Faced: The Joker Returns In Batman #13on July 3, 2012 at 7:32 am
With San Diego Comic-Con literally right around the corner (we fly out a week from today, and I have my first airline system nicotine fit one week and three hours from today), I’d been expecting a dearth of actual comic news until then, since the big stuff usually gets held until the appropriate convention panels, giving fans good reason to attend and creators a wide sampling of attractive people in superhero costumes upon whom they can hit. Protip, creators: steer clear of anyone in a Batgirl suit. There may be… ulterior motives.
So here I was, thinking I’d have a week to recharge my batteries and prepare for the sensory overload that is SDCC by doing some quickie reviews and getting my drink on at a reasonable hour for a change, when DC Comics went ahead and announced yesterday a tiny little news item. Y’know, nothing anyone would be interested in. Just the course of the Batman main title (at least) immediately following the Night of The Owls event and opening up the New 52′s second year.
Starring The Joker.
He crippled Batgirl. He killed Robin. What will The Joker do next? And what must Batman do to protect his secret identity and that of those who fight alongside him? The adventure begins in BATMAN #13 by Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo and Jonathan Glapion.
Now, if you recall from way back in September, Tony Daniel took The Joker out of commission in Detective Comics #1, which wound up making that issue one of the strongest debuts of the New 52 by way of ripping The Joker’s fucking face off. Joker’s been incommunicado since then, so who knows what he’s been up to?
Apparently Scott Snyder. At least I hope so; he’s writing the damn thing:
“Joker is my favorite villain of all time,” Snyder told THE SOURCE. “Not just in comics. In everything – film, books, TV. He’s the greatest, hands down. So this story is something extremely important and personal to me – something I’ve been building in my head ever since I started working in Gotham. Basically, this is my big exploration of the Joker, my ARKHAM ASYLUM or THE KILLING JOKE, only bigger in scope. Bottom line: it’s the biggest, baddest, most shocking Joker story I could tell. This is Joker completely unleashed. He has been away for a full year planning this revenge, watching, plotting, setting things up. And now he’s back. He has his traps set, his knives sharpened… And wait ’til you see him. Greg’s sketches literally gave me chills. Point blank: This is Joker like you’ve never seen him before. He has a mission. He has a secret. And he has a serious axe to grind with Batman. It isn’t going to be pretty, but it’s going to be a wild ride. Thanks for taking it with us.”
Okay, first of all, I know that this has been a damn good year for Snyder, and the main Batman title has been pretty much rock solid under his pen, despite having more than a few similarities with Jim Starlin’s and Bernie Wrightson’s The Cult. But putting your story in the same class as Alan Moore or Grant Morrison working at the height of their powers is a bold statement, and one that’s gonna be damn hard to back up.
To start off with, Snyder needs to reconcile what happened to Joker’s face. Did he get it reattached after Harley Quinn stole it from the Gotham Police in Suicide Squad? Did he get a new one? And if he did, whose? Snyder describes Greg Capullo’s sketches of Joker as “chilling,” so my guess? It’s Ron Jeremy’s face.
And “the biggest, baddest, most shocking Joker story”? What has Joker been doing for a year, Scott? We know he was probably under the knife to get his new Ron Jeremy face, so why stop there? He’s a bit of a fop, so maybe he got gender reassignment surgery? Nah, not shocking enough… maybe gender reassignment surgery… on the male side of the equation? That’s it, isn’t it? The Joker’s back, and he’s got two wangs and the face of the Hedgehog!
Yeeeaahh, there’s a reason I write about comics as opposed to actually writing comics. Regardless, Batman #13 drops in mid-October, and if there’s more news about this story in the SDCC Batman panel a week from Thursday, we’ll try to let you know. In the meantime, here’s Capullo’s teaser drawing: