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What Makes Gotham Knights Navia Robinson Anxious About Playing Robin

"Gotham Knights" star Navia Robinson has taken up the mantle of DC Comics' Robin, but this iteration of Batman's sidekick is based on the version created by author Frank Miller. Carrie Kelley first appears in the pages of the 1986 graphic novel series, "The Dark Knight Returns." She is a red-headed teenage girl — not a Boy Wonder — who aids an aging Bruce Wayne in his war against crime in Gotham. And being the first woman of color to tackle the role made Robinson feel a bit nervous.

"I feel almost avoidant of it, if I'm being completely honest, because it does make me anxious," Robinson said during an interview with The Nerds of Color. "I just want to do the character justice. When it comes to performing, the goal is to ignore and forget all of the external stuff so you can get inside of the character." In the CW series, Carrie is mourning the murder of the Bat and is the one who ultimately steps in to save Bruce's adopted son Turner Hayes (Oscar Morgan) and the others accused of killing Batman from the clutches of the mysterious Court of Owls.

"The character's circumstances aren't mine, right?" Robinson continued. "The character doesn't know that she's the first female Robin or Robin of color. You kind of have to ignore that to actually get inside of the character and inhabit qualities that make her worth watching." Uneasy or not, Robinson has done an incredible job with the character thus far.

Anxiousness hasn't stymied Robinson's performance

Fans meet Robinson's Carrie Kelley immediately, as it's established that she and Turner have math class together. But when he is wrongly arrested for murdering his own father, Carrie rescues Turner and the children of Batman's enemies from certain death while en route to Blackgate Prison. Robinson has the honor of being the first female performer to suit up as Robin in a live-action project. And while she might be anxious about playing the Girl Wonder, 17-year-old Robinson is delighted to be portraying such an iconic character.

"When I actually think about it as myself, I feel so honored, and grateful, and hopeful that I am capable of carrying the spirit of Robin," Robinson said during the same interview. "And that people can ultimately see it for what it is, which is a new and different portrayal. It's just the world evolving, and the character evolves along with it, and that really excites me."

While Carrie Kelley's CW costume looks completely different than it did in "The Dark Knight Returns," Robin still sports a version of her trademark goggles with green lenses. She wore them constantly in the graphic novel, even though they've been updated for the television show. Season 1 hasn't wasted any time exploring the new Robin, and diehard Batman fans are undoubtedly curious to see how the series handles Kelley and Stephanie Brown's (Anna Lore) relationship moving forward. In the comic books, Brown also dons the identity of Robin.