Tonight, the Clown Prince of Crime is headlining his own film in director Todd Phillips’ Joker. Joaquin Phoenix is stepping into the title role as the Joker, and he’s simply the latest in a long line of performers to lend his take on the character. What drew actors like Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, Mark Hamill, Heath Ledger, Jared Leto, and Phoenix to the Joker? It’s because he’s not just Batman‘s greatest villain, he may be the best comic book villain, period.
Jerry Robinson, Bill Finger, and Bob Kane struck gold when they came up with the Joker as the bad guy for Batman #1 in 1940. From there, the Joker took on a life of his own. Batman has one of the best rogue’s gallery in comics, but there’s no question about who his true nemesis is.
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DC Daily‘s Clarke Wolfe is our special guest host for “The Evolution of the Joker,” a retrospective of the Clown Prince of Crime. You may think you know the Joker, but there may be a few surprises along the way. For example, did you know that there was a four year period in which the Joker didn’t appear in the comics at all? It’s almost inconceivable now, but in the late ’60s and early ’70s, DC didn’t know how to bring the Joker back to prominence. But once it happened, the Joker never looked back.
What do you think about the Joker’s eight decade reign of terror? Let us know in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: The Joker: A Visual History of the Clown Prince of Crime