Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Tuesday Discussion - Gotham: Who is the Red Hood?

In DC Comics, "Red Hood" is the name of a number of characters -- generally villains, but the most current version is an antihero and formerly Robin.

Arguably the most significant version -- and the one played with tonight on Gotham -- is that the Red Hood Gang is a group of criminals who commit their crimes while taking direction from a central figure in a red hood.

In the comics this figure, who seems to be the leader, is in fact the low man on the totem pole, often a complete outsider.

The idea is to throw the cops off, by making them believe the most expendable one is actually the most important. For all intents and purposes, the red hood is a target.

He's also generally accepted to be the starting point of The Joker, most notably in Alan Moore's seminal The Killing Joke, where a struggling comedian became the Red Hood and, after an accident invoving an acid bath, became the Clown Prince of Crime.

After being killed by The Joker and then resurrected via cosmic retcon, Jason Todd -- the second Robin -- took on the identity of the Red Hood in part to terrorize The Joker and Batman. After that phase of his life was over, he retained the name and identity. Why not, right? Not like he was going to go back to being Robin.

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