When was Damian born?

The question of whether or not Damian, in the New Age (New 52) was conceived and born before Bruce became Batman or during his first year as Batman has been mused upon by comic book fans and chronologists at conventions, comic shops, and on message boards for the past year.  DC has yet to address this in its new comic continuity, so until they do, everything surmised is pure speculation.  So far, it is my belief that Bruce trained in his early pre-Batman years with Ra's Al Ghul, met Talia around that time, knocked her up, and had little Damian.  Many argue that Damian's growth was artificially sped up by League of Assassins scientists, meaning that even if he was conceived as little as five years ago, he could still look like a ten-year-old in 2011 or 2012.  This doesn't really sit well with me, for a laundry list of reasons that I won't bother delving into at this juncture.  (Ask me and I'll tell you why if you are truly interested!)  

I've chosen a few selections from message boards and internet forums that seem to grasp the New 52 Damian conundrum with an open and enlightened mind.  Note that a few of these selections quote Scott Snyder.  I have yet to confirm any of the Snyder quotes and don't know where these commentators got them from.  However, the quotes directly from writers and artists like James Tynion and Greg Capullo, we can take as gospel.  Here are just handful of the many, many posts I've scrutinized on the web that deal not only with Damian's age and conception, but the ages of the other Bat Family members as well:

--Anonymous on the Warner Bros/DC Comics message boards/forum (Sept. 13, 2011):
"Scott Snyder has stated that Damian was conceived while Batman was training, which is in his first year.  [...] He says that Bruce will float around 33-35 [years of age] in character personality. Snyder [also says] ... [Batman has been active for] roughly 10 years, roughly [33-35 years old].

--Theozilla on the CBR forum/message boards (Sept. 9, 2011):
"[Scott] Synder basically says Bruce is around 33 years old and that gives him about 12 years of activity, which all the Robins can be squeezed into."

--James Tynion IV (Batman Vol. 2 writer!) says in a CBR interview with Jeffrey Renaud (Feb. 29, 2012):
"The back-up [story in Batman Vol. 2 #8], "The Fall of the House of Wayne," is set around 33 years ago, in Bruce's infancy."

--Greg Capullo (Batman Vol. 2 artist!) on the CBR forums (Sept. 24, 2011):
"The [editor-in-chief, Bob Harras,] said [in regard for how old to make the characters look when drawing them in Batman Vol. 2 #1], ages 30 [for Bruce], 19 [—later changed to 21 for Dick], 16 [for Tim], and 10 [for Damian]."

--Grim on ComicVine message boards/forum (Nov. 22, 2011):
"The one thing you can guess for sure is that all the Robins were only Robin for 2-4 years. Dick is only in his 20s, as is Barb[ara Gordon]."

--TheLuckyOne on CBR message boards (Sept. 4, 2011):
"The ways around [continuity issues regarding Damian’s conception] ... are to either say Damian was artificially aged [quickly], or change Son of the Demon to say Bruce wasn't Batman yet when he and Talia were together."

--SeoulCanuck on CBR message boards (July 21, 2011):
"Doesn't it make more sense for Bruce to have met and trysted with Talia during his "roaming the world, learning from masters" phase, long before he ever put on the cowl? That would mean Talia hadn't drugged and raped him, of course, but it's a lot easier to accept a teenage mistake than artificially aging what would be a three-year-old into a tween's body, isn't it? Why wouldn't Talia have just made him into an adult, if she could clone and indoctrinate the clone that well? It means jettisoning a little bit of Bat-history, but DCnU certainly doesn't seem reluctant to mess with the history of their other icon."

--Vitruvian on CBR message boards (July 21, 2011):
"[The New 52] is better [off] by far to have Bruce and Talia get together while Bruce was roaming the world training himself for his war on crime; maybe even include some of the Nolan movie elements of some of that training coming from the League of Shadows, if not direct tutelage by the Demon's Head himself (or maybe that stays good, too)."


  1. "Knocked her up?" Grow up.

  2. It's very discouraging that only one person bothered to comment on this post, but even more discouraging that that one person would choose to leave a comment (anonymously, I might add) that offers nothing constructive to the dialogue. Furthermore, I take this comment as an offense and an insult to this project. The term "knocked up" is neither juvenile nor anti-feminist. As a staunch feminist myself and a nearly thirty-year-old human being with a Masters degree, (and I really don't feel like I should be defending myself here but I will anyway) I try to write every post on this site as lightly as possible and in a humorous, convivial, and fun vein--using the term "knocked up" was not meant to offend, but I'm sorry if it did. That being said, "Anonymous," get over it and next time please save your scurrility for the plethora of mainstream racist, sexist, and truly infantile awfulness that exists on the web. "Grow up" does not answer the question of how old Damian is, but it does waste precious space on my blog. If you have any actual serious discourse to offer on why you were offended by my writing, I would be more than willing to discuss this with you either here or via e-mail.

    Thanks for supporting the Real Batman Chronology Project.


    1. Also, now that I think of it... telling someone who writes a blog about Batman comic books to "grow up" is pretty ridiculous.

    2. Please explain for the sake of someone who can't afford grad school how the term 'knocked up' is NOT sexist?

    3. Again, "anonymous," I'm heartily sorry if I offended you (because the last thing I want from this website is to offend anyone). This project is and has always been a labor of love for me, and hopefully it will continue to be exactly that. If something I say on the site even offends ONE person, you can be rest assured that I won't repeat that item ever again on any of my websites. With you (and anyone else in agreement with you) in the forefront of my mind, I will no longer use the term "knocked-up" to describe someone being pregnant. This is an easy decision for me to make because I still do not see the term "knocked-up" as inflammatory (or sexist) in any way. However, since I harbor no strong feelings whatsoever in relation to this choice-of-wording in either direction, it is easy for me to simply never use it again.

      But since I truly want to understand where you are coming from, let's play devil's advocate for a moment. After doing a little bit of research, I'm guessing you might be referring to the Oxford English Dictionary's etymology for "knocked-up" that links the possible etymology of the term to the impregnating of slaves in the early 1800s. Or possibly the simple fact that "knocking" in general can easily be associated with penetration. However, there are other origins of the term that coincide with the old American Western "knocking boots" line and even more strange and arcane references beyond that. Whatever the history of the word may be, in my opinion, its connection to racism or sexism are seriously muddled and distanced to the point of extreme obscurity that it took a quite-layered search to even find a hint of possible related negativity. But to reiterate, I can see where you might be coming from, so I won't use the term anymore.

      And like I said before, I'm truly sorry if you are upset, but I think your extreme vitriol would be better directed at the multitudes out there who actually ARE sexist, racist, bigoted, etc...

      If this isn't a satisfactory response, then I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. At the very least take solace that I won't be saying "knocked-up" anymore. If that isn't good enough for ya, then I guess you'll just have to stop frequenting the site. Twice now you have attacked me rather than offered any type of actual dialog—telling me to "grow up" and then making the assumption that I can easily afford graduate school (when in fact I, like most other educated folk in America, am in a mountain of financial student loan debt). If you felt strongly about "knocked-up" then you should have left a comment, with your name attached, that simply said: "Hey Collin, you may not be aware of this, but the term 'knocked-up' can be pejoratively linked to sexism and you shouldn't use it!" To which, I would have responded: "Hey [insert name], I'm really sorry! I didn't know that. And while I fail to understand exactly why it is sexist, I won't use it anymore since some people are offended. My humblest apologies. Maybe you can explain your case to me a little more if you like. Thanks for you patronage."

      But alas, the world is cold, cruel, and angry place more often than not.

      Best wishes and love to all,

      Collin Colsher