Warning! Spoilers Ahead for Superman: Son of Kal-El #12
In the latest issue of DC comics, Superman: Son of Kal-El, even Man of Steel’s greatest enemy admits that Nightwing is pretty impressive in the current DC universe. Using his newly inherited billions to help the city of Newhaven unmask, the positive impact that Dick Grayson is having has been incredibly transformative. Thus, Nightwing has attracted quite a bit of attention, including Lex Luthor, as shown in this new issue.
Earlier in “Son of Kal-El,” John Kent fought his nemesis in the face of a new villain-Superman Henry Bendix, the corrupt president of Gamorra, who is building an army of controlled meta-humans known as the “Rebellion.” However, he also worked with Lex Luthor as the two villains worked to discredit Superman’s son by creating scenarios to make him look too young and inexperienced to adequately serve as Earth’s primary Kryptonian protector. However, John has allies and friends who will help him survive the storm. Including Nightwing, who became John’s new mentor in the DC universe.
Now, Superman: Kal-El’s son #12 from Tom Taylor, Cyanus Tormi and Ruairi Coleman sees Nightwing helping Superman infiltrate LuthorCorp to learn more about Bendix’s plans. Visiting Lex’s company under the pretext of wanting to do business, Dick’s new status as a billionaire means that Lex Luthor is more than ready to meet. However, Luthor freely and unexpectedly admits that he admires Grayson’s work in Dishaven. Respecting the new infrastructure and funds created by Nightwing to help the least fortunate in his city, Luthor claims that he was even inspired to do something similar in Metropolis.
While Luthor apparently has plans of his own to reform the Superman city of Metropolis, Dick warns that this can’t just be a cosmetic change. Systems need to be changed right along with hearts and minds, a goal that is easier said than done thanks to Grayson’s efforts, resulting in the former Robin having a target on his back thanks to the culprits of Newhaven (both with and without his mask). Although it’s unclear exactly what Luthor planned, it’s safe to say that it won’t be as altruistic compared to what Grayson was doing. After all, Lex is still a villain (hence his work with Bendix and The Rising).
In any case, the fact that Nightwing managed to impress Lex Luthor is a real feat. It’s only natural that the Superman villain reacted to Dick Grayson’s enormous wealth. Nevertheless, Nightwing using his new means for the common good is a sure sign that he is worthy of respect, making him one of the greatest heroes of the DC universe of all time.