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Interview: Scott Lobdell on Death of the Family, Red Robin & Jason Todd Fighting in a Towel

Joker's crazy scheme is infiltrating the pages of both TEEN TITANS and RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS.

With Death of the Family underway, both Batman and Joker have been extremely busy. There's another person that has been busy in all this as well, Scott Lobdell. The crossover is seeping into two of Lobdell's series, TEEN TITANS and RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS. Things won't be going too smoothly for Tim Drake or Jason Todd in these issues.

We had the chance to ask him a few questions and he revealed information not just about the crossover but some upcoming elements about Roy Harper and Superman as well.

TEEN TITANS #15

Comic Vine: How many interactions has Tim Drake had with Joker in the New 52 past? Have they had a bunch of encounters since we don't really know everything that has or hasn't happened?

Scott Lobell: I'm sure they did. Like I know you've had jobs before this one. Since we know each other, I know you work here but I don't look closely at the previous years. I'm assuming they have. It's been said that most of what happen to Tim as Robin in the pre-New 52 has happened to him as Red Robin in the current version. I think that people, to whatever degree, can align the previous Bat-continuity so most of the interactions with Joker and the rest of the stories have taken place. Only as Red Robin and not as Robin.

CV: Can we assume there isn't a personal grudge against him like there would be with Jason or Barbara Gordon?

SL: I think the extent of Joker's animosity towards Tim would be that Joker felt that by destroying Jason, he was cutting the heart out of Batman. The fact that Batman survived and suddenly there's another sidekick there to take his place, I'd imagine set Joker's teeth on edge. With his teeth being as massive as they are, that'd probably be a painful experience for him. I think that he definitely sees Red Robin as a character he'd rather had not stepped in to provide emotional support at a time when Batman most needed it. Because as we know now, that's a role that Joker sort of saved for himself.

== TEASER ==

CV: Will the encounter with the Joker only involve Tim or will the other Teen Titans get involved or pulled in?

SL: The Teen Titans show up in Gotham to try to rescue Tim when they discover he's been kidnapped. The Joker, who is generally not a character that plays well with metahumans, rather than try to deal with them himself while he has all the Bat-Family encounters going on, has set up a situation that is going to keep both the Teen Titans and the Outlaws very busy. They won't have the time or resources to track Tim and Jason. Joker's set up a scenario that's pretty ingenious. I'd like to share it with you but I think that when you see it in issue #15, you'll see the extent of preparation that went into the Death of the Family as far as Joker's concerned.

TEEN TITANS #15

CV: How is Batgirl involved in the story?

SL: Batgirl arrives in TEEN TITANS #15 because she was tricked there by Bart. She thought she was going to meet Red Robin but instead she meets the Teen Titans. She is not the least bit impressed by any of them. As far as she's concerned, she has no time to babysit these completely newbie teens. If it were up to her, she would have them go back to New York and wait for Tim. She's relatively certain that she, Batman and the rest of the Bat-Family will somehow prevail. She's only around for essentially a five page cameo before she shakes her thumb and pinky finger and tells them to call her. As anyone reading BATGIRL knows, she's really too busy to be dealing with the Teen Titans at this time.

It's also worth noting that in the New 52, the Teen Titans, none of them have been heroes for very long and they certainly haven't been a team long enough to feel their in a situation that they can go up against someone as legendary and horrific as the Joker. When Batgirl leaves, Roy Harper is going to step up and lead the team. If you've been reading RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS, you know that if Roy is the person you have to look up to, you're in some pretty dire straits.

CV: Roy is going is going to step up with the Teen Titans?

SL: Yes. He's essentially going to say, "You do this, you do that, this is how it's done." We're going to realize, yet again, Roy has much more going on than people give him credit for. Even people on his own team.

CV: So essentially we'll have a Teen Titans and Outlaws crossover?

SL: During Death of the Family, the teams cross over but unfortunately they're crossing over in a way that doesn't provide the support to either Tim or Jason who have their hands full in dealing with the Joker. The Teen Titans and the Outlaws do not meet the Joker at any point but they certainly are up to their elbows in his handiwork.

CV: Any plans to find a new base of operations now that their place has been compromised by Joker?

SL: Yes. In TEEN TITANS #17, we actually see the new headquarters. It will be on a yacht located in Chelsea Piers. That's going to be their new headquarters moving forward. No one else knows that!

CV: We haven't really seen any mention of approval from Batman about Tim's involvement with the Teen Titans. Will that happen in this arc?

SL: No. This arc is much much too full of Joker goodness. Other than BATMAN #15, there isn't much opportunity for interaction between Red Robin and Batman.

Although in SUPERMAN #15, Superman hears about the Teen Titans from Superboy and he is not at all excited about the notion of meta-teenagers hanging out together getting into trouble. In the coming months, we'll see how some of the older and wiser superheroes react to the presence of the Teen Titans.

CV: Penguin is busy over in DETECTIVE COMICS but will we be seeing any follow up from the TEEN TITANS zero issue soon?

SL: I don't know to what degree Penguin ever put a face on or a name in his pocket. Sure he sent people there to shoot up the house. He never knew this was the same kid that went on to become Tim Drake and Red Robin. I don't perceive any encounters between Red Robin and Penguin in the immediate future

RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS #15

CV: We've seen a few different tones for Jason, will he be able to control himself or are we going to see Jason cut loose?

SL: I don't think he loses control but I do think he certainly delivers a beat down to Joker. At least initially, when he's confronted by the Joker, the Joker quickly realizes that whatever psychological advantage he has had in the past over Jason in their previous encounters has pretty much evaporated in the last few issues since RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS started. The good news is Jason doesn't respond to those particular buttons being pressed. The bad news is it means that Joker needs to get even more creative. I think there's few things scarier than Joker unleashed.

RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS #15

CV: When Jason is confronted by the police in issue #15, how does he manage to keep his towel on after getting out of the shower?

SL: I actually went into my living room and moved around and did some Tao Bo in only a towel. I did manage to keep on my towel the whole time. So if I could move around like that, and I'm just a comic book writer, I'm certain that Jason, who has been trained by Batman and the All Caste, could keep his towel on. I would encourage all the readers at Comic Vine to dance around in their living room in just a towel and they'll discover, as I have, it's easier to keep your towel in place than one might suspect.

And don't photoshop me into a towel, Tony. I know how you think.

RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS #15 is on sale this Wednesday, December 19 and TEEN TITANS #15 is on sale January 2, 2013.

56 Comments
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Posted by cacarl

I don't really like the art in RHATO.

Posted by chasereis

Meh. I was excited when Lobdell had X-men back in the day and he flubbed it and actually eroded the franchise. He's going to have to prove he can tell a story without destroying characters or trying to one up himself to the point of no return...

Posted by fartvader

don't photoshop me into a towel, Tony. I know how you think

The guy is funny!

Posted by ccraft

I'll be getting the TT, RHnOL, and Nightwing DOTF crossovers.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

I wandet if Jason still has his training from Talia and all those criminals

Posted by frankcmu

Very excited for the Red Hood story... :D should be a good one

Posted by CerealKiller

Jason should fight in nothing but a towel more often. I could really get behind that creative decision.

Posted by fodigg

This is interesting because even if Joker doesn't know who the rest of the bat clan civ IDs are, he would know who Jason is according to the backup story that said he basically threw Jason at Batman as the new Robin.

Posted by RedX9

Say what you will about Lobdell, he knows how to hype his books. My problem with him is in the execution of his stories. He makes bad calls when it comes to where they go and it just leads me to not enjoy them.

Posted by JonSmith

@fodigg said:

This is interesting because even if Joker doesn't know who the rest of the bat clan civ IDs are, he would know who Jason is according to the backup story that said he basically threw Jason at Batman as the new Robin.

Didn't Joker specifically say he didn't want to know anything about Jason or his family, including names?

Posted by sethysquare

this is going to be fantastic.

Also why arent DC putting Blond on more books? He needs to colour like every single book in DC

Posted by NightFang

@cacarl said:

I don't really like the art in RHATO.

The art could be better.

Posted by Mbecks14

Meh. I will continue to pass on these two titles.

Posted by fodigg

@JonSmith said:

@fodigg said:

This is interesting because even if Joker doesn't know who the rest of the bat clan civ IDs are, he would know who Jason is according to the backup story that said he basically threw Jason at Batman as the new Robin.

Didn't Joker specifically say he didn't want to know anything about Jason or his family, including names?

Did he? But how could that be possible?

Posted by Outside_85

Not really thrilled about how every grownup cape and goverment-employed jerk seems to be coming down on the Titans, what happened to the JL-approved team?...oh, yeah... :(

Posted by Sammo21

Not a fan of the art and also not really sure how the Joker suddenly becomes the greatest criminal mastermind in the DCU.

Posted by Trevel8182

I hate what he's doing to Tim and Jason!

Posted by sethysquare

aw man i wa really hoping batgirl joins TT or something.

Posted by LiamB8
@frankcmu said:

Very excited for the Red Hood story... :D should be a good one

I have to agree!
Posted by Rixec

@Sammo21 said:

Not a fan of the art and also not really sure how the Joker suddenly becomes the greatest criminal mastermind in the DCU.

Read Batman: Death of the Family, or any other previous work involving the Joker.

Posted by Scott_Lobdell

Wow! This looks awesome!

I only wish I was reading these books instead of writing them -- then I can be as surprised as you are by what is coming up.

Chaseris: Whatever.

Outside85: By my count there have been two people now: Superman, and Amanda Waller. Superman is concerned and Amanda wants to make sure they don't hurt themselves. Two seems a far cry from "every grownup cape and goverment-employed jerk"... but maybe I am missing something.

So you want me to just do what has been done before, with a JL-approved team? Didn't you read those stories already?

To Everyone Else: Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Posted by namtabmi

@cacarl said:

I don't really like the art in RHATO.

Depends who it is. I love Rocafort's art (not his above)...but the art above is great anyway.

Posted by Mbecks14

@Scott_Lobdell: I think he was referring to Batgirl:

She is not the least bit impressed by any of them. As far as she's concerned, she has no time to babysit these completely newbie teens.
Posted by Scott_Lobdell

MBecks14 Good point! But that is still three!

(Though I would point out it is more that she can't be bothered with them while she's trying to find her mother and not "coming down on them.")

Posted by Outside_85

@Scott_Lobdell: I haven't seen anyone thinking it was a good idea yet, and if Superman disapproves, what are the chances someone else thinks it's a good idea.

In case you haven't noticed, I happened to like that the Titans were a respectable team and I dont see any reason they need to be dragged into the X-Men's nightmare world where everyone hates them.

Posted by Shallbecomeabat

@Sammo21 When Joker is on his game, he is the most dangerous, non powered villain in the DCU. Easily. As somebody who fights Batman all the time, he has to be more than just formidable. @Scott_Lobdell Love your work on Superman and Red Hood! Really hope you stay on for a long time to tell the stories you wanna tell. Like the new direction for both characters. Its fresh and appreciated.

Posted by TheCrowbar

[quote]And don't photoshop me into a towel, Tony. I know how you think.[/quote]

Immediately forgot what this article was about and lost myself to cackling.

Edited by doordoor123

@Scott_Lobdell:

Love everything you're doing Scott.

I think my only concern is the work your editor is putting in. At times, it seems like the continuity doesn't fit in with the rest of the "Bat-world" or super hero world in general. I don't mean the past. I could care less about the past. I'm talking about the present continuity. Is that an editor thing or do you want to make make your stuff stand on its own?

I know you leave threads that you don't pick up and I really actually like that about you're writing. If you never pick up on those threads, perhaps another writer can at a different point in time. I'm not saying that you won't pick up a lot of those "threads" or "loose ends."

Posted by wessaari

@Scott_Lobdell: You too Scott, really looking forward to your work :P

Posted by SpadesSlick

You are doing good work Scott. Really looking forward to seeing Jason and Tim work together.

Posted by daredevil21134

@Scott_Lobdell: Is Jason Todd ever gonna lose that Bat symbol on his chest,and maybe get his own.

Online
Posted by danhimself

@Scott_Lobdell: anyone who says that your run on X-men wasn't good obviously has no taste at all...you're run was the first run of X-men books that I ever collected and to this day remains my absolute favorite X-men run...keep up the good work!

Online
Posted by Timotheus316

I like both titles. Scott's a great writer. I lol'd at the comment telling Tony not to photoshop him with a towel on. That would be hilarious! (Do it Tony ;) )

Online
Posted by ChloeRogers22

If you think Keith`s story is great..., 1 week ago mother in-law basically easily made $4995 sitting there eighteen hours a week from home and there friend's aunt`s neighbour was doing this for 10-months and got over $4995 in their spare time at there computer. apply the guidelines at this address, Great60.com

Posted by TDK_1997

Well I can now particulary say that Teen Titans totally sucks!

Posted by modunhanul

Is it me, or Joker's doing lot of stuffs?

Posted by cacarl

@namtabmi:I dropped the title when Rocafort left. I'm buying it again because of the crossover and what is coming for Jason after this arc is done.

Posted by arnoldoaad

is anyone going to point out just how well shaped is the ass of batgirl in that picture

Edited by Franchise1590

@arnoldoaad said:

is anyone going to point out just how well shaped is the ass of batgirl in that picture

I thought I was the only one who stared at my computer screen like a freak for 4 minutes.

Damn this male brain!!!

Posted by Anthonypilone01

This is sickening. I physically cringe when I read anything by Lobell ... Why HIM ? why did they give this D-Bag the keys to Tim ??... I for real hate what this guy is. I still cannot believe how they messed up joker's face.

Screwed up new 52.

Posted by Scott_Lobdell

Wow, you actually physically cringe (as opposed to... emotional cringing?) when you read anything I write?

Are you physically cringing now?

Maybe you should stop reading this post if it is going to make you physically cringe.

This is so fascinating to me. I don't know that I have ever made anyone physically cringe before. (Wretch, I am certain. But physically cringe...? Not that I recall.)

How much of my writing did you read before you started physically cringing? An issue? Two?

Or did you only start physically cringing lately?

I am asking because if it is a current thing maybe I can figure out what I've done recently and stop doing that... and then you can enjoy my writing without physically cringing.

But if this post has gone on too long as has caused you too much physical discomfort I will totally understand if you don't write back. (Certainly, if i was ever in a situation where someone's writing made me physically cringe I doubt I would read interviews by them about books that I wasn't reading for fear of physically cringing.)

Posted by InnerVenom123

@Scott_Lobdell: They're gonna have to put a warning label on now. This will surely be a PR nightmare. :P

Posted by Illuminatus

TIL Scott Lobdell is irascible and tends to get overly confrontational on the internet over criticism.

@Scott_Lobdell: Dude, you're making all the money and writing comic books. There's no need to try and defend your work on ComicVine. All you're doing is stirring the pot, and needlessly, I might add.

Posted by YourNeighborhoodComicGeek

This will be interesting! I'm glad the rest of the Titans won't meet Joker face to face. That'd just be messy and PIS-filled.

Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus

So need to get to this crossover since of all the books its covering, Teen Titans is one of my monthly holds.

Posted by arnoldoaad
CV: How is Batgirl involved in the story?

SL: Batgirl arrives in TEEN TITANS #15 because she was tricked there by Bart. She thought she was going to meet Red Robin but instead she meets the Teen Titans. She is not the least bit impressed by any of them. As far as she's concerned, she has no time to babysit these completely newbie teens. If it were up to her, she would have them go back to New York and wait for Tim. She's relatively certain that she, Batman and the rest of the Bat-Family will somehow prevail. She's only around for essentially a five page cameo before she shakes her thumb and pinky finger and tells them to call her.

and yet the is actually sounds more likable than the Batgirl that we currently have

Posted by Outside_85

@Illuminatus said:

TIL Scott Lobdell is irascible and tends to get overly confrontational on the internet over criticism.

@Scott_Lobdell: Dude, you're making all the money and writing comic books. There's no need to try and defend your work on ComicVine. All you're doing is stirring the pot, and needlessly, I might add.

While you are right, it is nice to see he isnt any different from the rest of us :)

Posted by BatWatch

Looks pretty amazing. @daredevil21134 said:

@Scott_Lobdell: Is Jason Todd ever gonna lose that Bat symbol on his chest,and maybe get his own.

Personally, I love the Bat Symbol. In my mind, it represents him acknowledging his roots while flaunting his defiance at Batman.

Online
Posted by TaylorEspo

The preview here for Red Hood #15 has a pretty cool letterer's name there. :)

Posted by Bitchgurl

I used to love SL's work for Marvel, but don't care for it on Red Hood. I like the character of Jason Todd but Roy Harper is SO obnoxious and OTT it's not funny, and don't get me started on Starfire, who has never been the same since Wolfman and Perez wrote her back in the day. Red Hood needs to be a gritty street level title, and not go off into space(Yes, Starfire can, but Jason and Roy in space=fail). This title really needs a new writer, hopefully one who isn't looking to swipe things from Star Trek .

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