Warning: The following contains SPOILERS for Titans season 2, episode 13, "Nightwing."
The final episode of Titans second season finally saw Dick Grayson assume the Nightwing mantle. While he arrived in grand style in a new costume, fighting to save his friends from an assault by Deathstroke, some doubt lingers over whether it was really worth the two-season wait.
Dick Grayson's transformation into Nightwing had been teased since Titans' season 1, when he burned his Robin costume as a symbolic way of cutting ties to his past. Despite this, season 2 found Dick returning to Bruce Wayne for advice and trying to reestablish a new Titans team in San Francisco with Raven, Beast Boy and the new Robin, Jason Todd. Yet Dick didn't adopt a new codename or a costume for himself until the penultimate episode of season 2, where he sought out a specialized tailor who just happened to have a new design that Bruce Wayne had contacted him about.
Whatever else may be said about Nightwing's eventual arrival, it cannot be denied that Brenton Thwaites looks like he just stepped off the cover of a Nightwing comic. The familiar black and blue costume is completely accurate to the most popular Nightwing costume design created by artist Scott McDaniel. He is also armed with Nightwing's trademark weapon from the comics: a pair of custom-made escrima staves with built-in tasers.
While Nightwing's duel with Deathstroke is perhaps the most well-blocked fight scene in the show's history, it still feels like too little, too late. There is no logical reason why Dick Grayson couldn't have adopted the Nightwing identity sooner in the season, apart from the need for a big showy spectacle for the season 2 finale. Indeed, many of the events of season 2 that were meant to build up to the big reveal of Nightwing's arrival were ultimately completely pointless.
Chief among these was the subplot which saw Dick Grayson sending himself to prison in a bid to save his teammates from the wrath of Deathstroke, who decreed that his punishment for depriving him of his son would be to forever distance himself from the family of heroes he had made for himself. While imprisoned, one of Dick's South American cellmates told him the legend of Alazul - a hero of his village, who it was said "lives between the moon and the stars, and in the time of greatest need he flies down and saves you." This story inspired Dick to help his cellmates escape from prison and apparently steeled his resolve to fight back against Deathstroke. Unfortunately, this story is never referenced at any point in Titans' season 2 finale, nor does Dick Grayson ever drop the codename of Nightwing.
All things considered, it seems like the show could have introduced Nightwing far sooner than it did. Despite this, the season 2 finale does give Dick Grayson's new alter ego a suitably epic premiere. Hopefully we'll get to see more of the acrobatic hero in action in Titans season 3.