False Faces [Jason Todd] Week 7: Jan. 20-Feb. 2

Black Mask

The Renegade Robins Club introduces two brand-new rogues for Batman: Darkwolf and Cutter! Oh, and some dude named Black Mask premieres in these issues, too. (Like that guy will ever appear in a movie, right?) Catwoman and Calendar Man drop by as well.

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Across the Community
  • Jason’s pal Roy Harper is still the focus over at Characters of DC, and some of the stories even feature Jay himself!

  • World of Bats is looking at the aftermath of Jason’s death in Batman: Year Three, and Jason’s post-Flashpoint origins are explored in one of the featured tie-ins to Zero Year.

Bird Sightings
  • These issues coincide with the first few months of Crisis on Infinite Earths, and Jason Todd even had a cameo in COIE #5. As we find out in the issues we’re reading this week, the Monitor is the one who hires Calendar Man to kill Batman!

  • Jason’s most significant appearance outside of the Bat-books to date occurs in Superman Annual #11, aka Alan Moore’s “For the Man Who Has Everything.” One of our discussion questions is based on this iconic story.

  • Catwoman and Vicki have a history of fighting over Bruce, as depicted in Detective Comics #521 and Batman #355.

  • Calendar Man first appeared in Detective Comics #259 and had appeared more recently in Batman #312. His gimmick includes wearing a new costume for every caper (themed around seasons in his first appearance and days of the week in his second). This arc introduces his real name, Julian Day.

  • We’re skipping Detective Comics #549-550 due to a lack of Jason Todd, but World of Bats had previously covered #549 here.

Does Batman need Robin? Jay thinks so:

Here’s our schedule: 2020-01-20T06:00:00Z2020-02-02T06:00:00Z

Week 7 Reading (Nine Issues)

Note: One issue in this arc is missing from DC Universe. A link to a summary with images has been provided.

I. Darkwolf

  1. Detective Comics #548
  2. Batman #382

II. Bruce Wayne

  1. Batman #383

III. Calendar Man

Missing Issue: Batman #384 (Summary)
4. Detective Comics #551
5. Batman #385

IV. Cutter

  1. Detective Comics #552

V. Black Mask

  1. Batman #386 (Optional: No Jason Todd)
  2. Detective Comics #553
  3. Batman #387
Discussion Questions
  1. What was your favorite Jason Todd moment this week? Can you relate to Bruce’s day without sleep? Are you as buff as Vicki Vale?
  2. What did you think of Calendar Man’s story? Black Mask’s? Darkwolf’s? Cutter’s?
  3. Black Mask’s debut tale was still canon after the Crisis. What other stories from this era would you retain in continuity?
  4. What did you think about Green Arrow’s run-in with the law? Was Ollie in the right?
  5. If you have read Superman Annual #11, what did you think of Alan Moore’s depiction and use of Jason?

Next issue: Alfred talks to HR.

Poll Question: Who is your favorite villain in these issues?

  • Darkwolf. Duh.
  • Calendar Man!
  • Cutter, I guess?
  • Black Mask!
  • Does Catwoman count?
  • Bruce’s insomnia!

0 voters

We’ve all been there, Jay.


Just finished #383, and y’know, I voted “Bruce’s insomnia” on the poll there as a gag, but now reading through that issue, I think it is legit his worst enemy, yeesh! I really liked that issue – it’s rare to see Bruce have such “normal” problems like that.

Also, looking at the summary for #384, I’m surprised that it isn’t on here yet, I figured anything with The Monitor/a Crisis tie-in would have been digitalized by now.


It’s really unfortunate. The issue is actually quite good. It’s the first time that Calendar Man ever received much in the way of depth, and much of the issue is dedicated to his conflicted feelings over the thought of killing Batman.

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Yeah, and seeing the summary describe all the different outfits he wears to fit the holidays made me think “Gah, I want to see the undoubtedly horrible outfits!”


Well, you can see two of them in this Tumblr post.

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Oof, it’s so garish. I love it. :laughing:


By the way, am I the only one who gets a bit of a Bruce Timm vibe from Batman #383’s cover?

Batman 383 cover

Not that it carries through into the interior art…

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I can definitely see it with the outline Batman, not so much with the seedy crime elements around him.

And it’s funny, when Batman’s talking to the gargoyle at the end, I was half expecting him to call the gargoyle “Bruce.” Then I remembered that was Spider-Man’s thing and Batman’s the reason why he calls the gargoyle Bruce.


Yeah, that’s what I meant, and I nearly edited the comment to clarify that point, but I didn’t want one of those ugly edit icons in the top corner of my post. :stuck_out_tongue:

Eh, that always happens on posts with photos, I think because the forum software does something to resize them as an edit after.

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My favorite Jason moment was his refusal to sit on the sidelines just because some loon na!we Calendar Man threatened him. And then talking Batman into letting him participate.

I’ve had insomnia before, and been too tired to sleep…I have a feeling we can all relate.

I am not as currently buff as Vicki, but I’ve been working out all January so I may get there again. Right now I have a definite dad-bod.

I liked all of them. This is my first time reading the Black Mask issue, so those stood out to me.

Man, somewhere along the way I’m just completely stopped being about continuity. Just tell me some good stories and I’m good.

Speaking of “tell me a good story,” I stopped reading the Arrow backups several issues ago. Not doing it for me.

I loved it. I liked seeing him meet Wondy for the first time, and I loved how Moore used Jason as an instrumental part of winning.

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Oh, and that insomnia issue is one of my favorite Batman issues ever.


Yeah I loved that issue as well. I laughed in a few places even.


Alright… took me a while to get through all of these. Like other members have said, the issue about Bruce being exhausted and tired was fantastic and by far the best issue out of this set.

The other stories… eh. I get that this is a different era from current Batman, but it seems like every street level thug or bad guy who gives himself a name can almost go toe to toe with Batman fighting skill-wise. I don’t know Calendar Man’s backstory, but he stood toe to toe with Batman in one issue, barely escaped Robin in another, and then was defeated by both working together.

The Cutter issue I more skimmed than read. Felt like fluff or filler.

Black Mask was, eh.

I haven’t been reading the Green Arrow back-ups. I usually read these on mobile so it makes it a little hard to read these books back to back since the stories jump from one series to the other and less incentive to read Green Arrow back ups.

Robin came across as smart and thoughtful in the Superman Annual. Like he came up with a plan and followed through whereas the other heroes were more reacting to what was going on around them. But he also was outside of the main action of the story with allowed him to do that. Probably why he was included, otherwise why bring Robin to Superman’s rather intimate 2 guest party.

One thing that has stood out to me in this week and last week (the only weeks I’ve read so far) is that Jason continues to make a lot of reference to his origins. I’m sure if they tried they could talk about the circus a little bit more, but there is a good amount of “because of the circus I can do xyz:”

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Again, I wish that the missing issue from this week was on here. It provides Julian Day’s backstory. Anyway, Calendar Man had appeared twice before, once in a 1958 story by Bill Finger and again in a 1979 story by Len Wein. In both stories, he was a formidable opponent for Batman both mentally and physically, so the arc we’re reading now is following a precedent.

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That makes more sense. I’m more familiar of Calendar Man from more recent appearances - Long Halloween, tv shows, etc. Where commits crimes but isn’t necessarily physically intimidating.


I prefer the physically intimidating verson of Calender Man to his later portrayals. He may be a goofy themed villain but at least he looks like he could be a real threat to Batman in these issues.

Those costumes of his are great too.

@AlexanderKnox- I dug through my long boxes today trying to see if I had that missing issue but no such luck. Must have been in one of the boxes I lost in a flood years ago.

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Same here, I’m more used to him being a creepy Hannibal Lector type. Though now that I think about it, the Calendar Man in the Arkham games is an absolute unit and might put up a good fight if needed.

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In regards to these issues, I’ll just say that I found them a pleasant relief after the tedium that was the Night-Slayer arc. He seemed determined to ruin every Nocturna story. :stuck_out_tongue:

Darkwolf is the first hint at where some of the late 80s Batman stories are going (international terrorists and foreign assassins!), though the costume is utterly silly. I do love the hokey name, though. If he had appeared a decade later, he’d undoubtedly be called Daarkwulf, and he’d be covered in thousands of pouches.