10 Things DC Comics Wants You To Forget About Ra's Al Ghul

Things haven't always worked out for The Demon's Head.

Ras Al Ghul
DC Comics

While The Joker may be considered Batman's arch-enemy, another strong contender for that title is Ra's al Ghul.

While he may stick to a code of nobility and is even the grandfather to the current Robin, Ra's is also the head of the League of Assassins and has proved himself to be a deadly opponent in his attempts to wipe out humanity for what he sees as the greater good.

His fights with Batman have been some of the Dark Knight's most trying and even when Bruce does manage to come out on top, the rejuvenating magic of the Lazarus Pit means that the near-immortal Ra's will always be back for more.

Of course, the downside of being nearly immortal is that Ra's has had plenty of opportunities for embarrassment over his long lifespan. With dubiously effective schemes and messed up family relations, he's definitely dropped the ball more than a few times.

DC would love it if some of these missteps were swept under the carpet and forgotten about, but that kind of compliance doesn't make for a very entertaining article so let's roll up that metaphorical rug and take a peek at the dirty secrets of The Demon's Head.

10. He Met Talia's Mother At Woodstock

Ras Al Ghul
DC Comics

Ra's' second in command is his daughter Talia. She is an important part of any story involving Ra's and is also a love interest for Batman and the mother of his son Damian.

Not much is known about Talia's origins except that her mother was a woman called Melisande. Oh, and that Ra's met her while at Woodstock.

That's right, the megalomaniac leader of an international organisation of assassins was a peace-loving hippy back in the 1960's. It makes him a lot harder to take seriously as a threat when you can also imagine Ra's strutting around in a paisley shirt and whipping up a batch of his special brownies for everyone else in the camper van during the Summer of Love.

To make things even worse, Melisande's original cause of death was that she overdosed on drugs (it was later retconned that she was murdered by one of Ra's enemies), just in case you had any doubt about what it was they were getting up to at Woodstock.

It's clearly pretty ridiculous to think that Ra's was a hippy. Then again, it does explain why his outfits always seem to include an unbuttoned shirt and a sash.

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I was just a mild-mannered NCTJ accredited journalist until one day I found out the truth... that I could share my nerdy ramblings with people on the internet! It's just like mumbling to myself on the train, but without all the strange looks.