WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Task Force Z #3, on sale now from DC Comics.
There are many classic Bat-Foes in the zombified version of the Suicide Squad known as “Task Force Z”, led by Batman's former Robin, Jason Todd (aka the Red Hood). While Batman’s number-one foe, the Joker, is absent from this Task Force, issue #3 (by Matthew Rosenberg, Eddy Barrows, and Eber Ferreira) reveals that The Dark Knight's “number two” foe is the one calling the shots, as the mysterious voice that has been commanding Jason Todd is finally revealed to be Harvey Dent a.k.a. Two-Face.
This latest development for Dent is interesting, not just because of how it reveals the multi-faceted nature of Two-Face as a villain (as he has often struggled with his evil half), but of how it seems to play into his role as an antagonist for most of the former Robins, for whom it can be argued he has a more intense relationship with than with Batman.
After being killed by a gunshot wound from the zombie Deadshot, Jason was brought back to life after being injected with the “Lazarus Resin” drug. While healing, Jason started to question his motivations for being with such a team and confessed that he feels awkward working alongside a zombified Bane after the villain’s brutal murder of Alfred Pennyworth. This angers the head of Task Force Z, a man known solely as “Crispin”, who gave Jason a warning about running off with another teammate unannounced, before sending him and the Task Force to take down the Kobra Cult. After the Task Force swiftly dealt with Kobra, Jason took his revenge on the zombie-Bane by beating him and throwing him off a rooftop. He then left the team to confront Crispin, who is revealed to be Two-Face.
This reveal may seem at odd at first but makes total sense when thinking about certain aspects of Two-Face’s character. As Crispin, he has been talking to Jason cryptically about people deserving “second chances” and he seems to be obsessed with serving justice, both staples of Harvey Dent and his villainous alter-ego. Yet, this also plays into the strange and antagonistic relationship Dent has with all of the Robins, one that is as fascinating and violent as the one between them and the Joker.
Whilst he is currently working with Jason, Two-Face’s first and arguably biggest rivalry with a former Robin began with the original, Dick Grayson. In both Robin #0 (by Chuck Dixon and Tom Grummet) and Robin: Year One #2-3 (by Dixon, Scott Beatty and Javier Pulido) it was revealed that early in Dick’s career he was brutally beaten by Two-Face and nearly died from his injuries. Bruce even briefly considered removing Dick from the role for his own safety.
This sort of relationship with Two-Face seems to be a recurring theme for Robins, as Two-Face was the first villain Tim Drake faced when he donned the Robin costume, helping to save both Batman and Nightwing. But Jason has also had serious run-ins with Dent in the past, and in Batman #411 (by Max Allen Collins and Dave Cockrun), he nearly murdered the villain when it was revealed that Two-Face was responsible for the murder of his father, Willis Todd, who once worked for Dent. Willis being dead was later ret-conned after the New 52, as the character would make an appearance as Wingman in Red Hood: Outlaw #36 (by Scott Lobdell and Pete Woods).
Whether or not Jason’s father working for Two-Face is currently canon, it could potentially bring an interesting dynamic between the two men going forward. The Todd/Dent pairing also presents an interesting symmetry, as both characters have experiences as anti-heroes and have different opinions than Batman on distributing lethal justice. While Todd walks the line between hero and anti-hero, Dent has mostly been a villain with redeemable qualities, having even been an anti-hero himself at times. With Future State even hinting at a redeemed Two-Face, it should be interesting to see him paired with another flawed vigilante as both men struggle for their own second chances.
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