- Hardcover: 128 pages
- Publisher: DC Comics (November 4, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1401215815
- ISBN-13: 978-1401215811
- Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 0.4 x 10.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (378 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #24,921 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Joker Hardcover – November 4, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Building on Heath Ledgers performance in The Dark Knight (although long before the movies debut), Azzarello creates a memorably cringe-worthy story. Rather than a natty Clown Prince of Crime, this Joker looks like a glam rocker gone to toxic seed. Newly released from Arkham Asylum, he begins disorganizing the criminal establishment of Gotham City. Although he claims to want power and money when he confronts Two Face and his peers, he really seems just to enjoy playing with people—shooting them, setting them on fire or skinning them alive. Accompanying him is Jonny Frost, a young thug who takes a long time to recognize the drawbacks of seeing a vicious sociopath as a role model. Like Jonny, however, readers may find that, horrifying as the Joker is, they cant take their eyes off him. Even Batman, when he inevitably enters the action, functions largely as the Jokers partner in a dance of death. Azzarello has learned how to create a menacing, morally ambivalent atmosphere in his years of scripting 100 Bullets, and Bermejos jagged, shadow-saturated art sustains the mood. The result is fascinating but extremely dark. (Nov.)
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Batman’s preeminent foe comes to the fore, and the Caped Crusader makes only a fleeting appearance at the end in this graphic novel scripted by hard-boiled crime-comics author Azzarello that sees the Crime Clown, newly released from Arkham Asylum, attempting to take Gotham City back from the underworld figures who have carved it up in his absence. The story is told from the perspective of a small-time hood who stumbles into being the Joker’s henchman. Azzarello’s Joker hews closely to Heath Ledger’s portrayal in the film The Dark Knight. He’s a genuine psychopath, whose unpredictability is his strongest weapon. Chillingly cruel and criminally insane, he still isn’t so outré that he couldn’t conceivably exist in a non-comic-book world. Two-Face, the Penguin, and the Riddler are here, too, similarly muted compared to their usual comic-book personae and active in the most squalid version of Gotham City ever put on paper or celluloid, a sleazy milieu that Lee Bermejo’s deliberately ugly artwork, aided by a muddily muted color scheme, well realizes. --Gordon Flagg
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Top customer reviews
• The art on the Book (Bermejo) is really good. Forms, bodies and shapes are well detailed.
• The story involved many Batman villains
• It is complete book about the Joker
• Joker is draw as Hugh Ledger’s Joker
• Joker is not as criminal as other tales.
• Killer Croc is not the real Killer Croc
The movie The Dark Knight reinvented the Joker with a considerably toned down visual appearance and darker attitude. The Dark Knight had more than a few flaws, particularly in the scripting, but it positively nails The Joker who stole the show and helped the movie become the second highest grossing film of all time. Brian Azzarello's, Joker, is pulled from the movie with a grungy appearance, disgusting greasepaint, carved out grin and anarchist mentality. There are no more squirting flowers or electrocuting joy buzzers. Azzarello's Joker is also legitimately terrifying, like a rabid dog with a genius IQ. What can you do to The Joker, maim him? This one is already a mess. Could you threaten to kill him? The Joker is fully prepared to die.
The story is told from the view of a low level henchman named Jonny Frost who travels with The Jokers following his release from prison. This is not the canonized world of DC comics it's more of an elsewhere story existing somewhere between the regular comic and the world of the Dark Knight. My understanding is that Two Face did not survive the movie but he does appear in this story so already it clearly isn't a direct sequel. The other Batman villains including Killer Croc, The Penguin and The Riddler are written and drawn to be much more realistic in line with what you might expect in the movies.
Speaking as a huge fan of Alan Moore I have to say that this is a better interpretation of The Joker than the legendary `Killing Joke'. The Batman only makes an appearance in the last few pages and the encounter is perfect. It is clear throughout the book that The Joker rules the criminal roost even among the rogues gallery. He is smarter and more ruthless than anyone else but here in the last few moments The Joker finally meets his match and The Batman drops a line so perfect I wouldn't dare to reveal it here. In the end Jonny Frost learns that this is The Joker and The Batman's world, he was only living in it.
Most recent customer reviews
Read this and see a little into mind of the Joker. You will see insanity twisted to the 10th level.