It’s been a while since we’ve touched Red Hood and the Outlaws, so let’s do a quick recap. Jason Todd, Starfire, and Arsenal are battling Ra’s al Ghul and the League of Assassins at the climax of the arc that has followed an amnesiac Jason taking over as head of the assassins. For some reason, Jason is instantly recruited to be the leader of said League, even though there are people who seem far more qualified and experienced to lead. There was a giant battle between the League and the Untitled, a group of immortals who can get turned mortal by punching them the proper way, which results in Jason, the Outlaws, and the League eventually throwing all of the Untitled into the Well of Souls.
This is interrupted by Ra’s arrival and entering the Well go gain the powers of all the Untitled, because he can do that. On top of that, apparently Ra’s has been manipulating everything that’s happened since Ducra and the All-Caste were killed. So we’ve got a super-charged Ra’s battling Jason.
This is not where the issue starts, however. Instead, “Remembering” opens with a page revisiting Jason’s resurrection, where Talia al Ghul and Bronze Tiger watch Jason rise out of the Lazarus Pit. The first odd thing is that Bronze Tiger’s height changes in each panel; no matter what angle you are at, there is no reason that at one point Bronze Tiger looks as tall as Talia’s waist and in the next he’s a solid foot taller than her without moving. We zoom back to the present, where Ra’s is mopping the floor with Jason while the Outlaws, the League of Assassins, and Essence (from a distance) look on. After a good bro-mance moment between Jason and Roy, Ra’s prepares to kill the Outlaws.
Even Jason knew this nonsense was going to take too long.
Without directly spoiling a really cool moment of this issue, Jason is able to resolve one of the more annoying plot lines in the entire Red Hood and the Outlaws run.
There is some great action sequences between Jason and the Man-Bats of the League of Assassins, and Julius Gopez’s penciling creates some very impressive splash pages highlighting Jason’s one-man assault on the assassins. The Outlaws themselves do not play a major part in this issue, outside of Roy’s pseudo-inspirational and way too optimistic bro-moment. Roy has always been the wise-crack/positive attitude member of the team, and with Kori frequently being all laser beams and no emotion, the position of morale support frequently falls on Roy’s shoulders. James Tynion has definitely been fleshing him out more in recent issues, but he was pretty much useless in this issue. There were a couple of things that I was a bit confused by, and some other notes that I’ll place in the spoilers.
The issue ends on an ominous note, but it would appear that the League of Assassins arc is coming to an end soon.
- So Jason can just force himself to remember his memories? And apparently it was the plan the whole time for him to forget his past, join the League of Assassins, empower Ra’s, THEN remember and fight/kill him….OK
- Every member of the League of Shadows gets taken down in literally one hit. Lady Shiva gets beaten with a karate chop to the neck that she apparently taught Jason. You would think she’d be ready for that.
- Same thing with Bronze Tiger; Starfire punches him once and he’s down. She’s way too overpowered for his series.
- Another thing about Bronze Tiger: There’s a panel where he turns to Cheshire and says “I know what you’re thinking Jade. Do it now.” So Cheshire goes and frees Roy and Kori, but Bronze Tiger attacks Jason? Why didn’t he help her or try stop her? I would’ve been down to see Bronze Tiger and Cheshire fight.
- Can Roy stop calling Jason “Jaybird”?
- At the end, Ducra’s Force-ghost reveals to Essence that Jason remembered his past too soon, and now “this is the end.”
- You like some intense Jason Todd action
- You’ve been enjoying the mysticism of this arc
- You’re a fan of the League of Assassins, they’re pretty much all on display here.
There’s strong artwork here, and the story is noticeably moved on past the muck that’s held the series back the past dozen issues or so. Jason Todd’s story has gone so far off-base and has just dived head-first into insanity that the best I can see happening is that this arc ends soon and with a finality that allows Jason to move on to better things.