DC Universe, the new streaming service airing the live-action series ‘Titans’, is asking subscribers if they want to see the newly introduced Jason Todd die. Todd, played by Curran Walters, is the Robin who replaced the show’s Dick Grayson as Batman’s sidekick after Dick quit the job. This question mirrors a 1988 poll ran by DC during the ‘A Death in the Family’ story arc in which readers could call one of two 1-900 numbers to decide Jason’s fate during the event’s cliffhanger. The phones were open 36 hours and cost 50 cents per call. After over 10,000 calls were made, the fans’ judgment was clear.
In the following issue, Batman was too late to save Robin from a brutal beating by the Joker and a subsequent explosion. Current readers may say, “But wait, I just read a story with Jason Todd as the Red Hood!” Well, yes. He returned to life when the Superboy of our universe altered reality by punching through dimensions. No, really.
Modern fans of the show appear to like the character more than readers in the 80s. The current poll has 70% of subscribers (26,251 of them at the time of writing) in favor of Todd surviving. This poll is just for fun, with no real bearing on the direction of the show, but it is safe to say that Jason’s fate will be different from that of the comics.
‘Titans’ has been careful to not feature Batman directly and the same will likely be true for the Joker. The rights to those characters are still film-centric for the moment. Todd could still die by some other means, if for no other reason than to open up the position for other Robins we know are in Batman’s future. The show has clearly set up Todd to be the lesser Robin; a hothead who acts in ways both Dick and Bruce do not approve. If Todd does die, don’t be surprised if Dick is present as part of the conflict.