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DC Showcase (Part 10): Batman: Death In The Family

Hello, my friends.  As we revisit a past entry from the main line, it’ll soon become apparent that the fate of those characters will lie within the hands of its viewing audience.  With that in mind, I once again welcome you all to another entry of…

Ever since the DC Universe Animated Original Movies’ main subsidiary series was brought back following an eight-year hiatus, it’s been delving into more lesser-known heroes.  Over this second wave, we’ve seen a World War II sergeant infiltrate a Nazi-occupied castle alongside some supernatural soldiers, a young artist get some otherworldly inspiration from the actual personification of the afterlife, a Spirit of Justice protect a youthful lady from an eternally-living fiend and a cosmic archeologist looking to find his way back home while helping several miners fend off some hostile aliens.  For this last entry of the DC Showcase’s second phase, we’re actually bringing in the Dark Knight as he goes through one of the biggest failures of his superhero career.  However, the narrative path that we decide to take will see a certain Boy Wonder go on a journey of either personal redemption or bloody vengeance.  On that note, we’ll be venturing into the biggest entry of the whole series and upon whatever path we decide to go on in a particular piece called…

Released on October 13, 2020 for Digital Download and Blu-Ray, this entry takes place in the same continuity of “Batman: Under The Red Hood”.  Just like that film, Brandon Vietti has returned to direct this project, though he’s also taking on writing and producing duties as well.  With us revisiting some familiar ground, what sort of twists and turns await us within Gotham City?  Depending on the choices that we’re given, it’s bound to deliver some surprising revelations.  As such, let’s venture into this dark municipality and shine some light upon the unexpected events to come.

Following the opening credits, we begin over in Bosnia and Herzegovina as Bruce Wayne a.k.a. Batman (voiced by Bruce Greenwood) is on his Bat-Cycle as he hurriedly attempts to save his crime-fighting partner.

During this, he thinks back to a particular moment when he and Jason Todd (voiced by Vincent Martella) stopped a group of thugs from performing their drug operations. With one thug remaining, Batman is able to disarm him with a well-aimed Batarang.  Unfortunately, Robin delivers a fierce elbow strike to his collarbone, much to the Dark Knight’s dismay.

Later, they return to the Bat Cave as Bruce scolds his partner for his action.  Wayne says that the goon would’ve provided some useful information, but is now in shock due to the harmful attack.  Despite delivering the unnecessary hit and even apologizing for it, Robin says that the fiend was “a drug-dealing pimp” and that he still “deserved it” before taking his leave.

From there, the flashback continues as Bruce recalls the fateful night from his childhood where he and his parents had just seen “The Mark of Zorro”.  The young boy expresses his appreciation for the film and says that it would be amazing if the titular hero was riding through Gotham as this exact moment, to which Thomas Wayne (voiced by John DiMaggio) says that a masked vigilante wouldn’t be allowed within their city, since the authorities would lock up “Zorro in Arkham”.

We then shift over to Wayne Manor as Bruce tell his butler Alfred that he has thought about his father’s final words and wonders if it held a particular level of truthfulness.  He then says that while he’s always had the support of his family butler to deal with the murder of his parents, he wonders whether it was wise for him to place Jason under his crime-fighting wing, especially since the boy had lost his father to Two-Face and his mother to an illness.  Not to mention, Todd’s physicality is fueled by “unresolved pain and anger”.  Believing that his sidekick is becoming a potential risk to both “himself” and “the mission”, Bruce makes the call to take the boy off of active duty.  However, Jason had overheard all of this as he angrily exclaims that it’s “fine” with him before he runs off and leaves the mansion.

Afterwards, we return to the present as Batman continues his mad dash to save his sidekick.  Meanwhile, Robin had been captured as he gets beaten up by the Joker (also voiced by John DiMaggio) and his crowbar.

While Bruce maintains his fast-paced attempt to save his crime-fighting partner, we then flashback to Jason arriving into the country.  Just then, Wayne grabs him into a closet as the two of them are surprised to see each other within Bosnia.  Bruce says that he’s been tracking Ra’s al Ghul, with Todd assuming that the target is attempting to get Wayne to marry his daughter.  Jason then exclaims that he’s been on his own investigation, especially since he’s been following the Joker.  Bruce tells him that he shouldn’t be going after the Clown Prince of Crime by himself, but Todd says that the infamous fiend had crippled Barbara amongst his various crimes.  He then criticizes Wayne for simply having the Joker arrested, since the fiend has since busted out yet again.  As Jason says that someone had to do something to stop the Joker, Bruce interrupts him by exclaiming that Ra’s is looking to build some dirty bombs in order to wipe out thousands of people via radiation poisoning.  He then says that al Ghul is currently in Bosnia in order to purchase the necessary materials from “an unknown buyer”.  Fortunately, Todd reveals the key discovery from his investigation as the Joker is currently in possession of some stolen Uranium and is about to sell it to some terrorists.  After Wayne commends his partner for his detective work, he says that it’s going to take their effort as the Dynamic Duo to stop this potentially dangerous situation from forming.

Later that night, Batman and Robin manage to spot Ra’s al Ghul’s men attempting to smuggle their recently-purchased Uranium across the border.  Jason says that because the Bat-Cycle is only big enough to carry one person, he wants Bruce to go after the thugs while he investigates the nearby warehouse that the Joker is potentially in.  However, Batman tells his crime-fighting partner that it’s far too dangerous for him to pursue the Clown Prince of Crime by himself.  Instead, he wants Todd to stay put and keep an eye on the building until he gets back.  In the end, Jason reluctantly agrees and tells Bruce to “hurry back” before Batman speeds off to successfully stop the devious henchmen.

From there, we once again return to the present as Bruce attempts to reach Todd before it’s too late.  Over at the warehouse, the Joker is about to head out.  Before he does so, he tells the battered Robin to let Batman know that he said “Hello”.

After the Joker takes his leave, Jason manages to bend his body in order to get his handcuffed hands in front of him.  Unfortunately, he too weary to walk as he begins to crawl towards the door.  As he finally reaches it, he discovers that he’s been locked in.  Just then, he hears some beeping as he sees several explosives set to go off in less than ten seconds.

From there, we get the first of several choices that the viewer gets to make throughout this entire experience.

If “Robin Dies” is chosen, then it plays out just like in “Under The Red Hood” with Batman arriving too late just as the warehouse blows up.  Following the explosion, he searches through the rubble before he ultimately finds Todd’s body.  Sadly, his crime-fighting partner didn’t survive the blast.

We then jump ahead several years later as Bruce is in a diner with another patron.  He mentions that they constantly save the lives of various strangers on a daily basis and that they’re aware that he “failed to save Jason from this life”.  From there, he begins to share how he couldn’t save the former Robin “from the next”.

Bruce says that he’s doubled his efforts to defend Gotham City by himself over the next five years following Todd’s death.  Fortunately, Nightwing would pop up to give Batman “an extra hand” during those ventures.  During this particular one, they manage to defeat a particular piece of Black Mask’s cargo that the three goons were attempting to steal, which turned to be Amazo.  From there, the original Dynamic Duo interrogate the thuggish trio in order to learn who they were pilfering for.  Just as our heroes learn about their boss named Red Hood, the three goons are executed via a sniper’s shot.  In his narration, Batman says that the mysterious figure could’ve taken them out as well, but he intentionally “laid out the red carpet to follow him instead”.  Shortly after spotting Red Hood via his hi-tech binoculars, the Caped Crusader flies off in the Batwing and purposefully leaves Dick Grayson behind.

A chase ensures before it culminates at a familiar chemical factory as Batman recognizes it as the place where the original Red Hood tripped and fell into a particular vat, ultimately becoming the Joker in what the Dark Knight calls his “first great failure”.  Suddenly, he’s approached by the current Red Hood as Batman narrates about this mysterious figure seeming to have known all about that incident.  From there, the opposing figure fires his gun towards his wrecked car, which ignites the spilled chemical and causes the building to blow up.  The Caped Crusader managed to escape in time as Bruce narrates about Red Hood using this explosion to deliver “a message” that struck a familiar chord with his incident in Bosnia.

Back in the present, Bruce continues his informative delivery towards the patron.   At that point in his story, he had learned from the attempted Amazo heist and Nightwing’s reports that the Red Hood was viciously taking over Gotham’s numerous crime syndicates.  Now that he was tasked with protecting the various criminals that weren’t under the figure’s protective grasp, he and Nightwing proceeded to question the Joker over at Arkham Asylum.  They attempt to ask the Clown Prince of Crime about a possible connection that he may have with the current Red Hood, but they ultimately learn very little from him.  With hardly anything to go on, they decide to scope out the being’s key target: Black Mask.

It turns out that the crime boss is in the process of trafficking some illegal arms.  Unfortunately for him, Red Hood also learned about this as he lethally interfered with this operation.  Fortunately, Batman and Nightwing arrive as they disable the helicopter just as the mysterious being was about to take off.  However, he manages to send the craft into a free-falling dive before he’s able to escape.  After Bruce and Dick manage to prevent the chopper from falling onto the innocent civilians below, they swing their way back over as a rooftop chase ensues.

During the pursuit, Wayne narrates about the Red Hood’s uncanny knack for constantly evading out heroes as “irritating, but educational”.  From “advanced parkour” to “counterattacking on the run”, our heroes were constantly kept at a reasonable distance.  Even more impressive, the figure was able to cut Batman’s line before it could completely wrap around his ankle.  From there, they wind up at a Skyway Station as Bruce recounts how he was getting overcome by his own frustration and that it caused him to be “careless and stupid”.  Even though Batman & Nightwing notice a bomb that was waiting for them and they were able to avoid the full-on blast, Dick still wound up injured before the Red Hood manages to escape under the cover of an approaching subway train.

Later on back at the Bat Cave, Bruce looks over the footage that he recorded on a camera from within his cowl.  Within his narration, he blames himself for ultimately getting Nightwing’s right leg damaged from the explosion.  With the sense that he must finish this investigation by himself, he studies the video as Wayne narrates about how the Red Hood seems to have known about his “tactics” and his “history”.  Just as he discovers that the fiend knows who he is, Bruce fully realizes how “the impossible is just the unthinkable lying in wait”.

While Batman attempted to reach the newly-resurrected being, Black Mask begins to strike back as he sends his men out to help him reclaim his former control over the various crime-ridden areas.  Ultimately, Red Hood was drawn out as he finds himself caught in an ambush by a group of high-tech warriors named the Fearsome Hand of Four.  Though he manages to fend them off as best as he can, they ultimately defeat and surround him.  Just then, Batman arrives and helps his former crime-fighting partner take the opposing group down.

With one foe left and threatening to cut away at his throat, Red Hood manages to slip a taser out from his jacket sleeve and jams it into the being’s helmet, which overloads and causes his head to blow up.

After he “crossed the line” with that last act, Jason explains that he’s “cleaning up Gotham by controlling it through deadly force”.  With this display of disdain towards Bruce’s methods, Todd proceeds to use a smoke grenade and escape as Wayne narrates how it became even clearer to him that Jason was alive again via resurrection.

Back in the present, Bruce explains that the body he initially brought back to America was nothing more than a fake replica.  He blames himself for not checking the body before it was buried and because he was in this emotional state of weakness, he wound up “deceived”.  As we transition back into his story, Wayne decides to suit up and head towards Sarajevo in order to confront the man responsible for Todd’s second life: Ra’s al Ghul.  Bruce says that this longtime enemy has a honorable amount of respect towards him and even tried to get him to marry his own daughter.  From there, he learns from Ra’s about the stolen Uranium that he purchased from the Joker in order to bomb the European bank.

Also, al Ghul would have the Clown Prince of Crime distract the Dynamic Duo from the deal.  In his narration, Bruce says that the Joker’s murder of Robin wasn’t part of the plan since Ra’s had no idea that Jason was in Bosnia.  Even though Todd initially lost his life, his intel did help him and Wayne ultimately stopped al Ghul’s plans.  Not only that, but it allowed them “to relieve a growing disconnect” between them.  After Robin’s initial death, Ra’s admits to Batman that he was foolish for underestimating the Joker.  As a fellow father, al Ghul would also share his own grief towards Jason’s death.

In an attempt to “rectify his disservice” towards the Caped Crusader, Ra’s successfully carried out his discreet plan to swipe Todd’s body and place it within his Lazarus Pit.  Even though it succeeded in bringing Jason back to life, it did have a twisted effect on his mental stasis.  From there, he bolted towards the study, smashed through the window and plummeted towards the dark abyss where he ultimately escaped.

As we briefly go back to the present, Bruce says that he initially visited the house of al Ghul with the hope of blaming someone (specifically Ra’s) for what’s become of his former Robin.  However, he still blames himself for putting Todd on his present path in the first place.  We then shift back into his story as Batman was flying back to Gotham in order to put a peaceful stop to Red Hood.  While he was gone, Jason attempted to attack the Black Mask by firing a RPG into the crime boss’s office.  Even though the fiend managed to evade the fiery blast and the blown-off fire door, things have still gotten sour for him that he ends up resorting to breaking the Joker out of Arkham Asylum in order to enlist his services and finally kill off the Red Hood.  Unfortunately, the Clown Prince of Crime’s unpredictable nature dooms him as he unexpectedly kills off his henchmen before holding Roman & his assistant at his mercy.

This ultimately leads to a stand-off upon the Gotham Bay Bridge where the Joker has Black Mask, his secretary and several of his former associates tied up within a semi-trailer.  Just as the Clown Prince of Crime doses them with gasoline and attempts to light up a lighter in order to ignite each of them towards a burning death, Red Hood shows up to confront the fiend.  Bruce narrates that it was Jason’s plan to get the Joker out of Arkham Asylum and that Black Mask was the key figure to make that happen.  Not only that, but it was all a part of Todd’s long-con plan against the criminals, the Clown Prince of Crime and even the Dark Knight as well.

Just as the Joker finally ignites his lighter and drops it onto the criminals in order to begin their incendiary demises, Batman flies in at just the right time as he dumps some extinguishing foam into the trailer in order to douse the blaze.  Afterwards, he manages to pick up the Joker with a grappling hook and line.  However, Red Hood managed to reach his foe before using his knife to cut the line as they disappear into the water.

Later, Jason takes the captured clown to a rundown apartment.  As he waits for Batman’s arrival, he proceeds to get some vengeance by smacking the Joker with a crowbar.  Not too long afterwards, the Caped Crusader arrives at Todd’s chosen destination of Crime Alley.  With the sight of the familiar theater from that fateful night looming nearby, it turns out that this is also where he first met Jason back when he was an orphaned kid who attempted to steal the Batmobile’s tires.  From there, he’s met upon by Red Hood who intends to finish his mission.  However, Batman entered this duel in the hope of saving him from what he’s become.

As the rain begins to fall, Bruce and Jason begin their final clash against each other.  After swapping some blows with their tools & gadgets, they proceed to head towards the rooftop.  During their struggle, Red Hood manages to cut off Batman’s utility belt before Bruce ultimately answers by tackling into Jason as their momentum makes their way onto the top of a nearby church.

From there, Todd manages to pull Wayne’s cowl off of his head before he decides to take off his helmet and reveal his face.  Bruce narrates how at that moment, he felt like a father again as he begs Jason to stop their fighting.  However, Todd simply kicks his helmet over to him before activating a trigger, revealing that his headpiece contained a mini-explosive as Wayne manages to dodge in time.  From there, they resume their brawl.

Eventually, Batman starts to get the upper hand as he flicks an igniter onto the Red Hood’s jacket, forcing Jason to discard it and his gadgets.  As they swing over towards the rundown apartment, Bruce narrates how Todd always thought that it was always a contest of himself against the world and that losing his life initially didn’t change that notion.  While Batman proceeds to smack his former crime-fighting partner around the bathroom, he narrates that he wasn’t going to hold back anymore and that he wanted to prove to Jason that this “contest” of his isn’t about him going up against the world, but himself.

Bruce then shoves Todd through the wall and into the apartment, but Red Hood manages to regain control of the situation by aiming one of his handguns at Batman.  After bringing the tied-up Joker out of the closet, Wayne narrates about how Jason doesn’t blame him for not coming to his rescue in time.  However, he felt dishonored since Bruce didn’t avenge him by killing the Clown Prince of Crime.  From there, Todd gives Wayne his other handgun and forces him to make a decision: Kill either the Joker or his former Robin.  Fortunately, Batman refuses to accept his offers and drops the gun onto the floor.

As he begins to walk away, Bruce narrates how “life isn’t a game and death is never a choice”, since it would’ve undone everything he stood for as Batman.  He goes on to say that he’s thought about taking the Joker out for good every single day, but he just can’t go against the promise he made to his dying parents and thus, he refuses to cave into that “release”.  Angered at the fact that Bruce isn’t going to make either of his preset choices, he proceeds to fire a shot at him.  Fortunately, Batman had a Batarang at the ready as he dodges the bullet before tossing his projectile into the gun barrel, causing it to explode and injure Red Hood’s hand.

However, Jason had one final ultimatum up his sleeve as he activates a trigger.  As Batman discovers some plastic explosives set up within the fireplace that’re set to go off in 20 seconds, he tries to defuse it.  Unfortunately, the newly-freed Joker tackles him as he wants all of them to go out in a blaze of glory.  Fortunately, Bruce manages to punch the crazy clown off of him as he grabs Todd and makes a mad dash for the fire escape.  Suddenly, the timer runs out as the whole building blows up.

Afterwards, Batman emerges from rubble as he searches for Jason, yet only finds a defeated Joker.  As his story ends, Bruce exclaims that he can never stop fighting to protect other people from themselves and from himself.  At that moment, it’s revealed that he’s been telling this tale to Superman himself, Kal-El a.k.a. Clark Kent (voiced by Nolan North).  From there, he tells Wayne that he’s incredibly strong due to all of the inner demons that he’s been constantly fighting.  As such, he commends his friend for opening up and telling this account to him.  Afterwards, this part of the tale ends with Clark promising Bruce that they’ll find Jason.  As Kent attempts to pay for the check, Wayne hilariously reveals that he’s already done so before his friend even showed up.

Now, it’s time for us to go down a different path than how history played out.  If the viewer chooses “Robin Cheats Death”, then Batman still arrives a bit too late before the Bosnian warehouse blows up.  He still searches through the rubble and manages to find Robin’s partially-burned body.  Thankfully, Todd is showing signs of consciousness as Bruce happily discovers that his crime-fighting partner survived.  From there, he tells Jason that he’ll get him “fixed up”.

However, not all is mentally well within Todd as he narrates about how he returned from this near-death experience different.  With numerous stitches, skin grafts and scar tissue upon his body, he spends the next 72 days recovering in Wayne Manor.  As he’s visited by Bruce, Alfred, Dick, Barbara and the family Bat-Hound Ace, Jason narrates about how he’s seeing the Bat-Family’s supportive smiles as false in order to cover up their “pity and fear”.

He even believes that their looking at him like he’s a failed victim that any of them could wind up as.  Not only that, but he sees his fellow supporting figures as “victims of Bruce Wayne”.  From seeing Dick Grayson as an “adopted codependent of his mommy-daddy issues” to Barbara Gordon as someone who was “crippled by a maniac of his creation”, he even blames Alfred Pennyworth for encouraging a “damaged individual” who trains his proteges towards harmful situations.  As such, he secretly grows a hatred towards the whole Bat-Family for taking him in before ultimately getting him nearly-killed.  From there, he manages to sneak out of Wayne Manor and runs away.  Later, he looks over Gotham as he aims to “become more than the dreams and nightmares” that he thinks that the Bat-Family wanted him to be.  As such, he prepares to fight crime his way as Hush.

We then have a montage where he begins his ruthless approach towards Gotham’s criminals by gunning down several of the city’s crime lords.  Later on during a moment when Cheetah was being arrested after fatally slashing a random guy while Batman and Commissioner James Gordon (voiced by Gary Cole) oversee her detainment, Jason manages to execute her with a sniper rifle before taking his leave.  As Bruce investigates where Todd shot the newly-deceased villainess from, Hush narrates about the true kind of Batman that terrifies criminals.  Specifically, one that’s “unchained from his self-imposed moral leash”.  From there, his war on Gotham’s villainous scum continues as he manages to decapitate the Riddler.

The montage then concludes with Jason firing an RPG at Black Mask’s office.  This time however, the major crime boss isn’t able to escape in time as he gets blown out of his building while he’s engulfed in flames.  Ultimately, he meets his grisly end on the street as he slams into a gasoline truck, resulting in a massive explosion.  Over in the Bat Cave, Bruce looks over the bloodshed that his former Robin has caused as a news broadcast mentions that he’s been unable to stop this string of high-profile criminal murders.

We then cut to sometime later as a fully-unbandaged Jason is hanging out on top of the church.  Suddenly, he hears someone commenting about how he’s been able to evade Batman’s grasp for such a long time, yet no one is able to avoid “the league”.  Todd attempts to detonate some hidden explosives, but they get thrown at his feet as he discovers that they’ve been disabled.  From there, he’s approached by the daughter of Ra’s himself, Talia (voiced by Zehra Fazal), who’s also the League of Assassins’ head commander.  Todd draws his weapons and slowly approaches her, while explaining that he’s previously read Batman’s file on her.  However, she then reveals something that Bruce’s dossier failed to mention.  Specifically, it’s a baby boy that she gave birth to named Damian.  Talia then explains that she’s aware of the file exclaiming how she lost her child during the birthing process, but it was actually a lie that she told Bruce in order to spare him from choosing which family he should devote himself to, thus allowing him to return to Jason and forever disconnect all ties with Ra’s & his operations.  Seeing how Todd and her baby have both lost “a father figure”, she tells Jason that Damian still needs one.  As such, Talia wants him to raise her son in order to restore his feeling of family.  He refuses at first, but she makes a tempting offer when she says that they can use the league’s resources in order to hunt down the Joker.  She goes on to say that the Clown Prince of Crime has crossed way too many lines and that unlike her group, Batman will never do all that is necessary to permanently stop that vile fiend.  As such, Jason agrees to her terms and accepts Damian.  From there, this story thread ends with him planning to get Talia’s son “fixed up” and become the key figure that will ultimately “burn down the house of Wayne and al Ghul from the inside”.

Now, it’s time for us to go down the path that has the most rabbit holes for us to venture on: “Batman Saves Robin”.  On this narrative path, Batman actually makes it to the warehouse in time and reunites with Robin.  However, the explosives are set to go off in five seconds as Bruce picks Jason up and dashes for the door.  Unfortunately, they don’t get out in time as the warehouse proceeds to blow up.

Within the flaming rubble, Todd is able to pick himself up.  Unfortunately, he discovers that Bruce has taken the full-blast and is now lying fatally wounded.  Jason gets a radio transceiver from Batman’s utility belt and offers to call for help, but Wayne says that there’s no time for it.  With his dying breath, Bruce tells his crime-fighting partner to promise him that he won’t kill the Joker.  He says that “protecting Gotham” and “helping others” has “healed” him.  As such, he wants Todd to receive that benefit out of absolute care & love from a father to his son.  Wayne also says that he can relate to the burning anger & pain that Jason feels within, but slaying the Joker won’t extinguish it.  Instead, he wants Todd to take his own pain and become stronger not just for the entire Bat-Family, but for Joker as well.  Before Jason even gets the chance to make a decision on his promise, Batman succumbs to his injuries and dies.

From here, the story will take many twists and turns depending on what the viewer chooses to see happen from this juncture.

If the decision is made for him to “Kill The Joker”, we then shift to the funeral where the Bat-Family has Bruce buried next to his parents.  In his narration, Jason says that he immediately went back to the Bat Cave afterwards as he tells both Dick and Barbara that he needed to help with their overall healing by returning to their mission.  He even promises Alfred that they would “capture the Joker together”.  However, that was actually a lie as he wants to find the Clown Prince of Crime by himself and deliver the executional blow.

During his physical healing and his investigation, he would be visited by Superman, Wonder Woman, the Flash and even Nightwing (twice) as they each shared stories of their own personal ventures with Batman in order to help console Todd.

From there, more heroes paid him a visit to tell their tales concerning of their experiences with Bruce.  After hearing so many stories about how these various superpowered heroes had a whole bunch to “unload about a guy with no powers”, he manages to find a relatable healing from this as a fellow “guy with no powers” as he feels more inclusive within the superhero community.

Then on one particular night, Jason arrives at a diner where he catches a newscast about “Batman” stopping a metahuman trafficking operation run by Stagg Industries.  Afterwards, a man starts talking to him about how he thinks that Nightwing is assuming the mantle of the Caped Crusader.  Todd asks him if he seems to know about Batman, to which the guy says that he “knew him” and that “the old Boy Wonder” has claimed the role in order to prevent Gotham from “exploding with crime”.  Jason then attempts to implore the man on his possible connection with Batman, to which he simply says that he’s starting his life over as a result of his professional therapy.  Todd tells him that he’s willing to hear what he has to say in order to help him out.

From there, the man agrees as he tells him of a joke that he once told Batman.  Specifically, it’s about two asylum inmates attempting to flee.  As the joke plays out, Jason slowly realizes that this was the same bit that a familiar criminal uttered and it shares a deep connection with Barbara getting crippled.

With him discovering who the guy truly is, Todd offers to tell Batman that he said “Hello”.  Suddenly, the man realizes who he’s talking to and proceeds to make a familiar smile.  From there, Jason grabs a butter knife and stabs the man in the eye.  As he emits his maniacal laugh, the guy wipes off some of his make-up and reveals himself to be the Joker.  From there, the fatal injury takes its toll as the Clown Prince of Crime goes out with a smile on his face.

Afterwards, Todd gets approached by a pair of cops who’re already present as they attempt to apprehend him.

At this point, the viewer gets to serve as their own judge for this scenario.

If the decision is made for him to “Surrender”, then he gets arrested and is ultimately sentenced to spend the spend the rest of his life behind bars.  As such, this plot line ends with Jason narrating how he’s ultimately disappointed Bruce.  However, he has no remorse over what he did and he now intends to “serve justice from the inside”.

If the viewer instead decides that he should “Attack”, then Todd manages to disarm the two officers and knock them out.  From there, he narrates about how he’s ultimately let Bruce down.  Not only that, but the Joker made him realize that “evil can’t be cured, only killed”.

As such, he takes up a new persona called Red Robin.  After he begins his tenure by gunning down a purse-snatcher, he proceeds to unleash some handgun justice upon several of Gotham’s crime lords before he snipes an arrested Cheetah and evades Dick Grayson a.k.a. Batman.

Finally, he fires an RPG at Black Mask’s building.  While the crime boss does manage to reach the stairs, he’s not able to duck in time as the blasted door ricochets down and decapitates him.

We then transition into a mall as Red Robin is in the middle of a shootout with a pair of thugs, while innocent shoppers are trapped amongst the raging bulletstorm.  Jason is able to take out the two henchmen before he’s forced to take cover.

From there, he proceeds to take on the main culprit: Harvey Dent a.k.a. Two-Face (also voiced by Gary Cole).  He proceeds to open fire as Todd is forced to take cover at a help desk.  During the intense action, Harvey is able to toss a grenade into the booth as Jason is forced to hop out before it explodes.  However, a giant cell phone display falls over as a result and smacks him on his head.

Even though he’s able to lift the massive model off of himself, he’s still a bit groggy from the hit.  He then sees one of his handguns and attempts to reach for it, but Two-Face manages to shoot his hand.  Afterwards, Harvey kicks the firearm away and proceeds to taunt him in order to find out what’s driving Todd into his ruthless venture.  Red Robin tries to use a surprise taser on him, but Two-Face manages to smack it away before deciding that it’s “daddy issues”.  From there, he tells Jason that he has different things to worry about.  Specifically, whether he’ll wind up dying slowly with his blood spilled or if he’ll get a quick death via a bullet in his head.  With the terrified patrons being forced to watch, Harvey proceeds to take out his coin and let lady luck decide on Todd’s fate.

For this story however, we’ll get to decide which side it’ll ultimately land on.

If the viewer chooses “Heads”, then Two-Face declares Jason guilty and is about to carry out his death sentence.  Suddenly, he gets shocked by a young boy who managed to discreetly get Todd’s taser.

Shortly after Red Robin returns to his feet, he takes out his gun and prepares to execute Harvey.  Suddenly, the boy draws Jason’s discarded firearm on him and begs him not to murder the bad guy.  Todd says that evil is incapable of being “cured”, but the kid begs to differ and argues that villainous figures should instead be “caged” and “rehabilitated”.  He then tells Red Robin that he wasn’t like this when he used to work alongside Batman.  Not only that, but taking Two-Face’s life won’t change anything.  From there, the boy tells Jason that he must take his pain and become stronger than Harvey.  At that moment, Todd realizes that the boy’s words are paralleling what Bruce told him with his dying breath, especially with protecting others within Gotham.

Thankfully, Red Robin throws his gun away before he asks the boy what his name is.  The kid reveals himself to be Tim Drake (voiced by Nick Carson) before we shift into Jason’s narration as he says that Two-Face’s nearly-delivered death sentence opened his eyes on what he’s done within his crime-fighting venture.  Meanwhile, a young boy inspired him to rebound and fight the noble fight again.  From there, this story thread ends with Todd refocusing himself on Bruce’s mission as he reunites with the Bat-Family.  Not only that, but Tim Drake has been brought into their world as he takes on the moniker of Bat-Kid.

Should the viewer decide to go with Tails”, then Harvey tells Red Robin that fate isn’t with him before Jason orders Dent to carry out his death sentence.  However, Two-Face tells him how he “used to stand for something” when he fought alongside Batman.  However, he’s become a nobody due to his recent actions.  As a result, he’s become feared by Gotham’s citizens while the current Batman is trying to capture him.  As such, Harvey decides to spare Red Robin’s life and let him live as “a perfect failure” before he makes his escape.

From there, this plot line ends with Bruce’s words ringing in his head as Jason returns to the Bat-Family and fully retires his crime-fighting persona while promising to be strong for both Dick & Barbara.

Now, let’s backtrack to Bruce Wayne’s death and see what happens should our troubled Robin decide to “Capture The Joker”.  Like before, Bruce gets buried with his parents.  As he stands over the grave alongside the Bat-Family, Todd narrates about an internal war stirring within his head and heart.  Specifically, it’s between his “murderous rage” and his “promise to Bruce”.  As he eventually returns to the Bat Cave, he vows to fight “his anger for the mission”.  During his investigative hunt for the Joker, he refused to see any visitor or accept any of their condolences.  Mainly, he needed to use his pain in order to maintain his strong drive and come up with a plan to ultimately “bring Joker to justice”.  As he suits up to become the Red Hood however, he gets some stirring mental whispers telling him to “Kill Joker”.

From there, he sets his plan into motion in order to lure the Clown Prince of Crime out.  First, he intimidates a group of mob bosses in order to take control over their operations and “mitigate their damage on Gotham”.  Then, he disrupts an illegal trafficking operation while keeping those involved alive in order for them to inform the city’s entire criminal underworld that this entire municipality “belongs to the Red Hood”.  Finally, he completes his non-lethal campaign by firing a special rocket towards Black Mask’s office.  Fortunately, it then launches a special dart that lodges itself into his window before unveiling a “BANG” flag inside of it.  During all of this, Jason was able to perform his duty while constantly hearing an inner voice uttering “Kill Them All”.

It ultimately culminates in a standoff upon the Gotham Bay Bridge where the Joker has captured the crime bosses that’re under the Red Hood’s watch.  He doses them in gasoline and prepares to roast them all, when he’s suddenly approached by Jason himself.  He informs the Joker that he set this all up just to get his “attention” before he mysteriously vanishes from sight.  Just as the Clown Prince of Crime gleefully asks where he went, Todd manages to sneak up and drag him off of the semi-trailer with a crowbar.

From there, they proceed to fight each other as the Joker manages to swipe Jason’s knife from him.  Red Hood counters by using a smoke grenade, where it proceeds to envelope the area within a thick layer as James Gordon tells his fellow officers to start wearing their gas masks.

Back within the struggle, Todd nearly gets the drop on the Joker with a attack from the smoke.  From there, they continue their brawl before Red Hood headbutts the killer clown in the face.  He then manages to grab an attempted punch, but the fist turned out to be a fake-out as the Joker manages to kick Jason towards a car that’s on its side before it seemingly rolls onto him.

Joker then goes in to check before he suddenly has a car door kicked open onto him, thanks to Red Hood having evaded a potential crushing due to curling up into its sunroof.  From there, Todd ends the fight by smacking the Clown Prince of Crime with a swift facial hit from his crowbar.