‘Batman: The Killing Joke’ Could Be Even Darker Than We Previously Thought

By October 12, 2015

In all of Batman comic book history, there are a fair few stories and issues that have stood the test of time to become some of the most beloved Batman stories of all time. Of course Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns is in that list, but it also includes The Killing Joke without a doubt. The story not only was possibly one of the most brutal and twisted Batman comics ever written as The Joker worked to absolutely torture and decimate Jim Gordon, and his daughter, but also is one of the few definitive origin stories for The Joker.

These are all contributing factors to why the new Batman: The Killing Joke animated movie adaptation has become so highly anticipated over the past few months. With the announcement that Mark Hamill would be returning to voice The Joker in the film too, as well as all the possibilities the adaptation has at its disposal considering the source material’s content – it seems like this has the potential to not only be one of the best DC animated movies, but one of the best comic book movies ever in general.

It looks like things might have just gotten even crazier too.

According to Batman-News, the NYCC panel for DC Comics / Warner Bros. presentation of their upcoming Batman: Bad Blood video included some intriguing new pieces of information regarding the Killing Joke adaptation from producer James Tucker. Apparently DC has given the go-ahead to make Batman: The Killing Joke rated-R if need be, with Tucker going on to clarify that just because they can give the film an adult rating, doesn’t mean they will for sure.

Now, it doesn’t come as a major surprise that The Killing Joke could receive an R-rating, especially for anyone who knows the original comic very well. The Joker origin story tale begins with the iconic villain showing up at the door of Barbara Gordon and shooting her point blank in the waist, subsequently paralyzing her, before stripping her nude and taking naked photos of her in compromising positions. He then kidnaps Jim Gordon and takes the character through a ride (literally), where he forces Gordon to look at the naked photos of his daughter in the hopes of driving him insane, much like how The Joker himself went crazy in just one bad day.

The animated films have already been able to get away with quite a lot over the past few years with PG-13 ratings, so it is saying a lot that DC would be okay giving The Killing Joke an R-rating, and the only concern I have is the possibility of the filmmakers crossing the story’s careful line of brutality into a much more gratuitous story. Part of what makes The Killing Joke so good is not the awful things that The Joker does, but because of how psychological it gets for not just the Clown Prince of Crime, but for every other notable character in the story too. I can’t wait for the adaptation personally and knowing Hamill will be doing The Joker voice in it gives me confidence it will be a faithful, and successful adaptation.

Make sure to keep checking back for more updates — right here on GeekNation.

Alex Welch

Alex Welch

Alex dreams of meeting a girl with a yellow umbrella, and spends too much time* staring at a movie screen. His vocabulary consists mostly of movie quotes and 80s song lyrics. *Debatable