Life is Like a Box of Jokers

Apparently, crazy is as crazy does, and needs no further explanation.  The Joker is first introduced in TDK rather brilliantly, as dangerous, psychotic, and reasonably well-played by Heath Ledger.  The problem is, other than his own dialogue in 2 moments of the movie about his father that he hated who gave him is facial scars, and some rambling dialogue about some female he was in love with who seemingly experiences the same fate (it was a bit jumbled), there is no other background about him as a character.  He just exists, and has no rhyme or reason, no motivation, other than he wants to kill “The Batman” — but then later he… uh… doesn’t want to kill “The Batman”.

Perhaps this equates to how the writers perceive people being disfigured as immediately and definitely correlating with them turning into homicidal maniacs.  Harvey Dent was the epitomy of do-gooder, until 1/2 his face burned off.  Insta-crazy!

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32 Responses to “Life is Like a Box of Jokers”

  1. You are utterly clueless. First, the Joker is crazy. It’s pretty obvious by his actions. His jumbled explanations reflect the fact that he’s a psychotic. As for Dent, long before he’s started to show signs of a more ominous side. Did you pay attention when he kidnapped the Joker’s henchman?

  2. There’s another section here called “From Dent to Bent in The Blink of an Eye”. He saw the same movie you and I did. The gist is Dent goes too crazy too quickly. The part where he kidnaps the crazy henchman guy isn’t all that crazy. Going on a killing spree after Joker talks to him for just a minute is far-fetched.

  3. OMG some people are so hurtin.
    …. like the scene with Dent and the Henchman is a MAIN scene (aside from other more subtle ones) that points to Dents Vigilante-ness.

    like Dent plays secondary to the main characters so obviously they will no backstory him or anything like that.

  4. he talked about how he was tired of ripping off the mob while in prison…did you expect his character to sit down and have a heart-to-heart with someone in this movie? i’m positive that would have drawn 100x more criticism from you… how bout reading up on his background and making some simple implications based off what he did say?

  5. Read up on the Joker? Well, he’s had numerous and varying origin stories over the years. The Nolan brothers decided that instead of choosing one of them from the existing mythology they’d take the easy way and not give him one at all.

    That way the Joker can be everything and anything — more of a deus ex machina to advance the story and make the other characters face “moral dilemmas.”

  6. I think the Nolans wanted the Joker to feel like a natural spill over of the crime world that was trying to survive against a fascist vigilante. The Joker is a smart character that supports himself, and how he turns over Harvey Dent is, to me, absurd, given that Harvey Dent was motivated by stalwart, good deeds. It seems strange that he would so readily put the gun on Gordon’s family and is the only thing in this movie that I have a problem with. I love the character of Twoface and knew that despite the physical disparity delineated on his body, that there would be something intelligent out of him, rather than being so easily affected by the Joker.

    But I suppose they couldn’t add to an already long feature, so they just made the point of Twoface without the full meditation. True, he acts on the coin, but he arrives there with all his powers so the coin can decide for him.

  7. Or perhaps you need to read some Batman stories. That was the whole point of the Joker character: You don’t know who he is where he came from or what his motivation is.

    I suggest you find and read two stories: “The Killing Joke” and “The Man who Laughs” Ledger’s performance was perfect as the Joker. Why are you making things up to hate about this movie? Find something legit and quit pulling shit your of your ass.

  8. The Joker is manipulating the mob from the beginning. He obviously can’t sit at the meeting with them them and say, “I don’t want the Batman dead. I need him. “

  9. “Or perhaps you need to read some Batman stories.” You might want to do that yourself. There is an entire origin storyline in “The Killing Joke”

  10. This Joker didn’t need an origin. Whereas the Joker of the comics was (according to “The Killing Joke”) forced into his Joker-ish state via rather extra-ordinary circumstances (a vat of chemicals), the Joker of TDK was just straight-up crazy. His insanity has no origin. If anything, they could have commented on why he like clown make-up, or how he REALLY got those scars, but as it stands now, he’s kind of an enigma in regards to those, which (I think), adds to his Joker-y malevolence.

  11. i agree with hutt. it was a manipulation. he doesnt want batman dead. the fun would be over.

    on the other hand he doesnt mind people dieing as a result which is kinda weird but then again he is a psycho.

    didnt nicholsons joker want batman to die? he even shot him with that baby pistol. remember? or did he not no it was batman.

  12. So. Let’s say you were tied up in a room with moments to live and you had resigned yourself to death because it meant the person you loved would survive, and then at the last moment you realize that you’re going to have to listen to that person die, and then you’re horribly, horribly burned and in an intense amount of pain (no painkillers) and while you’re lying there, dying slowly, emotionally and physically scarred, you learn that the people you put all your faith and trust in betrayed you and let this happen, and all they can say is “Err, uhh… sorry?”

    Hmmm, yea. I would, you know, just lay there in my hospital bed and wait for the new DA to be appointed.

    Gordon obviously didn’t DESERVE to be a focus of Two-Face’s blind rage, but it was HIS people that kidnapped Dent and Rachel. HIS cops that were weak willed and easily corrupted. Dent didn’t DESERVE what happened to him either. That’s the whole fucking POINT.

    Did you actually WATCH this movie?

  13. I agree with Lazarus, it was like Dent was only provoked by Joker. There was a TON of emotional pain already in place and the only person who used those emotions to sway Dent was Joker. Joker pushed Dent, using his weak pained emotional state, into becoming a vengeful killer. DUH!

    Also on Joker, the point was he didn’t have motivation, that was the point, you couldn’t feel anything for him because there was NO way to sit there and say, “Well I see why he’s killing people I guess he isn’t all bad,” instead it was, “WTF is he doing this for that crazy bastard!”

    You really need to watch a movie first if your going to pretend like it is this terrible wash of bad movie.

  14. ****** wasn’t like Dent was *******

    not was


  15. Joker didn’t need a backstory. Movie was long enough already, and I liked how he gave two different versions of his “scar” story, so as to let the viewer know that even if he did give us a backstory, it would likely be something he made up for a laugh. If you want to understand the character (a psychopath), can I recommend a high dose of hallucinogens? Otherwise, perhaps you should resign yourself to the realization that you can’t grasp the character at all.

  16. “You might want to do that yourself. There is an entire origin storyline in “The Killing Joke”

    Read the story to get a sense of his insanity. Perhaps i didn’t make that clear. When Joker was introduced in 1940 he had no name, no origin story, no nothing.Origin story came later. Tim Burton took his inspiration from Moore’s and Miller’s adaptations of Batman in the 80’s… the character was over 40 years old by then. He originally had no origin and that’s why Nolan didn’t give him one.

  17. “You might want to do that yourself. There is an entire origin storyline in “The Killing Joke””

    You might actually want to read the comic. The Joker says that he remembers his origin in multiple ways. I believe his exact words were ” If I have a past, I prefer it to be multiple choice.” He himself does not remember his own origin.

    Also, as has been mentioned, Nolan wished to present the Joker as an absolute evil with no backstory. He appears, and chaos follows.

  18. Joker kept making up stories about how he got his scars, meaning that from as far as we know there is no true story there.
    It’s just him intimidating people, he was going to tell another story about his scars at the end to Batman but got a face full of blades instead… which suprisingly didn’t hit him.

  19. But GORDON and BATMAN DIDNT BETRAY DENT! That’s what doesn’t make sense to me. Because somebody on Gordon’s team was on the take, Dent almost blows Gordon’s kid’s head off? It’s totally implausible. He does go too crazy too quickly and it’s one of my main complaints about the movie. Believe me, I want to like this movie. I loved Begins. I’m just not drinking the Kool Aid on this one. A very disjointed, tonally confusing, long film. Entertaining and amazing to look at, yes…But not really deserving of all the praise being heaped on it.

  20. “Because somebody on Gordon’s team was on the take, Dent almost blows Gordon’s kid’s head off?”

    Dent is upset because he repeatedly warned Gordon about the possible traitors in his unit, and Gordon ignored him (in fact, Dent names the two traitors early in the movie, when he names cops with questionable affiliations). Harvey beleves that if Gordon had watched those two more carefully or done something about them, Rachel wouldn’t have died and he wouldn’t look like he did. Third, we know at this point that he is not exactly thinking logically.

    And on the subject of Dent going crazy too quickly, we are shown in the movie earlier on that he has a darker side to him, and, for those who know the comics, he was never perfectly sane to begin with. Besides, think about how you would feel when you have to talk to the one person you love while you know you or her might die. The mental strain on a person like that is unimaginable.

  21. you’re an idiot!
    get a life, watch some porn, think of something better to write about!

  22. The joker can’t actually remember what happened in his past. He only knows that it’s one big joke.

    Read the killing joke. the writers got it spot on.

    and also dent didn’t go crazy too quick. It was a cumulation of all the pressure in his life and crashed down with one bad day

  23. It seems like your suffering from a case of a one dimensional mind. For the Joker, hes meant to just be a madmen, and your not supposed to know why, your just supposed to know thats who he is and what is it gonna take to stop him. The whole point to him is, YOU CANT FIGURE HIM OUT. Theres no “oh well hes only like this because this happened” or anything like that. Period. Batman is used to knowing how criminals are and confidently figuring them out if need be, as is shown from his line “criminals arent complicated” and his journeys in batman begins just to understand them. But now he has his greatest threat, someone who he cant understand. A one of a kind from the bad side, just like hes a one of a kind from the good side. And the two stories he told people, were just meant to freak them out and think “this guy is crazy” because thats what he thrives off of, is making peoples minds race in his presence. And as for Dent, he had a good intention but he was never right in the whole movie. Hes witnessing Batman do all these things but knows he never kills, while at the same time you know he really has the “sometimes you need to kill” mentality from the whole abduction scene on the tracks. And he also felt strange about Gordons unit but never acted on it because he trusted Gordon who trusted them, and as a result, the love of his life was blown to bits, and now hes doing what he feels is necessary by killing all of the people he felt were responsible, but at the same time referring to his coin which he thinks is the only way to do things fair in the world after people like the joker are allowed to live while rachel was allowed to die. Then at the end he wants Gordon to feel the pain he is going through by taking the most important person in the world from him, since his whole point is he wants everything to be fair. You know, everyone has their own opinion, but the type of stuff your bringing up here is just senseless bitching, yes, the movie had faults, but you make up your own site devoted to bitching about a FICTIONAL film just because in particular you dont like it for its minor flaws?

  24. first of all, Joker not having an origins or have many, that’s just respecting the source material, go read some Batman comics.

    Dent going from Dent to Bent too quickly? I don’t know, seems to me he was on the edge already before his face got burnt, losing Rachel and his face burnt pushed him over the edge, it’s really not that quick

  25. Exactly, theres a reason the joker said “madness is like gravity, all it needs is a little push” implying that he could tell dent was on the edge and was corruptible.

  26. // theres a reason the joker said “madness is like gravity, all it needs is a little push” //

    Except, madness ISN’T like that.

  27. Ohhh it ISNT like that huh? Well I didnt know that tdksucks, so your sure, no doubt about it that it factually is not like that at all? Even if the joker is figuratively speaking?

  28. Huxley, on July 21st, 2008 at 8:31 pm Said:

    “Or perhaps you need to read some Batman stories.” You might want to do that yourself. There is an entire origin storyline in “The Killing Joke”

    Skimming the wikipedia doesn’t equate to reading the comics. In fact, the wikipedia entry you quoted also shows that Joker’s origins are conflicted:

    “Though many have been related, a definitive backstory has never been established for the Joker in the comics, and his real name has never been confirmed.”

    tdksucks, on July 30th, 2008 at 12:32 am Said:

    // theres a reason the joker said “madness is like gravity, all it needs is a little push” //

    Except, madness ISN’T like that.

    This was the central idea behind “The Killing Joke” which the movie drew inspiration from. In the comics, Joker tried but failed to drive Gordon insane in an attempt to prove that any reasonable person can become crazy like himself given a really bad day.

    I think Nolan tried to show this with the ferries. But ultimately for Harvey Dent, he wasn’t depicted as the most mentally stable character to begin with and his fall doesn’t refute this core ideal.

    It is opportunistic, but personally, I think it is a good interpretation of “The Long Halloween” which had Harvey descending to Two Face over a few months (with the physical deformation marking the official transition)

  29. Wow, you know a movie must be good when someone creates an entire site to bitch about it. I can’t wait for the movie to come out december 26 and see it again and again and again.

  30. LIsten buddy don’t talk about stuff you do not know a single thing about. You are just ranting to annoy people so stop. The Joker isn’t how he is because of his scars, to be honest no one knows why he is how he is. That is the beauty of The Joker, we have no clue. As for Dent he changed because in his mind he was doing all the right things yet he was terribly punished with the death of Rachel. So please shut the fuck up.

  31. “we have no clue”, ain’t that the truth.

  32. Ummm…first off I didn’t read any comments so I’m just going to assume I’m the first to say this. The Joker tells multiple stories in the movie regarding his origin because he has multiple origins in the comics, and the reason he was given no further background in the movie is because in the comics he was introduced with NOOOOOOOOO origin. Alan Moore and others tried to explain it away with everything turning to shit in his life ending with a chemical bath that finally made him snap, and from what we can see in TDK Nolan kept to joker having one thing make him snap but just changed it to scars instead of chemicals to give it a more real world feel. As for two face, you try listening to the woman you love dying and then being blown half to hell (couldn’t resist) and we’ll just see how you react to the world, Dent was already going crazy without joker’s help (no pain meds or skin graphs) Joker just pushed him into the fast lane. Next time you want to criticize a movie why don’t you try and do some research. And if anyone would like a good joker origin story for joker pick up the killing joke, Lovers and madmen, or mask of the phantasm (Cartoon movie), they all tell a different story but share some elements.

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