BATMAN CONFIDENTIAL #12
Author: Bill Ramey
Saturday, February 9, 2008
FROM DC COMICS: "The last laugh in the Joker's first meeting with his hated nemesis Batman sets the stage for the lunatic war these two icons of tragedy and comedy/good and evil are fated to fight for years to come! Do not miss the final chapter of 'Lovers and Madmen.' "
The second story arc of the newest Batman monthly, BATMAN CONFIDENTIAL, was a hell of a lot better than the title’s inaugural one. However, this title’s second six-parter was certainly nothing to write home about.
Here’s the deal: If you want to know exactly how some petty criminal named “Jack” became The Joker and why he has an obsession with Batman, then “Lovers and Madmen” may be your cup of tea.
On the other hand, if you have zero desire to see The Joker’s origin re-conned yet again, then you probably would give “Angles and Madmen” a big ’ol “Meh” right about now.
I know I am.
Look, I’m not going to waste your time rehashing the storyline of issue #12. Basically, everything is resolved. The very forced Bruce Wayne love story that has permeated the entire arc ends the way you knew it would end. And The Dark Knight deals with The Joker at the end exactly how one would expect.
So now that it’s all said and done, the big question I have is “WHAT THE HELL WAS THE POINT?!”
If you want to do a Joker story that’s set in the early years of Batman’s career, then do something that doesn’t involve The Joker’s origin. We all know that the pre-Joker Joker fell into a vat of chemicals and came out with white skin and green hair. But now we have to take in account that Batman also contributed to The Joker’s “permanent smile!”
I’m sorry, the whole “You MADE me!” angle is a little too forced and BATMAN ‘89-ish for my liking.
I don’t know what went on in the editorial meeting at DC when they came up with this storyline, but someone should have stepped up and said, “Let’s do an early Batman/Joker story, but there is no reason to rehash The Joker’s origin.”
One wonders if some sort of mandate come down high atop the Time-Warner mountaintop that all should cash in on the fact that The Joker is going to be the main villain in THE DARK KNIGHT film this summer?
If that’s the case, then shame on DC, Warner Bros., and the company that owns them for this abomination of a collaboration.
Memo to Warner Bros. and DC: The Joker works best when the his origin is a mystery. He and his relationship/obsession of Batman doesn’t need to be explained. In fact, it’s much, MUCH better when it isn‘t.
Yes, yes we know why and how Bruce Wayne became The Batman and that‘s very important to the core of the character.
But when it comes to The Joker, it’s best when…
He. Just. IS.
They need to hire me as a consultant.
Or at least take a good hard look at The Joker in THE DARK KNIGHT courtesy Chris Nolan, Davis Goyer, Jonah Nolan and company.