"I've been putting smiles on facesnote whether they wanted any or not! since 1940!"
"The Joker is the kind of guy who will come up with a plan to kidnap a scientist and have them create a super-pheromone that will attract little old ladies to a warehouse so Joker can feed them into a woodchipper and use the resulting paste to make counterfeit money so he can buy fuel for his ice rocket that will freeze the entire city which will cause everyone to flock to his beverage vendors who will sell them hot chocolate laced with a mutagen designed to drive everyone insane."
— Shamus Young, Stolen Pixels (who put it quite well, if I do say so myself...)
Actually Clayface: The Joker you see for the majority of Batman Arkham City, believe it or not, isn't me. The titan I took at the end of Arkham Asylum poisoned me and left me too weak to run my gang, so I had Clayface disguised as me to keep anybody from noticing I was sick, and he was happy to take on "the role of a lifetime". And boy, did he work like a charm!; nobody could tell he was fake till he turned back to his normal form.
Badass Normal: Though some would argue that I'm anything but normal. Still, the fact that folk who go toe-to-toe with ol' Supes are scared of me? That's gotta be worth something.
Hell, I've got one of the highest bodycounts in the entire DCU, far outdoing almost any superpowered freaks out there, and generally only outdone by those with the power to destroy entire worlds.
Bad Boss: Good help is sooo hard to find these days...
Bad Guys Do The Dirty Work: In one episode of The Batman, I actually saved Batsy's secret identity by taking care of Wrath and Scorn before they could spill the beans. What can I say? I didn't want anyone else being the Bat's end.
Body Snatcher: Yes. I've even managed to pull this off in my comeback appearance in Batman Beyond. I lost my old body thanks to Tim Drake turning against me. Ungrateful kids; you teach them everything you know and then they turn around and stab you in the back! Or in my case the chest. Fortunately, I had ensured my immortality long before this inconvenience thanks to a little genetics micro chip I had planted on Little J during his time in my care. Unfortunately, my comeback was thwarted thanks to that Bat-Fake old Brucey was grooming.
Captive Audience: What's the point of killing Batman or one of his sidekicks if nobody's there to see it?
Cardboard Prison: Arkham's a great place to kick back and relax for a while, and it's never too hard to get out and about when I feel like a stroll through the guts of Gotham's gentry. Then again, that time I took over the place, that was glorious.
Car Fu: Once ran over a woman while reporting it to the police with a tied up Robin in the car. Did I mention this was Christmas time!
Characterization Marches On: In my first appearances, the only real quirk I had was an association with a certain playing card — I was just a straight-forward, humorless murderer and thief who merely grinned alot, rather than the comedy-obsessed and always laughing maniac you all know and love today! And I gotta say, boy howdy have I come a long way!
Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: I was last seen busted by a SWAT team after my little "social experiment" failed at the end of The Dark Knight, and didn't even get mentioned in The Dark Knight Rises simply because that damn Heath Ledger punk bit the dust before TDK was even released! Maybe that also has something to do with the Dollmaker ripping my face off (see Put on a Bus for some more on that little incident, my pretties).
Civilian Villain: Every once in a blue moon, usually when the Bat manages to get himself killed, something inside me snaps and I won't be my usual, cheerful self. I might even pass off as being, gasp, almost sane! How lucky for me that Batsy never stays down for very long.
Combat Pragmatist: A few notable examples include beating unarmed enemies with a crowbar, setting hungry dogs on them, spraying various unhealthy substances in their faces, trying to kick the Dork Knight in the ribs with a knife that came out of my shoe — and who could forget the time when I hopped myself up on Titan?
Though I tried to get Batboy a chance there, but he refused.
The Corrupter: Because madness is like gravity, and as you know, all it takes is a little push.
Crazy-Prepared: You think old Bats always has a contingency plan for each and every occasion? Trust me, I got him beat in that little competition.
Create Your Own Villain: In a few incarnations, old Batsy had a hand in my origin. Makes it more delicious wouldn't you say? Sometimes I subvert the trope myself by being the one that made poor little Bruce an orphan, such as in my first movie appearance. Heck, I even lampshaded it!
I suppose I was also responsible for the birth of the Phantasm and the deaths of my old mob gang.
Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Are you kidding? Merely selling that flying saucer to NASA would have been so boring! And I wouldn't have sold it to the Soviets, in case you were thinking that. As I told that Red Skull fellow, I'm an American criminal lunatic.
Dartboard of Hate: That poster of Bats was really too good for me — the animated me — to resist! And I was pretty upset in that series...
Death Dealer: I'm always a card, but sometimes I like using them as throwing weapons too! What better way to show off some style than by slicing a man with razor-sharp metal playing cards? You can always be sure I have an extra one or two up my sleeves, too...
Death Is Cheap: So cheap that I'm fairly sure it's on sale whenever I come around.
Depending on the Artist: Some artists, like Neal Adams and Jim Aparo, give me a long pointed chin, while others, such as Marshall Rogers, gave me a square one. I'm sometimes lean and mean, while other times I'm of average build. Some depict my lovely smile as being stuck on my face, while others have me capable of showing... other emotions. Gotta admit, having the grin cut into my mouth so I can make two expressions at once, that worked out decently enough.
Depending on the Writer: So tell me. Am I a harmless prankster, a homicidal maniac, a hostage to momentary whims, or a chessmaster capable of constructing elaborate plans? All these and more, at various times. (The current official theory is that I'm so mentally unstable my brain turns right over every now and again, and I become insane in a whole new way. That Grant Morrison, what a kidder.)
Disproportionate Retribution: People keep saying I go into this, but I don't know why. A henchman who refuses to fork over the money he owes me when he loses a twenty-dollar bet on the World Series should be clubbed to death with a bunch of bananas (Note to self: takes too long. Use plantains instead). Anyone who would dare deny me first prize in a comedy competition just because I never actually entered it deserve to be mind controlled into becoming D-List criminals. And all those people who claimed that I couldn't legally trademark the fish that I arranged to grin like me seriously had it coming. Honestly, what's so disproportionate about all that?
Does Not Like Shoes: My costume in The Batman? A straitjacket and bare feet. It was a legitimate fashion choice! Well, I did adopt a variation on my trademark purple suit in later appearances, but I still went barefoot. Hey, it was the turn of the millennium. We're all entitled to try new things with our image once in awhile.
Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: Imagine how boring a battle with Superman would be if I didn't let him know I kidnapped that Lois woman.
Enemy Mine: I'm as shocked as you are! When my newest animated incarnation made his first appearance, he actually joined forces with Batsy in order to take down Owlman, mainly because he just wasn't as much fun. In the end, he made a smart move and joined forces with the alternate double, but not before telling Bats that he tried to be good. That better not be signs of me decaying, otherwise I might need to have a little chitchat with those writers...
Oh, I should have trusted the writers more. I got to kill the Bat nine times! On a show for children!
Even Evil Has Loved Ones: I just don't get it!! I shout at her, I even give her a shining and a love tap or ten, but that dame Harley just keeps coming back for more.... (sulks off to corner) I do love ya babe!! I just can't change who I am... (Wipes tear) Please forgive me..... Hahahahahaha!! I just don't get dames.
Even Evil Has Standards: I may be a criminal lunatic, but I'm an AMERICAN criminal lunatic! When I found out that Red Skull fellow was a Nazi, I turned on him, right then and there. And don't talk about that selling-nukes-to-Arabs thing. Fanon Discontinuity, plain and simple, got it?!
Funny thing — to other villains, I'm below their standards (perhaps that would make me the Spear Counterpart to ol' Jimmy, if I'm to believe that Dick Flass). Well, phooey! I didn't want their help, anyway...
Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Averted! I can damn well understand the good guys if I please. Even been one just a couple of times. It's just that it's out-of-your-skull boring.
Though, for the life of me, I can't understand why Batsy doesn't get the joke...
Eviler than Thou: Carnage? Puh-leeze! The guy is an uninventive, style-less dunderhead! Like I told him that one time we met, "Any idiot, nothing personal of course, can go out and slaughter a few thousand people, but where's the laughter and tears? The handstands and histronics? In short, my dense and sanguine pal... where's the theater?"
Evil Plan: I dabble in everything from the classic robbery to pay the bills to Mind Rapefor kicks. Though they usually involve Batsy somehow.
Evil Twin: Word is there're some worlds out there where my counterparts are on the good guys' side. Is that messed-up or what?!
Evil Versus Evil: I tussle with the competiton all the time! The penultimate issue of my own magazine pit yours truly against ol' Jonathan Crane, for example. The bet, entitled "The Scarecrow's Fearsome Face-Off", is which of our fearsome weapons is the best, and my laughing gas won out. Ha, that'll teach him.
Glasgow Grin: Sometimes I opt to carve my trademark cheerful smile right into my face! Assuming, that is, it wasn't done for me; I can't quite remember anymore. If I don't have any of my happy gas on hand, maybe I'll give one to my victims as well!
Hollywood Acid: Have a little whiff of my posy. Flowery pun, I know, but...
Hollywood Psych: According to the good doctors in Arkham, I'm not Insane, oh nonono. I am Super Sane! It's like Tourette's but mass murdery! Another one of dear Harley's bright ideas — fortunately, I managed to get to her just in time, because lunacy like that needs a wider audience.
Humiliation Conga: Less-Than-A-Pennyworth once outfenced me and trapped me on a pole-elevator of some sort, zipping up and down, up and down, for five minutes. Never did quite see what the pole was for...
The Hyena: It's always a laugh-a-minute around me, especially when the punchline involves a bomb and a busload of orphans. So many happy memories. I do remember some sort of amalgamated version of me with that name, but who can keep track?
Improbable Aiming Skills: My aim should be this good after all these years of using Gotham's people as practice. Need an example? Fine! Remember that one animated movie that's criminally underrated? In it, I unload an entire magazine from a Tommy Gun at those singing robots, all of them being headshots which blast off the heads of all 4 robots. The camera reveals me to be the shooter and my left hand was in my pocket the whole time.
Incredibly Lame Pun: "The Joker's Wild?"Nah, that one wasn't funny. Still, if you think that one was corny, you should see the one at the end of the movie with Jack where I died by falling off a building due to a statue pulling my leg!
In Love with Your Carnage: But he's sooo magnificent when he loses it... Especially when he loses it on me. Ahh, but dear Bats is in deep denial.
Insanity Has Advantages: Let's face it, by all rights I should have gotten the death penalty a long time ago. Although I wonder which would be the best way to go... the electric chair would be an absolutely heavenly sensation, while dying by lethal injection would allow me to leave a beautiful corpse (and I do love the irony)...
Crane hates this. Can you believe the buffoon actually tried using his fear gas on me? HAHAHAHA!
Of course, little Acey-poo showed me that no matter how wacky you are, there's still new depths to plumb. What a trip that that was...
Love Makes You Evil: Maybe. Maybe I did all this because I lost my beloved wife as part of my One Bad Day. Maybe I didn't. Hey, wanna know how I got these scars? Then again, I've lied so much about my past. The way Batman tells it in Confidential, I never had a wife and it was the allure of Bats himself that drove me over the edge.
Luxury Prison Suite: Once upon a time, I used to maintain a minature version of my hide-out beneath my cell in Arkham. Ah, good times.
Muggles Do It Better: I don't need to shoot magical lasers out of my ears to put Superman down faster than Darkseid usually does. Everyone gives poor Croc grief for his grand plan of "I threw a rock at him!" but it works so well against our favorite Kryptonian.
No Fourth Wall: And lovin' it! I'll happily chat directly with readers, and I've been doing it for years before that Anonymous — in the "chan"sense of the phrase — over at Marvel made it "cool"! I do it so well, even you can't be sure if I am or not sometimes!
No Sense of Humor: No, really! In my very first first appearance, I was a smiling psychotic gangster with no sense of humor whatsoever — and during my fight with Bats, he's the one making puns while I'm just screaming "I am going to kill you!"...
Omnidisciplinary Scientist: Biology, Physics, Mathematics, Anatomy, and of course good old Engineering, Psychology and Chemistry; all the stuff at boring old school that actually makes life fun for a prankster like me. The only subjects a genius like me has trouble with is that boring old inter-whatchyouaycallit-net, too much logic. Oh no, I wasn't a teacher's pet, it's quite the other way round actually. As a matter of fact Ms Crabtree over there has been licking water from her dish since I put her "facing your childhood fears" lecture to practice.... on a roller coaster showing the "movies" her daddy made with her back in sweet-16..... I wonder if it will work on Sheriff Gordy.....
And Jacky Boy likes to imply that I'm also a fella who is gifted in poetry, theatre, literature, and all that lovey dovey, boring pansy stuff..... Tell anyone I read that Shakespeare sonnet to my Dear Harley and I'll tear you lungs out, buddy boy!!
The novelization of The Dark Knight has a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment where I slipped an old lady a hundred-dollar bill. Of course, that may have been me practicing for my big confrontation with Bats down the line, to try to imitate his every move so as to confuse him, which would help to drive an ordinary person mad... wait a second, Bats is no ordinary person! That, or I got tired of waiting around for my henchmen to pick me up and had nothing better to do to pass the time.
Pie in the Face: Batman's favorite present had to be the pie I gave him in the Christmas episode of the animated series.
Put on a Bus: I appeared in the very first issue of Detective Comics published in our brave DCNuworld, only to let the Dollmaker cut off my face and hang it on a wall. Suppose I should get around to having that sucker stapled back on one of these days...
Shut Up, Hannibal!: I've been on the receiving end. Most often from the Crazy Chiroptera, the Turd Migratorius, and the Cute Chiroptera; but more than once from a criminal! I just don't get it. How can anyone honestly believe good and evil exist when I've proven beyond reasonable doubt that they don't?
Snuff Film: What, you think I wouldn't try my hand at something like this? My attempt at becoming a cinematic auteur was to be entitled The Man Who Killed Batman, although unfortunately I had a number of "creative differences" with my star. Old Batsy can be such a prima donna at times...
For some reason, Lexie didn't think the whole "booby-trap the coffins of your latest rampage's victims with springs to turn them into a wave of Jack-in-the-Boxes at their funerals" was funny at all. Can't imagine why.
Straw Nihilist: Nope, not Craney. I learned an important lesson a long time ago, one that makes this whole crazy, screwed-up world make sense: nothing makes sense. It's all just one big joke! But you guys, you don't get that — so I've got to show you. One wayor another.
Rousseau Was Right: And those times that people didn't take to the lesson don't count, damn it!
Suicide by Cop: Case in point. During the Last Laugh storyline, Nightwing (Robin #1 for those keeping score) did me in. However, Batsy ruined the fun bringing me back because he didn't want his boyfri-I mean, ex-sidekick to be a murderer. Still, wished I’d filmed it though.
There was this one time... I was holding the Philosopher's Stone... just waiting to remake the world in my glorious image... and then that damn green guy did something to me. Something 'orrible. Something I don't want to remember. Methinks he may have made me — gasp! SANE! Fortunately, it did not last.
And then there was the number I sang for that old fart Gordon in The Killing Joke. (That's right, I sang an original song in a comic.) Shame, really – if only Al had included, say, a piano, maybe you'd know what it sounded like!
Then there was the time I turned the water supply into jelly.
What Could Have Been: I could have been a part of the Legion of Doom in Challenge Of The Super Friends, but as it turned out, I was in The New Adventures of Batman instead. Their loss as far as I'm concerned. I mean, they had Bizarro of all people! He's not a menace, he's a nuisance! And don't get me started on The Riddler. Why him as the Bat's counterpart? I mean really, riddles are boring, not to mention too easy for the Bat to solve. Where's the fun in that?
Woman Scorned: Huh? Where'd you hear that? Harley would never hurt me! Even if I did try to... Uh... Replace her... And even if she did, she'd never get away with it... And... (Guh, I'm a lousy liar...)
Wolverine Publicity: My face was made for the spotlight! I can't help if I'm so marketable! They've even got my face on shoes for crying out loud!
Xanatos Backfire: Maybe I should've checked whether or not my attempt to force Batman into his greatest boner was foolproof enough to not wind up becoming Out-Gambitted. For starters, I should've sent Bats and his sidekick into the Atlantic via plane, and not England like I wound up doing. But I certainly didn't count on Bats tracking the signal to my hideout!