"Brutal" Joker Returns To Comic Stores

Illustration for article titled "Brutal" Joker Returns To Comic Stores

Wondering where to find more The Dark Knight-style Joker now that we're years away from a sequel (and Heath Ledger is... unavailable)? Crime writer Brian Azzarello would like to draw your attention to a little graphic novel he's been working on that he promises is "so ugly - in a good way."The book, Joker was originally going to have a much more familiar title, before corporate synergy dropped by to say hello, according to the writer:

Yeah, it was originally called Joker: The Dark Knight but this whole ‘The Dark Knight' movie came along and we kind of got out voted. (laughs) But that's okay-I actually like calling it just Joker.

Illustration for article titled "Brutal" Joker Returns To Comic Stores

The 120-page graphic novel may be a follow-up to Azzarello's Lex Luthor: Man Of Steel series (both books have been illustrated by Lee Bermejo), but aside from focusing on iconic villains, they aren't too similar, apparently:

Well, one of the major differences in Joker is that I'm not telling the story from his point-of-view like I did in Lex. Lex isn't insane so you can give him a world view that I think is relatable. I firmly believe that trying to write from the Joker's perspective would be taking power away from that character; part of the power of that character is his unpredictability. Nobody knows what he is going to do next; so, if you're in his head, you totally take away the unpredictable nature of the character. Rather than tell it from his perspective, I chose to tell it from the point-of-view of a tough guy who joins his gang-so it's someone close to Joker; someone who wants to be like Joker who doesn't really understand what being like the Joker is actually all about... It's a brutal book. I have a reputation for writing all kinds of hardcore, violent things. This is the most violent thing I've ever written.

Illustration for article titled "Brutal" Joker Returns To Comic Stores

And if you're wondering just what version of the Joker will be starring in the book, then Azzarello is happy to... well, tease, more than share:

You know, I really love what Frank [Miller] did; but then, you have to consider what Alan Moore did with Killing Joke. Denny O'Neil did some great things with Joker-I thought Greg Rucka used him really well in Gotham Central... I think that's part of the power of that character-there hasn't been a definitive Joker-and that's what makes some of these characters so strong; coming back to them and there's always something fresh. Look at the theater-that's a brand new Joker! [And] if you like that character-you're gonna love our book. They're very, very eerily similar.

Joker appears in stores October 22nd. Exploring the Joker -Brian Azzarello Talks [Newsarama]



The Killing Joke was one of my all time favorite Joker-related stories. Matter of fact, I happened to reread the sucker just the other night for the first time in years.

I'm definitely geeked for this, they need to take the Joker out of the rut the character's been in for the last few years and bring him back to glory. Once this Batman R.I.P. nonsense ties up and Final Crisis blows over, I'd like to see the Joker as the main attraction in Batman's rogue gallery; someone that Bats just can't take down, no more stints in Arkham, just a constant reminder that his war on crime can never be truly successful.