“This is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object. You truly are incorruptible aren’t you? You won’t kill me out of some misplaced sense of self righteousness and i won’t kill you because you are just too much fun. Me and you…we are destined to do this forever.” – Joker, The Dark Knight.
He is deranged, evil and downright psychotic. He’s the ultimate villain. He’s been around for a few decades and has won most hearts, being the coolest, most malicious villain in the history of fictional villains. It is none other than the Joker, from Batman!
This eccentric character is the absolute opposite to Batman, from size to ideas. The Batman is a muscular guy who is always on the move in the darkest hour of the night, camouflaged in deep black clothes, fighting crime. In contrast, the Joker is a thin, lean guy, with a manic laughter, moving noisily and attracting attention wherever he is. He has an awesome look of a permenant grin shadowed by red lips, green eccentric hair and white skin. This flambouyant character’s past has never been fully revealed but it has been mentioned in once or twice in Batman that the Joker was a engineer named Jack working in a chemical plant. Jack quitted his job to become a comedian but miserably failed. He became desperate as he had a pregnant wife to support, so he agrees, with two criminals, to break in to the chemical plant he was previously working for, so they could get in to the card company next door. But then his wife and unborn child die in an accident. So, in grief, the Joker tries to back out of helping with the break in. However, the other two criminals makes him keep his promise. So, Jack, with the nickname of Red Hood, breaks in with his croonies. But as expected, Batman comes in to stop them when they were in the chemical plant. Jack, terrified, jumps in to a well filled with chemicals. When he gets out of the chemical in a nearby reservoir, he is turned in to the green haired Joker with red lips and pale skin we know today.
There have been many Jokers in the past. From cartoons to comic books to films, a whole lot of Jokers were created all with similar personalities. But we think, and probably also most of the world, that the Joker in the Dark Knight ruled out every other Joker. Heath Ledger did some seriously good acting. He made the Joker so real that you could almost believe that there really is a Joker, prowling the streets of our cities, which would be kind of scary, really. Heath Ledger won an Academy Award, a BAFTA and a Golden Globe award for this character. These awards were presented after his death which was sad but he totally deserved the awards.
In the Dark Knight, the Joker was downright manic, more so than with any other jokers around, and he was a killer who killed with style. He had the coolest yet the most demonic ideas of killing. If you’ve watched Dark Knight you would know his methods. In the Dark Knight, the Joker’s sole purpose was to prove that anyone at a desperate situation would be as horrible and cruel as he is. He was one intelligent dude and had the grace of the devil…
So who created this amazing criminal mastermind? This super, demonic villain?
The story goes that Bill Finger and Bob Kane created the Joker. They both modelled the Joker around the picture of actor Conrad Veidt wearing make up for the film “The Man Who Laughs” (made in 1920). But a man called Jerry Robinson claimed he came up with the idea of the Joker. In an interview, Bob Kane said that Jerry Robinson brought in some playing cards to be used as the playing cards of the Joker but himself and Bill Finger were the real creators of the Joker. Hmm…bit of a dispute there. But whoever was the creator of the Joker, he was a genius!
All in all, the Joker was created and his first appearance was in Batman #1 in the spring of 1940. Sadly, when editorship of the comic book changed in 1964, the Joker almost completely disappeared. Then, the Joker was revived by Dennis O’Neil and Neal Adams in 1973. Wow, i feel sorry for the Joker fans back then, they had to wait for ten years to get the Joker back! And get this- in the versions just before the Joker almost disappeared in 1964, the Joker was portrayed as harmless, cackling nuisance(?)!!! That must have been a shocker, going from homicidal maniac to harmless!
Moving on…In the comic series, cartoons and movies, the Joker uses some really horrible weapons. All his weapons always have a tinge (maybe more than a tinge) of evil humour to it. Some of his weapons include razor sharp playing cards, acid spewing flowers (!), cyanide pies, expldoing cigars filled with nitroglycerin (don’t ask me what it is, i have no idea but it sounds absolutely lethal), harpoon guns which shot out razor sharp bang-flags, and electric joy buzzers (when i mean electric i don’t think its the type that gives you a small buzz). But his most famous (or should i say infamous) weapon is the Joker Venom, also known as Joker Juice. This poison makes the Joker’s victims laugh to death and infect the victims with a trademark Joker grin. The venom can come in the form of gas, liquid poison, darts and in other various forms. Interestingly, the Joker himself isn’t affected by this poison. He had so much of this poison that he’s immuned to it… Seriously…this guy is insane!
As i said before, the Joker was played by many people in the past. Here are some pics…
Ceasor Romero,Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger (in order), as the Joker.
The Cartoon Jokers…
And this is another pic of a Joker i found on Google. I’m not sure if this has been in the comics or cartoons. In any case, i thought this Joker looked awesome, so i decided to put it on…
This seriously looks like a manga drawing to me. Anyway, don’t you guys think its awesome?! I really like it. This pic was described as the demented joker and i think who ever put it up is right.
Anyway, that’s the Star Guest for this time people. I hope you learned something knew and enjoyed the facts. Remember to leave comments on this (maybe tell us which of the Jokers you like!) and come back to find out which crazy (or just , maybe, sane) guest that’s visiting Ebony Ink next time!
Sayoonara and watch out for Mr Joker, he may be around the corner!