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Red Hood’s Most Mocked Costume Design was a Twisted Blend of Batman AND Joker



  • Red Hood’s costume in Morrison’s run reflects a unique blend of Batman and Joker elements, offering a deeper look at Jason Todd’s character evolution.
  • Fans criticizing the “Pill-Head” suit might reconsider its significance, as it’s a statement about Batman and Joker, not just a fashion mishap.
  • The costume in
    Batman & Robin Vol. 1: Batman Reborn
    symbolizes Jason’s complex journey, shaped by both Batman and Joker’s influences.

While most Red Hood fans are familiar with the fact that his frequently ridiculed “Pill-Head” costume has its origins in the Joker, fewer are aware of the deliberate homage to Batman in its design. Understanding the history behind this costume may potentially alter many fans’ opinions about it, as it reveals a depth beyond being an atrocious fashion statement.

Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely’sBatman & Robin Vol. 1: Batman Reborn marks the debut of Jason’s first significant iteration of the Red Hood suit since its introduction in Judd Winick’s Batman: Under the Hood. This design faced widespread criticism and continues to be mercilessly ridiculed today, with fans referring to it as the “Pill-Head” suit due to its pill-shaped helmet.

Red Hood Superhero DC

Other design elements contribute to the fashion disaster, including the white and black spandex suit featuring a cartoonish red skull on the chest, thigh-high black boots, and a dramatic black cloak that would make even Severus Snape envious.

The “Pill-Head” Costume Is as Much of a Statement About Batman as It Is About Joker​​​​

Jason Todd as The Red Hood DC Comics

At first glance, anyone would wonder what Morrison and Quitely were thinking when they decided on this comical design choice for the badass Red Hood. However, in Batman Redrawn, found at the volume’s end, Morrison explains this bizarre design and how it’s actually a statement about Batman and Joker, rather than just a reference to the Joker’s previous moniker “Red Hood,” which Jason adopted following his resurrection after being brutalized and killed by the Joker during his time as Robin. This revelation is sure to encourage critics of the costume to reconsider their hatred for it.

The design followed Morrison’s vision of having Jason intentionally emulate Batman’s basic superhero appearance and modus operandi, with the pill-shaped helmet and cape serving as a homage to the Joker’s original design. Thus, while Jason incorporated elements from Joker’s Red Hood design, his decision regarding this outfit was more about making a statement and imitating Batman and his heroic persona rather than focusing on the Joker. This aligns with the Batman Reborn storyline, wherein Jason spends the majority of his time fixating on and critiquing Batman’s approach to crime rather than concerning himself with the Joker.


Red Hood’s Forgotten Catchphrase Was So Corny Even Nightwing Hated It

Nightwing has said his fair share of corny things, but Red Hood’s catchphrase was so bad that even Dick Grayson couldn’t excuse its corniness.

Together, Batman and Joker Created Jason Todd’s Red Hood

Batman & robin Batman Reborn featuring Red Hood shouting Let the punishment fit the crime.

This costume serves as a tangible embodiment of the evolution of Jason Todd. With its fusion of homages to Joker and Batman, it symbolizes the complex interplay between Jason’s two primary influences. Bruce Wayne made him into Robin, while the Joker’s heinous act of killing him effectively undid that transformation. In a twisted sense, through their separate actions, Batman and the Joker inadvertently collaborated in giving rise to the Red Hood, and thus, made the anti-hero into the figure that fans know today.

Batman & Robin Vol. 1: Batman Reborn is available now from DC Comics!


Batman & Robin Batman Reborn cover featuring Batmobile

  • Writer: Grant Morrison
  • Artists: Frank Quitely, Philip Tan, and Jonathan Glapion
  • Colorist: Alex Sinclair & Pete Pantazis
  • Letterer: Pat Brosseau
  • Cover Artist: Frank Quitely & Alex Sinclair


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