"Under the Hood, Part 1: New Business"
Batman #635
December 29, 2004
Written by Judd Winick
Cover by Matt Wagner
Pencilled by Doug Mahnke
Inked by Tom Nguyen
Colored by Alex Sinclair
Lettering by Pat Brousseau
Edited by Michael Wright, Bob Schreck
Previous Issue Robin #133
Next Issue Robin #134

Batman learns that someone unknown has managed a hostile takeover of Kord industries, which is WayneTech's research and development unit, responsible for a number of the items he uses in his war on crime. Meanwhile, as Black Mask continues to increase his grip on Gotham's underworld, a new player makes himself known. The Red Hood, who insists that his drug dealer stay away from kids. In response, Black Mask recruits yet another of Gotham's super criminals - Mister Freeze.

Summary of Stephness: Alfred, narrating to himself, says, "due to recent events...I would say that this abode is steeped in a darkness we will not soon escape. Ties have been severed. Familial ties. The myth seems more like a man. And death has visited this house...again." This last caption appears over a top-down panel of Batman kneeling by a bed, face in one hand and the other holding Steph's arm as she lies, dead. Alfred continues: "He talks of another lost soldier. He talks of battlefields. He talks of a war. He does not allow himself to see it for what it is. A loss of someone he cares for. Another blow to an already very battered heart." The caption speaking of Bruce's care for Steph is overlaid on a panel of Jason Todd's Robin memorial. Though the story does not explicitly continue referencing Steph's death, the connection drawn between the two Robins, both impulsive, both good hearted - both loved by Batman and his family - hangs heavy.

Other Formats/Collected In:
Digital Comic Book
Batman: Under the Hood TPB
Batman: Under the Red Hood Compete Series TPB

  • Batman 635 page 16
  • Batman 635 page 17