5 Strangest DC & Marvel Comics Sales Tactics

3. Call A Hotline To Determine If Robin Dies

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DC Comics

When Jason Todd became Robin a lot of people didn't like him. Honestly, a chunk of readers just flat-out hated the kid and thought he acted like a spoiled brat. Therefore, when DC ran a promotion in 1988 where fans could determine if this Robin lived or died, it got tongues wagging. 

During the arc, "A Death in the Family (Batman #426-429)", it all went down. Basically, the Joker trapped Jason Todd in a building, beat him with a crowbar, and blew it all up. Fans could call a 900 number to vote on if Todd survived or perished, and by the slimmest of margins (5,343 verus 5,271, or 50.34%) it was decided Todd would die.

Even keeping in mind that Todd is a fictional character, it is a little alarming to think he engendered that much hate that more people wanted to see him dead than alive. After all, were such a contest to happen with the beloved Dick Grayson--the first Robin and now Nightwing--one could imagine an overwhelming majority would want him to keep on living.

The fact that DC was willing to actually kill a character based on how bloodthirsty fans were results in quite the surreal promotion.


David Bitterbaum is a big fan of all the things that entertain us. He is the creator of The Newest Rant (www.thenewestrant.com) and has opinions, so, so many opinions.