For as long as DC superheroes have fought the good fight, sidekicks have risen to aid these heroes on their quest for peace. Some of these partners have even gone on to overshadow their predecessors, making a name for themselves. However, not all of them have become beloved.
For some DC sidekicks, it’s not necessarily their origins or powers that fail them. Sometimes their time alongside their mentor could have been more notable. Other times, they tried to replace more popular partners, but couldn’t find their footing. With so many iconic allies, certain sidekicks become a nuisance to the fans.
10 Sandy The Golden Boy Was A Robin Wannabe
Robin’s appearance in the DC Universe gave rise to the creation of sidekicks in comic books. To increase sales, various heroes from DC received teenage partners. The Golden Age Sandman was slowly transitioning from his pulp-noir aesthetic to a Batman clone at the time, complete with his own Robin — Sandy, the Golden Boy.
Unlike newly created partners like Speedy or Aqualad, Sandy was just a mere copy of the Boy Wonder, a pale imitation with little personality. Not really catching on with new readers, DC tried new ways to reinvent the sidekick, turning him into a sand monster at one point. While he returned as the current-day Sandman, his time as Sandy should be left to the sands of time.
9 Aquagirl Has Tried To Remain Relevant
Aquaman is among the few DC characters with a small supporting cast. A few members, such as Mera and Jackson Hyde, have seen tremendous growth over the years. The same can’t be said about Tula, the first Aquagirl, who has remained a forgotten figure among the Atlantean heroes.
Tula first appeared as the sidekick and later girlfriend of Aqualad, often portrayed as the damsel in distress. She died during the tragic Crisis on Infinite Earths, but she returned during New 52, now a trained warrior and Ocean Master’s half-sister. Even with the changes, Tula never caught on, remaining uninteresting to most readers.
8 Doiby Dickles Should’ve Stayed In The Golden Age
Not every sidekick has superpowers or are well-trained athletes. Some, like Doiby, are just regular people looking to do some good. As the partner to the first Green Lantern Alan Scott, Dickles was a cab driver from Brooklyn who knew his way around the city and how to last in a regular fistfight. While useful during the 40s, his current depiction leaves much to be desired.
While Alan Scott continues to fight the good fight thanks to his power ring, Doiby’s age and outdated character traits have continued to make him less of a creditable partner and more of a nuisance. Maybe it’s about time for the senior sidekick to retire and enjoy the rest of his life knowing that he’d done some good for the world.
7 Pre-Crisis Comet The Super-Horse Was Disturbing
In the 60s, sidekicks could now take many forms. Even animals joined various superheroes on their adventures. Comet the Superhorse became Supergirl’s animal partner after she discovered the superpowered steed in a falling comet. However, readers discovered Comet’s true identity and one of his eerie powers.
Originally an adult centaur from Greek Myth, he was accidentally transformed by the sorceress Circe. Along with this, he discovered that when a comet passed, he could transform into a human adult. Comet’s human persona prompted both Supergirl and Lois Lane to fall in love with the stallion, leading to creepy situations.
6 Bluebird Hasn’t Recovered Since Rebirth
The Batman Family has had multiple members join their ranks, some being the best fighters and detectives in DC Comics. Bluebird is one of the recent additions to the group, a streetwise teen with a knack for invention. While she may have been a good fit at first, Bluebird slowly became just another random vigilante after DC Rebirth.
It’s hard to stand out among a team of well-trained fan favorites like Nightwing, Red Hood, and Batgirl. Plus, Bluebird’s personality and gadgets all seem to be a collection from other popular sidekicks. While she’s appearing in series likeYoung Justice and the upcoming Gotham Knights show, her time with the team has seen little fan reaction.
5 Bette Kane Has Used Different Names, But Remained Bland
Various sidekicks have used different names when trying to reinvent themselves. While some have succeeded, Bette Kane is one of the few who haven’t. While she was created to be a love interest for Dick Grayson in the 60s, her tenure as the first Batgirl was forgotten, replaced a few years later by the more iconic Barbara Gordon incarnation.
Bette returned in the late 80s, operating as vigilante Flamebird. Even with the new moniker, Bette had a difficult time standing out among other teen heroes for most of the 90s and 00s. She tried again years later as Hawkfire, with a new suit and a more mature personality. While Bette proved her tenacity in fighting crime, she remained a Bat-Family member with no real identity or purpose.
4 The Fourth Robin Never Caught On
The name Robin has been passed to various teenagers, a few of them forever tied to its iconic legacy. When Tim Drake retired as Robin, readers were on board with the mantle going to fan favorite vigilante Stephanie Brown. However, her time as the Girl Wonder rubbed fans the wrong way.
This came from a combination of creators throwing ideas at the wall and boring subplots didn’t help raise her popularity at the time. The result was the apparent death of Stephanie, returning as the more fitting Batgirl and later her old moniker. While she may have recovered from her experience, Stephanie’s wasted opportunity as Robin will forever haunt her.
3 The Third Terra Is Underwhelming
The name Terra is linked to the former Teen Titans’ member responsible for one of DC’s biggest betrayals in history. The Supergirl doppelgänger, Power Girl, encountered a strange girl with similar powers to the original Terra and took the girl under her wing as her sidekick. For readers who don’t remember this, they aren’t alone.
Terra, or Atlee to her friends, was just another plucky young hero with no connection to the original Terra outside Geo-Force allowing her to use his sister’s codename. Besides that, her time as Power Girl’s partner was short and mostly forgettable, portrayed as a teen who’d need to be rescued by her mentor.
2 Garth Is An Obscure Powerhouse
Garth’s heroic career began as Aqualad, Aquaman’s ward and one of the first sidekicks in comics. His recognition was bolstered after joining the Teen Titans and leaving his former moniker to become Tempest, growing into one of Atlantis’ strongest heroes. Even so, Garth’s increased powers came at a loss.
Deciding to remain the protector of Atlantis while his king is away has seen the character’s popularity wane over the years. It hasn’t helped that the recent Aqualad, Jackson Hyde, had risen to prominence in his absence. Also, while Garth’s equipped with the knowledge of various magical spells and considered the second strongest Atlantean, he’s remained on the sidelines of events, only brought up concerning DC’s past heroes.
1 Snapper Carr Was A Sidekick To A Team
The Justice League is one of DC’s most important teams, revitalizing the Justice Society to a new era. During their early years, DC gave the team their own sidekick, the snarky teenager Snapper Carr. While he was created to be the eyes of the readers, his presence became one of the few aspects most fans hated.
A ploy to be hip with teenagers, Snapper became outdated once the League started growing their roster and went on bigger adventures. Snapper was written out of the book soon after, revealed to be a traitor and cast out. While Snapper constantly floats around the DC Universe, he serves as a reminder of what happened when companies don’t understand their audience.
NEXT: 10 Harsh Realities Of Being A Sidekick