A Fangirl’s Newfound Love for Jason Todd

Hi. I’m El, and I’m a Jason Todd-aholic.

Over the span of a few weeks, Jason Todd has wriggled his way into my currently overcrowded fangirl heart. Isa has always loved this guy, but I never really understood until I started reading Red Hood and the Outlaws a few weeks back.

Jason Todd in Red Hood and the Outlaws #1
Hello, gorgeous. I’ve always had a thing for guys with black hair and blue eyes. And dual pistols.

Having been a bit out of loop with the DC Universe, the only thing that I knew about Jason was that he was killed by the Joker and that he was brought back to life by Superboy and a punch of reality-altering proportions (at least that’s how I remember it – blame Isa if I was misinformed). I was having mixed feelings about Jason and Red Hood and the Outlaws in general after reading the first issue for a variety of reasons some of them including Roy Harper’s annoying attitude and the people who kept whining about Starfire’s gratuitous boobage which actually didn’t bother me as much as I expected it would, but I did, however, think that Jason Todd was interesting enough to look into further. So I went ahead and bought the second issue of Red Hood and the Outlaws.

Jason Todd in Red Hood and the Outlaws #2

Why do I like snarky, angry, arrogant guys in comics and fiction? I don’t know. It might be a weird sort of fetish. But this first panel really managed to grab my attention, and the rest of the issue really started to make me really, really interested in Jason. The whole back-from-the-dead thing never really appealed to me, but once I allowed my head to wrap itself around it, it really didn’t matter. Jason seemed very much like a character I’d like, and I wanted to read more.

Or watch more. Can you guess what I did next in my pursuit of Jason?

Batman: Under the Red Hood
Yep, I went there.

I didn’t have high hopes for Batman: Under the Red Hood, especially since Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill weren’t there to lend their voices to Batman and Joker, but it turned out to be one of the better DC movies not counting Nolan’s Batman films that I’ve seen thus far. I felt that it provided a better, more believable explanation for Jason’s return from the grave, and it gave me just enough insight into his actions and his personality (this particular scene nailed me) to decide that he’s probably going to be one of my favorite comic book characters…ever.

So by the time I read Red Hood and the Outlaws #3 and saw this:

Alfred, Jason Todd , and Bruce Wayne in Red Hood and the Outlaws 3

I pretty much melted into a glob of goo. MY FEELINGS, JASON. MY FEELINGS. I mean, we’ve got sick baby Jason and Bruce Wayne being all daddy-mode all in one go. MY HEART CANNOT TAKE MUCH MORE OF THIS. Maybe I should be glad Jason gave up that memory so it won’t come back and kick my emotional ass around in future issues.

Red Hood: The Lost Days

To top off my month of Jason Todd/Red Hood stalking love, I finally got around to reading Red Hood: The Lost Days, and I loved watching my new baby Jason progressing from zombie to badass. The only thing that weirded me out about the Lost Days was that part where he slept with Talia. That “hurting Batman” argument was kind of flimsy, and Talia’s…I don’t know. I’ve never really liked her much, and she just seems so pathetic in this particular moment.

Talia Al Ghul and Jason Todd in Red Hood: The Lost Days #6
Yes, Talia. Let’s sleep with Batman’s resurrected ward who is I-don’t-know-how-many-years younger than you. That’ll show Batman, yesiree.

That aside, I can only assume that my new-found love for Jason Todd will keep growing the more I read about him. I’ve always been a sucker for characters who have tragic pasts and stand in that gray area between hero and villain to play the antihero. I regret never really getting to know Jason before the New 52 came out, so I’m currently catching up on a few more Batman titles involving him. My love for the Batman series has always started and ended with Nightwing’s fine ass Batman’s sexy voice Bruce Wayne, but at least now I’ve got more to look forward to in the Bat-verse thanks to Jason!

18 thoughts

  1. WHY DIDNT YOU KNOW ABOUT JASON BEFORE 52!!!!! HES SOOOOOO MUCH BETTER THEN THAN THIS NEW VERSION OF HIM WITH THE STUPID OUTLAWS!!!!! IT SUCKS, HE ISNT LIKE THAT AT ALL !!!!! HES LIKE SOME NEW PERSON….. AND I KNOW CUZ IVE BEEN HIS FAN SCINCE HE WAS ROBIN… yes not many peolpe were.

    1. OMG, CALM DOWN, LOL! If you read the article carefully, you can see that I said I knew about him before that – it’s just I didn’t care enough to notice him. Don’t worry, as I said: “I regret never really getting to know Jason before the New 52 came out, so I’m currently catching up on a few more Batman titles involving him.” I’m not reading the New 52 exclusively! :

      To be honest, I DO like what I’ve seen in his other incarnations (Lost Days, Under the Red Hood, etc.) better than the New 52 version, especially since Red Hood and the Outlaws seems to be getting worse with every issue that comes out.

  2. waht? superboy brought jason todd back to life?
    i thnik not it was talia daddy who brought back jason tood!?!?
    anyways there is word on the web that red hood is the least fav in the batman series
    i beg to differ jason was one of the best robin sidekick ever!!
    well TTFN!

    1. Whoa, why did I not see this comment before? 😐

      Anyway, I know where that Superboy Punch thing came from: It happened in Infinite Crisis. To quote the Superboy-Prime Wikipedia article: “Furious, Superboy-Prime pounded on the barrier of reality. This assault caused ripples that altered reality, which was used as an explanation for character changes and retcons in DC continuity.”

      And there we go. Different things happen in DC’s different universes, but I guess the Ra’as-resurrects-Jason-using-Lazarus-Pit thing is the most popular explanation for his return.

    2. Hey, just to clarify things, being a Red Hood fan (my fav character alongside Green Hornet),

      I have the comic series (most of them0 of the Red Hood, and even the “Death In A Family” series (they’re volumes, but still…).

      The dvd verison of Batman: Under the Hood is partially accurate, however, there are many things to state:

      1. Red Hood obviously dies by the Joker, but in the movie, they did not provide the reason WHY he was in the factory in teh Middle East. Thing is, Jason found out his dad was killed by Two-Face (he worked for him), and his mum of cancer. This turns him into an arrogant jerk, but can see why, when Batman never told him and he found out himself on the Batcave computer. He then finds his real mum in the Middle East, (after 3 people were narrowed down to likely being jason’s real mum) but she is embezzling money, claiming to help kids there, but is negotiating with the Joker. Jason shows his mum his Robin suit (reveals who he is to her, she leads him the the factory, and the rest takes place).

      2. Yeah, he gets beaten with a crowbar, yaddah-yaddah. BUT… The movie never showed why he was there. She eld Jason into a trap, but didn’t think that the Joker would beat him to such a ruthless stage, and then when she says something like “What if Batman saw this?”, then joker thinks it’s a good idea, and ties her up in the factory, where we know, has the bombs. Jason tries to save her…. You get the rest of the story

      3. Red Hood is brought back to life by an angry Super-Boy Prime (the evil version of Superboy, from an alternate planet, part of the infinite Crisis series). He was trapped inside this solitary confinement, got pissed off of the place, smashed through it, and it altered the fabrics/events of time in the DC comics series. He comes back to life, but is autistic, does not interract with people unless on attack, doesn’t really talk (only says Brucve before passing out in a hospital. People find he walked 12 miles non-stop before he passed out).

      4. Ras-Ah-Gul has nothing to do with brininging him back to life. They decided to romancticize this whole them of his character through movie license. He only allowed him to be taken into his place when Talia Ah Gul was the only person to know of his existence (no idea HOW). He considers him useless over a few months, and Talia goes against her father’s commands to cast him out where Batman will not know of his existence (he does not wantt o be blamed for the Boy Wonder). HOWEVER, to state, he was pushed into the Lazarus pit by Talia, and as you know, becomes normal again (not say in a non-discriminating way to people who have disabilities).
      She pushes him off a cliff, when they esacpe from her father’s guards, straight after he got puushed into the Lazarus pit. He later ends up in an apartment where Talia commanded people to escort him to (her guards)

      5. He learns that he was unavanged via the info Talia provicded him, trains under certain people, and the rest take son from there. talia helps him find people to mentor him how to set off the bombs, etc.

      OK

      That is some parts where the movie alters fromt he comics. Now to state the real stuff:

      1. You know the above now that I told you.

      2. Read about the Hush series of Batman. Clayface impersonates Jason Todd for a while.

      3. Batman finds out that the Red Hood is Jason when he removes his helmet, however, they are not on a rooftop when the detonator for his helmet goes off. This occurs BEFORE the fight with the people Black mask hired to kill Jason (Batman later jumps into the fight as well, and Jason kills the guy). Thing is, those charcters aren’t in the comics. It’s Captain nazi (he’s the one that gets tasered in the face by Jason), Hyena, and Vertigo (can make person dizzy). Jason uses a drug on Hyene to make him attack Vertigo (like an animal on rabies).

      4. The Black Mask is more involved in the comics then the movie makes him. One part being that he thought he has stabbed who he thought was the Red Hood in the chest, when in reality, it was a setup for Batman and Black Mask to meetup, so that they can be distracted while Jason takes the Joker hostage in a seat. He just uses his voice in his helmet to make it sound as if the fake Red Hood was him. As to why the guy chose to dress up as the Red Hood, no idea. That is what puzzles me…..

      5. Jason was at the cargo area to lure Batman in, but also because he stole the Black Mask’s box (different Kryptonites, planned to be provided for him and his men, so that Superman could not intefere with crime issues committed by them).

      6. His body was never replaced by a latex doll, like in the dvd. It was just empty. But when Jason took off his helmet to show Bruce, he used a batarang to scratch some blood onto it and gave a hair sample to Bruce, proof that he was amongst the living (Batman was still skeptical because of his encounter with Clayface impersonating Jason, in the Hush series).

      7. Talia has quite alot to do with Jason becoming the Red Hood he is now. She allowed him to learn shooting, maiming, and killing techniques off a Russian dude (goes to the Soviet). He finds out that he was a pedo (had child slaves), and so poisons him and frees the kids. He gets taught how to use bombs by a high-ranking person in a gang similar to the Mafia, and kills him, too, if I recall…? His view on justice, as you know. 😛

      8. They did the quotes right (e.g., “Party Pooper. No cake for you.” – Joker), but what they did not show, was that the Joker was the one who got a hold of the explosives. Jason Todd got the batarang to his lapel, not his hand (think: his hand should’ve blown off if it was to the gun).

      ****************************************************************************************************

      Hope that helps! Yes, I’m a comic geek. I collect comics so when it comes to the movies, I can see whether they followed the comics pretty closely, or completely off, like how Dragonball wasn’t even close to the manga (I got banned from a bebo page for aying the movie would suck, on their fan page. Proved them wrong 2 years later).

      1. WOW, that’s a detailed summary! Thank you so much for all that info! 🙂 I actually finished reading “A Death in the Family” recently, so I already know about how Jason died and how he would up with the Joker in the first place. 🙂 I also know about Talia helping him become the Red Hood (that was shown explicitly in The Lost Days), but the resurrection thing was where things got a bit…messy. Again, thank you for taking the time to post all that stuff! As a newcomer to the Jason Todd fandom and with all the convoluted DC storylines, it’s great to have a summary of important events related to him! 😀

  3. OMG I LOOOOOVE jason todd. if i feel lonely i like look at random pics of him and listen to music. I am always into the characters who get hurt badly and are hopeless to bring back, but I DON”T KNOW WHYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!! its unfair i always wish he was real!!!!!!!!!

  4. I read an interview with Judd Winick where he says he deliberately wanted the Talia/Jason thing to throw fans over because neither character is stable. They’re both fragile, angry people and Jason does a lot of things to spite Bruce. It’s meant to provoke us. Which does beg the question if Jason could *ever* build a healthy relationship with someone and if so then who could help him?

    Jason fascinates me. I know a lot of fans were annoyed that he was brought back to life but Winick fueled the concept of a wayward and Batman’s greatest nightmare coming to life. It’s very operatic.

    If you start Jason’s saga with “Under the Red Hood” instead of “Outlaws” then it gives a different POV on the character. He’s not “another anti-hero with a heart of gold”. Jason isn’t just broken; he’s shattered. His resurrection was a mentally and emotionally traumatic experience that’s sent him down a dark path. He’s done everything Batman taught him NOT to do and Jason does it spitefully and successfully. But I think deep down inside Jason can’t come to term with his errors so he turns the accusations onto Bruce. And in other comics Jason fights with “Firstborn” Dick Grayson and “replacement” Tim Drake, believing he’s less loved than them.

    While I do hope that Jason will be able to make peace with his inner demons, his character in “Outlaws” seemed a sharp contrast to “Under the Red Hood”. When did he suddenly become polite, opening up to Starfire, and saying he’d leave Gotham’s filth to deal with itself? I want to know what caused Jason to change and not just from training with a grandma who can flip him over. He’s already taken the road to hell paved with good intentions; the road of redemption can’t be that easy for Jason.

    One last thing: Jason’s memory of cuddling up with Bruce also melted me inside.

    1. They’re both fragile, angry people and Jason does a lot of things to spite Bruce. It’s meant to provoke us. Which does beg the question if Jason could *ever* build a healthy relationship with someone and if so then who could help him?

      ^ THIS. Is exactly why his relationship with Isabella from the New 52 kind of turned me off. He isn’t acting like a fragile, angry person around her; he’s acting like an inexperienced teenager. I don’t like it at all, and I much prefer Winick’s approach, now that you’ve explained it.

      I also prefer Jason from Under the Red Hood and Lost Days than in the New 52, especially now that I’ve read more of Outlaws. I’m starting to see why fans are saying the New 52 version of him is not like him at all.

  5. I suspect Isabella isn’t “The One” for Jason or a long-term potential love interest; more of a reason to keep the story going. Anyone who is going to be a love interest for Jason will need good fighting/agility/survival skills to keep up with him.

    Talia’s story is intertwined with Jason and I say that gives her some form of power over him. She failed to control her son Damian and may try something similar on Jason as a puppet/tool. If he tries to turn his back on Talia then things could get dangerous.

    Now that I’ve read “Outlaws” I admit to enjoying it as refreshing fun “road trip” story that works in itself. But for long-term fans of the characters, 52 erased a lot of things we loved about those characters. Oh well…at least Jason looks gorgeous in the “Outlaws” artwork. I can’t complain about that!

    In “Lost Days” Jason does some good things (saving kids, defusing bombs) alongside violent ones (killing bad guys). He *can* play the hero but he chooes to punish wrong-doers first. That’s what makes Jason different than Bruce, Dick, and Tim. But I’d like to see a scenario where Jason is forced to play “good cop” against his will. It could be a painful blow to his ego.

    I can’t begin to tell you how refreshing it is to find other Jason fans! Few people in my “real life” read comics books, let alone those who know the Bat-universe don’t care much for Jason’s resssurection. Online it’s a different thing with lots of good fan art to amuse me.

    1. I completely agree with your comment about Jason’s love interest needing good skills to keep up with him. I really doubt he’s the type of guy who’d end up with a “normal” girl.

      I was about to comment about Talia…but I haven’t been keeping up with the New 52 Outlaws lately. Have I missed anything related to her and her relationship with Jason? I stopped at Issue 12 because the story was starting to turn me off. :p

      I’m so, so happy to find other Jason fans who can discuss his character and history in detail like this, though! You guys are awesome. :3

  6. Hey, I have an unhealthy obsession with Jason Todd myself and I’m always happy to meet more people that share it. I will say that I don’t get the reason for the New 52 reboot when Post-Crisis was already perfect. I’m actually working on a couple of fanfiction about Jason Todd (one set in Batman: Under the Red Hood and the other set in Batman: Arkhamverse). Since you made this post four years ago, I don’t know if you’re still into him.

    https://www.fanfiction.net/s/11642292/1/Blast-From-The-Past

    Yes, I do have an OC that I pair up with him but I’m hoping I do a good job making her a believable character. I’m also worried that I got Jason out of character due to this being my first time writing for him. I don’t know if you’ve read Animorphs but I’m using Rachel and Tobias’s relationship as a template for it.

    1. I’ll always be into Jason! Always nice to hear from a fellow fan! :3 I’m not familiar with Animorphs, but I’ll check out your fic when I have the time. 😀

      1. Okay, thank you. Let me know what you think about it and feel free to be honest. I value constructive criticism. You also don’t know how grateful I am to find fellow Jason addicts. It gets a little lonely when you feel like you’re the only one.

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