Jason Todd and the “A Death in the Family” and “Under The Red Hood” storylines are undoubtedly a controversial mess of hornets in the Batman mythos. Todd’s sort of become a bit of a difficult character to deal with since then, going from torn villain to reluctant hero to anti-hero, and everywhere in between.
However, this DC animated adaption, “Batman: Under The Red Hood”, manages to tie up various aspects of the whole thing quite nicely, streamlining the story into something that actually makes sense not only as a story but also in the DC universe as a whole.
The voice actors working on this movie are a bit of a shock to a DCAU fan like myself, with Bruce Greenwood voicing Batman, Jenson Ackles as Red Hood, Neil Patrick Harris as Nightwing, John Dimaggio as the Joker, and Jason Isaacs as Ra’s al Ghul in there. For someone reared on Timm Batman animations usually featuring the likes of Mark Hamill as the Joker and Kevin Conroy as Batman, it’s admittedly quite of a shock.
Ackles and Harris are the best of the whole cast in my opinion, Dimaggio seems to lean a bit too much at times on Heath Ledger’s performance as the Joker in “The Dark Knight”. Animation-wise it’s a solid piece of work, looks good, and was a pleasant surprise action/violence-wise. I mean seriously, it was pretty shocking at times to see where they went. And I enjoyed it.
Anyway, while this isn’t necessarily an A+ style effort from DC, it’s pretty good, another solid entry in DC’s already-stellar library of animated works.