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Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) (1990s DC Comics) (Batman / Robin character) Marvin the Martian

Spoiler

(Stephanie Brown) (Profile #2 - Early 2000s)


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Context

This profile directly follows our first , so you should read that first !

It starts when Steph gets training and equipment from the bat-squad (starting in Robin #87) and ends when she becomes Robin (Robin #126).

We don’t have a Robin (Stephanie Brown) profile yet because… ugh… but you can continue with our big Batgirl (Stephanie Brown) profile.


Background

  • Real Name: Stephanie Brown.
  • Marital Status: Single (minor).
  • Known Relatives: Arthur Brown (aka the Cluemaster, father, deceased), Agnes Bellinger-Brown (mother), David Bellinger (uncle), child (name and gender unrevealed).
  • Group Affiliation: Reserve associate of the Batman (Bruce Wayne), former reserve associate of the Birds of Prey.
  • Base Of Operations: Widowstone Creek.
  • Height: 5’5” Weight: 110 lbs.
  • Eyes: Blue-green Hair: Blonde


Powers & Abilities

Stephanie receives more thorough training, which includes :

  • Advanced urban acrobatics.
  • Emergency medical technician basic training.
  • Additional martial arts forms, including hard styles, as taught by such grandmasters as Batman, Batgirl (Cassandra Cain) and Black Canary.
  • Better driving experience, now with real motorbikes rather than a cheap motor scooter.
  • Age-appropriate physical conditioning and strength-building exercises – on several occasions Steph lifts objects that would pose a serious challenge to most people.
  • Training with thrown weapons.

However this trainings occurs in a few relatively short spurts rather than as a systematic program. Thus, while she’s better than before, the improvements aren’t spectacular.

At this stage Stephanie isn’t yet a superior fighter, but Black Canary deemed her talented. The training with Batgirl also allows Spoiler to learn years’ worth of hand-to-hand combat knowledge much more quickly than normal – and leaves her with an extremely robust, healthy foundation that she will later build on.

Gear

  • Her costume is now lined with ballistic fire-resistant fabric, and includes flat night vision lenses in the hood, a radio link, and reinforced boots.
  • Her basic ropes have been replaced by cutting-edge de-cel lines, which are much stronger and safer, and she has a bat-style motorized grapnel gun.
  • Her surveillance equipment includes rugged compact binoculars (with compass, range meter and GPS) and a compact digital camera.
  • She has a larger stock of the flash marbles Robin once gave her, which are usually used to stun opponents so she can escape.
  • A set of half-moon shaped throwing blades, normally thrown at her opponents’ arms and hands to disarm them, and a bola.
  • A pack of flexi-cuffs.
  • She also has a cheap pager for Robin to contact her privately.

On the other hand Stephanie no longer has her Honda motor scooter (presumably because she didn’t have a license), and had to make do with a BMX bike until she convinced Batman and/or Oracle to loan her enduro motorcycles.

She sometimes carries a messenger-style bag under her cape.


History

In 2001, Batman (Bruce Wayne) decided to invite Spoiler to join his informal clan of vigilantes. He also told Stephanie that Robin was Tim Drake – without his knowledge or consent.

Though Stephanie was looking forward to reconciling with Tim, Batman’s tactless initiative went very poorly with Robin. Tim stopped talking to Bruce for a while. He and Stephanie managed to patch things over as they wanted to resume their relationship, but Drake’s complicated life made that a drawn-out process as they couldn’t see each other much.

Stephanie found the training Batman put her through gruelling, and Batman himself a stern and scary taskmaster. She was also unsure of why she had been recruited.

She gradually realised that much of the bat-squad was on poor terms with Bruce. He no longer had field partners he could rely on. She thus had been called in to help man the trenches until the situation improved.

Get a clue

A few months later, the Cluemaster returned to Agnes and Stephanie’s home. He had been released from prison, the mortgage bore his name and Agnes Brown couldn’t afford to lawyer up against her husband. Unable to stay home, Spoiler moved to Black Canary’s place for a while.

Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) delivering a jump kick

As a junior helper to the bat-squad, Spoiler assisted during the Last Laugh crisis, when the Joker took control over a small army of super-criminals by dosing them with one of his special toxins. During this event, Robin was briefly thought killed by Killer Croc.

When Bruce Wayne was accused of murder, Spoiler couldn’t help much. But she apparently trained some more with Black Canary, and helped Robin rescue a fellow high-school student kidnapped by mobsters. Oracle then detailed Black Canary to help Stephanie reclaim her mother’s home.

Though Dinah was initially unenthusiastic about the mission, seeing the Cluemaster, his ally the Riddler, and the latter’s henchwomen Echo and Query squatting in the Brown house angered her. She barged in, flattened everyone and threw them out for good.

Clueless

Spoiler also started training with Batgirl (Cassandra Cain) and occasionally acted as a reserve agent for Oracle. Steph also :

  • Stopped a murderous thuggee fighter by herself when Batgirl was unavailable.
  • Teamed up with Robin to contain Natalia Mitternacht’s strange influence powers.
  • Helped against Agrippina and her Catafracts.
  • Joined a small army raised by Young Justice to invade Zandia, even though Young Justice member Secret hated her guts.

However, Oracle then told her that they wanted her to stop being Spoiler. At the same time, Batman stopped contacting Steph. They apparently had both rebuilt their field teams and no longer needed a light outrider. Batman also forbade Cassandra from training Steph, which ended the girls’ hard-won friendship.

Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) and Batgirl fighting thieves

Stephanie was unsure of what to do, though she and Robin decided to continue dating in their civilian identities. They agreed not to have sex yet, though – presumably because Tim did not feel emotionally mature enough.

A further blow then came in, as the government announced the death of Arthur Brown to his family. Though officially he had died in a prison accident, the Cluemaster had actually been killed in action during a Suicide Squad mission.

To her dismay, Stephanie came to realised that she grieved for her hated father. She even tricked Black Canary into letting her reach the Riddler, the Cluemaster’s last associate, to ask questions about Arthur Brown.

The psychotic Riddler would only answer in riddles, and the frustrated teenager ended up punching him.

Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) using a grapnel among rooftops

Agnes Brown took the news even more badly, and Stephanie couldn’t stand how the grieving widow retconned  her husband into a good person.

Steph ended up cashing part of her meagre college fund to live by herself in a cheap flat. Robin realised what was going on and convinced her to return to Widowstone Creek. He successfully brokered a sustainable reunion between mother and daughter.

Spoiler resumed her costumed activities against minor criminals, and was even briefly reactivated by Batman to help against the Network run by Athena (Celia Kazantkakis).

Clued in

Spoiler eventually confronted Batman on a rooftop, demanding to resume her training. Batman challenged her to stop a terrorist threat within hours. Spoiler did her best but was out of her depth.

As the clock ran out she realised that Batman knew that she would fail, and had been running a contingency plan all along. He then essentially fired her.

Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) with the cowl on psyching herself up

Devastated, Steph retired for a time, though she and Tim (who soon celebrated his 16th birthday) continued dating. Unsinkable, Steph resumed being Spoiler, which allowed her to respond along with Robin to a murderous rampage by Johnny Warlock.

The two youths saved each other’s life but Robin had to seemingly kill Warlock to stop him. This destroyed his morale, but Steph helped him butch up and overcome his doubts. However, Tim soon had to stop being Robin after a major clash with his father.

Knowing that Batman needed a Robin and didn’t have a replacement handy, Steph went for the chutzpah – she sewed herself a Robin costume, sneaked into the Batcave and offered her services.


Description

During this era Spoiler sometimes styles her hair shorter since it’s more convenient to wear the Spoiler hood.


Personality

When working with the bat-squad or the Birds, Stephanie is more cautious than before. She’s no longer going out for fun to take on suburban young toughs and basic loser criminals. She’s now on the edge of a far more dangerous world, and she knows that she can quickly get out of her depth.

Thus, she works more like a scout than like a fighter.

Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) and Batgirl (Cassandra Cain)

During this era, Steph doggedly creates an unlikely friendship with Batgirl (Cassandra Cain). Spoiler is determined to have Batgirl teach her the martial arts, and reasons that a girl her age is going to be much more easy to establish a rapport with than Batman.

Though Batgirl doesn’t know much about friendship or tact, Steph eventually wins her over through her sheer determination to learn and improve herself. They also connect over their respective experiences with their criminal fathers.

Spoiler finds it difficult to fit in. Oracle doesn’t like her, Black Canary treats her like a kid, Robin is often unavailable, and establishing a functional friendship with Batgirl takes months.

This sharpens her insecurities about people seeing her just as the Cluemaster’s daughter rather than as somebody they can trust, and about the people around here being monstrously gifted whereas she’s “merely” talented.

Weak chinks

Though she sometimes wobbles and hesitate, Steph remains determined to prove herself by developing her skills and competence. She gets a lot of mileage out of any shred of positive reinforcement.

She has a lot of nerve for somebody her age. She’s not going to confront deadly menaces or the supernatural without being really scared, but when it comes to mundane circumstances she’ll do stuff most people only dream of having the courage to do.

If necessary Stephanie will lie and manipulate to reach her ends, as she’s used to doing whatever it takes without relying on anyone. She has even occasionally lied to Robin, though she couldn’t stand doing so and ended up telling him the truth.

A battered Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) eating

Her insecurities continue to make her feel jealous about pretty girls within the same zip code as Tim Drake, but she has obviously learned from her previous excesses and can rein her fears in. Even Tim doesn’t realise how jealous Steph can get, as she remains determined to be at her most pleasant when they’re together. She calls him “sweetie”.

Steph’s relationship with her mother continues to improve. Stephanie is far too stubborn, independent and self-reliant for her mother to wield any parental authority, but they otherwise manage to cobble functioning familial ties and care for each other. This nearly breaks after Arthur Brown’s death as Agnes slid back into being pathetically weak.

However, a bit like her daughter, Agnes has an unsinkable character to her and rebuilt herself as a much stronger person over the following years.

When stressed Stephanie tends to go for mashed potatoes, chips and/or ice cream – with her aggressive exercise regimen, she can amply allow herself that.


Quotes

(To herself) “Dear diary, I know what my next science paper is going to be called : ’My love/hate relationship with gravity‘.”

(To Batgirl (Cassandra Cain)) “ExCUSE me, some of us speak in MORE than two-word sentences.”

(To Batman) “Oh my gosh ! Okay ! I am *so* on it, sir ! I can be there in, like, less than two minutes ! And I’ll report in the *second* I see anything, and I won’t engage without permission and, um… oh yeah ! I’ll be *super* careful ! I promise ! You can count on me.”

“Ah, the Spoiler Signal ! Okay, actually it’s a $30 pager. But I painted it, see ?”

(After a sparring session with Batgirl an exhausted, wobby, sweat-drenched Spoiler finishes vomiting from system shock then somehow gets back on her feet)
(Defiantly looking at Batgirl) “So… same time tomorrow.”

(About her costume) “It’s not actually purple, you know. It’s eggplant. Purple would have looked stupid.”

Robin (trying to explain Batgirl’s behaviour to Green Arrow) “She has a lot of… issues.”
Spoiler (not helping): “Yeah. Like eBay has a lot of auctions.”


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Spoiler (somewhat trained)

Dex: 04 Str: 03 Bod: 03 Motivation: Justice/Thrill
Int: 04 Wil: 04 Min: 04 Occupation: High School Student
Inf: 03 Aur: 03 Spi: 04 Resources {or Wealth}: 001
Init: 013 HP: 025

Skills:
Acrobatics (Athletics, climbing, dodging): 06, Artist (Gymnastics, pianist): 04, Artist (Sewing): 02, Martial Artist (Incl. Techniques): 05, Medicine (First Aid): 03, Thief (Stealth): 04, Vehicles (Land): 03, Weaponry (Thrown): 05

Advantages
Area Knowledge (Bristol Township), Schtick (Disarmer (Weaponry (Thrown)).

Connections:
Robin (High), Batman (varies), Batgirl (varies), Oracle (varies), Black Canary (Low).

Drawbacks:
Age (Young).

Equipment:

  • COSTUME [BODY 06, Blunting: 05, Flame immunity: 02, Radio communication: 07, Ultra-vision: 03, Limitations: Ultra-vision only for low-light vision].
  • De-cel lines [BODY 06] and motorised grapnel gun [BODY 03 STR 04, Stretching (No Fine Manipulation): 03].
  • Flash marbles (x4) [BODY 03, Fog: 03, Flash: 04 (Area of effect 1 APs), Sensory block (Hearing): 03, Note : all Powers are Combined, Grenade drawback, R#03].
  • Throwing blades (x10) [BODY 03, EV 02, Dart Bonus, Grenade Drawback].
  • Bola (x1) [BODY 04, Snare: 05, Grenade Drawback].
  • Binoculars [BODY 02, Telescopic vision: 04, Area Knowledge (GPS)].
  • Reinforced enduro motorbike [STR 03 BODY 06, Running: 06, R#2].

By Sébastien Andrivet.

Source of Character: Batman and Robin comics.

Helper(s): Darci.

Writeup completed on the 15th of March, 2015.

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