(Spoiler alert for “Suicide Squad” and possibly future DC Comics movies.)
Even if you’ve already watched “Suicide Squad,” there’s a good chance you missed one of its biggest easter eggs.
That’s because this one comes during Harley Quinn’s introductory scene, where her criminal history is listed on screen for a brief moment. The revelation pops up so quickly you barely have time to comprehend it, but it’s stunning.
Bios for the other members of the squad mostly just mention their abilities and the laws they’ve broken, but Harley gets an actual plot point. It seems like it will be a big deal whenever she pops up again in DC’s shared movie universe.
Here it is: In no uncertain terms, we’re told that Harley admitted to murdering Robin.
We already knew Robin was dead — we saw in “Batman v Superman” that Batman kept Robin’s suit in a display case, with the sentence “HAHAHA joke’s on you Batman” spray-painted across the chestpiece. The assumption, of course, was that the Joker killed him, but “Suicide Squad” casts doubt on that.
The Joker assumption fit like a glove because that’s a story we already know. The 1988 comic story “A Death in the Family” was about Robin being tortured and killed by the Joker. That Robin was Jason Todd, the second person to take on that title as Batman’s sidekick. During that story arc, DC actually held a phone poll in which fans would call in and vote on whether the Joker should kill or spare Jason. “Kill” won out, by a small margin.
Nearly two decades later, Jason Todd returned as the Red Hood, a vicious anti-hero more than happy to kill the bad guys. Todd did actually die, but was resurrected. (Don’t worry about the details, because they’re complicated).
It’s important to note that the character of Harley Quinn had not yet been created when “A Death in the Family” was published — her first appearance would come on “Batman: The Animated Series” in 1992. So this is certainly a new wrinkle.
As for whether Jason Todd will pop up later as Red Hood, that remains to be seen. But our own Umberto Gonzalez reported last year that the DC powers that be saw Red Hood as a priority at that time.