Readers of the 2021 Robin ongoing series from DC are about to have a major question answered. Anti-hero Respawn, created by artist Gleb Melkinov and writer Joshua Williamson, has managed to keep his face hidden under a mask. But in the upcoming Deathstroke Inc. #7 (opens in new tab), that’s about to change.
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Before we get into what’s beneath the Deathstroke-inspired mask Respawn wears, let’s address the metahuman elephant in the room.
Why is a Deathstroke title giving us the identity of a Robin villain? The answer is that both those titular characters are on track for a major collision in this spring’s Shadow War, an upcoming DC crossover event that sets up Deathstroke as the assassin of classic Batman villain. Ra’s Al Ghul, and sticks Robin and his Bat-dad in the middle. The event will spread across Robin, Deathstroke Inc., and the main Batman title, all of which are being written by Williamson.
Now that we got that out of the way; what does Respawn really look like? If you want to find out on your own, now is your last chance to wait until you get your hands on Deathstroke Inc., because there’s a SPOILER coming your way just below.
Spoilers for Deathstroke Inc. #7 follow…
According to CBR.com (opens in new tab), who published an unlettered preview of March 22’s Deathstroke Inc. #7 by Williamson and artist Stephen Segovia, Respawn’s real face… wait for it … is a younger version of Slade Wilson’s.
At least, that’s what it appears to be. Respawn’s hair is white and his features are very similar. Though this might surprise readers, there have been hints leading up to the similarities between the two characters even before this issue.
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Respawn’s costume was obviously inspired by Deathstroke’s from his very first appearance. Then, Slade’s daughter Ravager was quoted as saying that his voice sounds familiar, and when she got a look at his face (obscured to the reader) in an earlier issue, she began to trust him.
Of course, Respawn has both of his eyes, whereas Slade only has one.
So there’s that.
And now it’s time to speculate. Who is this li’l Slade? Could it be a time-traveling version of himself? A clone? A mysterious relation to the Wilson family we’ve never met before? Why can’t we get Marvel’s Cable out of our heads at the moment?
Whoever he is, Newsarama will be keeping an eye out on the character, and letting you know all the news we get about Shadow War.
There’s no getting around the fact that Deathstroke will pose a threat to the heroes of Shadow War, but is he in Newsarama’s list of the most dangerous villains of the DC Universe? Click the link to find out.