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What If Jason Todd Lives?

Image: Rick Leonardi/DC Comics

It’s one of the most infamous stories in DC’s long history: the handful of public phone-in votes that decided that the Joker should take a crowbar to Jason Todd’s face and leave him a bloodied, dead pulp. It’s comics of course, so Jason eventually got better(?), but fans and the publisher alike have long been fascinated with what could’ve been—and now the latter’s actually imagining it.

We’ve seen over the years in fits and starts, the potential for what could’ve happened if that infamous phone-in vote storyline had gone Jason’s way, but now DC will imagine it outright in Death in the Family: Robin Lives!

A new four-issue miniseries from J.M. DeMatteis and artist Rick Leonardi will pick up immediately off from the original alternate ending to 1988’s Batman #428an iteration if which has been in DC’s vaults for decades, and then actually printed last year in a facsimile re-release of the classic issue—and sees a brutalized, but alive Jason Todd begin to plot his revenge against Joker for nearly killing him.

Image for article titled DC Comics Asks: What If Jason Todd Lives?

Image: Rick Leonardi/DC Comics

“Continuing this classic, and controversial, story and following in the footsteps of Jim Starlin and Jim Aparo, two creators I greatly admire, has been both a challenge and a joy,” DeMatteis said in a press release accompanying the announcement. “This is a great opportunity to tell a story that’s big on action, but also takes a very deep dive into the heads of our main characters as we ponder what would have happened if Jason Todd had survived The Joker’s brutal attack. And having a master like Rick Leonardi bringing it to life visually? I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

The first issue of Death in the Family: Robin Lives! is set to hit shelves July 10.


Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.

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