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Red Hood Needs a Hated Superhero Cliche to Reach His Real Potential

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  • Posted on 04th Aug, 2022 22:14 PM
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Red Hood is no stranger to strained family relationships, but one family member returning could really turn things around for Jason.

DC has struggled to find out what to do with Jason Todd, having him be an anti-villain, an antagonist, and an anti-hero. He's gone from fighting Batman to leading his own team of zombified villains and despite all of that he still doesn't really have any roots or family of his own. This is why it might be time to call on a tired cliche of reviving a family member. Bringing back Jason's mother could be just what he needs.

Jason has had a hard time finding his place in the Batfamily, being one of the only members willing to use lethal force has often put him at odds with Batman and the others. Though the Batfmaily has sometimes been supportive of Jason, he has little support outside of that. He also never really found his supporting family, whereas Dick Grayson had Barbara Gordon and Bridget Clancey, Tim had Stephanie Brown and Bernard, while Jason doesn't really have a consistent supporting cast. Jason used to pal around with Starfire and Arsenal, then later Bizzaro and Artemis, but these are characters that are far too large to be just supporting characters. Bringing back Sheila Haywood, Jason's criminal mother could give him just the family link he needs to finally find some measure of supporting cast or place in the DC universe.

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Every Batfamily character has a supporting cast. Even Damian Wayne had Maya Ducard as seen in Robin: Son of Batman #1 written and drawn by Patrick Gleason, but Jason has always gotten the short end of the stick.  When he was a member of the All-Caste he had some people, but they're all but forgotten now and never really had that big of a connection to Jason. Given Jason's focus on punishing criminals, bringing back his mother Sheila could work. Jason's current comics actually have a way to make this happen. In the pages of Task Force Z, by Matthew Rosenberg and Eddy Barrows, Jason is currently dealing with the Lazarus resin, a substance capable of bringing people back to life. Considering the current canon is that Jason was brought back using a Lazarus pit, doing the same for his mother wouldn't be unreasonable.

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Throw in the fact that Willis Todd, Jason's father, is still currently alive and acting as Wingman as seen in Red Hood and the Outlaws #36, by Scott Lobdell and Pete Woods, and there really is everything needed to bring Jason the supporting cast of his family. It would be an interesting dynamic unseen since Tim Drake, the third Robin who came from a loving home, only to have both of his parents eventually killed. If Jason, the oftentimes darkest and edgiest Robin, was actually able to get a supporting stable family life, it'd give him a unique advantage over his brothers. And while the adopted family Bruce has provided for Dick and Tim is undeniable, it's equally undeniable that Jason has never really found his place in it.

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Bringing Sheila and Willis back, letting Jason react to and deal with how his mother betrayed him and left him to die or how his father is trying to move past his criminal history and become a hero in his own right would be a brand new direction to take Jason in. Currently, Jason is leading his team of zombies to try and make the world a better place in his own way, and as admirable as that is, hopefully, someday Jason Todd will get a supporting cast that he can come home to.

NEXT: Red Hood & Harley Quinn's History Is the Bat-Family's Last Big Secret

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