Why doesn’t Bruce make Jason’s memorial case out of the same material as high-grade armored vehicle windshields? You know, the stuff that’s synthetic sapphire, aka shatterproof? Because the memorial case gets smashed so often, it might as well have a sign that says: break in case of dramatic effect. And yeah, the breaking of the case is a big deal, but to me, the worst part is imagining the clean-up. Every time it is broken, Alfred has to sweep up the pieces. He has to carefully shake the shards of glass out of the spare uniform that only fit Jason. I like to think that Bruce took home at least one piece of the costume that Jason had been wearing—-namely, his domino mask. It’s small, easily concealed on the trip back, and it doesn’t visibly scream the fact that it was in the explosion. Bruce had to destroy much of it, but he had trouble only bringing back Jason’s remains. The rusty old bloodstains are on the inside of the mask, so you can only see them when it is out of the case. When you look at the case, you don’t see the blood. It’s only when you have to pick up the pieces and really see the case for what it is.
Whoops, gave myself an early morning sad. This was going to be a funny post, but then Jason feels happened. WHAT ELSE IS NEW…
Anonymous asked: How about Jay/Dick relationship?
Oh, anon. There is no way for this headcanon post not to be TL;DR, so bear with me. First off, even before anything ~happens~ between them, Jason doesn’t hate Dick. When people ask him, the stubborn, angry little remnants of Jason Todd, Age Fifteen and Three-Quarters, will claim that Dick is a chump and he hates that guy. The truth of the matter is that Dick is really hard to hate, even for Jason (and believe you me, Jason put a lot of time and effort into hating him. He gave it his A game, but his haterade just sort of beaded off Dick’s back like water off a duck’s feathers). At best, he resented him. He suffered from being the sequel to Dick Grayson: Boy Wonder, because in the early days, Bruce was very “I want you to be your own person, so long as you look and act like Dick okay”. He didn’t mean to be that way, but Dick’s absence had left a large hole in Bruce’s heart, and the only thing he could think of doing was to stuff another black-haired blue-eyed orphan in there to plug it up. Jason definitely resented that, even though he still gave his best attempts at filling the Dick hole.
When he wasn’t around, Dick became a lightning rod for all of Jason’s resentment. Dick didn’t come around much in the early days because he was hurt about being replaced—-basically, they were both mad at Bruce, but since being mad at Bruce doesn’t get anyone anywhere, they took it out on each other. So Jason’s internal monologue when Dick wasn’t around went “GOD I hate that guy YOU WERE TOO OLD FOR SHORTPANTS AND ALSO YOU SMELL”, because it was easy enough to hate Dick in abstract. But when Dick was around, his thoughts got all jumbled up. It turned into “GOD I hate that guy HOW ARE YOUR TEETH SO WHITE STOP SMILING AND ALSO YOU SMELL GOOD STOP IT YOU CAN’T MAKE ME WANT TO BE YOU WHEN I GROW UP”. Over time, Jason became much more confident in his relationship with Bruce—-that fear of being kicked to the curb if he fell short of the sparkles and holy explatives Batmans lessened. And as he got to know him, Dick couldn’t help but like Jason’s fire and mouthiness. I mean, he gave him his Robin uniform, and that’s how Dick shows that he cares (“I love you, please have my clothes”. He did it to Jason and Tim, and Kory somehow ended up with an entire closet full of his old costumes. Tell me that I’m wrong.). I feel like Dick and Jason were just starting to get along when the whole Big Bang happened. They went to Brent’s and got chilidogs together at least once a week. When he was trying to decide if he should go find his mother or not, he did call Dick—-but got his voicemail, since Dick was off having lol space adventures.
Dick came home from the lol space adventures to find Babs paralyzed and Jason dead. It took him about two months to get around to checking his voicemail (since the zillion missed calls were kind of daunting), and when he got to the message from Jason—-“Hey, Big Bird. It’s Jay. I, uh—-you said I should call this number if I needed to talk, ‘cause you and me both know that the bossman isn’t big on words. So I just. I wanted to ask you about something. S’not a big deal or whatever. Call me back, or—-aww, hell, never mind.”—-it broke his goddamn heart. Jason had needed him, but he hadn’t been there. Dick vowed to himself that he’d never make that mistake again. That’s why he jumped into big brotherhood feet-first when Tim came into the picture. Dick is really, really good at blaming himself for things, so he shouldered some of the blame for Jason’s death. If he’d been around, he would have either been there to tell him hey so globetrotting adventures usually DON’T END WELL, or to initiate a buddy system and go with him. He big brothered Tim aggressively, at least a little bit out of lingering Jayguilt.
So then, Jason came back. And he was like Bats I am home now. And I am looking so handsome and also not dead?. Since Dick is not Bruce, he wanted Jason to be back and okay and prepared for incoming hugs, but of course hugs were not on the revenge menu for the Red Hood. Dick held his ground and kept to Bruce’s wishes up until the point that Jason started getting up in his grill outside of Gotham city limits. Without Gotham and Bruce in the picture, Dick’s crippling feels took over. He didn’t want Jason to be unsaveable. The idea that anyone is beyond redemption does not gel with the solid chunk of optimism made human that is Dick Grayson. If the Brothers in Blood arc hadn’t been so bafflingly bad, it could have/should have been an opportunity for Dick to reach out to Jason and get him to mosey on back to their side of the line.
lmdkfj how about I just jump to what they would be like in a relationship, okay. Dick is wired for long term relationships. He doesn’t do one-night stands, and he doesn’t sleep with anyone that he doesn’t have a deep emotional connection with. In that respect, he and Jason are both similar and very different; that is what Jason wants, but not what he necessarily thinks he deseves. He would dig in his heels and rebel, because he is not That Person and he is not going to ever have a white picket fence relationship. They’ll work, but only if they don’t talk about it. Jason is okay with them being a thing so long as the thing that they have remains untouched and unlabeled. He’s contrary to his very core, and a part of him thinks that it’s better for Dick this way—-if they don’t talk about it, they don’t have to own up to what they’re doing. Jason is painfully aware of the fact that Dick has much, much more to lose by being seen with him than vice-versa.
Dick still acts like a gross couple-y person. Jason can’t get him to give up that bad habit, no matter how hard he tries. They’re aggressive and tend to break things even when they’re in a good mood, but Dick needs that outlet sometimes—-he needs someone that can hold him (hold him down, hold him together, just plain hold him), and Jason’s big enough to do that. Dick likes to think that he is a good influence on his Little Wing, and he’s not wrong. When the Bats see Jason’s ~activities~, it’s because he wants the attention. When he doesn’t want to ruffle Dick’s feathers, Jason keeps his work clean and quiet and under the radar. Dick knows better than to think that he’s stopped, but, being the King of Denial, he can function when that is out of sight and out of mind.
When Jason is pissed—-not ANGRY, but annoyed—-he turns into a passive-aggressive troll. Which doesn’t work with Dick. At all. He’ll do things like (drunkenly) writing Dick’s phone number in the bathrooms of the grossest dive bars, with the words “call for dick”. And so Dick will get all of these phone calls like: “Hey there. I heard this is the number to call if I want dick”, to which he replies, “HELLO YES THIS IS DICK” and gets the dialtone.
And he gets so confused when they hang up on him. Jason just chuckles to himself, drinks all of the milk, and leaves the empty carton in the fridge before he goes out to burn down his nightly quota of meth labs. Jason blows steam that way, because when he and Dick REALLY fight, it is ugly. Jason has a terrible talent with people. He knows exactly what to say and when to say it in order to get a rise out of someone. He fights to win, and he fights dirty. When he’s really angry, he verbally rips others apart. He’ll hate himself for it, but get a brutal satisfaction out of it at the same time. He and Dick do a masochistic tango, and everyone else pretends not to see.
My headcanon for the cooking abilities of the various Robins is influenced primarily by their background. In my experience, most people who are good cooks are kids that either had a parent that was invested in teaching them when they were younger, or kids that had to fend for themselves. So!
Dick: Dick is a better cook than people give him credit for, but only because Alfred didn’t want the poor boy to leave the nest completely unable to fend for himself. He’s good with simple, filling meals, but with the way he budgets his time, he’d usually rather go for quick meals that don’t require a lot of prep. He’s terrible with multitasking in the kitchen, so if he’s trying to make a fancy meal on his own, you should brace yourself for at least one completely ruined side dish. He has yet to make spaghetti with french bread without torching the bread. Dick is the most fun to watch cook, though—-it’s dinner and a show, because he has no problem with climbing on counters to get stuff out of the higher cupboards. Alfred just pours himself a glass of wine and looks away. Dick really likes to cook for others, though he rarely has the time or opportunity to do so.
Jason: I agree with you that Jason is the best cook out of the Robins. He had to learn to provide for himself and his mother from a young age, so he’s the master of making do with limited—-and often poor—-ingredients. I see him as being a super food-driven kid, since he knew what it was like to go hungry. Because of that, he got into the habit of never going to bed on an empty stomach under Bruce’s care, and spending a lot of time in the kitchen with Alfred. The different types of dishes fascinated him, and he was amazed by the sheer spread that well-to-do people had with every meal. Alfred was tickled by his interest, so he taught Jason the basics. Given his level of activity and size in adulthood, Jason has to eat often in order to keep from losing weight—-needing about five to eight thousand calories per day means a lot of grazing and liquid calories (i.e., fruit smoothies with protein powder). He has a very no-frills cooking style, but once in a (very long) while, he’ll splurge and make a nice meal for himself. He’ll never not see chilidogs as a staple of a healthy diet.
Tim: Tim is not a very good cook. He can follow recipes, but since he sort of sees eating itself as a waste of time, he rarely makes anything fancy. When he’s wrapped up in a project, he forgets to feed himself—-and if he does remember, he usually only surfaces from his work for long enough to choke down a protein bar or something of the like. He sticks to a balanced diet with appropriate serving sizes most of the time, but he’ll always have a weakness for pizza. The stuff that he cooks for himself isn’t bad, but it isn’t very good, either.
Steph: Like Jason, Steph had to learn to cook for herself early on in her childhood. One of the reasons that she loves waffles so much is that it was the first “fancy” meal that she learned how to cook for herself, by herself—-waffles have always been equated with victory in her mind. She is big on the comfort carbs—-mashed potatoes and waffles—-and (unfortunately) has figured out how to make just about anything in the microwave. She didn’t have the money to have a very balanced diet, growing up, but she tried to eat healthier when she started running around rooftops at night. Tim gave her the diet that Bruce had outlined for him during his Robin training, but Steph was too proud to admit that she couldn’t afford half of the fresh, raw ingredients on the list. Organic skinless free range chicken breast? Hahahaha no. Hamburger Helper is kind of the same, right?
Damian: Damian is a snob about what he eats, but he’s completely useless in the kitchen. He’s never had to cook for himself, and I personally believe that he inherited Bruce’s completely ridiculous inability to so much as boil water. I’ve always found Bruce’s terrible cooking to be delightful, and well, like father, like son. Damian can scramble eggs, and that’s literally it. But he scrambles eggs better than anyone else. Especially you, Drake. Damian’s choosiness about food will probably go out the window as soon as his puberty hits.
You’re absolutely right. It’s victim blaming, honestly. It shifts the onus from Bruce to Jason, ignoring the reasons WHY he ended up in that warehouse with the Joker. It’s REALLY DETRIMENTAL to retcon him that way, in my opinion. When people say that he deserved it, or that it was inevitable, or even that the Red Hood was how he would have ended up eventually anyway, I wonder if they realize the ableist, classist line of thinking that they’re supporting. There isn’t a single explanation that I’ve heard for why he “deserved” to die that doesn’t reek of bullshit biological determinism. That’s why I really appreciated that Flashpoint!Jason had ended up a priest. He continued to fight, continued to survive, and pursued a vocation that allowed him to help others. Because uh Jason gives a shit about people and genuinely wants to make their lives better.
Jason wasn’t bad. He wasn’t 100% angry 100% of the time. He was a kid that had been through traumatizing events at a very young age and had fought to survive. Rather than being a rage machine, I feel like Jason’s just someone who feels things incredibly strongly. He’s passionate, stubborn, and loyal as all get out. Also? He’s FUNNY. ugh this is why RHaTO Jason just isn’t Jason to me. The one thing that Jason isn’t is apathetic. I wish that people would remember that Bruce doesn’t flay himself over Jason’s death just because he blames himself for not “protecting him from his own darkness” or whatever. The loss of Jason ruined Bruce because he loved that kid.
But why have love when you can have grimdark, amirite.
When you are not in finals, this is definitely a thing that you should do, anon. You have my blessing and my enabling and anything else you should require.
I feel like Jason would be REALLY interesting to explore on the Vertigo side, because he lends himself more to that tone than to main canon. Let’s face it: in his post-death incarnation, Jason Todd is not exactly family friendly. There’s too much that connects him to the idea of what is and isn’t acceptable for a Bat book, and those connections restrict him. Under the Red Hood was FANTASTIC, but it hit up against the problem with any revenge story: the guy seeking revenge has no real ending other than death, be it at the hands of his enemies, or by eating his own muzzle. That is just the way that the revenge story is patterned. Whether wrong or right, the person seeking revenge has made the decision that vengeance means more than their own life. When I asked Rucka why he decided to take on the Punisher title, he said that THAT was why—-the Punisher’s story shouldn’t have gone on for so long, but he wanted to explore why he was an anomaly.
Most of the writers who have worked with Jason post UtRH have seemingly struggled with the concept of “okay, what now?”. They’ve used the idea that the Pit might’ve affected him mentally to escape accusations that his actions are out of character, and Lobdell has completely distanced his version of Jason from anything that existed before. And honestly, I think that this is due to the fact that HE doesn’t know what to do with him, either.
There are some characters that lend themselves to Vertigo or MAX titles. Jessica Jones, Frank Castle, John Constantine, and Jason Todd all function (or would function) best if their speech bubbles weren’t filled with asterisks and symbols instead of the fuck yous that they are more comfortable with flinging at the world. I think that if they really want to write Jason to his full potential, the brunt of his story needs to exist outside of the main line. There can—-and should—-be crossover, but if you really want to explore Jason, you should recognize that you can’t shy away from the taboo subjects that his character is basically BUILT on.
Okay. Here is how I extrapolate their ages. Dick’s age has been anywhere between eight and twelve at the time of his parents’ death, but recent canon has pegged it as twelve. Tim was present the night they were killed, and he remembered it—-if Dick were any younger, it’s just not feasible for Tim to have been old enough to remember. We know that Dick was Robin for six years, and that Jason was Robin for around three. That puts Dick as newly twenty-two when Jason dies (Jason’s death certificate lists his age as fifteen, and his date of death as the 27th of April. Dick’s birthday is the 21st of March, and he’s six years older than Jason).
Jason and Cassandra are almost the same age, as mentioned in the Detective Comics issue set on Jason’s eighteenth birthday. Tim was sixteen at that point in canon, so Dick is six years older than Jason and Cass, who are one year older than Steph, who is one year older than Tim, who is six years older than Damian. Steph was fifteen when she got pregnant, was sixteen when the baby was born (if I remember correctly), had maybe six more months before War Games, and then spent a year in Africa—-all tallied up, that makes her eighteen, which corresponds to Tim’s age in Red Robin. SO, that would make Dick twenty-five, which is kind of great, if you think about it! That was Bruce’s age when he first became Batman (as stated in Year One). We know that Bruce was twenty-five when he became Batman, and that Dick was twelve in the third year of his career, so that puts about a sixteenish year age gap between them. Babs’ age in relation to Dick has been retconned, I think, so IDEK.
APPROXIMATE ages pre-reboot are:
Bruce: 41/trapped in tiiiiiiime