Richard Dragon grew up poor and neglected in the slums of St. Louis, Missouri. However, a chance meeting with Ben Turner the martial artist known as "Bronze Tiger", turned Dragon's life around. Under Turner's tutelage, Richard Dragon became a kung-fu fighter in his own right, not only did he help Bruce Wayne get back in shape after his back was broken by the villain Bane, he also was the trainer of several costumed vigilantes, including Barbara Gordon, The Question, and The Huntress amongst many others. Unfortunately, Dragon fell under the sway of the notorious Lady Shiva, who drew him into the world of underground fighting competitions. Now Dragon is redeeming his past sins by tracking down the many criminals he encountered while immersed in the deadly world he indulged in.
Powers and Abilities
- Meditation: Richard Dragon is skilled in Chinese meditative techniques which he uses to enhance his concentration and channel his ch'i.
- Karate: Before becoming a Kung Fu master, Richard Dragon was already trained in the art of Karate.
- Kung Fu: Richard Dragon is a master in several forms of Kung Fu, notably Dragon Style and Leopard Style.
Able to lift double one's own body weight up to the 800 lb level (peak human). Richard Dragon possesses the strength level of a man his age, size and weight who engages in intensive regular exercise.
Richard possesses the 'Dragon's Claw], a small jade amulet given to him by O-Sensei. The Dragon's Claw is a mystical artifact that collects and channels mystical energy in times of great need. Richard Dragon uses the Dragon's Claw as a focus for meditation and channeling his inner ch'i.
Because it largely ignored all previous stories of Dragon (a fact that Chuck Dixon admitted), the 2004 series has proved notoriously difficult to incorporate into continuity. Although some aspects of the retcon have been acknowledged into other books - such as appearances by Shiva's students from the series, and Ben Turner's presence in Detroit - other retconned elements have been ignored. Perhaps most notably, Richard Dragon's role in helping The Question and The Huntress to train and find harmony is still considered canonical, and has been referenced since the 2004 series. The series, however, states that Dragon had essentially been wallowing in anger and self-pity during this period (due to conflict between himself and Lady Shiva), which would contradict his role as a spiritual guide to these two heroes. The Dixon series also showed Richard on his legs while training Question, while a major plot point of the original Question series was that Richard had been pretending to be crippled during Question's training. How these and other inconsistencies could be resolved, if at all, remains to be seen.