There once was a hooded outlaw, who tried his best to abide by the law. But then, one day, he changed, his way, by punching everybody in the jaw! Want to know more? Then please ignore the following adventure created by Scott Lobdell, Pete Woods, Rex Lokus, and published by DC Comics in August, 2019.

TO QUOTE Helen Hollick: “Change has to come for life to struggle forward.

Over the past four issues, we’ve seen Jason Todd become a respectable casino owner and accumulate a network of appropriate associates around him.

But why? Why has he done this? What could have possibly motivated Jason to steal Cobblepot’s criminal empire and turn his back on Batman and the rest of his allies? Well, that’s what Bunker wants to know, along with a certain umbrella twirling villain who’s recently broken free from his cage! Now, to find out more, please pick up issue 36 of Red Hood: Outlaw, today. In the meantime though, here, check this out…

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this episode because the artwork was bold, expressive, and very dynamic on the page, while the story in itself managed to deliver a fairly solid finale. After all, Scott Lobdell carefully resolved most of the tangled plot lines he previously set up, before introducing Jason to the up-and-coming summer event, ‘Year of the Villain’.  What now follows are four points I’d like to raise about this particular episode in order to tell you what I thought of it.

1) Jason: To me, the best part of the entire book was how Jason’s personality was graciously redefined. So, long gone is the hot-headed, vindictive, upstart that was unable to move forward, and here to stay is a much more nuanced character that now believes in second chances. Seriously, folks, it has taken Lobdell nine whole years to crystallize Jason’s persona and show us what he ultimately stands for. Namely, redemption, compassion, and a modicum of respect!

2) Isabel: Even though Jason’s old flame didn't have a huge part to play in this month’s episode, that doesn’t necessarily mean she isn’t significant within the bigger picture! Well, let’s face it, Jason seems to care for Isabel very, very much, and even promised to see her again when he next comes back to Gotham. So, fingers crossed, he’ll stick to his promise and we will get to see their fractured romance flourish further down the line. Otherwise, it'll be, bye-bye babe, and so long...

3) Dog: Yes! Her. The bitch. Also known as that mean-looking mutt Jason picked up in Mexico at the end of issue 30. Well, without giving too much away, you might like to know that she finally gets her dues by the end of this book and even returns the favor. Apart from that, though, please remember, with the good...

4) The Bad: ...also comes the bad, which in this case means that certain parts of the plot didn’t feel quite right. Tonally, at least, and included things like the pacing of each scene (which was rushed and slightly disjointed), Bunker’s interaction with Jason (which seemed very abrupt and out of character), as well as Oswald Cobblepot’s new status quo (which was interesting but not very memorable). So, more or less, I’m afraid to say that this episode did have a couple of drawbacks, and most of them affected its mood and its overall execution.

So, in conclusion, I would just like to say that despite having its numerous ups and downs, at the end of the day, Scott Lobdell still managed to safely land the ‘Prince of Gotham’ storyline with a very satisfying ending. It’s also worth mentioning that this will be the last issue drawn by Pete Woods and colored by Rex Lokus. So, in many ways, next month will be a brand new start for Jason and the rest of the crew! Care to come along for the ride? Go on, it’ll be fun!

Since this issue marks the end of the ‘Prince of Gotham’ storyline, I thought that it would be a pretty good idea to musically match it up with the following song, 'Anthem', performed by Leonard Cohen.

Personally, I just loved listening to Mr. Cohen’s lyrics as they encouraged people to ‘stop dwelling on the past and start facing the future’, which is a sentiment that perfectly complements Jason’s new outlook on life. 

A noticeable theme that came out of this issue mainly focused on the notion that some people need to move on and find their own path in life. So, not that different from a hatchling leaving the nest, and growing into a fully-fledged bird! 

At the end of this episode, Wingman’s secret identity is finally revealed, and boy, what a surprise it truly is!  So, out of the following eight candidates, let’s see if you can guess who’s hidden behind his mask? I mean, could it be…

  1. The Joker.
  2. Bane.
  3. Bruce Wayne.
  4. Tim Drake.
  5. Dick Grayson.
  6. Lex Luthor.
  7. Willis Todd.
  8. Donald Trump.

*** This review was brought to you by Adan, Comic Lad Extraordinaire.

RED HOOD: OUTLAW #36 RED HOOD: OUTLAW #36 Reviewed by David Andrews on August 06, 2019 Rating: 5

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