Cassandra Cain

Cassandra Cain (also known as Cassandra Wayne) is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, commonly in association with the superhero Batman. Created by Kelley Puckett and Damion Scott, Cassandra Cain first appeared in Batman #567 (July 1999). The character is one of several who have assumed the role of Batgirl, and Cassandra Cain goes by the name of Orphan in current DC Comics continuity.

Cassandra's origin story presents her as the daughter of assassins David Cain and Lady Shiva. She was deprived of speech and human contact during her childhood as conditioning to become the world's greatest assassin. Consequently, Cassandra grew up to become an expert martial artist while simultaneously remaining mute, developing very limited social skills, and being illiterate.

Cassandra was the second Batgirl to star in her own ongoing Batgirl comic book series, an Asian character who was replaced as Batgirl by Stephanie Brown in a 2009 storyline. She returned in late 2010, where she was shown working as an anonymous agent of Batman in Hong Kong before adopting the new moniker of Black Bat.

She returned to mainstream continuity after the company-wide reboot in Batman & Robin Eternal and assumed the code name Orphan after the death of her father David Cain, who originally used the code name.

The character will make her cinematic debut in the upcoming film Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn),[1] portrayed by Ella Jay Basco.

Cassandra Cain
Knightalone
Trade paperback cover of Batgirl: A Knight Alone.
Art by Damion Scott
Publication information
PublisherDC Comics
First appearanceAs Cassandra Cain:
Batman #567 (July 1999)

As Batgirl:
Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #120 (August 1999)

As Kasumi:
Justice League Elite #1 (September 2004)

As Black Bat:
Batman Incorporated #6 (May 2011)

As Orphan:
Batman & Robin Eternal #26 (March 2016)
Created byKelley Puckett
Damion Scott
In-story information
Team affiliationsBatman Family
Young Justice
Justice League Elite
League of Assassins
Titans East
Outsiders
Batman Incorporated
The Spoiler
Justice League
Abilities
  • Highly skilled martial artist and hand-to-hand combatant
  • Able to read body language and anticipate opponents' actions

Publication history

The character was created by writer Kelley Puckett and penciler Damion Scott. Cassandra Cain first appeared in Batman #567 (July 1999). Cassandra appeared as one of the main characters in a short story written and drawn by Amanda Conner for Wonder Woman #600, where she helps Wonder Woman and Power Girl in a battle against Egg Fu.

Fictional character biography

No Man's Land

Cassandra Cain was first introduced during the "No Man's Land" crossover storyline in 1999. She is one of the Oracle's agents in Gotham City. In that arc, Gotham was leveled by a 7.6 magnitude earthquake, declared a "no man's land", and isolated from the rest of the United States. After proving herself by saving Commissioner Gordon's life, she is given the Batgirl costume with the approval of both Batman and the Oracle. She becomes a ward of Barbara Gordon (Oracle). In this story arc, Cassandra cannot speak at all and can only communicate through gestures and drawings.

Bruce Wayne (Batman) eventually learns about Cassandra's past. She murdered a businessman when she was eight years old, after which David Cain transmitted a video he had made of the murder to the Batcave. Nevertheless, Wayne continues to accept Cassandra after she takes several bullets to save the life of a hired assassin, proving her devotion to protecting human life.[2]

Batgirl

In 2000, Cassandra became the first Batgirl to be featured in an eponymous ongoing comic book series. At first she is discovered by Batman and sent to live with Barbara Gordon, currently functioning as Oracle. Babs says she prefers to live alone but since Cas is never home and doesn't talk, it is just like living alone. A telepath "rewires" Cassandra's brain so that she can think with words and use language, but these abilities come at some cost to her ability to read people's body language. As she had relied completely on this ability to fight, she is unable to effectively fight crime. Worried, Bruce Wayne takes away her costume and begins training her in defensive skills.

Cassandra's birth and childhood are revealed in the Batgirl series. David Cain had sought a perfect bodyguard for Ra's al Ghul. He found a potential mother when he saw Sandra Wu-San fighting her sister Carolyn in a martial arts tournament. Believing that Sandra was holding back for Carolyn, Cain murdered Carolyn and lured Sandra into a trap, sparing her life in exchange for giving birth to his child and leaving that child for him to raise. She agreed. After the birth of Cassandra, Sandra set out to become Lady Shiva.

Cain trained Cassandra from birth how to be an assassin. She was not taught to read or write; instead, reading body language was her only language. She was able to read people's movements and predict what they were going to do. When she was eight, Cain took her to kill a businessman. As the man died, she read what he was feeling, realized what she had done, and ran away from her father, resurfacing again during the "No Man's Land" story arc.

Cassandra soon discovers that assassin Lady Shiva can read people like she used to be able to and asks Shiva to reteach her.[3] Lady Shiva accepts on the condition that they would have a duel to the death a year later. As Cassandra would rather be "perfect for a year" instead of "mediocre for a lifetime", she accepts the offer. When the women fight in a year's time, Cassandra dies within minutes. Shiva then restarts her heart, realizing Cassandra had a death wish, so that they can have a real fight. In the subsequent fight, Cassandra beats Shiva but does not kill her.

Batgirl vs Shiva
Cassandra defeating Lady Shiva.

Though not known for her private life, Cassandra does have a one-time romance with Conner Kent after meeting him on a cruise ship.[4] He is the first boy she ever kissed, and she even visits him at his home in Smallville, though the relationship never becomes serious.

Batman holds Cassandra in high regard. During the "War Games" story arc in 2004, he relies heavily on her to help control the violence of the gang war in Gotham City.

Following "War Games", Batgirl moves to Blüdhaven with Tim Drake (the third Robin) at Batman's suggestion and with his financial support (Nightwing had been injured during the crisis, and the Gotham City Police Department had declared all costumed heroes illegal). There, Deathstroke takes on a contract from the Penguin to kill Batgirl and decides to let his daughter, Rose (the current Ravager), do the job instead. Cassandra beats Rose by playing on her emotions to leave her open for a critical strike, giving Deathstroke no choice but to get her medical attention.

During this time, Cassandra starts developing a friendship with Brenda, the woman who owns the local coffee shop, and even a very short-lived relationship with a boy named Zero. Unfortunately, her friends are all killed in the Blüdhaven disaster.

Cassandra also goes undercover for Batman, as Kasumi, in the Justice League Elite, working under Sister Superior to track and eliminate metahuman threats to the population. She works with the Batman's old fellow Justice League members Green Arrow and the Flash, and forms a certain bond with Coldcast, who is the first person to whom she revealed her real identity. Although he is subsequently accused of murder, she and the rest of the team soon realize that he had been manipulated by renegade Elite member Menagerie, who was also being manipulated by the spirit of Manchester Black as he tried to drive his sister to destroy London. As the JLA falls, the Elite, united by the spirit of the deceased Manitou Raven, free Vera and vanquish Black, although the team disbands after this last mission.

Cassandra gathers evidence that indicates that Shiva could be her mother, and seeks her out to confirm this. After being proclaimed by Nyssa al Ghul as the "One Who Is All", the students of the League of Assassins split their allegiances, half following Shiva and the others Cassandra. In the ensuing confrontation, Cassandra is mortally wounded by her "adoptive brother", the Mad Dog, while heroically saving one of the students under her leadership. Shiva revives Cassandra in a Lazarus Pit, then answers Cassandra's questions about her parentage. When Cassandra asks Shiva if she had killed more people since their last battle and Shiva said that she had, Cassandra asks if she would ever stop. Shiva responds, "It's why I had you", and Cassandra agrees to fight her to the death once more.

In an evenly matched battle, Cassandra manages to break Shiva's neck, paralyzing her. She appears ready to place Shiva in the Lazarus Pit, but Shiva pleads with her not to do so. In response, Cassandra impales Shiva on a hook hanging over the pit, apparently killing her. Although Cassandra's intent regarding this action is unclear, whether to kill her or let her fall into the pit and be revived, it has been confirmed that Shiva is alive in the "One Year Later" storyline. Cassandra then abandons the identity of Batgirl and returns to her life as a wanderer.[5]

One Year Later

Batgirloyl
"One Year Later": Cassandra Cain. Art by Freddie E. Williams II.

Cassandra took on the role of a villain by becoming the head of the League of Assassins following the "One Year Later" continuity jump, as established in Robin #150 (July 2006). Robin (Tim Drake) captures David Cain and brings him to the League of Assassins as ransom to free Cassandra, only to find that Cassandra is the new leader. Cassandra produces a gun and tells him to shoot Cain and join her league. Upon his refusal, she shoots Cain herself. Tim and Cassandra engage in a fight which ends when the platform they are fighting on explodes. By the time Tim comes back to the original location, Cassandra and Cain are gone and the ninjas' necks have been snapped. Tim had secretly recorded the conversation, clearing his name, but branding Cassandra as a murderer at the same time.

Cassandra then appears in Supergirl #14 (April 2007), battling the title character, (Kara Zor-El), in her role as leader of the League of Assassins. She is hired by Dark Angel to kill Supergirl and attempts to do so by kidnapping Supergirl's friend, Captain Boomerang. Supergirl arrives at the League's Tibetan headquarters to confront Cassandra, where they fight. Cassandra uses swords that emit red sun energy which strips away Supergirl's powers. However, as Cassandra prepares to kill her, Supergirl mysteriously extrudes crystals from her body which injure Cassandra.

This story is shown to follow the "One Year Later" jump in the Robin series, as in Supergirl #14 there is a file in the Batcomputer titled "Cassandra Cain and the League of Assassins", showing this takes place after she battled Robin. In Teen Titans (vol. 3) #44 (April 2007), it revealed that Cassandra battled Supergirl first, before attacking the Teen Titans with the Titans East.

Cassandra reappears later in the Robin series.[6] Cassandra approaches Dodge, a wannabe superhero with teleportation powers, wanting him to steal a drug that gives humans metahuman strength in exchange for money. Cassandra (with an ally) plans to use the drug to create an army. She also makes another appearance where she murders the businessman who was producing that drug. Robin had been unable to legally bring him to justice.

Titanseast
Cassandra with the rest of the Titans East on the cover of Teen Titans (vol. 3) #43. Art by Tony Daniel.

Cassandra is also on the roster of Titans East and is once again wearing the Batgirl costume.[7] Cassandra remained in the role of a villain, under the command of Titans East's leader, Deathstroke. It is revealed in Teen Titans (vol. 3) #43 that she is being drugged by Deathstroke. In issue #44, after a rematch with the Ravager and a brief confrontation with Robin, Robin injects Cassandra with a counter-serum (prepared in case Deathstroke regains control of his daughter). She apparently regains control over herself, with a desire for revenge by killing Deathstroke for violating her like Ravager and Terra before her. In issue #45, Cassandra is allied with the Teen Titans (to which Miss Martian comments that she is more in control of herself now) and faces Deathstroke, Match, and other former Titans East teammates, before being subdued by Risk. Soon after, Cyborg, Raven, and Duela Dent summon former Titans Nightwing, Donna Troy, Beast Boy, and the Flash (Bart Allen), who join them against Deathstroke's team. Batgirl attempts to kill Deathstroke, but is stopped and knocked unconscious by Nightwing, who demands that Deathstroke face the courts. However, Deathstroke escapes from the Titans with the help of Inertia, and after the battle is over, Batgirl and Duela Dent both vanish without a word.

52: World War III

Following the events in Infinite Crisis, 52 fills in the one-year gap where "One Year Later" left off. Cassandra was left behind while Batman, Robin, and Nightwing left for their year-long trip and Harvey Dent was charged with protecting Gotham instead of her. Deathstroke approaches Cassandra and preys on her desire for a loving father as well as her feelings of abandonment. Although occurring off-screen, Deathstroke managed to inject Cassandra with drugs, from a distance, that warped her mind allowing for him to manipulate her to his liking.[8]

Batman and the Outsiders

In October 2007, DC announced that Cassandra would be taking up the Batgirl identity as a member of the Outsiders in the upcoming Batman and the Outsiders ongoing series to be written by Chuck Dixon, which appears to, or is hoped to, begin resolving the controversy.[9]

Cassandra retakes the Batgirl mantle to join the Outsiders at Batman's request near the end of Batman and the Outsiders (vol. 2) #2 (January 2008). Cassandra moves into the team's apartment, but does not show much desire to socialize with her teammates. Batman also offers membership to Green Arrow, who is furious to learn that the former leader of the League of Assassins is on the team as well. While on a mission, Green Arrow and Batgirl battle one another and end up gaining an unusual sort of respect for each other. The team as a whole begins to slowly accept Batgirl into their ranks when she frees all of them from the Chinese military.[5]

After the loss of their leader in the 2008 "Batman R.I.P." storyline, the Outsiders are left in disarray. Cassandra, believing that Batman brought her onto the team for just such a contingency, takes command of the group. Together, they undertake a search for him.

Batgirl (2008)

In February 2008, Dan DiDio revealed during a convention panel that writer Adam Beechen would be writing a "new Batgirl" miniseries. Beechen himself said that the story would resolve the questions over Cassandra's behavior and will be a setup for new Batgirl adventures.[10]

In this series, Cassandra moves into Wayne Manor and desires to kill her father and Deathstroke for what they did to her. She uses the Batcave's computer to locate them but is attacked by Nightwing, who claims she cannot be trusted. Robin and Batman give her the benefit of the doubt.

During the series, Cassandra learns that David Cain and Deathstroke started up a school training Cassandra's "sisters". When Cassandra hears that the school's purpose was to "cripple the meta-hero community", she believes Oracle is about to be assassinated and rushes to her base of operations. She locates her father on a rooftop and engages in a one-on-one fight, eventually sending him over a ledge. When he loses his grip, she tries to save him but fails; he falls to another part of the rooftop. Batman, who had followed her, accepts her into the family again and says he will adopt her and make her his daughter.

The first issue of a 2009 Batgirl ongoing series, set after Bruce Wayne's apparent death during Final Crisis, shows Cassandra disillusioned. She passes her Batgirl identity to her close friend, Stephanie Brown. She leaves Gotham, with her whereabouts unknown.[11]

Black Bat

CassandraBlackbat
Cassandra as Black Bat with Red Robin; art by Marcus To.

After Bruce Wayne returns, it is revealed that Cassandra's disillusionment was a ruse, and that she had willingly handed over her Batgirl mantle to Stephanie because she was acting under her mentor's order in the event of his death or disappearance. Tim Drake is revealed to have been in regular contact with her, implying that she is now an anonymous agent to Batman.[12] Following Bruce Wayne's public announcement about his intention to create a global team of Batmen, Tim visits Cassandra in Hong Kong, where she has been acting as an anonymous vigilante. He attempts to persuade Cassandra to return to Gotham now that things have returned to normal, but she refuses, saying that Stephanie needs the Batgirl role more than she does. Just before departing, Tim gives Cassandra a copy of her old costume and tells her that if she chooses to stay and fight crime in Hong Kong, he hopes she will do it while wearing a Bat-symbol.[13]

In Grant Morrison's Batman Inc. series, it is revealed that Cassandra has taken Tim up on his offer and joined up with Bruce's new group, now wearing a heavily modified costume that uses her original outfit as a base. She now uses the name of Black Bat, and is shown contacting Bruce after bringing down a heroin-smuggling operation in Hong Kong.[14]

At C2E2 2011, it was confirmed that Cassandra would be appearing as a main character in Scott Snyder and Kyle Higgins' mini-series Batman: Gates of Gotham.[15] In the first issue of the series, a new supervillain named the Architect destroys three Gotham bridges with the help of explosives smuggled from Hong Kong, resulting in the deaths of dozens of civilians. Feeling guilty over her failure to stop the explosives from leaving China, Cassandra returns to Gotham and partners with Red Robin, Dick Grayson, and Damian Wayne (the newest Robin) to bring the Architect to justice.[16] During a stakeout at Oswald Cobblepot's nightclub, Cassandra is mocked and berated by Damian, who tells her that he is a better hero and that Bruce likely sent her to Hong Kong as a demotion. Despite Damian's hostility toward her, Cassandra ultimately saves his life after pulling him out of the club mere seconds before it is destroyed by a bomb.[17] After Dick discovers that the Architect plans to flood Gotham and kill thousands of civilians, Cassandra and Damian work together to dispose of the explosives that were supposed to sink the city. Once the Architect is defeated and captured, Cassandra implies that she intends to stay in Gotham rather than return to Hong Kong.[18]

Cassandra later infiltrates a tournament for hired killers and rescues Red Robin, who had been captured and was about to be sexually assaulted by the half-sister of Ra's al Ghul. After rescuing Tim, Cassandra apparently kills him with a katana, thus winning the tournament for herself. It is later revealed that she had merely faked Red Robin's death in order to allow him to escape. The two then travel to Hong Kong in order to catch a 10-year-old assassin known as the Cricket, but are easily defeated. Just as Cassandra and Tim fall into unconsciousness, the Cricket vows to face them again someday, and tells them that he hopes they will put up a better fight next time.[19]

The New 52

Cassandra Cain appears in Batgirl: Futures End, set in The New 52: Futures End continuity, a possible timeline five years from the present. Cassandra is a member of Barbara Gordon's League of Batgirls, operating on the field under her leadership alongside fellow Batgirls Stephanie Brown and Tiffany Fox. At San Diego Comic-Con International 2015, James Tynion IV announced that Cassandra would be introduced into mainstream continuity in Batman & Robin Eternal.[20] Her father, David Cain, is portrayed as a character named the "Orphan", who raises Cassandra alone and forces her not to speak but to "listen" to body movements and react accordingly with deadly precision. She was intended to be a "gift" to the villain "Mother", to show her that child assassins can be manipulated through "the old ways" instead of through the use of drugs, but "Mother" rejected her and told Orphan never to do anything behind her back again. Although she is used by Mother to kill Miranda Row, mother of Batman's new ally Harper Row, at the conclusion of the storyline, Harper forgives Cassandra for her role in her mother's death, while Cassandra's own father David sacrifices himself to kill Mother by trapping her in her disintegrating fortress, refusing to allow her to torture others in the future. At the storyline's conclusion, Cassandra adopts her father's identity of Orphan to continue protecting others.[21]

DC Rebirth

As Orphan, Cassandra is later inducted into Batman and Batwoman's "boot camp" for young Gotham vigilantes.[22] Orphan is known for being the best fighter on the team. She tries to fight the team's battles alone and is known for sneaking into Stephanie Brown's and Harper Row's apartments in the middle of the night. When Batman is attacked by the Colony, she tries to take them on by herself and is left injured and later sedated after leading the Colony into their base. Clayface helps Batwoman, Red Robin, Spoiler, and the injured Orphan escape.

Skills, abilities, and equipment

Training and abilities

Like the rest of the Batman family, Cassandra has no superhuman powers. As a child, she received intensive training by her father, along with several other members of the League of Assassins, including Bronze Tiger, Merlyn the archer, and a series of instructors hired by her father, including Alpha. Upon taking the mantle of Batgirl, she was trained further by Batman, Oracle, Black Canary, and by Lady Shiva. She received supplementary instruction from Onyx. She is an amazing hand-to-hand combatant and is highly-skilled in several martial arts, including Jeet Kune Do,[23] Muay Thai,[23] and Ninjutsu.[24] She was also very briefly trained in detective methods by Tim Drake during their time in Blüdhaven.

Cassandra's superiority in combat results not just from her excellent physical condition, but from her cognitive functions (the result of her idiosyncratic upbringing) that enables extraordinary feats of coordination as well as perceiving minute changes in an opponent's movements and body language. In Batgirl #14 (May 2001), the writer, Kelley Puckett, places Cassandra in a position within the story in which her skills are analyzed by a group of government experts. The creative team reveals to the reader that the character has no metagene. Yet her genetic status was felt to be incompatible with her recorded abilities. One expert states, "Her individual moves are borderline human. It's her aggregate speed that's metahuman. Look—humans can throw a 100 miles-per-hour fastball, smash concrete blocks with their heads, and run 4.2 forties. What they can't do is all of that at once. It's not so much physical as... as mentally impossible. Too much to coordinate."[25]

Her upbringing using body language as her exclusive mode of communication also had the effect of enabling her to "read" minute changes in an opponent's expressions, breathing, muscles, joint position, and center of gravity which in turn allows her to see or "predict" an opponent's moves before they happen. It is possible this ability is only partially the result of her upbringing and that there is a genetic predisposition to it since Lady Shiva, Cassandra's mother, is the only other martial artist known in the DC universe to have this ability. When a telepath "rewired" Cassandra's brain to allow her speech, this had the unintended consequence of blocking her ability to "predict" attacks, as though her ability to comprehend physical language was traded for her ability to speak and read. Eventually, Lady Shiva helped her to regain this ability, but how this was done is never revealed. "[26]

Cassandra also exhibits extraordinary resistance to pain. On more than one occasion she has been described as "being able to take a bullet wound and not even bat an eye", due to additional training received as a child.

Language skills

As a side effect of her father's training, Cassandra's brain developed learning functions different from most. Having been brought up by Cain deliberately without speech, the communication centers of her brain learned body language instead of spoken or written language. Thus, she originally had as much trouble learning spoken and written language as a normal individual would have in learning body language. Although she was able to learn some very basic things ("no", "yes", "me") the same way a normal person can learn to recognize smiles and frowns, it took a telepath "rewiring" her brain to teach her to speak and understand English. Even then, she only spoke with extreme difficulty (very falteringly, short sentences with long pauses, frequently using the wrong words, etc.). In Batgirl #67 (October 2005), Oracle performed a number of tests on Cassandra, determining the severity of the problem: "The language centers of your brain are all over both hemispheres. Not centralized like with most people. When you try to read or write, your brain doesn't know how to keep it cohesive."

In the 2008 Batgirl miniseries, the first issue delves into an explanation as to Cassandra's increased verbal and literary skills. It is explained that during the year in which Batman, Nightwing, and Robin were abroad, Cassandra and Alfred took it upon themselves to help develop the skills that she lacked due to her less than conventional childhood. By day she took speech and ESL courses. The formal training aided her thought processes related to language and thus her verbalization improved rapidly.

Costume and equipment

Cassandra's costume as Batgirl is composed of black skin-tight leather. Her mask covers all of her head with the exception of the eyes, which are darkened, and symbolic stitches surround the mouth of the mask. Cassandra wears a yellow-rimmed black logo rather than the yellow bat version of the logo worn by Barbara. The costume was first created and worn by the Huntress in the early stages of "No Man's Land".

Like the other members of the Bat-Clan, Cassandra's Batgirl also wears a yellow-pouched utility belt which contains grappling hooks, batarangs, mini-explosives, tracking devices, a hand-held computer, binoculars, PlastiCuffs, and smoke pellets. However, Cassandra rarely uses any of these devices.

The costume displays slight variations in Titans East. The cape shows a yellow lining and Cassandra wears a "capsule" utility belt rather than pouches. In Teen Titans (vol. 3) #43, the once hollow bat-symbol appears to have been filled in and her cape is once again completely black; a new line of stitching goes up the forehead of her cowl. This version of the costume apparently results from one artist's interpretation, as Cassandra's appearances elsewhere (i.e., Supergirl and Batman and the Outsiders) show her wearing her standard Batgirl costume.

Her costume as Black Bat incorporates her former Batgirl costume, with some modifications. She now wears a domino mask and exposes the rest of her face and head. Her cape is now severely torn, looking ragged and almost smoke-like. Her hands are wrapped in bandages rather than her former scalloped bat-gloves.

The costume she currently wears as Orphan consists of a form-fitting longsleeved black top, gloves, and full head mask; occasionally she has worn a variant with an attached hood and no mask. Her pants are looser and baggier in the thighs to allow greater flexibility with her acrobatics, and she wears knee-high black boots. The entire costume has yellow accents, with small armor plates in strategic areas on the torso and arms, and includes a yellow utility belt.

Controversy

Critical reception of Cassandra's villainous turn in the "One Year Later" storyline was mixed.[27][28] In general, the portrayal of Tim Drake was praised, whereas Cassandra's depiction was not. Upon being asked if Cassandra's characterization was editorially mandated, writer Adam Beechen stated, "When I came to the book, I was told that the first arc would deal with presenting Cassandra as a major new enemy for Robin. From there, I worked out the details of just how that would come about with our initial editor, Eddie Berganza, and then his successor, Peter Tomasi."[29] In a follow-up interview, he clarified further, stating, "They didn't present me with a rationale as to why Cassandra was going to change, or a motivating factor. That was left for me to come up with and them to approve. And we did that. But as far as to why the editors and writers and whoever else made the decision decided that was a good direction, I honestly couldn't answer."[30]

In interviews and press conferences,[31] Dan DiDio and others have stated that Cass will "be going back to basics", as in her early adventures before she was able to talk. Later, Geoff Johns was quoted as saying, "We will be addressing in Teen Titans exactly what the deal is with her. Is she a bad guy? How? Why? She was a completely different character before 'One Year Later,' so let’s find out what happened."[32]

According to Wizard Magazine #182, the storyline was "one of the most controversial changes to come out of DC's 'One Year Later' event", and "fans rose up in arms, organizing websites and letter-writing campaigns to protest the change." Dan Didio commented, "I'm glad to see there was a reaction created, it shows that people care about the character and want to see something happen with her."[33]

Other versions

In the alternate timeline portrayed in the "Titans Tomorrow" storyline in Teen Titans, Cassandra was mentioned as having been murdered by Duela Dent. Years later, Tim Drake (now the new Batman) killed Duela in retaliation.

In the timeline depicted in the sequel, "Titans Tomorrow... Today!", Cassandra is portrayed as Kate Kane's successor to the Batwoman mantle, and a member of Lex Luthor's Titans Army.

A toddler version of Cassandra appears in several issues of Tiny Titans. She is a friend of Barbara Gordon and Stephanie Brown.

Cassandra makes a cameo appearance in issue #13 of the second Batman: The Brave and the Bold tie-in comic. The issue focuses on the Phantom Stranger bringing together Robins from all time periods to help save Batman's life, because "Batman can always rely on Robin"; at the end of the comic, Stranger's sister Madame Xanadu remarks that had the Robins failed, "there is always Batgirl, too", revealing the four Batgirls (Cassie, Barbara Gordon, Bette Kane, and Stephanie Brown).

In The New 52: Futures End, Cassandra appears as a member of the League of Batgirls alongside Stephanie Brown and a young African-American girl named Tiffany Fox (the daughter of Lucius Fox). Her friendship with Stephanie appears to have remained intact.[34]

In the DC Comics Bombshells universe, Cassandra is a Chinese heroine known as Black Bat. After the end of World War II, she returns to her home country to help rebuild and make life better for the young girls there.

Collected editions

Most of the 2000 Batgirl ongoing series, as well as the 2008 miniseries, has been collected into trade paperbacks.

Title Material collected Publication date ISBN
Batgirl: Silent Running Batgirl #1-6 March 2001 978-1840232660
Batgirl: A Knight Alone Batgirl #7-11, #13-14 November 2001 978-1563898525
Batgirl: Death Wish Batgirl #17-20, #22-23, #25 August 2003 978-1840237078
Batgirl: Fists of Fury Batgirl #15-16, #21, #26-28 May 2004 978-1401202057
Robin/Batgirl: Fresh Blood Batgirl #58-59; Robin #132-133 October 2005 978-1401204334
Batgirl: Kicking Assassins Batgirl #60-64 January 2006 978-1401204396
Batgirl: Destruction's Daughter Batgirl #65-73 September 2006 978-1401208967
Batgirl: Redemption Batgirl #1-6 (2008 miniseries) June 2009 978-1401222758
Batgirl Vol. 1: Silent Knight Batgirl #1-12, Annual #1 January 2016 978-1401266271
Batgirl Vol. 2: To the Death Batgirl #13-25 July 2016 978-1401263522
Batgirl Vol. 3: Point Blank Batgirl #26-37, and a story from Batgirl: Secret Files & Origins #1 January 2017 978-1401265854

Other collected editions

  • Bruce Wayne: Murderer? (Batgirl #24)
  • Bruce Wayne: Fugitive vol. 1 (Batgirl #27, #29)
  • Bruce Wayne: Fugitive vol. 3 (Batgirl #33)
  • Batman: War Games, Act 1 (Batgirl #55)
  • Batman: War Games, Act 2 (Batgirl #56)
  • Batman: War Games, Act 3 (Batgirl #57)
  • Ghost/Batgirl: The Resurrection Machine (a 4-part miniseries crossover with Ghost, a Dark Horse Comics character)
  • Bruce Wayne: Murderer? (New Edition) (Batgirl #24, #27)
  • Bruce Wayne: Fugitive (New Edition) (Batgirl #29, #33)
  • Batman: War Games Vol. 1 (Modern Release) (Batgirl #53, #55)
  • Batman: War Games Vol. 2 (Modern Release) (Batgirl #56, #57)

In other media

Film

Television

  • In the Justice League season one finale "The Savage Time" (based in the DC animated universe), a girl is seen with Tim Drake, Barbara Gordon, and Dick Grayson in an alternate timeline that bears a resemblance to Cassandra. The creators of the show have stated this as an uncredited cameo.
  • A male version of Orphan appear in the final seasons of Gotham portrayed by Nico Bustamante and Benjamin Snyder.
  • Cassandra Cain appears in Young Justice: Outsiders as Orphan.

Video games

  • Cassandra Cain as Batgirl appears in a cameo alongside Robin (Tim Drake) in the video game Batman: Dark Tomorrow.
  • She can be made in the character creator in Lego Batman: The Videogame.
  • She can also be made in the character creator in Lego DC Super-Villains.
  • Cassandra appears as Batgirl in DC Universe Online voiced by Mindy Raymond.
  • Cassandra also appears as Batgirl in two Batman games made by The Learning Company: Toxic Chill and Justice Unbalanced.
  • Cassandra Cain appears as a Batgirl variant obtained by online challenge in the mobile version of Injustice: Gods Among Us.

Audiobook

  • Cassandra Cain as Batgirl, voiced by Nanette Savard, appears in the GraphicAudio full-cast audiobook of the novelization of No Man's Land written by Greg Rucka.

References

  1. ^ "Margot Robbie Reveals Full 'Birds of Prey' Title: 'The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn'". thehollywoodreporter. November 20, 2018. Retrieved November 20, 2018.
  2. ^ Batgirl #3-7 (June – October 2000)
  3. ^ Batgirl #9 (December 2000)
  4. ^ Batgirl #40 (July 2003)
  5. ^ a b Jimenez, Phil (2008). "Batgirl". In Dougall, Alastair (ed.). The DC Comics Encyclopedia. London: Dorling Kindersley. p. 38. ISBN 0-7566-4119-5.
  6. ^ Robin #161 (June 2007)
  7. ^ Teen Titans vol. 3, #43 (2007)
  8. ^ World War III #2 (June 2007)
  9. ^ "Chuck Dixon Named As New Batman and the Outsiders Writer". Newsarama. October 16, 2007. Archived from the original on March 5, 2010. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
  10. ^ "Newsarama: Wondercon '08 - DCU Countdown To Crisis Panel". Tales from the Longbox. February 24, 2008. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
  11. ^ Batgirl #1 (October 2009)
  12. ^ Bruce Wayne: The Road Home: Batgirl #1 (December 2010)
  13. ^ Red Robin #17 (January 2011)
  14. ^ Batman Inc. #6 (May 2011)
  15. ^ Esposito, Joey. "C2E2: Cassandra Cain Returns to DC". IGN.
  16. ^ Batman: Gates of Gotham #1 (May 2011)
  17. ^ Batman: Gates of Gotham #2 (June 2011)
  18. ^ Batman: Gates of Gotham #5 (August 2011)
  19. ^ Red Robin #25 (July 2011)
  20. ^ White, Brett (July 14, 2015). "SDCC: DC'S UPSTARTS TALK "BLACK CANARY," "MIDNIGHTER" & MORE". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved July 23, 2015.
  21. ^ Batman & Robin Eternal #26
  22. ^ Detective Comics #934
  23. ^ a b Batman: Gotham City Secret Files and Origins #1 (April 2000)
  24. ^ Batgirl #21 (December 2001)
  25. ^ Batgirl #14 (May 2001)
  26. ^ Batgirl #9-10 (December 2000, January 2001)
  27. ^ Goldstein, Hilary (May 17, 2006). "Comics Reviews for May 17, 2006". IGN Comics. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
  28. ^ Cronin, Brian (May 17, 2003). "Robin #150 Review". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
  29. ^ Singh, Arune (October 24, 2006). "Adam Beechen Forms A Dynamic Duo With 'Robin'". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
  30. ^ Taylor, Robert (November 5, 2006). "Reflections: Talking 'Robin' (and Batgirl) with Adam Beechen". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
  31. ^ "DC: 52 and more at Heroes Con '06". Newsarama. July 2, 2006. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
  32. ^ Titans Tower: Geoff Johns Looks Back Archived May 2, 2009, at the Wayback Machine titanstower.com
  33. ^ Phegle, Kiel (December 2006). "Character to Watch: Batgirl". Wizard Magazine (182).
  34. ^ Batgirl: Future's End #1
  35. ^ "Margot Robbie Reveals Full 'Birds of Prey' Title: 'The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn'". thehollywoodreporter. November 20, 2018. Retrieved November 20, 2018.
  36. ^ Gonzalez, Umberto (November 11, 2016). "Harley Quinn-Birds of Prey Movie's Screenwriter Revealed (Exclusive)". TheWrap. Retrieved December 16, 2017.
  37. ^ "Exclusive: Margot Robbie confirms January production start for Birds of Prey, will have "much smaller budget" than other DC movies". Flickering Myth. 2018-07-06. Retrieved 2018-11-15.
  38. ^ Kroll, Justin (November 14, 2018). "Harley Quinn Spinoff 'Birds of Prey' Casts Cassandra Cain (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved November 14, 2018.
  39. ^ "'Birds of Prey:' Black Canary, Huntress, Cassandra Cain, Renee Montoya". TheWrap. 2018-07-16. Retrieved 2018-11-15.
  40. ^ Fleming Jr, Mike (April 17, 2018). "Cathy Yan Is Warner Bros' Choice To Direct Margot Robbie In Next Harley Quinn Film". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved April 17, 2018.
  41. ^ Brail, Nate (May 14, 2018). "DC Films' 'Birds Of Prey' Eyes 2019 Start Date; All-Female Crew (Exclusive)". HeroicHollywood. Retrieved May 14, 2018.
  42. ^ Marc, Christopher (July 18, 2018). "UPDATE: BIRDS OF PREY START DATE SET FOR MID-JANUARY IN LOS ANGELES". TheGWW. Retrieved July 20, 2018.
  43. ^ Couch, Aaron (September 24, 2018). "Margot Robbie's 'Birds of Prey' Gets 2020 Release Date confirmed". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 24, 2018.

External links

Batgirl

Batgirl is the name of several fictional superheroes appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, depicted as female counterparts to the superhero Batman. Although the character Betty Kane was introduced into publication in 1961 by Bill Finger and Sheldon Moldoff as Bat-Girl, she was replaced by Barbara Gordon in 1967, who later came to be identified as the iconic Batgirl. The character debuted in Detective Comics #359, titled "The Million Dollar Debut of Batgirl!" (January 1967) by writer Gardner Fox and artist Carmine Infantino, introduced as the daughter of police commissioner James Gordon.

Batgirl operates in Gotham City, allying herself with Batman and the original Robin, Dick Grayson, along with other masked vigilantes. The character appeared regularly in Detective Comics, Batman Family, and several other books produced by DC until 1988. That year, Barbara Gordon appeared in Barbara Kesel's Batgirl Special #1, in which she retires from crime-fighting. She subsequently appeared in Alan Moore's graphic novel Batman: The Killing Joke where, in her civilian identity, she is shot by the Joker and left paraplegic. Although she is reimagined as the computer expert and information broker Oracle by editor Kim Yale and writer John Ostrander the following year, her paralysis sparked debate about the portrayal of women in comics, particularly violence depicted toward female characters.

In the 1999 storyline "No Man's Land", the character Helena Bertinelli, known as Huntress, briefly assumes the role of Batgirl until she is stripped of the identity by Batman for violating his stringent codes. Within the same storyline, the character Cassandra Cain is introduced. Cain is written as the daughter of assassins David Cain and Lady Shiva and takes the mantle of Batgirl under the guidance of Batman and Oracle. In 2000, she became the first Batgirl to star in an eponymous monthly comic book series, in addition to becoming one of the most prominent characters of Asian descent to appear in American comics. The series was canceled in 2006, at which point during the company-wide storyline "One Year Later", she is established as a villain and head of the League of Assassins. After receiving harsh feedback from readership, she is later restored to her original conception. However, the character Stephanie Brown, originally known as Spoiler and later Robin, succeeds her as Batgirl after Cassandra Cain abandons the role.

Stephanie Brown became the featured character of the Batgirl series from 2009 to 2011. DC subsequently relaunched all their monthly publications during The New 52 relaunch. In the revised continuity, Barbara Gordon recovers from her paralysis following a surgical procedure and stars in the relaunched Batgirl series as the titular character. These changes were retained as part of the 2016 DC Rebirth event. As Batgirl, Barbara Gordon has been adapted into various media relating to the Batman franchise, including television, film, animation, video games, and other merchandise. The character's popularity from adaptations factored into the decision to have her return to the comics, and Dan DiDio, co-publisher of DC Comics, expressed that she is the best-known version of the character.

Batman and Robin Eternal

Batman and Robin Eternal is a 6-month weekly limited series published by DC Comics, that began in October 2015 and concluded in March 2016. The series featured Batman, Robin, and their allies, and was a follow up series to Batman Eternal. Batman and Robin Eternal was written by James Tynion IV, Scott Snyder, Tim Seeley, Steve Orlando, Genevieve Valentine, Jackson Lanzing, Collin Kelly, and Ed Brisson.

Bette Kane

Bette Kane is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character first appeared in the 1960s as Betty Kane, the Bat-Girl. Her name was later modified to "Bette Kane", and she assumed the role of Flamebird.

Birds of Prey (2020 film)

Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) is an upcoming American superhero film based on the DC Comics team Birds of Prey. It is intended to be the eighth film in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). The film is directed by Cathy Yan from a screenplay by Christina Hodson, and stars Margot Robbie, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Rosie Perez, Chris Messina, Ella Jay Basco, and Ewan McGregor. Birds of Prey follows Harley Quinn as she joins forces with Black Canary, the Huntress, and Renee Montoya to save Cassandra Cain from Gotham City crime lord Black Mask.

Robbie, who also serves as producer, pitched the idea for Birds of Prey to Warner Bros. in 2015. The film was announced in May 2016; Hodson was hired to write the script that November, while Yan signed on to direct in April 2018. The majority of the cast and crew were confirmed by December 2018. Principal photography lasted from January to April 2019 and took place in Downtown Los Angeles, parts of the Arts District, Los Angeles and soundstages at Warner Bros. studios in Burbank, California. Birds of Prey is expected to be the first theatrically released R-rated DCEU film.Birds of Prey is scheduled to be released in the United States by Warner Bros. Pictures on February 7, 2020.

Black Canary

Black Canary is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by the writer-artist team of Robert Kanigher and Carmine Infantino, the character debuted in Flash Comics #86 (August 1947). One of DC's earliest super-heroines, Black Canary has appeared in many of the company's flagship team-up titles including Justice Society of America and Justice League of America. Since the late 1960s, the character has been paired with archer superhero Green Arrow, professionally and romantically.

At her Golden Age debut, Black Canary was the alter ego of Dinah Drake and participated in crime-fighting adventures with her love interest (and eventual husband), Gotham City detective Larry Lance. Initially, the character was a hand-to-hand fighter without superpowers who often posed as a criminal to infiltrate criminal gangs. Later stories depicted her as a world-class martial artist with a superpower: the "canary cry", a high-powered sonic scream which could shatter objects and incapacitate and even kill powerful foes such as Superman. When DC Comics adjusted its continuity, Black Canary was established as two separate entities: mother and daughter, Dinah Drake-Lance and Dinah Laurel Lance. Stories since the Silver Age focused on the younger Black Canary, ascribing her superhuman abilities to a genetic mutation. However, since the launch of the New 52, the two identities have been merged, with Dinah Drake possessing a metahuman cry.

Black Canary has been adapted into various media, including direct-to-video animated films, video games, and both live-action and animated television series, featuring as a main or recurring character in the shows Birds of Prey, Justice League Unlimited, Smallville, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Young Justice and Arrow. In Birds of Prey she was played by Rachel Skarsten, and in Smallville she was played by Alaina Huffman. In Arrow and the Arrowverse shows the characters Dinah Laurel Lance, Sara Lance, and Dinah Drake are portrayed by Katie Cassidy, Caity Lotz, and Juliana Harkavy. The character will also make her cinematic debut in the upcoming film Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn), portrayed by Jurnee Smollett-Bell.

Bluebird (DC Comics)

Bluebird (Harper Row) is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. She is a supporting character of Batman. Harper Row was created by writer Scott Snyder and artist Greg Capullo, first appearing in Batman vol. 2, #7 (March 2012), before debuting as Bluebird in Batman #28 (February 2014). Harper Row's Bluebird identity was designed by artist Dustin Nguyen. Within the fictional DC Universe, Harper Row officially joins Batman's group of allies during the events of Batman Eternal, a year-long weekly maxiseries.

Instead of taking on the mantle of Robin, which is traditionally that of Batman's sidekick, Harper Row instead adopts an entirely new superhero identity, Bluebird. Her appearance marks the arrival of the first new "Bat-family" character in Batman comics since DC relaunched its entire line in 2011 as part of its The New 52 publishing event.

Huntress (Helena Bertinelli)

The Huntress, also known as Helena Rosa Bertinelli, is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Based on the Earth-Two Huntress (Helena Wayne), she is one of several DC characters to bear the name Huntress. The character was also one of the incarnations of Batgirl and was a longtime member of the Birds of Prey. In DC Comics New 52 continuity, Helena Bertinelli is an alias used by Helena Wayne while the real Helena Bertinelli is an agent of the spy organization Spyral.

In the first two seasons of Arrow, Helena Bertinelli is played by actress Jessica De Gouw. The character will make her cinematic debut in the upcoming film Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn), portrayed by Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

Justice League Elite

Justice League Elite was a twelve-issue comic book limited series published monthly by DC Comics in 2004 and 2005. The title was created by writer Joe Kelly and penciller Doug Mahnke.

The Justice League Elite was formed to attempt black ops that would not be acceptable for the JLA to "sully their hands" with.

"The Justice League Elite are a not-exactly-sanctioned, don't-ask-don't-tell, covert operations unit-- newly formed to hunt and eliminate extra-normal threats to the earth before they go public." (JLA Secret Files and Origins 2004)

The team was formed at the end JLA #100 from most of the second incarnation of The Elite (only missing Hat), members of the JLA and a couple of spies/assassins. They operated out of Somerset, New Jersey.

Kasumi (given name)

Kasumi (written: 霞, 香澄 or 佳純) is a feminine Japanese given name. It literally translates to "Mist". Notable people with the name include:

Kasumi Nakane, a teen gravure model

Kasumi Takahashi, a teen rhythmic gymnastics performer

Kasumi Arimura, Japanese actress

Kasumi Ishikawa, Japanese table tennis playerFictional characters:

Kasumi, a female ninja character in the Dead or Alive video game series

Kasumi, the original Japanese name for Misty, a character in the Pokémon anime, manga and video games

Kasumi (Cassandra Cain), former assassin and member of the Justice League Elite

Kasumi Gyoubu, a character in Basilisk: The Kouga Ninja Scrolls

Kasumi Hanasaki, a character in the anime Tama and Friends

Kasumi Toyama, the lead singer and first guitarist in Poppin' Party, a band from the media franchise BanG Dream!

Kasumi Tendo, a character in the anime and manga Ranma ½

Kasumi Todoh, a character in the video games Art of Fighting 3 and King of Fighters series

Kasumi (Chikyu Star), a character that appears in the first two Suikoden video games

Kasumi Goto, the second DLC character and 13th recruitable squad member for Mass Effect 2

Kasumi, a supporting character in Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger

Kasumi, a minor character in the manga and anime series Rurouni Kenshin

Kasumi, a minor character in Raymond Feist's Riftwar saga

Kasumi Momochi, a main character from the 2015 Japanese tokusatsu television series, Shuriken Sentai Ninninger

Kasumi Yoshizawa, one of the new characters introduced in Persona 5 Royal

Kelley Puckett

Kelley Puckett is a comic book writer. He is notable for having co-created DC Comics characters Cassandra Cain and Connor Hawke.

Lady Shiva

Lady Shiva (real name Sandra Woosan, or more recently Sandra Wu-San) is a fictional supervillainess and antiheroine appearing in comic books published by DC Comics. The character was co-created by Dennis O'Neil and Ric Estrada, and first appeared in Richard Dragon, Kung Fu Fighter #5. Over time, she has become more closely associated with Batman and related characters, both as an enemy and an ally. She is a martial arts grandmaster and one of the most skilled combatants in the DC Universe. She is an assassin-for-hire, who specializes in killing her targets with her bare hands, and is the mother of Cassandra Cain, a.k.a. Orphan.

League of Assassins

The League of Assassins (renamed the League of Shadows or Society of Shadows in adapted works) is a group of fictional villains appearing in comic books published by DC Comics. The group is depicted as a collective of assassins who work for Ra's al Ghul, an enemy of the superhero Batman and the Green Arrow.

The League of Assassins has been adapted into other media several times, predominantly in animated Batman productions, the live action Batman film series The Dark Knight Trilogy, as well as the CW TV show Arrow, and the FOX TV show Gotham.

List of Outsiders members

The Outsiders is a team of superheroes that appear in comic books published by DC Comics.

The roster of the team has changed a great deal over the years. These roster lists are of the members during the Outsiders' various incarnations by team iteration. The codenames listed under Character are those used when that character was a member of the team. Bolded names indicate current team members.

Joined in refers to the issue where the character first appeared as a member of the team. It is not necessarily the first appearance of the character in print, nor the story depicting how the character joined the team.

Lynx (comics)

Lynx is the name of three fictional characters owned by DC Comics.

Renee Montoya

Renee Maria Montoya is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character was initially created for Batman: The Animated Series, and was preemptively introduced into mainstream comics before the airing of her animated debut in 1992. The character has developed significantly over the years.

Renee Montoya is initially a detective from the Gotham City Police Department, assigned to the Major Crimes Unit who comes into frequent contact with masked vigilante Batman. Over the course of her comic book history, she is exposed as a lesbian and resigns from the police force, disgusted by its corruption. She operates as the Question out of a lighthouse that she shares with Aristotle Rodor on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. She first appeared in Detective Comics #41 (August 2015), in which she was established as Harvey Bullock's new partner. The character made her first live action debut on the first season of Gotham played by Victoria Cartagena. She will make her cinematic debut in the film Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn), portrayed by Rosie Perez.

Stephanie Brown (comics)

Stephanie Brown is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, most commonly associated with Batman. The character first appeared in Detective Comics #647 (June 1992) and was created by Chuck Dixon and Tom Lyle.

The daughter of the criminal Cluemaster, the character originated as the amateur crime-fighter named Spoiler. Later, she briefly became the fourth Robin and the fourth Batgirl. From 2009 to 2011, she was the star of her own ongoing Batgirl comic book series. In 2014, following a company-wide relaunch of all DC Comics titles as the New 52 in 2011, the character returned to the Spoiler identity in Batman Eternal, completely resetting her to the beginning of her crime fighting career. She is the only character to have been both Robin and Batgirl in mainstream continuity.

Titans Tomorrow

"Titans Tomorrow" is a storyline of a possible alternate future in the DC Comics Universe, from Teen Titans vol. 3 #17-19 (2005), by Geoff Johns and Mike McKone. The story arc has been collected as part of the Teen Titans: The Future is Now trade paperback.

The concept was revisited in the Teen Titans monthly title by writer Sean McKeever and artist Alé Garza in the "Titans of Tomorrow... Today!" storyline.

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