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Batman: A Death in the Family

(Batman (1940) #426-429)

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4.07  ·  Rating details ·  22,446 ratings  ·  476 reviews
Batman readers were allowed to vote on the outcome of the story and they decided that Robin should die! As the second person to assume the role of Batman's sidekick, Jason Todd had a completely different personality than the original Robin. Rash and prone to ignore Batman's instructions, Jason was always quick to act without regard to consequences. In this fatal instance, ...more
Paperback, 144 pages
Published December 1st 1995 by DC Comics (first published 1988)
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Community Reviews

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Sean Gibson
Oct 09, 2016 rated it liked it
As someone who has written a serialized story that solicited input from the reading public to determine the course of the plot (see the greatest adventure tale ever told, The Chronicle of Heloise & Grimple), I fully appreciate the gimmick of canvassing readers to help shape a story. On the other hand, there’s something so horrifically impersonal about the idea of comic readers calling a 900 number to weigh in on whether Robin/Jason Todd should live or die (as opposed to their usual reason fo ...more
Kemper
Treasure of the Rubbermaids 8: Dial 1-900 For Murder

The on-going discoveries of priceless books and comics found in a stack of Rubbermaid containers previously stored and forgotten at my parent’s house and untouched for almost 20 years. Thanks to my father dumping them back on me, I now spend my spare time unearthing lost treasures from their plastic depths.

The Robin character is something that has been a problem for Batman stories since comics ‘matured’. As Batman was turned into an increasing
...more
Mizuki
Jun 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
"Gayness" he said, "is built into Batman. I'm not using gay in the pejorative sense, but Batman is very, very gay. There's just no denying it. Obviously as a fictional character he's intended to be heterosexual, but the basis of the whole concept is utterly gay. I think that's why people like it. All these women fancy him. He doesn't care—he's more interested in hanging out with the old guy and the kid."

-Grant Morrison on Batman

(quote took from The Caped Crusade: Batman and the Rise of Nerd Cul
...more
StoryTellerShannon
This best selling 1980s graphic novel let the readers decide if the second Robin, Jason Todd, would live or die after an explosion. In this late 80s graphic novel there's an actual copy of the advertisement and the 900 number to call to decide upon the fate of the Boy Wonder. The fans decided they didn't like Jason Todd much and voted to kill him and no that isn't a spoiler based on the title and cover. Apparently the vote was close. Over 10,000 votes were cast, with the final vote being 5,343 v ...more
Delirious Disquisitions
Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: fans of retro Batman, Batman & Robin, classic comics, Joker, Tim Drake
You should read this if you like: retro Batman, Batman & Robin, classic comics, Joker, Dick Greyson, Tim Drake, Batman/Robin dynamic.

I know this is a classic but some elements of this story just feel so outdated. Jason Todd's death happens with some drama but since it was to be expected it didn't really pack much of a punch. As someone who would have totally voted yes to put an end to his annoying character I am glad we finally got him out of the picture. His death, though, is significant if
...more
Sam Quixote
May 04, 2012 rated it it was ok
SPOILERS

Joker busts out of Arkham Asylum (the place is useless, really) and heads to the Middle East to sell a cruise missile he's had in storage, and Batman follows to stop him. Meanwhile Jason Todd aka Robin is working through some emotional issues and finds out that the woman he thought was his mother wasn't his biological mother so he sets off to track down his real mum.

I know this book is always on peoples' lists of "must-read" Batman stories but, besides Jason's death, there really isn't a
...more
Paul Nash
May 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I've always enjoyed this story and how truly insane the Joker really is. I grew up on the late 70's and early 80's comics and even tho the art is nowhere near where it is today, I just love the nostalgic feel they have.

These oldies but goodies will always have a place in my heart! When I was little, my grandfather, "Papps" (God rest his soul), took me and my brother every Friday to the comic book store, without fail, and bought us whatever we wanted. So every time I reread one of these stories,
...more
Lᴀʏᴀ  Rᴀɴɪ
I first knew about Jason Todd through the story Under the Hood written by Judd Winick which turned out to be his resurrection story. I watched the animation film with Supernatural's Jensen Ackles as Todd's voice actor and then I read the collected edition a few months after. To explain briefly, Jason Todd was the second Robin who succeeded Dick Grayson shortly after the latter quit and then joined the Teen Titans instead. Bruce Wayne first met Jason in the infamous Crime Alley when he was on p ...more
Roy
Apr 06, 2018 rated it liked it
It felt strange having known that the readers voted for this ending. You also get an impression of the ending from the title and the front cover, so if you dont see it coming, Im not sure youve paid attention. Just was a little predictable with characters actions and too over the top in some dialogue scenes. Probably wont satisfy everyone, as shown by all the mixed reviews.
Donovan
Jun 06, 2014 rated it liked it


This left a sour taste. I just don't feel right about Jason Todd's death. It doesn't feel justified.

Jason is reckless and nihilistic following his parents' death, so Bats puts him on the bench. Soon after, though, Jason learns that his birth mother is alive, and he's narrowed it down to three women living in Lebanon, Israel and Ethiopia. The Joker is raided and he flees to...you guessed it...Lebanon, to sell a cruise missile to some Shiite terrorists. And Bats follows the Joker not knowing Jaso
...more
Kayla
Jan 02, 2013 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Briar's Reviews
Batman: A Death in the Family was an amazing collection of comics full of the nerdy Batman I always loved!

Every year on my birthday I splurge a little bit and buy myself a comic book. I bought this one year ago and totally slacked on reading it and posting my review. So now is my time to shine and finally reveal my thoughts on it!

So far, this is one of my favourite series of comics in the Batman universe. Is it the best ever? No. Is it a hit or miss set of comics? Yes. But I absolutely love th
...more
Eric
Jun 24, 2008 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Hardcore Batman fans
Recommended to Eric by: Joe Carl
My co-worker lent this to me with the Batman: Hush graphic novels and told me to read this first. I followed his suggestion and will admit that knowing this background information helped me to understand Hush. However, I would be hard pressed to find another reason to read this comic, other than the obvious one -- to come to understand why and how Robin died.

As for reasons not to read this comic, a few immediately jump to mind. The illustration is dated and unimpressive, the plot is contrived, a
...more
Lashaan Balasingam (Bookidote)
You can find my review on our blog by clicking here.

Let’s cut to the chase. If the cover of this trade paperback doesn’t single-handedly give away one of the biggest events in Batman’s history, then something’s wrong. Aside from the fact that Batman : A Death in the Family is considered to be one of the most important reads for comic fans and that the death of a Robin is seldom tragic, this volume was a stunning disappointment. I’ll be frank, I jumped into the volume without prior knowledge of t
...more
Kat
Aug 30, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5
Chris Gordon
Wow! I am very impressed at how high in quality A Death in the Family turned out to be. I'll be honest, the stigma of this graphic novel being a bit aged and far before my time initially turned me off to the idea that it could be as worthwhile as some of the contemporary graphic novels I've read and enjoyed. I figured, at most, I would get a decent story out of it and not much more. Boy, was I wrong. Batman: A Death in the Family is by and large one of the best written and most enthralling Batma ...more
Ill D
Oct 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comic-reviews
Malpractice, kiddie porn, international terrorism! Oh My!

Or perhaps should I say, Great Scott?

While silly schemes/skullduggery evidenced in the 1960's led Adam West TV serials might have merited such a silly expletives, a more proper exclamation in A Death in the Family would probably be, "Oh F@&*!"

Not only are we graced with a hard story but a particularly dark one. And this narrative is darker than the darkest of freshly laid down asphalts. Again we are visited by the eternal Batman and hi
...more
Brooke W.
Dec 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
As someone who jumped on board with Batman comics during DC's "New 52", this certainly is a must red for the new "Red Hood and the Outlaws" storyline. I have always known about the general premise of the "A Death in the Family" before reading it, but it ended up liking it much better than I predicted. Sure, you can definitely tell that this comic came out in the 80s with it's format and artwork, but it really is a great look at Jason Todd, and reflects to a fantastic degree who he was and what h ...more
Tiffany
Nov 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: batman, favorites
I didn't know Tim Drake was named after Tim Burton. I'm not sure how I feel about that. I guess you learn something new every day.

Anyway, I love Tim! He's so adorable and lovable just as the writers intended for him to be. The art is a little off and the writing is a little cheesy, but that's what you should expect from these older comics. The 5 stars are for the story of course: the end of Jason Todd as Robin and the beginning of Tim Drake. This is one of the greatest stories in all of Batman h
...more
Melissa
Mar 04, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: comics, don-t-bother
This was such an utter disappointment, I can't even put into words everything that was wrong with this story. I was going to give it two stars because I did enjoy the first half of it but it honestly doesn't even deserve that. The Joker becomes a UN AMBASSADOR FOR IRAN, let that sink in for a moment. The writing was abysmal and the art was extremely basic. I'm not sure why this has been added to so many "must read" lists.
Logan
Jul 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Amazing! These books that I've read long ago but have never reviewed, or becoming more and more frequent, and its always the really good ones, what's wrong with me? So to put this short, this is definitely in my top 5 favourite batman stories! Of course it does mark a sad moment in batman comic history, but symbolises one of batmans failures, and proves that even batman can't always save the day! Honestly a very moving story, and one every batman fan has to read!
Javier Muñoz
Esta es una historia con gran incidencia en la historia de batman, todo un fenómeno mediático en su momento debido a que se dejó en manos de los lectores (mediante una encuesta telefónica) la supervivencia de Jason Todd.

La idea de Starlin era que tenía que quitarse de en medio a robin porque no tenía sentido que batman pusiera en peligro constante a un adolescente (hoy en día es aún peor, porque ese adolescente es su hijo, pero bueno, se ve que algunos nunca aprenden la lección) y creó una hist
...more
Amber
Apr 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
There! I’ve finally read it!

Batman in the older comics has a much grittier, detective vibe it seems. Or maybe this modern stuff is so different.

Good to meet you, Jason Todd. Sorry it ended up like this!

Now on to write some fanfiction....
Charlotte
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
not okay
Roxanne
Jun 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
I did put off reading this one for a while because i just thought it would be too much angst, i mean i know it's batman and angst is his middle name but there is a limit, however this at points is quite campy very 60's tv batman, like joker raiding his closet for his sunglasses and the delivery of his jokes are so deadpan they're spot on his character in this is just balls to wall crazy. The plot you've just gotta go with it, yeah it was mucho coincidental everyone ends up in the middle east tog ...more
Brandy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michael Benavidez
Sep 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
So this collects the ultimate moment in Batman, where things got real. it shows that it wasn't just a grown, rich man and little boy in tights fighting crime. It shows that Batman is human, the situations are dangerous, life threatening, and the Joker is not to be messed with.
So this is one of the earliest comics of Batman I read, and I can't help but notice the art. See in the current Batman books I have, the art is dark, atmospheric. it's Batman's style, and it fits him. Here though, the art
...more
Laura Pamplona
Jul 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
My first mmm Comic? Yes. Well, my best friend is a know-it-all when it comes to batman and sent me a bunch of Batman comics straight from Peru! So, being this the first time reading comics I have to say i enjoyed it a lot, enough to do it again. I love how the story develops and you can not really infer as you would on a regular book... (not sure if this is because i had no previous knowledge when i read it? May be.)
At the end i had strong feelings about Robin, I just didn't like the kid. He so
...more
Eric Mikols
Jan 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: batman
This is one of those classic stories I never got around to reading, or had much interest in until lately. I had no real connection to Jason Todd except from the Under the Red Hood stories (and the movie). While reading this book, I wasn't sold on Jason as a likable character, though his quest was sympathatic. The Joker is off the wall throughout, even if the end twist is pretty darn stupid. The real story, Jason Todd's search and end, are very well told and I like the Middle Eastern setting for ...more
Nerdish Mum
This is a must read for all Batman fans, its incredibly well written, the artwork is on point and the story is epic. I've always known what happens in this book (these comics) but I didn't know how much we learnt about Jason Todd and his back story. I really enjoyed the insight into what makes him who he is and who he becomes. I also think the people who phoned in to vote for the outcome made the right decision as this story would have lost something if Jason hadn't been "killed". If you haven't ...more
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James P. "Jim" Starlin is an American comic book writer and artist. With a career dating back to the early 1970s, he is best known for "cosmic" tales and space opera; for revamping the Marvel Comics characters Captain Marvel and Adam Warlock; and for creating or co-creating the Marvel characters Thanos and Shang-Chi, Master of Kung Fu. Death and suicide are recurring themes in Starlin's work: Pers ...more

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