Joker – DC Black Label Edition – #Batman80 Column

In celebration of Joker starring Joaquin Phoenix releasing this week, we'll be looking at the newly re-released "DC Black Label" graphic novel, Joker. #Batman80
This book was released 10 years ago, right around the time of The Dark Knight. Some of the Joker's looks in this book were inspired by Ledger's awesome take on the character. This book features artwork by Lee Bermejo (one of my favorite artists) and a story by Brian Azzarello.

Joker is being released from Arkham Asylum. Not escaping, busting out, flying the coupe, or whatever analogy you want to use. They are letting him walk out freely. A cured man.

In no way, shape or form is he cured though (LOL). As he walks out, we are introduced to the narrator of this story. Johnny Frost. Johnny Johnny as Joker calls him is a small-time goon who unfortunately is chosen to pick up Joker from Arkham.

Joker immediately latches onto Johnny and the descent into the Joker's madness begins. In this story, the Joker has been locked up for a while now. He's lost everything that matters to him. Control. His driving mission is to get it back and all of Gotham has to reap the whirlwind.
His first stop is to get some muscle. For this, he chooses Killer Croc. Croc's look is more akin to his look from the Suicide Squad movie, just beefier. Not the monster type look he currently has in the comics.

Next stop, A bar. In it, is one of the Joker's old henchmen, Monty. In the back of the bar, we see Harley Quinn who never acknowledges Joker….at first. Joker has some business with Monty. Apparently, he did something while the Joker was locked up and he's not very happy about it. Harley does an impromptu striptease to put on her costume. During the distraction Joker gives Monty the old Godfather kiss and takes him, terrified to the backroom accompanied by Harley, who is now fully in costume. Next, we see Monty stagger out…..skinned, Predator style. Standing over Monty's corpse, Joker lets the rest of the goons know that he's unhappy that his grip on Gotham was allowed to be stolen. He wants it back and wants to know who's coming with him…
Can Gotham City withstand this chaos that is about to be unleashed? Which of the rogues gallery members is the current boss of Gotham? How will he or she react to the fact that Joker is back and ready to fight for his version of control of the city? How will Batman react to the madness that has been unleashed by an even more unhinged Joker?

Go grab the book and find out! This new edition was released on July 9th, 2019 and has an MSRP of $14.99. Definitely worth the money and a great book to add to the shelf!

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