Comic Review: "The Killing Joke"
For the first time the Joker’s origin is revealed in this tale of insanity and human perseverance. Looking to prove that any man can be pushed past his breaking point and go mad, the Joker attempts to drive Commissioner Gordon insane. After shooting and permanently paralyzing his daughter Barbara (a.k.a. Batgirl), the Joker kidnaps the commissioner and attacks his mind in hopes of breaking the man. But refusing to give up, Gordon maintains his sanity with the help of Batman in an effort to best the madman.
As a young lad, I grew up watching cartoons and reading comics and would spend my allowance on toys on primarily two characters: Spiderman and Batman. X-men anything was also part of my nerd addiction. The appeal to me for Spiderman was that although he somewhat super-powered (“somewhat” when compared to heroes like Superman), once the costume came off, Spiderman suffered the daily problems we all face. I liked Batman because he was both an ordinary human doing extraordinary things, and because of his somewhat tortured, living on the edge of right and wrong, persona.
“Batman: The Killing Joke (the deluxe edition and the one I read)”, written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Brian Bolland, is probably the ultimate story about Batman and his arch-nemesis the Joker. Although nothing will ever make the Joker sympathetic (he’s too vicious of a psychopath in his current iteration), this possible explanation of his origins (there are several of course) gives you some insight into how he came to be the way he is. In many ways, the line that separates Batman from the Joker is a razor-thin one, and this book show hints at just how precarious Batman’s grip on his own reality is.
I don’t give spoilers, so I won’t discuss the plot (but it’s excellent), or the ending (which is probably my favorite in all of the Batman comics I’ve read). The comic book is not long, and it includes an additional Batman story both written and illustrated by Brian Bolland, and some additional sketches by Bolland. But it is a seminal work if you’re a Batman fan, and well worth a read.
5 templar crosses out of 5
I love this comic book, but however there are some people who dislike the Killing Joke for being too unrealistic. Even the legendary writer Alan Moore, who wrote the Killing Joke, said that the story sucks as well. How ironic. Neverthless, don’t let these bad remarks foil you into not buying this comic book. The Killing Joke is a must have and this is by far the best tale about the most psychoticcaly hilarious and mysterious criminal- The Joker. The Clown Prince of Crime.
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