Breaking: Next Week’s Batman & Robin #19 Sees the New 52 Debut of…Carrie Kelley?

The New York Post broke the news this morning that Carrie Kelley, the female Robin first introduced in Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns, is set to make her New 52 debut in the pages of Batman & Robin #19 (originally branded “Batman and Red Robin”). On shelves next week, the issue sees the grieving Bruce teaming up with a new iteration of Carrie, introduced here as a friend of the late Damian Wayne. She can be seen in all her glory with the reveal of Patrick Gleason’s full gatefold cover.


As we’re all aware, though, covers can be misleading. Based on an interior image and Peter Tomasi’s own comments, it’s evident that Carrie’s new role is a little more complicated than new Robin status. While Tomasi stresses that it’s not a one-off stunt and that the character will be around for an extended period of time, she’s not Damian’s successor.

β€œIt’s all real,” he said. β€œIt’s all in continuity. It’s all part of the Batman universe in the here and now. Carrie Kelley has found her way into The New 52 and she’s here to stay – in what capacity is anybody’s guess – except mine of course.”


It all happens next week.


  1. gawd, give us steph back already…

  2. Seriously? Seriously?

    I expect Pete Tomasi to not be so simple though.

  3. Good lord, she’s so homely in that panel.

    • Its like they drew a “hot Robin” and then added a boy’s head.

    • Oh, christl! She’s Louis from Ghostbusters.

      “Hey, this is real smoked salmon from Nova Scotia, Canada, $24.95 a pound! It only cost me $14.12 after tax, though. I’m givin’ this whole thing as a promotional expense, that’s why I invited clients instead of friends. You havin’ a good time, Mark?”

    • Oh, no! A woman who isn’t drawn to look like every other woman in my comics. What ever shall I do???

  4. It could be Mr Hanky & Tomasi would make it awesome. He’s been amazing on this title probably his best work. I have full faith who ever the new Robin is he will make the character likable.

  5. More Robins! Six more!

  6. Let the circus begin…I can’t believe they actually brought her into the New 52. I wish I had a different demeanor, but REALLY?? I didn’t even think Damian had any friends, least of all girls from an alternate mini-series universe that takes place in the future.

  7. Lame

  8. A strange choice…. but I can’t deny I’m curious about how this will all come together.

  9. I like her but I hope she is not the new permanent Robin.

  10. Already??

  11. This is just another in a long line of stale ideas from DC. Im not looking for rehashed old ideas from my comics that play on nostalgia, im looking for fresh ideas, things that i’ve never seen before. this is the kind of stuff that excites me DC, not old characters being reintroduced over and over again.

    I really cannot wait until DC gets desperate and starts exploring the indy comic space and brings in some fresh new blood into their writing pool. That’s when their line will really start to get exciting again

    • I jumped onto comics with the new 52 and I’ve never read TDKR but I am welcoming Carrie Kelley as an opportunity for something new (this is the new 52 version after all), and this is definitely going to get me to read Frank Miller’s original story. Sounds like a Win/Win situation to me.

    • I suppose for the newer comic fan, this will be a new idea and a bit of a shake-up, but as someone who’s been reading for 20 plus years, I just find all these decisions boring. I’m glad that your excited for this though and in the end, i hope I’m in the minority because that makes for a stronger comic industry, but I can only give my opinion, which is that i find all these moves extremely boring.
      On a brighter note, Cantseeme, I’m totally jealous that you are going to be reading Dark Knight Returns for the first time, it’s fantastic and you’re in for a hell of a ride. If this Carrie Kelly idea will get more people to read that amazing story, than I guess Im for it. While you’re at it, be sure to pick up Frank Miller’s Batman: Year One, it’s my favorite Batman story and I acutally think it’s superior to DKR. One of the best superhero stories of all time, in my opinion πŸ™‚

    • I hope when I’m a 20 year old comic fan I’m not overly-cynical and bitter about my hobby. It seems that older fan almost hate it.

    • pretty much, yeah. It’s because we’ve see all the tricks before πŸ˜‰

    • That’s a bummer. So why keep reading comics?

    • @deepspacesamurai: Because super-hero comics are not ALL comics. Many of us that have been around the hobby for so long have branched out into all the various flavors of indie books, but still try to keep at least a toe in the water that got us to go swimming in the first place.

      There are so many cliches to illustrate it, but the let’s go with “the first cut is the deepest”. Even though it’s sometimes harder to get excited for super-heroes these days (particularly at DC, in my opinion), nostalgia makes it almost impossible to just walk away entirely.

    • As always, Ken put it better than I ever could. thanks Ken!

    • @ken I guess that makes sense. There’s plenty of hobbies where people get sick of what might have brought them into it. Video games, for example. Final Fantasy brought me into gaming, now I hate all the new ones coming out. I still like plenty of other video games. I still don’t get buying cape books if they’re not doing it for you,nostalgia or not. IMO, if you don’t like something, don’t do it, and don’t ruin it for people that do like it.

    • I don’t think that sharing opinions or being critical of something is ruining it for other people. If it is, then that’s on the person it’s being ruined for. If you’re excited for something, be excited.

    • @chris I realize after that I came off saying that it ruins it for others because others are being critical. Not at all. There’s comics I don’t like. It’s just the idea that some come off as hating comics, even as they read them. I’ve never seen that in a fandom before.

    • @deepspacesaumurai – I get where you’re coming from. There’s definitely a segment of fans that seem to have a hate-on for the medium, but I don’t see a ton of it here. I think iFanboy is one of the most well adjusted fan bases on the net, even if there are a few bad eggs here and there. Most of the complaints I see here are more aimed at the business side of the industry, and it’s hard not to understand why, especially in the case of DC since the new 52 got going.

    • Yeah, I just read The Dark Knight Returns this past Christmas for the first time. I really liked it. I have both the animated movies that just came out too. They are really good. Once I heard that Carrie Kelley was coming to the New 52 I went to the comic shop to pick up The Dark Knight Strikes Again so I could see her whole history. I brought it to the counter and the cashier stood the book up and said, “Are you sure you want to buy this?” I said, “Yes?” He said, “I’m just letting you know that it sucks.” I said, “So the first one is better? Because I liked that one.” He said, “Yeah, the first one is MUCH better.” I got it anyway. I would have to say that I enjoyed it. It’s not as good as the first one but I wasn’t expecting it to be. It’s very different yes, but I like different stuff sometimes. The art was very different too. I was surprised that he told me it sucked because a) he wouldn’t have made the sale and b) his opinion doesn’t mean it’s everybody’s opinion. I don’t usually go to comic shops as I order most of my stuff online. And people like him are part of the reason. I always get stuck with some weirdo at the comic shops I go too. And I go to more than one. I’m glad I didn’t listen to him as I would have missed out on a good book.

    • @Ken: Good point about branching out to other titles other than DC and Marvel. I have recently done this with Cyber Force, Saga, Walking Dead and soon to be The Wake and Lazarus. I hope this doesn’t mean I’m an old timer comic book collector now. πŸ˜‰

  12. Yeeesh couldn’t we have had a “Batman alone and grieving” period? And I’m not a fan of the character selection. Just seems like trying to fold everything into one universe. And wow, that image of her looks like Thelma from Scooby Doos ugly sister.

  13. I think this is just a tease and a misdirection, she is obviously just at a fancy dress party!

  14. Isn’t that bare-legged Robin costume no longer canon? I believe the New 52 Dick Grayson Robin costume had leggings. Looks like Carrie is going retro without realizing it.

  15. seriously?
    people aren’t excited about this?
    that’s the real WTF about this situation!

    this is badass.
    back on the pull list you go, b&r.

    • I guess everyone missed the whole wtf part?

    • I got the wtf part. So wtf is she doing “here to stay”? It all just feels really lame. She was awesome in TDKR and now she’s just muddied up in all of this anything goes DC Universe, conveniently right after Damian dies. It feels like “who else could we bring in that readers really liked.” Oh well, enough negativity, I have Stokoe’s Godzilla to go read now…

  16. Not overly excited by this news, but will give Tomasi’s story the benefit of the doubt. I too would prefer an alone period for Bruce before we rush into finding his replacement. Honestly, this title should probably simply slide into hiatus for the time being. It’s not there still wouldn’t be one Batman title every week . . .

  17. and to all the freaks saying she’s ugly:

    she’s underage. and even if she wasn’t, not every comic book female has to be gorgeous.

  18. Gosh, I’ve been managing to keep most of the fold-out covers a surprise. Guess they didn’t consider it a spoiler?

  19. I’m starting to think that DC doesn’t full understand the concept of a “surprise.” This is the second gatefold cover they’ve done a reveal on, and back when Damian died there was a massive, unmissable pop-up if you went to the DC website. Is there any chance we could figure mysteries out by actually reading the books?

    • It’s not just DC, sadly. Marvel and DC have both been blowing huge moments by leaking them to the media (mainstream and comics) either the day the issue comes out or a few days before at least since the death of Captain America. I remember even reading something about Identity Crisis in a newspaper and that’s just embarrassing.

  20. Interesting. It’s beginning to seem like an intentional “game” on DC’s part. From the moment of Damian’s death, we’ve seen a Harper Row story (that had some people assuming she’d be the next Robin), some theories about that girl in red that we see in Batman Incorporated (I forget her name), and now Carrie Kelley. Wondering if it’s coincidence, if they have a plan, if they’re just teasing different things to get fans worked up, or if they’re waiting to see if there’s a critical mass of opinion…(crowd-sourcing a Robin?)

    • At this point I’d almost not be surprised if they did a “Vote on the new Robin!” after introducing a bunch of potential Robins. But, DC doesn’t exactly do a lot of listening to their fanbase, so probably not.

    • @daccampo: Your “crowd-sourcing a Robin” comment reminded me of a comment I made previously.

      What if they’re all “Robin’?

      I can imagine that at this point, Bruce is going to be pretty wary of actually imperiling another young person, but utilizing a collective of tech-savvy young people to be extra eyes, ears and (when it’s safe) hands to assist in his war on crime? That would be kind of interesting, if only for the potential it creates for more stories about regular folks in Gotham.

      So Harper, Ellie, Carrie (and a whole of other folks) could take the concept of a sidekick and extrapolate it out to something that makes sense in an era of social media. In other words, if Batman had a single Oracle in the 90s, wouldn’t he want a Cloud of Oracle’s now?

    • I could definitely get behind something like that. At least it’s something different.

    • But maybe that’s just because I really miss Oracle. A lot.

    • That is awesome, Ken. Very Batman Inc., too.

    • @daccampo/Ken/Chris: So basically you’re asking for what we saw in ‘BATMAN: SNOW’? Cause that’s what it sounds like….Which I would be for because apart from that story you don’t see that in Batman usually.

    • @TNC: I wasn’t familiar with Batman: Snow until just now (thanks, by the way, looks awesome), but I think what I’m proposing would be even bigger (based solely on the Amazon description of Snow).

      Batman would probably have actual interactions with only a few of the Robins, like Harper and Carrie (in an Oracle or Aleph from Global Frequency type role). For the most part, anyone in Gotham could become a Robin at any moment, and only for a moment. They see or hear something shady, tweet (heh, tweeting Robins) it to the “Bat-Cloud”, the intel gets assessed by the inner circle of Robins and passed along to Batman to investigate. I guess it would also be something like Sherlock Holmes’ Baker Street Irregulars.

      I think it could be the logical extension of Batman Inc. Where that initiative was a global branding kind of thing, this would be something of a localized youth movement based on that brand.

      Which could have interesting implications for Batman’s relationship with the GCPD. Presumably, Gotham cops have trust problems with various ethnic and socioeconomic subgroups. Some folks just won’t talk to cops — and with the systemic corruption in Gotham politics, who could blame them? The fact that Gothamites will talk to Batman and not them will probably rankle a bit.

    • “If you see something, tweet something”

    • I’m showing my age here ( a spry 34), but didn’t DC do some kind of phone-in voting for something like this back in the 90s with the whole Knightfall thing?

    • @Ken…that is brilliant. I think Cap had a bunch of teen CB’ers helping him out back in the day. What a great concept. I’m in favor of Cloud Sourced Robin.

  21. Is Pat Gleason secretly Alan Davis? Diabolical!!

  22. I should be excited by this. I love Carrie Kelley. She’s a fantastic character in a great story. And she should stay that way. Her value as a character is what she brings to a Bruce Wayne who’s jaded, lost and out of the game. Yeah, he’s depressed now, but it’s not to the level of TDKR. Hell, it isn’t even Batman Beyond levels of old angry Bruce.

    But hey, I’ve pretty much resigned to the fact that DC comics just aren’t being made for me anymore. I’m reading and enjoying… two titles that I can think of off the top of my head. Batman and Earth 2 are doing it for me. That’s about it, and Earth 2 is even a bit rocky from time to time.

  23. this just makes me miss Stephanie Brown more and more πŸ™

  24. Why does Tim get no respect?

  25. She looks like Enid from Ghost World in that panel. I would buy the hell out of a Dan Clowes bat-title.

  26. doesnt that fuck up the continuity? when batman retires and comes back as an old man to take out the mutants and carrie comes up is he just pretending he doesnt know her? or are they going to add to the dark knight returns instead of him asking her name he is going to say oh hi carrie your my dead sons friend. yes you can be robin again. continuity is already screwy enough to add her now before she is really introduced into the batman mythos.

  27. I’m not going to freak out over this. I wanna see how this is going to work and I trust Tomasi has some massive plan for bringing Carrie into the 52 universe. Considering this is a…..(sigh) ‘WTF?’ issue it seem to have done the trick. People are just FLIPPED out over this.

  28. And DC’s downward spiral continues.

  29. So, how long until they announce those “Before Dark Knight” minis??? I just hope they put Darwyn Cooke on The Question series…

  30. I like that panel/page.

    Nut sure i am ready for a new Robin, though. Nor would Bruce and the rest of the Bat-family be, I think. .

    Just too soon.

    (But it seems like this is just a WTF stunt.)

  31. Screw you DC. I am so out.

  32. no no no no. First they kill Damien and now this. I thought we were trying to decrease the number of robins hence the needless death.
    personal opinion the only good things to come out of the new 52 is the flash and snyder’s batman. (and batman I’m convinced could have worked with just a few changes before the switch. Also, I’m still liking his black mirror work with dick batman better).

    • I don’t know if I’d call it a needless death. I mean, Morrison has been pretty vocal about how he was going to kill him not long after Batman and Son. It has always been a part of his plan for Damian. And I’m totally cool with the creator of a character getting to make that call. That doesn’t mean I’m saying I’m not going to miss the little guy. One of my favorite DC characters.

  33. I’m not jumping to any conclusions about this reveal. I do trust Tomasi & Gleason to deliver an engaging and thought through story. This development doesn’t encourage me to opt-out. Yet, I don’t regard it as encouraging folk to opt-in, either.

  34. I hope its just this one page but, total butterface…

  35. Damien’s death felt like a small footnote to me when compared to Todd’s death back then. Everything in the New52 (from story arcs to character introductions/deaths) has felt so compressed into a small time frame. This seems to be DC saying “We heard people liked old-school Oracle so we’re giving that job to a much loved Frank Miller character” and it’s already happening next issue.

    I havent even considered Batman as human for a while now. I mean it’s all loose terms anyway (because comics) but one of the cool things about Batman was that he was a human, he bleeds and he has to heal when he gets real messed up….that hasnt been the case in a good while what with surviving an electric chair and a stab wound through the sternum then showing up in the next issue with a few bandages.

    I’d like to see the character deal with his old wounds that dont go away. I’d like to see Batman as a human who dresses like a bat again like we saw not too long ago in Legends of the Dark Knight #1. At this point he HAS to be a genetically-modified superhuman which personally loses a lot of the reasons why I liked Batman in the first place.

    • I agree. We had what felt like 18 issues of turmoil after Jason’s death. We saw Bruce and Batman grieve for months until Tim weaseled his way into the book. He was a person. This time around (ok, maybe not in Inc) we get one issue Requiem stories (sort of) FOR HIS SON, and now they’re teasing us with “new ones”. I too miss human Batman that is missing from the majority of Bat titles at the moment. Hopefully Zero Year pans out, but it still doesn’t balance the handling of Damians death (if it even sticks). And I agree with you on the other points about his current “superhumanness”.

  36. Y’know, I had this crazy idea that I could put Batman down in a couple months and just imagine that this is where TDKR picks up (after the death of Robin), whilst at the same time going back and picking up classic Batman comics from the ‘olden days’. I’m still somewhat bitter about Damian’s death and can’t help but see a logical closure point in the story as a result.

    It seems to me that TDKR (which was, to my mind, always canon) can no longer be canon.

    However, aside from that, I have no problem at all with this. I’m actually quite excited. I really love Carrie. Also, I think the kind of ‘Tom-Boy/Girl-Geek’ style that’s big now fits her like a glove. Carrie was always ahead of her time, so it seems that we might be in for a real treat.

    I don’t know if you guys noticed, but Pete & Pat have been knocking out of the park on this book (for the last couple months I’ve been reading it, at least) and there’s a chance to do something wholly new with a really special character who is

    a) a vital part of the Batman mythos
    b) a Frank Miller character NOT bumped off in ‘Dark Victory’ and
    c) A veritable continuity ‘blank slate’ (aside from the above issue, of course).

    I’m excited for this one. Balls nasty.

    – Tt –