"Up, Up And Away... My Beautiful, My Beautiful Balloon!": Jason Todd is afraid of few things, but one of those few things is Superman. Now, Superman is stopping the H.M.S. Depalo to confer with Jason's friend [[Koriand'r (Prime Earth)|Starfi
- I need a few moments of your time, Starfire.
- — Superman
Synopsis for "Up, Up And Away... My Beautiful, My Beautiful Balloon!"
Jason Todd is afraid of few things, but one of those few things is Superman. Now, Superman is stopping the H.M.S. Depalo to confer with Jason's friend Starfire, on their way back to Earth. Unfortunately for Superman, none of the occupants of the ship are interested in speaking to him. So, Orn offers to teleport them back to Earth with a cloaking program to prevent the Kryptonian from finding them.
They rematerialize on the abandoned island where Starfire landed on her first visit to Earth. Unfortunately, despite their precautions, Superman finds them with relative ease. In the face of Starfire's obvious disdain for him, Superman insists on talking to her. So, she and her companions decide to fight him. After several minutes of futile back-and-forth, Isabel - the flight attendant with whom Jason has been on a particularly long date that featured an adventure in outer-space - complains that they all ought to be more civilized.
Superman explains that he has only come to ask whether Starfire was also accosted by Helspont. Starfire had in fact been contacted, but she, like many others, had turned down the offer to join him. Superman asks that they tell him if ever she hears from Helspont again. After that, Starfire points out that Superman is obviously suppressing his desire to ask them for help, and he responds that he is also suppressing his desire to apprehend them for their numerous crimes, despite Batman's vouching for them.
After Superman leaves, Isabel asks for a ride home, but Roy reminds them that there is an intergalactic warlord trying to enslave the Earth, as Superman just told them. They should probably save the world. Unfortunately, he doesn't know where to start, and reluctantly just agrees to drive Jason and Isabel home.
They arrive in Gotham City, and Jason reveals that he is actually going to stay there for a few days. At Isabel's apartment, she tries to excuse how small it is, and Jason merely kisses her. Afterwards, he takes a shower and calls out to Isabel for something to wear. When she doesn't respond, he becomes suspicious, and yanks the shower curtain-rod off the wall as a weapon.
He finds Isabel on the floor, seemingly having overdosed on drugs. He knows, though, that she is not a drug addict, and that this must have been staged. In fact, she looks just like his mother looked when her own drug overdose was staged. Within a short time, paramedics arrive to help, but Jason didn't call them. From the TV, still on, Jason hears a report by weatherman Jack Napier, speaking directly to him. He called the EMTs and the police. As the GCPD bursts in to arrest him, Jason warns the Joker that he will kill him if Isabel dies.
Appearing in "Up, Up And Away... My Beautiful, My Beautiful Balloon!"
- Isabel (Apparent Death)
- H.M.S. DePalo
- This issue is reprinted in Red Hood and the Outlaws: The Starfire.
- Pages 16-20 are also reprinted in The Joker: Death of the Family.
- Superman's appearance to talk with Starfire has to do with the events of Superman Annual (Volume 3) #1 regarding her encounter with Helspont.
- Joker uses the name Jack Napier when he's disguised as a weatherman. That is the name of the man who went on to become the Joker in the 1989 Batman movie.