The new Joker movie staring Joaquin Phoenix will be released on October 4th. While there is much promise in it, we can’t let it make us forget all the other beautiful Jokers. From movies to comics, the Joker has had some of the most intense, iconic moments in villain history. Let’s take a look at some of his greatest, most memorable moments.
Why So Serious? – The Dark Knight (2008)
Can we just get this out of the way because we all know it had to be on here. The most famous part about this scene is that Heath Ledger’s character tells a unique story about how he got his scars. In this version, he says his father gave him the scars after doing the same to his mother. His father deemed them too serious and gave them permanent smiles.
Who is the Joker? – Gotham (2018)
Gotham gave Jerome some pretty intense moments. Such as the time he confessed to killing his mother and had that awfully creepy look on his face. But it was just last year that we found out that Jerome isn’t even the Joker in the first place (more about that next season). But at this point, we think he is, and when he falls off the side of the building to his death, we know it isn’t over. But what we don’t know is that “Jerome” reemerges, only he isn’t Jerome at all. He is Jerimiah, Jerome’s twin brother who was driven crazy by Jerome himself.
Teaming with Batman – Dark Nights: Metal (2018)
While Batman and the Joker have teamed up on various occasions, this may be the most famous as of late happened in Dark Nights: Metal. In this series, Batman faces off against multiverse doppelgängers of himself, the last of these being The Batman Who Laughs. While Batman couldn’t defeat him all alone, The Joker shows up in the nick of time to end this imposter posing as his arch-enemy.
Robin Meets His End – A Death in the Family (1988)
Well, sort of. At this time, Jason Todd was Robin, and was just “fired” from his job due to his impulsive nature. After this, Jason sets out to find his real mother who ends up handing him over to the Joker to torture. The Joker eventually kills both Jason and his mother, leaving Batman to pick up the pieces.
However, in 2005, Jason was resurrected after a poll as The Red Hood, making himself an antihero like Batman who was willing to bring death to those who crossed him.
The Joker’s Death – Dark Knight Returns (1986 and 2013)
In this miniseries, Batman and Joker are well into their 60s and Batman decides to come out of retirement. Never one to be left behind, The Joker escapes Arkham yet again and chases after Batman. His goal? To get Batman to kill him. He gets him to break his neck in a fight, but Bruce won’t finish him off. So, what does Joker do? Twists his own neck far enough to kill himself, leaving Bruce Wayne a mess.
Nurse Joker – The Dark Knight (2008)
In this iconic scene, Harvey Dent wakes up in the hospital to see The Joker is his nurse. Every word The Joker says here is iconic. It gives us a look into his mind, the way he works, the way he manipulates everyone he comes into contact with. He turns Harvey Dent into an upstanding man with morals into a vindictive, twisted mind like his own. He’s an agent of chaos, looking to create as much of it as he possibly can.
Everything – The Killing Joke (1988)
While everything about The Killing Joke is iconic, there is one thing that really made an impact on us. First of all, this is one of the few times we get to see “The Joker” as a man. A man who only wants to provide for his family and ends up getting them killed instead. But what’s even more memorable is when he shoots Barbara Gordan, Batgirl, putting her out of commission for good.
Cuts Own Face Off – Batman #13 The New 52 (2015)
While the Joker has done this various times, none are more gruesome than this time in The New 52 Variant. He simply cuts it off all Jason-style and pins it to the wall with his own flesh. We don’t see what he looks like underneath, but we do see him some time later with it sewed back on. This shows us that Joker doesn’t just want to cause others pain, he’s also a first class masochist.
In the Pale Moonlight? – Batman (1989)
One of Jack Nicholson’s most famous quotes was spoken to Batman as the Joker. “Did you ever dance with the devil in the pale moonlight?” he asks Bruce. He claims he says this to all of his prey before pouncing. While it isn’t canon, in the movie, this Joker had asked his parents the same question before killing them. Meaning, Joker/Jack Napier killed Batman’s parents. A big reveal at the time.
Sarah’s Death – No Man’s Land (1999)
After kidnapping a bunch of babies and locking them in the basement of the police station, Sarah Essen (Gordan’s wife) goes face to face with The Joker. This is one of the times the Joker comes closest to death. Sarah is a good cop and has him in the sights of her pistol in seconds. But when The Joker tosses a baby at her, she instinctively drops the gun and catches it. Joker uses this opportunity to shoot her in the head. Wow, he really does hate Commissioner Gordon.