Thursday, March 31, 2005

Grave Robin


Hi. Remember me? My name is Jason Todd. For a while - back in the crazy 1980s - I was one-half of the dynamic duo: Robin, the Boy Wonder. You knew me as the second Robin, or the least likeable Robin. Trained by the Dark Knight himself - Batman - I inherited the role when the original Robin - Dick Grayson - outgrew his sidekick status and hung up his cape for the more mature guise of Nightwing. Brash, headstrong, and impetuous, I could often be seen leaping into battle, fists swinging while Batman called after me to "wait" or to "be careful." More often than not, I was being held hostage by Two-Face or Scarface or Clayface or some deranged villain with a messed-up face and a grudge. Whatever.

I don't think you guys ever really gave me a chance. True, I was often portrayed as angry, mentally unbalanced, and reckless. But there was another side to me - a side that none of you would ever get to know because you bloodthirsty fanboys picked up the phone and brutally murdered me. Oh, sure, it was the crowbar beating I took from the Joker, added to the bomb explosion that killed me, but you all called it in. But I digress.

See. No one ever liked me. And even though I only wore the Robin outfit for a scant 4 years or so, I was apparently deemed "too unlikable to live." And so, you killed me.

And - oh, irony of ironies - THEN I became popular! Suddenly, you couldn't tell a Batman story without referencing "poor, dead Jason Todd." I became embedded in the Batman mythos: the Robin killed by the Joker, the Robin who died, the Robin who Batman couldn't save. Saint Robin the Second. In life, I was a hoodlum-turned-hero that nobody liked. In death, I became the most devastating loss to Batman since the murder of his parents. The image of Batman holding my broken, limp body became iconic.

I. Was. Immortal.

And now, I can't even have that. You want to rob me of my dignity once again. You can't just leave well enough alone. Noooooo. You need to dig up my rotting corpse and continue exploiting the fanboy culture's morbid curiosity with death and suffering by bringing me back as the Red Hood. Well, let me just say this: I'm flattered that so many people are excited about me and think enough of me to want to see my return. But, where was this show of support when you were all jamming up the phone lines requesting my death?! What, couldn't stand the fact that the hated Jason Todd was forever memorialized in the Batcave, my empty Robin outfit eerily hanging behind a glass display case, a painful reminder of Batman's failure? Did my constant presence in Batman's continuity gnaw at you? Did my importance to the mythos drive you insane? Is that why, ultimately, you have decided to wake me from eternal slumber and shove me back into Batman's living world?

Thank you. Thank you for this final insult, stripping me of my iconic stature and my rightful place in Batman's mythos. Being the dead Robin was the ONE thing I had going for me! Now I'm just another lunatic with a chip on my shoulder and a point to prove; a half-crazed ex-Robin, once thought dead but now running amock in Gotham, alive and kicking, and boosting sales for the Caped Crusader.

You guys hated me so much that you had me killed. And I'm sure this latest stunt will no doubt bring even more hatred and bitteness my way, so at least I've got that to look forward to. Thanks a lot. If you guys hate me so much, why can't you just leave me alone and let me rest in peace?

Lord only knows, if this dumb idea doesn't pan out, you'll probably just have me killed off. Again.

Screw you,

Jason Todd (Robin II)