes Damian aside and rushes to Shawn’s apartment, only to find she’s been taken! Damian, to make up for being a jerk, offers to help Nightwing save his girlfriend.


Now, I havent read the TEEN TITANS Rebirth series, but the last time I saw Damian was in the first issue of NIGHTWINGs newest run. Robin was a jerk when he was first introduced but has become playful and far more childish since then. In NIGHTWING #16, Damian is a straight up brat. Going to Blüdhaven to claim the right to Batman’s legacy is what old Damian would’ve done. While this was just a way to get Damian to go to Blüdhaven, I feel like Seeley caused Damian to take a few steps back as a character. Seeley does, however, redeem Robin when Damian realizes that he was being selfish and wants to make amends for it. That kind of character growth is how Damian developed when he and Dick worked together in the past. Regardless, seeing Dick and Damian together makes one nostalgic for Grant Morrisons 2011 BATMAN AND ROBIN run. It was a good team up then, and it still is now. 

LISTEN: Speaking of selfish male characters, here’s to our podcast on Celebrating the X-Men Women in a Post-Trump World!

As for Nightwing, Dick shows once again why he’s such a relatable hero. The problems he deals with are relevant to what people in their 20’s are going through. Not to mention it’s always great to see Nightwing having fun fighting criminals while quipping cheesy lines. Nearly everything I read from Seeley about Nightwing reminds me why I love this character. He loves being a hero and sees it as a performance, a thrill even, but above all else, he does his best to do right by the ones he cares about.


Nightwings personality truly shines thanks to the artwork by Javier Fernandez. The facial expressions in NIGHTWING #16 made this issue extremely enjoyable. Even during the scenes without dialogue, a reader could clearly see what each character was feeling. Nightwings face when he heard Shawns news made me literally laugh out loud. I do have an issue with Damians design, though. When Damian was in the NIGHTWING: REBIRTH issue back in July, he could have passed for a fifteen-year-old. In this installment, however, Damian looks about nine. I was legitimately shocked when Nightwing said he was thirteen. All Im asking is for consistency when it comes to Damians height and overall appearance.

The artwork also lends itself well to the action scenes. Each panel was strategically placed to set up Nightwings next attack, and the darker blue and purple hue colorist Chris Sotomayor used throughout the city gives Blüdhaven its own unique noir-esque look.

Despite some issue with Damians personality and design, NIGHTWING #16 sets up what could be an exciting new arc for Nightwing. As mentioned before, I’m a fan of Grant Morrisons 2011 BATMAN AND ROBIN run. If Tim Seeley can recreate the chemistry Dick and Damian shared in that series, then Nightwing Must Die is going to be phenomenal. NIGHTWING #16 should be on everyones must-have list this week, especially if youre a Nightwing fan.

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