Robot 6

Jock offers grisly glimpse of Joker’s new look

Just two days after DC Comics spoiled the big reveal of the redesigned Joker with the cover of Batgirl #14, Jock has provided a close-up look at his take on the Dark Knight’s arch-nemesis from upcoming backup stories in Batman. Just don’t tell Greg Capullo.

The image, labeled “W.I.P.” (work in progress), appeared only briefly this morning on Twitter before being removed (it remains on Instagram). The panel shows the Joker, last seen last year in Detective Comics #1 having the Dollmaker surgically remove his face, wearing what’s essentially a reclaimed flesh mask, held together with what looks like staples, and some kind of bands stretching the mouth hole into a maniacal grin. Needless to say, it’s a little disturbing (you can see the image below).

DC has used a gruesome promo image to promote the character’s return in October’s Batman #13, which kicks off the “Death of the Family” crossover and marks the beginning of the four-part backup story by Scott Snyder, James T. Tynion IV and Jock.

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15 Comments

If there is one book zero month hasn’t deterred me from dropping its batman.

Shouldn’t he be worried about infection?

Man, I really like the work of everyone involved, but this is so gruesome. The Johnsification of the DCU continues, I suppose. This looks like Hellraiser more than the Joker.

The Boy With A Herve Villechaize Tattoo

August 16, 2012 at 10:33 am

Josh, I think The Joker would probably welcome a bout of infection, if ONLY to keep things lively for himself! Hahahaa!

Well at least it’s not Jim Lee-designed armor, but still… unnecessary.

Why is everyone so fixated on making The Joker as horrifying and gruesome as possible? Whatever happened to just telling good Joker stories? Does everything need to be as dark, grim and twisted as possible to be considered good these days? I didn’t think you needed to mutilate The Joker’s face to make him effective, but I suppose in these days of “trying to out-do one another in the dark-and-twisted department”, I shouldn’t be surprised.

lol, whatever happened to good Joker stories?

Like Joker needlessly (and shamefully) putting a cap in Babs’ spine? Yeah, where have those halcyon days gone?

This is nothing but change for change’s sake. If DC was that desperate to have a redesigned Joker they should have just gone with a Heath Ledger look.

Is this a Batman comic or a Texas Chainsaw Massacre reboot? Seriously people, write a decent story and you don’t have to fall over yourselves fixing something that wasn’t broken.

This reminds me of Mojo (xmen/longshot) but leatherface is equally true. A bit much I think-it’s all gone a bit identity crisis (dr light…. nuff said)…:(

I really think we should just start looking at DC as a pre-Comics Code pulp publisher of the gratuitous and gruesome. I actually kind of like them better when I think of them like that!

Mike McNulty aka Stillanerd

August 16, 2012 at 1:38 pm

As I said over on the message boards, nothing against Scott Synder, Greg Capullo or the other creators, but I think DC are missing a very crucial point with this whole idea of having the Joker wear his skinned and stitched up face like a mask: because what made the Joker’s clown-like visage terrifying was that it WASN’T a mask. Unlike Batman who has to dress up as a bat in order to frighten criminals, the Joker doesn’t have to wear a disguise in order to frighten people; his visage of a laughing, creepy-looking clown is all he needs to be terrifying. To have him essentially wear a mask in order to induce horror, fear, and terror diminishes and misunderstands this very concept.

Granted, the Joker’s new “mask” made from the skin of his own face is creepy and horror inducing, but it is the wrong kind of horror to attribute to someone like the Joker, and doesn’t even make any sense given his character. It works for someone like Leatherface of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre because it actually ties in with what that character and his family does, in that they re-use the remnants of their cannibalized victims. It even made sense for the Dollmaker character in Tony Daniel’s first Detective Comics story in that that character used a similar MO. But the MO of the Joker, on the other hand, was that he sets out to make people as insane as himself, to show that, deep down, they are no different than him. His face is the face of the darkness within us all, exposed for everyone to see. And it didn’t have to take a mask made from his own flesh to get that point across.

Geez, and I thought Morrison’s shot-in-the-face Joker was extreme enough… this is pretty unpleasant. The story could still be ace, though.

Is the grin somehow just not ghastly enough so having the skin of his sawed off face strapped to his head with a belt makes him a better villain than what Batman creators came up with originally? This could be really be a mascot for pathetically excessive grimdark. Either this or flesh eating Wonder Dog.

DC really either needs to channel stuff like this into a horror line to work it out of their systems instead of turning cape comics into hypergrisly gorefests! Not to mention their seeming obsession with the idea that revenge is the only worthwhile motivator for a superhero and that complete psychotic sadists/rapists are the only kind of villain there is worth putting up against them!

@Stephen B.:
“The Johnsification of the DCU continues”

I see your point… but at least we a have a good writer on this (Scott Snyder).

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