Batman: Under the Red Hood

08 Jan 2015

The story begins with shots of Ra’s al Ghul, the Joker beating up Robin, and Batman racing the rescue. Although this is an obvious bit of foreshadowing, it is also an important setup for those not familiar with the fate of Jason Todd, the second Robin. It’s also not a suprise that Joker features in the story (even if you don’t know about what happened to Todd), if you are aware of his origin as told in The Killing Joke.

One thing that struck me during the opening credits is that blood and gore were omitted from the graphics although the sense of violence remained. You see Joker beating Robin with a crowbar, and the only wounds he winds up with are a torn mask and bloody lip.

Through the arrival of the Red Hood in Gotham, we learn more about Batman’s morality and sense of justice. How is it that he has not killed the psychopathic criminals he faces time and again, who have killed so many countless others? The choices Batman leave you wondering if he cares most about those he loves, his moral code, or himself and his own identity.

This movie had some good fight scenes including one where the Red Hood and Batman fight cybernetic ninjas. There’s also some interesting interplay between Alfred and Batman. I like when they interact since Alfred is the closest thing to a father that Bruce has. I love that this movie had both the Joker and Ra’s, who I think are Batman’s greatest nemeses.

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