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Batman Beyond Howard Groote

Howard "Howie" Groote was a socially inept student attending Hamilton Hill High School.


Howard had excellent learning skills, but poor social ones. When his parents went on vacations to Madrid, he decided to host a party at his house, thinking it would grant him the popularity he so desperately craved. Howard set off to invite popular kids like Nelson Nash, Blade, and Chelsea Cunningham, only to be spurned by them.

Howard was friends with Terry McGinnis and Maxine Gibson, who tried their best to warn him about the frivolity of his pursuits. However, Howard adamantly equated popularity with importance, and thought that a popular girlfriend would make him a "somebody". One day after class, Howard tagged along with Terry, who had to pick up a special order for Bruce Wayne in a synthoids factory. There, he met Louie, an illicit employee that designed synthetic girlfriends for forlorn clients. Howard jumped at the change to get the perfect girlfriend. He specified his requirements ― undivided devotion, red hair, and green eyes ― and used his parents' credit cards to make the purchase.

Cynthia immediately caused a sensation at school, and consequently Howard became very popular. At his well-attended fête, Howard observed that Cynthia's program made her too possessive, as she started shoving Chelsea and Max out of jealousy. He took her to a bedroom and tried to contact Louie for some technical support. When Howard tried to break up with her, Cynthia went haywire and raised a ruckus. After she and Batman trashed his place, Howard naively tried to temper Cynthia by telling her they could still be friends. However, this had the opposite effect, causing the scorned robot to explode.

At that point, Howard's parents arrived from their cut short vacation, because Howard had maxed out their credit card. Despite the aggravation and almost certain punishment, this event earned Howard the popularity he sought for so long. He kept a friendship with Terry, Dana, and Max, with whom he sporadically hung out.

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