Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Roy Harpers' Behavior Part 3

It seems like Roy has calmed down a bit from #3 and might be ready to realize he's been too distracted lately.

Roy's still acting somewhat thoughtless as he doesn't consider the fallout of selling his tech where anyone can buy it. Jason does see the problem and points out the likelihood of criminals using it. (*1) In the diner Roy is shocked to learn that Batman is supposedly dead. Not only was he not aware of the fact this was broadcasted on the news Roy never picked up on Jason being upset. That clearly bothers him, mainly because he feels that he's someone Jason should be able to go to when he's grieving. His first assumptions (from RHATO) that Jason didn't care about his family are put to rest because Roy knows better now. He knows the bond goes both ways because he saw Batman doing everything to save Jason when his face was burned by Joker.

Since the first issue of Red Hood and the Outlaws they've come along way in terms of trust. Do they know everything about each other? Unlikely but they know enough of the important information or at least have some idea. Such as Jasons' death and his mothers' drug problem. There are issues their careful about bringing up like their respective families and bad aspects of their past. Jason was pretty polite when bringing up Roys' sobriety and neither have discussed the break up with Kori since the first issue. It's in Jasons' thoughts though and he's tried to be as accommodating as possible to help during this hard time. Outwardly Roy seems to be ignoring everything outside the business and acting like everything is fine. In the second issue Jason notices Roy acting more like a horn dog when that's not really his nature and chalks it up to Roy trying to adjust. Throughout it all Jason was been incredibly patient with his buddy.

Roys' normally an open person, Jason notes that in #4 although Roys' fibbing about where he's going. This tells us something is off--which has been built upon since #1--and it might have to do with him thinking his friend won't approve. Or would do something more extreme like dragging Croc back to Arkham. Jason knows he's being lied to and knows where Roy has gone. During the early Death of the Family tie ins Roy tapped Jasons' phone to know where he was and what he was doing. Despite being a bat Jason has no such inclinations proving that he does indeed trust Roy and doesn't have to know everything. Roy himself confesses to Croc that he feels lost like he lost part of himself and worried he's going to have a relapse.

What's intriguing about this meeting is the contrast it has with Jasons' behavior. Roy doesn't trust Jason as much as Jason trusts him. The phone tap, lying and sharing how he feels like he's losing himself to someone else seem to indicate his lack of faith. Yes there are other factors involved like a fear on judgment but he's not as together. Jason has already admitted in his caption box that he trusts Roy more than anyone--which is HUGE--and he has already proved it. He told him about the Venom, he's not prying and being far more understanding than many of us would be given Roys' behavior. Of course part of the reason he doesn't pry is because he has things he doesn't feel like sharing like his past with Gabby. We don't know if he recognized her before she says anything but Jason does admit that he doesn't want to dreg personal things up.

Roy did worry Jason about his sobriety and partly lied when he said he was never going back since he's afraid he's going to relapse. For whatever reason Roy is struggling to open up to Jason when he desperately needs the help. In order for them to get past this Roy needs to confide in him something even Croc seems to realize. Which raises the question: Why is it so hard for Roy to talk to Jason? We saw in #1 that Jason seems to understand what's going on with Kori and Roy. He was understanding and made a point in reaching out. Is there more to it or does Roy not think Jason will truly get what he's going through? Maybe Roy himself seems to have trouble understanding how he feels as it suggests in #4. Whatever the reason if something doesn't happen soon Roy might have a breakdown.

*1 Many have said Jason is reckless and didn't look before he leapt. He does and I wished more writers would show this maturity.


  1. I think Roy's reticence to confide on Jason stems from a misguided impression of him. Like Roy tries to not showing any weakness in front of Jason in fear of being rejected or maybe disappointing him. Sort of like if he sees Jason as a role model, I guess.

  2. I can kind of see him not wanting to show weakness but at the same time I can't. I need more content for this. I do think it's partly to do with his abandonment issues which might have flared up after Kori left.

  3. His abandoment issues are certainly a factor, but the way I see it; Roy looks up at Jason either as a big brother or a role model. So a lot of the stuff Roy does is to impress Jason. In that context it makes sense that he wants Jason to show weakness while at the same time he hides his.

  4. It's kind of hard for me to see the big brother/role model thing since Roy is older and how he's acted. Admiring Jason? To an extent sure but it doesn't come off like hero worship. Roy has tried to impress others too, he's even said he wants attention in his narrative once.

    Jason has been the only person able to understand him and treat him as an equal. Yet Roy was annoyed in the first issue because others thought Jason was superior to him. In three Underbellys' assistant ignores him to praise Jason. I get more of a feeling he wants to prove himself as an equal than looking up to Jason.

    It might have to do with his fear of falling off the wagon and letting Jason down. Maybe he thinks Jason will be disappointed in him if his sobriety isn't that strong. Lobdell seems to add a little more every issue.