DC Database

Crystal Brown is the former wife of the criminal Cluemaster and the mother of Stephanie Brown. She works as a registered nurse at Gotham City's West Mercy Hospital.[1]

Crystal struggled with an addiction to prescription pain pills, switching to a new doctor whenever the old one refused to write more prescriptions for her.[2] She was a neglectful mother who often missed her daughter's gymnastic meets because of her addiction and her work schedule, but she did try to be there for her and she showed a protective insight when she recognized that Stephanie's gymnastics coach was also a drug user.[3]

Crystal and Stephanie had to abandon their home and take shelter in a nearby school when the the Quake damaged it, and the house was subsequently looted. Her ex-husband squatted there during this time, but it's possible Crystal never learned about that.[4]

Shortly after they returned to their home, Stephanie told her mother that she was pregnant, and Crystal accompanied Stephanie to a meeting with a social worker. Stephanie left after the social worker implied that she shouldn't keep the baby, and Crystal left with her after apologizing to her for Stephanie's headstrong nature. Next, they talked to an adoption representative who spoke only about the money Stephanie could earn for giving birth to a healthy baby, and she stormed out of that meeting too.[5]

Stephanie later apologized for causing Crystal so much trouble, but Crystal only blamed herself for setting a bad example. She was proud of Stephanie for her strength, saying she hadn't been as strong when she'd been fifteen.[5] However, she was unable to take Stephanie to her birthing classes, and Steph asked her new boyfriend Robin to come with her. He did so in disguise as "Alvin Draper," and Crystal disapproved of him as much as she disapproved of her daughter's previous boyfriends, even eavesdropping on their conversations.[6][7]

Stephanie eventually arranged for an adoption through St. Swithin's, and Crystal was with her when her daughter was taken to the hospital, though she wasn't allowed in the delivery room with her.[8] Crystal was distressed by the difficulty of the labor, and she didn't leave the hospital during Stephanie's recovery.[9] Like her daughter, she never met the baby.[10]

Crystal was going through her daughter's maternity clothes when she found her Spoiler costume, and she panicked when Stephanie refused to explain why she had it, thinking Stephanie was following in her father's footsteps. Stephanie assured her that Spoiler was one of the good guys, and Crystal recognized the name from her last visit with her ex-husband. Stephanie only wanted to protect them from Arthur. Crystal thought it was funny that Arthur had been caught by "daddy's little girl," but she told Stephanie never to risk her life as Spoiler again.[11][12]

Crystal doted on her younger brother Dave, not knowing that he was a thief, and when he came to visit after No Man's Land, she welcomed him with open arms in spite of her daughter's skepticism and discomfort. Stephanie broke her promise to her mother and returned to her role as Spoiler after a year to stop her uncle and his associates. Stephanie hid what happened from her mother, telling her only that Dave had to go away suddenly.[13]

When Dean, Stephanie's ex-boyfriend and the father of her child, appeared at their house, Crystal yelled out advice while Stephanie beat him up.[14]

Crystal became worried when Stephanie broke her rule to become Spoiler again and showed up at her workplace dressed as a nurse. Stephanie tearfully confessed that she was looking for her boyfriend Robin, who Crystal knew as Alvin, but he was only interested in "that other girl."[15]

She was forced to shelter her ex-husband when Arthur was released from prison due to overcrowding because his name was still on the mortgage and she didn't have the money to take him to court.[16] He invited the Riddler, Query and Echo to stay with them after Stephanie exposed their previous hideout, which upset Crystal. Yet she refused to involve Batman because she thought it would be even more dangerous.[17] Eventually Stephanie turned to Black Canary, who drove them away.[18]

Crystal was upset by the news of her ex-husband's death while serving on the Suicide Squad.[19] Her grief angered Stephanie and drove her from their home for a time.[20] Stephanie stayed at the Majestic Arms until Tim convinced her to come home, and Crystal and Stephanie talked for a while before Crystal had to leave for work.[21]

Stephanie did not tell Crystal that she she had become Robin or that she was fired. Crystal only learned about her daughter's short stint as Robin after her apparent death.

Crystal began drinking after Stephanie's death and visited her daughter's grave after drinking too much wine. In Gotham Cemetery, she found Bruce Wayne also visiting Stephanie. Crystal revealed that she blamed Batman for Stephanie's death and called him a criminal.[10]

Shortly after, Crystal was contacted by Arturo Rodriguez who asked her to be on his show.[22] Rodriguez talked over her, blaming the "urban terrorist" Batman for Stephanie's death, and claimed that Crystal would now reveal Batman's identity. The interview was cut short when Black Mask showed up dressed as Batman and attacked Rodriguez in front of the cameras. Crystal fought back and defended Stephanie from Black Mask's insults. The real Batman appeared and stopped Black Mask, who lit Stephanie's medical records on fire before running away. Crystal finished destroying the records, telling Batman it didn't matter how Stephanie died. She was gone, and they both had to live with that.[23]

At some point prior to Stephanie's return Crystal moved from the ranch style home at 115 South Holden Street into a smaller brownstone.[1]

Crystal was shocked and relieved when Stephanie returned to Gotham and revealed that Dr. Thompkins had faked her death.[24]

Crystal supported Stephanie's decision to quit as Spoiler, and Stephanie began to walk Crystal to and from work after Batman disappeared and the city grew more dangerous.[25]



  • Drug Addiction (Formerly): Brown is a former drug addict, having been addicted to prescription pain killers during Stephanie's early childhood. [26]

  • Her name was Agnes Bellinger during her earliest appearances[27], but starting in Detective Comics #810, her name was changed to Crystal Brown.
  • According to Stephanie, she cleans when she's mad.[28]