Bruce: I'd like to adress the sudden rise in animosity the villains have shown towards Robin.
Jason, just back from a mission: [leaned back in his chair with his arms crossed] more than usual you mean?
Tim: A lot more.
Dick: Dami has recently decided to forget what the villains are called.
Jason: I- wait what?
Damian: [imperiously] I simply decided that memorising the names of criminals was an ineffective use of my cognitive faculties. Better I recall their behavioural patterns.
Jason: What exactly did you do?
Riddler: [appears dramatically in a puff of smoke] Well well, if it isn't the little bird?
Robin: [coldly] Question man.
Riddler: It's "the Riddler"
Robin: Who cares?
Robin: [drops down from the ceiling to interrupt a meeting between Penguin and his people]
Penguin: Great. It's the boy annoyance.
Robin: [cordially] Birdman.
Penguin: I beg your pardon?!
Robin: [without inflection] My apologies. I have come to arrest you, Mister Mumble.
Penguin: Out of all the movies you could have insulted me with-
Poison Ivy: Oh my, looks like a little birdie has come for a visit.
Harley Quinn: [grinning] Nice of you to drop in tweety
Robin: [nods to Ivy] Daisy. [to Harley] Miss Mime
Harley: [cracks her knuckles]
Robin: [throws a batarang at clayface]
Clayface: great. a mosquito.
Robin: ...[with distaste] There is no need for insults, Mudpie.
Robin: [calling in an arrest] Yes, I have apprehended Toto.
Scarecrow: [tied up nearby] Hey!
Joker: [Sees Robin swinging down in the middle of a hostage situation] Oh look! it's the cavalary...'s pet.
Robin: [cordially] Mr Quinzel.
Robin: You are Harley's husband correct?
Joker: [furious] no!
Robin: My apologies then. I shall endeavor to use your proper name... ... [frowning] Mrs? You are wearing make-up. Is that it? Mrs Quinzel? I did not mean to assume.
Joker: [frothing at the mouth]
[back at the meeting]
Tim: to be fair he only does it when they misname HIM.
Damian: I have a name. It is rude not to use it.
Bruce: Damian. There has been seven attempts on your life this week alone. Stop.
Bruce: [grinds his teeth]
Dick: Actually, what ARE Joker's preferred pronouns? Has anyone asked?
Jason: [munching down a power bar] It's Fuckface McKidkiller
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Like I know we've talked about how it's better if Batman doesn't reciprocate the Joker's arch-enemy fixation and is like 'genuinely please spontaneously drop dead so I can forget about you forever,' but the version I would really love to see is one where his actual archnemesis as far as he's concerned is like.
The Koch brothers, or suitably fictionalized equivalent.
Roughly the same amount of money he has to bring to the problem, being poured out with way fewer ethics about things like appropriate lobbying, just buying politicians outright & blocking all common-sense gun control legislation for decades. Enemy billionaires fighting him on the nature of their shared world.
Because the Joker's like. Sure, Batman hates him. He's dealt the Bat a lot of pain. He'd earned some hating after Barbara, never mind Jason.
But the Joker isn't nemesis material. Not really. Batman is about fighting the whole edifice of violent crime, every factor that leads to the situation of people shot to death in alleyways, the whole tower of it. And Joker has only ever been a symptom of the rot. He's not a cause.
And the thing is, Batman can never tell him. Not just because of his secret identity, since the gun control crusade is kind of distinctive--no. That's not why.
It's because if Batman told the Joker that the Kochs were his actual nemeses, there is an 85%+ chance that the Joker would then kill them.
He's got to look at the Joker, every time the damn clown targets him, capering away in his absurd quest to feel important, and think: I could weaponize you so easily.
If I told you about my actual arch-enemies in the right way, I could guarantee you'd kill them. Out of jealousy. Out of pride. To grandstand.
You'd think you were hurting me--taking advantage of my having let the information slip, making me responsible for the murder of people I hated, forcing me to wrack my conscience for it. You'd think it meant you got to make me live with being responsible for killing my archnemesis, and still be alive to watch. You'd think you'd won something. You'd never even know what I'd done.
You aren't a complicated machine, Joker. Unpredictable, sometimes, but not complicated. You point a direction and something sparks inside you, and violence comes out. Terribly simple. It would be easy. All I'd have to do is tell you the truth.
But I swore never to become the man holding the gun.
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