The Joker is the greatest super villain in comic book history and I firmly believe that this isn’t up for debate. Sure, there are more powerful villains. Maybe there are some that have achieved more (i.e. Doomsday did actually kill Superman). However, when it comes down to it, no one is as entertaining, twisted or as unpredictable as The Joker.
His ongoing (albeit never ending) rivalry with Batman has spanned nearly seventy-four years and has produced some of the most compelling storytelling in any fiction medium. Therefore, it’s about time that someone took up the task of crafting a visual history of the Clown Prince of Crime.
Accompanied by an excellent foreword from Mark Hamill (Joker’s most notable voice), author Daniel Wallace brings you a wealth of information regarding Joker’s appearances in comics, television, movies and video games all crammed into a modest 208 pages.
Aside from a few questionable mix-ups on dates (Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight was listed as being released in 2009), the material here is solid as the majority of his most well-known moments and stories are covered thoroughly. There’s even a few laugh out loud moments regarding some of the more questionable stories Joker has been subjected to (The Iranian Advisor to the UN?!).
If I have one complaint, it’s going to be about the size. I understand that the full pages work well given the subject matter (full two page shots of iconic comic book art) but it’s extremely uncomfortable to hold and read.
The fact that Cesar Romero didn’t shave off that damn mustache to play The Joker is both awesome and infuriating at the same time. Hey, I love my beard but there’s no way I’d keep it if someone told me I was going to portray The Agent of Chaos.