The Man Who LaughsEd Brubaker gets the Joker And the funny thing is, this isn t even the modern Joker He s not dark, gritty, or suicidal This Joker reaches back to his roots of merry prankster, with gags, a purple suit, and wanting to make people laugh This is an origin story Like Alan Moore s The Killing Joke explained how Joker came to be, The Man Who Laughs explains what he came to be And it s truly amazing The story takes place somewhere around Batman Year One and The Killing Joke Batman is a novice, James Gordon is a captain, and Gotham seems relatively untouched by super criminals Until now And watching the Gotham trinity, Batman, Gordon, and Joker, in their prime, is quite a show Brubaker is on point His dialog, while sometimes cartoony, is solid, especially for hardboiled Batman and Gordon The Joker feels like a cross between Cesar Romero and Mark Hamill but plenty menacing And the plot, while simple, has that essential unpredictability Brubaker is known for This is the first true Batman story I ve read of his and it s now one of my favorites The artwork is fantastic Doug Mahnke illustrates in a creepy cartoony style that holds up under the weight of the story It reminds me of a gritty cross between Batman The Animated Series and The Long Halloween There are plenty of wow moments for me where I really enjoyed myself And let us not forget the super bright and rich color work of David Baron, which allows the artwork to really pop off the page Briefly, it is now glaringly obvious that The Man Who Laughs was a huge inspiration for Christopher Nolan The plot connections to Nolan are this publicized assassinations on important figures, enlisting Arkham inmates in crimes, and an escalating sense of anarchy and mayhem And the water supply being poisoned That s also in Batman Begins except with Scarecrow and Ra s Al Ghul responsible That s pretty great coming from a 72 page story Made of WoodA different take on a Batman story, Made of Wood is a crime story involving Batman, a retired James Gordon, the first Green Lantern, Alan Scott, and a string of unsolved 1940s murders Little did I know that Scott was based in Gotham just like Batman Like most Brubaker stories, this is straight crime procedural Green Lantern is not at all on my radar of characters who interest me, but Brubaker steeps him in Gotham s dark bloody brine while bringing optimism to Batman It s a solid backup story and I m glad to have read it.
Written By Ed Brubaker Art By Doug Mahnke, Patrick Zircher, Aaron Sowd And Steve Bird Cover By Mahnke Witness Batman S First Encounter With The Joker In This Hardcover Volume Collecting The Graphic Novel BATMAN THE MAN WHO LAUGHS, By Ed Brubaker And Doug Mahnke This Collection Also Includes DETECTIVE COMICS , A Murder Mystery Tale Guest Starring Green Lantern Alan Scott 3.
5 starsEdit It has recently come to my attention through a reread that Kat s review sounds NOTHING like my classy informative reviewing style.
BecauseAnne Classy InformativeNotRambling Whatever the opposite of informative is cough Ok So in response to Kat s Review, I m going to try to write this review in Ms Stark s style Go easy on me, guys I m a little nervous hereclears throat, taps on mike Um, hey Is this thing even on feedback squeals Review a la Kat Guys, this should have been totally amazeballs So I was expecting something a little like this.
But what I got was this.
The Man Who Laughs, is a Joker origin story No, not that Joker This one.
Guys, if you ve been following my reviews, then you know that I m totally into Batman He is fuckingamazeballsSo, I ve been trying to catch myself up on everything that s considered to be a must read by fans of the Dark Knight When you factor in that Mr Awesomesauce Brubaker wrote this, it should equal up to an absolute win for Team Bats I hate to say this, but it just didn t do it for me I tried to love it, I really did, butI did like the add on, Made of Wood I say, add on, but it s really half of the book It s a good team up story between Bats and Green Lantern No, not this Green LanternvomitsThe original Green Lantern, Alan Scott.
Not all of you may know who this super old Lantern is, so I ll explain it to you Just like I explained it to my Hubs the other night See, he was in the shower, and I was camped out on the toilet He asked me what I was reading and if I would please warn him before I flushed , and I told him I was was reading about Batman and the Green Lantern, Alan Scott.
We talk about things like that cause we re such a Totes Adorb couple Anyway, he said he didn t know who that was, so I thought you guys might not know either.
Alan Scott doesn t work for the Guardians, and he s not a member of the Green Lantern Corps He got his ring from a flamey green meteor There s not even a little sucksauce in the second half of the book Totes worth the read, guys Which makes the whole thing kind of hard to rate, so I ll just leave you with thisand let you decide for yourselves if this is something you d be interested in view spoiler Trying to be Kat is really hard work I m going to take a nap hide spoiler Fun story, apparently not canon, but good story all the same.
Set shortly after Year One , this is Batman s first encounter with the Joker Joker starts taking out the wealthy Gotham elite one by one with his Joker toxin, hi jacking the Gotham airwaves with his messages of death and terror, finally threatening the destruction of the city itself But with Bruce Wayne as a target, how will Batman stop the JokerEd Brubaker pens a masterful 3 shot storyline introducing the best villain DC have, the greatest foe Batman ever faced, and one of the best bad guy s in all of literature The gruesome deaths from Joker toxin are shown very vividly throughout, and Batman has to find a way into a mind that seems to have been completely shattered I liked that Batman makes a number of mistakes in trying to capture Joker because this is their first encounter and he doesn t know Joker s methods yet.
The story reminded me a lot of Chris Nolan s 2008 Batman film, The Dark Knight, as they have similar plot points Joker taunts Batman and Gotham with video messages, he takes out Gotham s elite one by one, and he causes panic in the general populace leading to a mass evacuation It s to Brubaker s credit that his The Man Who Laughs storyline was used to great effect on the big screen and is definitely worth reading if you re a Batman Joker fan.
The second half of the book is a boring 3 shot story of Batman and the original Green Lantern Alan Scott as they try and solve a 50 year old murder mystery of a killer called Made of Wood I m not a Green Lantern fan so I wasn t so keen on this and it has nothing to do with the Joker so I have no idea why it s twinned with the first story.
5 stars for The Man Who Laughs , 2 stars for Made of Wood , the book is well worth reading if only for the first half.
I don t even know why I like the Joker any Now that first statement is probably the most heinous blasphemous remark I will ever type and will never type again as an avid Bat fan But I felt the need to confess it because I ve been keeping it bottled up inside sincewell, since Heath Ledger s outstanding performance in The Dark Knight film It was only during and after Death of the Family crossover event that I think I became one of those fans who contracted the Joker fatigue wherein I found everything that New 52 advertised and hyped about the return of the Clown Prince to be insufferable and diluted.
I think I m beginning to hate myself for this, which was why I feel that I should buy The Joker 75 years Anniversary collected works since I recently bought the Batman one last week I need a refresher I need to be reminded again why this delightfully terrifying clown psychopath was an important part of my childhood in the first place because I don t know why I m no longer that enthusiastic about him, let alone eager, to read a story featuring him as the central villain Heck, as much as I m enjoying Snyder s Endgame so far which once again brings back the Joker front and center especially in that previous fucking issue , I just can t handle another conversation or passing remark about the Joker FROM ANYONE unless it involves his relationship with Harley Quinn which I m always up for because they re an interesting study BUT MY GOD NEW 52 HARLEY IS ALSO MAKING ME ANGRY.
Maybe it s just a simple case of SENSORY OVERLOAD Earlier this year, I found out that two of my closest friends haven t watched The Dark Knight so I happily watched it with them separately so I watched it twice Last year I got so hooked with the indie webseries The Joker Blogs and I awaited each of their episode release like a battered puppy craving the abuse due to Stockholm Syndrome And then came Death of the Family which I had countless talks about with several people online in different social media accounts Things escalated steadily especially when I regretfully engaged in the unending argument in three separate forums about who is the best Joker Ledger, Nicholson, or Hamill because nobody ever wins that black hole all consuming debate EVER Pretty soon I was just SICK OF EVERYTHING THAT HAS THE JOKER STAMPED IN IT And I m reliving the horror again by typing all of this shit out and wasting your time if not possibly irritating you myself by making you read all of these whiny and bitchy sentiments Still, it helped me pinpoint why I hate the Joker now Hate is an overdramatic statement because the character will always be important and well loved for me but what I do hate is what he has REPRESENTED in New 52 material lately And it s not just about him being an overhyped phenomenon.
It s the way he would cast a large, looming shadow over every other villain from Batman s rogues gallery to a point where the re imagined origin stories for some villains in New 52 need to compete with his insane and chaotic characterization, if not imitate or increase it Take for example Thomas Elliot a.
a Hush whose updated origin in Batman Eternal is crazed up because that level of darkness is something a new generation comes to expect from a Bat villain if he ever lives to survive the competitive market where the Joker defines what makes a villain formidable and worthy of battling it out with Batsy Am I the only who noticed this With Nolan s franchise and subsequent characterization of the Joker as portrayed by Legder, the comics began to emulate it because it s the kind of brand that sells pretty damn well You know what, I wasted far too many paragraphs airing out grievances as oppose to giving you a fleshed out review of this comic book by Ed Brubaker which was composed of sixty seven pages while the other half has Green Lantern Alan Scott in it, one I didn t even bother to read.
This was a serviceable comic book which I don t think anyone post Nolan and those who subscribe to New 52 solely will enjoy that much It was straightforward and quite predictable even though the prose is engaging enough, considering it seamlessly alternated between Batman and Gordon s POVs As a companion piece to Year One, The Man Who Laughs does a good job introducing the Joker into the timeline where his first encounter with Batman is composed of the quintessential tropes that are recognizable enough to attribute to the Joker such as his convoluted and theatrical plans which he will nationally broadcast on television the absurdity and comical way those plans unfold and achieve their effect a steady body count as the story progresses and the eventual climactic clash with Batsy Overall, I enjoyed myself because it was a nice break, a simple story that was engaging enough But this wasn t going to resonate the same way a violent and grittier Joker centered piece would If that s what you re looking for then you might not bother with this one any I really have to buy the anniversary hardbound collection of the Joker stories soon I feel that it s the remedy I ve been looking for to purge me from my ongoing Joker fatigue at this moment RECOMMENDED 7 10DO read MY BATMAN COMICS REVIEWS AT
I was about as averagely impressed underwhelmed with this as I was with Year One Okay, so this is my introduction to the Joker I think half the problem I ve had with all these Batman comics I ve been reading is that they never seem to live up to my culturally enhanced expectationsNot actually my cultural expectation, it just makes me L O L as the kids say I don t why, but I expected something darker, or scarier, or just SOMETHING ER than what this was Maybe I should just stop reading Batman comics Naahhhas if Like a little bit of disappointment or mediocrity would stop me from reading what other people tell me I should although now that I think on it, that doesn t say much for my self preservation instinct Side ponderance Why the HELL can I not just fangirl obsess over the things other people do Ed Brubaker, Batman BatFamily, pretty much anything Marvel, etc I feel underwhelmed by all the things and it kinda SUCKS.
One by one, they ll hear my call Then this wicked town, will follow my fall.
JokerThis comic starts from where Batman Year One ends It s about the Joker story mostly I loved it Joker is trying to kill everyone in the Gotham city Batman has to stop him Joker is very clever I really liked him His way of killing is mind blowing His encounters with Batman are also very great I loved them view spoiler He kills two persons in a tight police protection One can t stop laughing while dying cause of a very dangerous poison Even Batman gets in a very critical condition after being affected by that hide spoiler
You have a knack for the obvious, Batman Very helpful Thanks for dropping in.
Educational digression The title of this book, The Man Who Laughs, is also a silent movie, starring Conrad Viedt The creators of Batman based the Joker s appearance on Veidt s character The movie studios tried to drum up interest in Veidt with the slogan Women fight for Conrad Veidt What kind of women are we talking about here End of educational digression Class dismissed.
So Batman, who s been dealing with punk ass villains up until this time, is at first in over his head Don t worry, Batman There are plenty billionaires in Gotham City The Joker can t kill them all Right The second story involves a serial killer seemingly back from the dead after forty years The original killings were meant to embarrass old man Green Lantern, Alan Scott, whose weakness is wood You can t get any embarrassing than that Am I right Look, Green Lantern it s Popsicle Stick Man Watch out for splinters sigh Bottom line Brubaker turns in two entertaining stories that are as much about Batman as they are Jim Gordon, at the beginning and after Gordon s time is over on the GCPD Check them out.