[WARNING: this article contains potential SPOILERS for Batman V Superman]
When the next big screen appearance of the Dark Knight is rumored to see him coming to blows with the Man of Steel, it's tempting to not look much farther into the future. But Warner Bros. has made it abundantly clear that Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is only the beginning - and now, we may have a few more details on where the movie universe, and Batman's series in particular, could be heading.
The latest rumor surrounding Batman V Superman is to be taken with a large grain of salt, but those wishing to avoid even the most uncertain of spoilers - for incredibly promising sequels and a brand new 'villain' in the DC Movie Universe - should proceed no farther. It may not be official, but potentially massive SPOILERS for the future, and yet another Suicide Squad connection lie ahead.
One of the most talked-about changes potentially being made to Ben Affleck's Batman character has centered on the possibility of a sidekick; actress Jena Malone has most recently been suggested as the Carrie Kelley version from Frank Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns." But before her casting, rumors had claimed that in the newest Batcave, the costume worn by Jason Todd - the second Robin - was kept in a glass case as a memorial. But when the script being pointed to for those tidbits was a fan creation saw many rumors instantly evaporate.
But there may have been fire to that smoke after all, as El Mayimbe has offered his latest scoop, claiming that there will, indeed, be a Jason Todd connection in Dawn of Justice. And the history behind the character (and the villain responsible for his death) won't be contained to just one movie in DC's shared universe:
Jason Todd's uniform is in a display case inside the Batcave! In fact, The Joker & Harley Quinn are estranged in SUICIDE SQUAD because she feels guilt over the death of Todd. I'm also told that the RED HOOD is now a priority character for DC.
For the unfamiliar, it was Jason Todd (remembered as a tough, angry, orphan) who Batman took under his wing once Dick Grayson became Nightwing. Yet Jason would prove to be even more important in death than in life, when he was killed at the hands of the Joker in the 1988 "Death in the Family" comic storyline.
According to this rumor, Zack Snyder's decision to introduce a much older Batman will take full advantage of the implied years of activity; not only has he spent years fighting the Joker (Jared Leto), but the villain has already taken the life of one sidekick (as was rumored previously).
Over the years it has seemed less and less likely for Warner Bros. to happily re-introduce Robin into Batman's movie market, let alone a dead one. But there's no denying the weight and emotion that could be added to a solo Batman movie by simply stating that this version of the caped crusader saw his sidekick - or adopted son - murdered by the Joker. And with Suicide Squad apparently hinting at that same event, the Joker escaping from prison just months after audiences meet Ben Affleck's Batman would supply the narrative (and fan) momentum needed for a new solo film series.
Of course, it's the second part of the rumor that will most excite comic fans. Although brought home and buried, Jason Todd didn't stay dead. Whether you credit the magical Lazarus Pits recently seen on Arrow, or some publisher retconning, Todd returns to life years later, remembering that it was the Joker who killed him - and learning that Batman never avenged him.
Enraged but determined, Todd set out to become the equal of the lethal vigilante who helped raise him, but adopting a more violent mission and the name of 'Red Hood.'
Even a rumor that Warner Bros. is considering such a storyline as a "priority" going forward will be enough to win over even skeptical fans. The chance to see DC's modern "Hush" story (in which an adult Todd returns to torment Bruce Wayne), or the "Under The Hood" arc (that finally returned Jason to Gotham and the core DC continuity) was always seen as a long shot - but the times may be changing.
Could the Red Hood become a familiar face in DC's new shared universe? The DC animated feature Batman: Under The Red Hood gives a good enough example of how such a twist could bring Batman, a new Robin AND Joker into an emotionally and psychologically painful drama. Jason Todd could spiral out into everything from a Suicide Squad sequel or even Batman's Outsiders, so it's not the worst direction DC and WB could take.
It's all rumors and speculation for now, but do you think the studio should cash in on some of the most memorable "Batman" comic arcs in recent memory? Or is Jason Todd and his Red Hood moniker a bit too much to bite off so early? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice will be in theaters on March 25th, 2016; Suicide Squad on August 5th, 2016; Wonder Woman - June 23rd, 2017; Justice League - November 17th, 2017; The Flash - March 23rd, 2018; Aquaman - July 27th, 2018; Shazam - April 5th, 2019; Justice League 2 - June 14th, 2019; Cyborg - April 3rd, 2020; Green Lantern - June 19th, 2020.
Source: Umberto Gonzalez