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  1. #1
    Don't Bully a Hurt Dragon Sergard's Avatar
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    Default The Jason Todd Reread (pre- and post-crisis)

    This thread is part of the Jason Todd: Robin, Red Hood, Arkham Knight, Prince of Gotham Appreciation 2019 thread. Its purpose is to give us Jason Todd fans a place where we can (re-)read and discuss old Jason Todd stories. (Please keep in mind that – since this is part of an appreciation thread – the appreciation thread rules still apply. You can find them at the end of the post.)

    I decided to separate this discussion from the appreciation thread because it's tremendously easier to follow the reread discussion and to find particular parts of it later on.

    The reread starts with Jason's pre-crisis appearances. We'll follow his journey in Batman and Detective Comics. Further, there are some guest appearances in other titles that we'll probably discuss. The reading order is chronologically starting with Jason's introduction in Batman #357, followed by Detective Comics #524, then back to Batman #358, … (I think you get the point.) Below you find a table that provides a good overview of the pre-crisis issues and their releases.

    Schedule: we discuss two* issues every other week on Saturday

    (If wished we can change the schedule later on.)
    *issues without Jason aren’t discussed separately but in combination with the next follow-up issue that contains an appearance of Jason.

    currently discussed (11 May): Batman #364 & Detective Comics #531
    next time discussed (25 May): Batman #365 & Detective Comics #532

    Further information:
    • A link to this thread can be found in the OP of the Jason Todd Appreciation Thread.
    • Links to the individual issue discussions will be added in the table below.


    Pre-crisis issues
    release Batman Detective Comics Guest Appearance
    March-83 Batman #357 (page 1) Detective Comics #524 (page 1)
    April-83 Batman #358 (page 2) only Jason’s mother Detective Comics #525 (page 2)
    May-83 Batman #359 (page 3) Detective Comics #526 (page 3)
    June-83 Batman #360 (page 3) Detective Comics #527 (page 3)
    July-83 Batman #361 (page 4) Detective Comics #528 (page 4)
    August-83 Batman #362 (page 4) no Jason Detective Comics #529 (page 4)
    September-83 Batman #363 (page 5) Detective Comics #530 (page 5)
    October-83 Batman #364 (page 5) Detective Comics #531 (page 5)
    November-83 Batman #365 Detective Comics #532: no Jason
    December-83 Batman #366 Detective Comics #533
    January-84 Batman #367 Detective Comics #534
    February-84 Batman #368: Detective Comics #535
    March-84 Batman #369: no Jason Detective Comics #536: no Jason
    April-84 Batman #370 Detective Comics #537
    May-84 Batman #371 Detective Comics #538
    June-84 Batman #372 Detective Comics #539
    July-84 Batman #373 Detective Comics #540
    August-84 Batman #374 Detective Comics #541
    September-84 Batman #375 Detective Comics #542
    October-84 Batman #376 Detective Comics #543
    November-84 Batman #377 Detective Comics #544
    December-84 Batman #378 Detective Comics #545: no Jason
    January-85 Batman #379 Detective Comics #546
    February-85 Batman #380 Detective Comics #547
    March-85 Batman #381 Detective Comics #548
    April-85 Batman #382 Detective Comics #549: no Jason
    May-85 Batman #383 Detective Comics #550: no Jason
    June-85 Batman #384 Detective Comics #551
    July-85 Batman #385 Detective Comics #552
    August-85 Batman #386: no Jason Detective Comics #553 Superman Annual #11
    September-85 Batman #387 Detective Comics #554
    October-85 Batman #388 Detective Comics #555
    November-85 Batman #389 Detective Comics #556
    December-85 Batman #390 Detective Comics #557 Blue Devil #19
    January-86 Batman #391 Detective Comics #558
    February-86 Batman #392: no Jason Detective Comics #559: no Jason
    March-86 Batman #393: no Jason Detective Comics #560 New Teen Titans #18
    April-86 Batman #394 Detective Comics #561 New Teen Titans #19
    May-86 Batman #395 Detective Comics #562 New Teen Titans #20
    June-86 Batman #396 Detective Comics #563 New Teen Titans #21
    July-86 Batman #397 Detective Comics #564 New Teen Titans #22: no Jason
    August-86 Batman #398 Detective Comics #565 Batman Annual #10
    New Teen Titans #23: no Jason
    September-86 Batman #399 Detective Comics #566
    October-86 Batman #400 Detective Comics #567*: no Jason New Teen Titans #24
    November-86 Batman #401* Detective Comics #568* New Teen Titans #25: no Jason
    December-86 Batman #402* Detective Comics #569* New Teen titans #26
    January-87 Batman #403* Detective Comics #570* New Teen titans #27
    February-87 Detective Comics #571* New Teen titans #28
    March-87 Detective Comics #572* New Teen titans #29
    April-87 Detective Comics #573* New Teen titans #30
    May-87 Detective Comics #574* New Teen titans #31

    * Officially post-crisis, but story-wise in a grey zone


    DC Forum Appreciation Thread rules:

    1) No negative comments about the honoree(s) of this thread. It's an appreciation thread, not a non-appreciation one.

    2) No negative discussion about any competitors of the honoree(s) of this thread. No ifs, ands, or buts. Find another non-appreciation thread to do that, just not here.

    3) No negative comments about other versions of the character. For example, if you like the DCU version of Cyborg, but hate the DCnU version (or visa versa), just appreciate the earlier version and keep your comments about the latter to yourself.
    Last edited by Sergard; 05-11-2019 at 12:06 PM.

  2. #2
    Don't Bully a Hurt Dragon Sergard's Avatar
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    This week (26 January 2019) we discuss

    Batman #357: "Squid"


    Summary:

    Featuring the first appearance of Jason Todd and Killer Croc. The Squid arrives in Gotham City, intent on taking over its underworld and trap the Batman.
    Source: DC


    Writer: Gerry Conway

    Penciler: Don Newton

    Inker: Alfredo Alcala

    Colourist: Adrienne Roy

    Letterer: Ben Oda

    Editors: Nicola Cuti, Len Wein
    Last edited by Sergard; 02-02-2019 at 09:22 AM.

  3. #3
    Don't Bully a Hurt Dragon Sergard's Avatar
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    Preview:






  4. #4
    Don't Bully a Hurt Dragon Sergard's Avatar
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    There is not a lot of Jason to see in this issue but I still had some fun reading it.
    Red seems to be Jason's color from the get-go - except for the hair. I often see people writing that Jason was a redhead pre-crisis.
    But not with all the will in the world this can be considered red hair.

    Regarding the rest of the issue: I don't like the Squid. I don't like goofy villains in general. And a fat little guy with a speech impediment and a stupid haircut is a textbook example of a goofy villain.
    Killer Croc, on the other hand, is introduced very nicely by being this mysterious and dangerous man who doesn't show his face.
    It's interesting to read pre-crisis Batman. He talks a lot, isn't scary and has no problem asking other people for help.

  5. #5
    Caperucita Roja Zaresh's Avatar
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    Geez, it ends in a cliffhanger.

    I think, for an old issue, it can be read alright. I wonder why some people have problems reading issues from that age. I mean, I see the differences in narrative and style, but this one, for example, isn't heavy. Doug Moench's Moon Knight is way heavier (I get why people have an issue with those, even if I love that stuff); but I know that's not the standard: this is not the first issue from the 80's Batman that I read, and this is more like the standard.

    Yeah, Bruce is a likeable character in these years, as far as I know (and recall from the little I've read). It's balanced, same as the TAS Bruce. And I guess, by how this issue went, that he had a very large ensemble of supporting cast. But as the years came, and the concept of the "gimdark Batman works alone" gained fans, I guess he was losing and loosening all those characters, step by step, even before finishing the decade. I didn't know this reporter, for example. Bruce is less prone to ask for help = less side characters. Which is a pity, because those characters can tell a lot about the main character in a story, as well as being the source of a lot of small stories.

    About the villain, I think it could be very easy to rescue him from the purgatory. Look at him: he's extravagant and cheesy, but he's also a master spy, an informant, and has some speech tic. Not, change him into some asian Mob boss that suspiciously looks like some North Corea guy, make him less dumb, smarter and actually slippery like a squid. Make him a spook working the Mafia in Gotham to riot the city for his country as well as his own benefit. Hold all his colourfulness, but make him hard to bring into justice by making more of his business legal, and bring conflict to the table by making a problem to unmask his spooky plots because no one in the government wants to acknowledge that they know of the spy activities in the city.

    There you have, an interesting villain for a story arc that can last for a while.

    As for Killer Croc, I liked him, seems like an interesting character; but I was hoping for him to hold a more active role in the story. I think the whole issue was a nice read, but it jumped from plot to plot a bit too much in the middle. I still can't figure out what's the link between the circus where the Todds work at, and the Squid main plot.

    Lastly, I love dramatic entrances like this one.
    Last edited by Zaresh; 01-27-2019 at 11:33 AM.
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  6. #6
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    I really like the comics from that era, with the long running subplots like Gordons health and the corrupt mayor, and a Batman who is not completely over powered and can loose against thugs when he is out numbered.

  7. #7
    Astonishing Member G-Potion's Avatar
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    It's really a stark contrast with modern day DC. It's fun; the issue feels long and meaty, and Batman's actually likable.

  8. #8
    Don't Bully a Hurt Dragon Sergard's Avatar
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    This week (2 February 2019) we discuss

    Detective Comics #524: "Deathgrip"



    A synopsis of the issue can be found here.

    creative team

    Writer: Gerry Conway

    Penciler: Don Newton

    Inker: Dick Giordano

    Colourist: Adrienne Roy

    Letterer: Todd Klein

    Editors: Nicola Cuti, Len Wein


    Important question for next week: The next issue is Batman #358, but Jason has no appearance - only his mother. So do you prefer to only read Batman #358 next week, or in combination with Detective Comics #525?

  9. #9
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    Preview by DC:








    @Zaresh: Seems like DC didn't want to save the Squid. Although I have to admit that his death would have had a bigger impact if he hadn't been such a slapstick villain. (And he actually did remind me of a dictator but not from some Asian country but from Germany since he called his squid "Gertrude". And characters based on that person are always welcome to die in my eyes. It also helped to push Croc's character. He really made a dangerous impression in this issue. I can't decide if he looks more scary in his modern appearance, being more monster-like, or with his pre-crisis look, having a human body but with scales and red eyes. At least the reveal of his face could have been a good jump scare in an animated version.

    It's still strange to see Jim Gordon with white hair and being 60 years old. I think de-aging him was a good idea. I'm a little confused that Barbara calls him "dad". I thought that he was her uncle pre-crisis?

    I'm surprised that the Todds are still hanging around. I'm reading Jason's pre-crisis introduction for the first time. The post-crisis introduction will always be my favorite, but I kind of dig pre-crisis Jason too. And even though people back then hated Jason for copying Dick's origin, looking at the whole story retrospective, I like it. Years have passed since the tragic death of Dick's parents and now he meets a new "Flying" family with a young shy (at least Jason looks very shy in the one panel of the issue he appears in) son who isn't much older than him back then. And history is going to repeat itself.

    But I expected that Trina and Joseph Todd would die a little faster - like in the same issue they were introduced in. On the other hand it's nice to have a little bit of interactions with them to see what kind of persons they are. I wonder why DC changed their names post-crisis. Sure, they were completely different people but Jason was allowed to keep his name.
    Last edited by Sergard; 02-16-2019 at 02:29 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sergard View Post
    I'm a little confused that Barbara calls him "dad". I thought that he was her uncle pre-crisis?
    Not pre crisis he was her father, post crisis she was his nice, whom he adopted after her parents died.



    Quote Originally Posted by Sergard View Post
    The post-crisis introduction will always be my favorite, but I kind of dig pre-crisis Jason too. And even though people back then hated Jason for copying Dick's origin, looking at the whole story retrospective, I like it. Years have passed since the tragic death of Dick's parents and now he meets a new "Flying" family with a young shy (at least Jason looks very shy in the one panel of the issue he appears in) son who isn't much older than him back then. And history is going to repeat itself.
    I think that the pre crisis Jason origin story is actually the best written Robin origin story (but might also be because I really like the Bronze age style), and has with Crock a really cool villain.
    They took also really their time to tell the story, it end with Detective Comics #526, which is also a an extra long issue sine it is the 500th appearance of Batman in Detective Comics.
    Which makes it quite long for the time, since back than story arc were usually 2-4 issues long.

  11. #11
    Caperucita Roja Zaresh's Avatar
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    The end was anticlimactic, but it set Croc as a bigger menace nicely. I liked it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sergard View Post
    @Zaresh: Seems like DC didn't want to save the Squid. Although I have to admit that his death would have had a bigger impact if he hadn't been such a slapstick villain. (And he actually did remind me of a dictator but not from some Asian country but from Germany since he called his squid "Gertrude". And characters based on that person are always welcome to die in my eyes. It also helped to push Croc's character. He really made a dangerous impression in this issue. I can't decide if he looks more scary in his modern appearance, being more monster-like, or with his pre-crisis look, having a human body but with scales and red eyes. At least the reveal of his face could have been a good jump scare in an animated version.
    I think that Squid was meant to be a very 60s-70s Bond-esque villain, so he could have been easily european. Those kind of villains, as xenophobic as it sounds, tend to be from foreign countries, non US american (not always, but often, I think). These were the 80's, still in the Cold War days: could be the case that he was meant to be german-ish.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aahz View Post
    I think that the pre crisis Jason origin story is actually the best written Robin origin story (but might also be because I really like the Bronze age style), and has with Crock a really cool villain.
    They took also really their time to tell the story, it end with Detective Comics #526, which is also a an extra long issue sine it is the 500th appearance of Batman in Detective Comics.
    Which makes it quite long for the time, since back than story arc were usually 2-4 issues long.
    How much they lasted? Maybe this Jason worked better because the process made it more like a natural outcome. Only Damian had some decent build up for him to be taking on the mantle, by what I currently know. I could see this Jason losing his parents in a 6 issues arc and being caught in another of Bruce's cases working fine as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zaresh View Post
    Only Damian had some decent build up for him to be taking on the mantle, by what I currently know.
    I would say that Tim had a good build up, what they did with Damian was imo kind of a mess.
    I still don't really understand why he suddenly ended up with the Batfamily in BFTC instead of being with Talia.

  13. #13
    Caperucita Roja Zaresh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aahz View Post
    I would say that Tim had a good build up, what they did with Damian was imo kind of a mess.
    I still don't really understand why he suddenly ended up with the Batfamily in BFTC instead of being with Talia.
    Because it's a half and half story about nature vs nurture and a legacy story as well, one you can write better with an all new (or not so) character like Damian and a character that already meant some kind of legacy like Dick, taking of the cowl. I mean; you could have written a story about legacy with Tim as Robin to Dick's Batman, and one about nature vs nurture with Jason; but I can see as well why using Damian for both. Morrison would have (and had) better control and more freedom of an almost unused if not plain used character like Damian, besides giving more of a punch with him being a kid, and Bruce offspring as well. For the mere sake of drama, it was more effective, in my eyes, that what could've been done with the other characters separately. And, besides, well, it was a fresh start, somehow, which writers working with a new-to-them a character prefer, I guess.

    BftC was bad, and I think it's better retconned (even if something "like" that happened even now, continuity wise—but that's not confirmed, either). But what came afterwards, the actual building up of Damian fitting and filling the Robin costume (to certain degree, even if it was a different kind of Robin, for a different Batman as well) was good, I think. Now, what he did with Jason, that is a mess.
    Last edited by Zaresh; 02-03-2019 at 03:48 PM.
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  14. #14
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    But with Damian you really had (in the comics) the problem that he was still with Talia during R.I.P., than BFTC started with Damian taking a joyride in the Batmobil, and Talia was completly ignored untill Batman and Robin Vol. 7.
    And iirc you don't even have a scene Dick passing the Robin mantle down to Damian, he is just suddenly the new Robin in the beginning of Batman and Robin.

    With Tim and pre crisis Jason on the other hand, they took their time, and had them after their origin stories first hand around in the cave and train a little bit before they finally became Robin.

  15. #15
    Caperucita Roja Zaresh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aahz View Post
    But with Damian you really had (in the comics) the problem that he was still with Talia during R.I.P., than BFTC started with Damian taking a joyride in the Batmobil, and Talia was completly ignored untill Batman and Robin Vol. 7.
    And iirc you don't even have a scene Dick passing the Robin mantle down to Damian, he is just suddenly the new Robin in the beginning of Batman and Robin.

    With Tim and pre crisis Jason on the other hand, they took their time, and had them after their origin stories first hand around in the cave and train a little bit before they finally became Robin.
    Are you sure that he was still with Talia in RIP? I'm not sure about the taking of the mantle. I remember Dick's part and decissions because I think it was told twice (being written in two books)--But I don't remember the actual take on the Robin mantle, so it may be as you say. But I kind of remember Damian being won already just before RIP. And I may be wrong as well, but Talia was out of picture for a long time during the Batman and Robin run because she was dealing with Ra's (and because Morrison just didn't want to tell that kind of story; but it's no instory excuse, so yeah, it doesn't matter as a reason).

    I trust you about Tim. I haven't get myself to read all the Robin run yet; just sporadic issues in a dubious order that have caught my interest. I trust your word on him being more built into taking his Robin role. I probably should have count him too, if seems reasonable to think he would have. I keep talking about things I don't know enough about :/.
    Last edited by Zaresh; 02-04-2019 at 12:19 AM.
    This is a signature. It has letters on it, and those letters form words. Words like these. I will not quote anything because I'm uninspired but, I read a lot: I could!

    And this is my Tumblr. Sometimes I post stuff there.

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