Batman: Three Jokers by Geoff Johns

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33 thoughts on “Batman: Three Jokers by Geoff Johns

  1. Hmm, this is one that I would solely buy for the art that looks absolutely incredible! Three Jokers though?🤔 I thought one would be enough!😂
    Too bad this falls short on the story telling aspects. I’m not a fan of retconning stuff in the first place, especially not when it falls short in the end. That said, the character’s journey that you are describing here is quite fascinating. I don’t know…maybe at some point I will dive into this one myself. For now though still too many of the classic tales that call my attention 😊😊 Great post as always!😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahahah nothing is impossible anymore! Here we are with 3 distinct Jokers for Batman and his family to take down. It’s an interesting idea, an homage to different era Jokers, while serving as a spiritual successor to The Killing Joke, but I found that certain elements of it just made it harder to chew. As long as fans read it with an openmind and without any expectations or any assumptions on where it’s set in terms of continuity, it can definitely be enjoyed for what it is, especially with the whole trauma elements! Thanks for reading, my friend! Keep up your awesome journey through DC’s classics! 😀

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  2. Ouch! Man, I honestly thought you’d like this…I definitely enjoyed it more than you but it surely needs a re-read in it’s collected form for a full assessment (I’ve got the hardcover on order).

    To be honest I never felt there was any element of retcon going on, that seemed to pass me by! I think the problem with the concept is that Three Jokers started out as an in-canon main DCU story and the jump to Black Label made it something vaguely outside of that. I think it’s probably best taken as it’s own standalone story… perhaps it’s nods and winks to other stories limits that, I don’t know.

    Alas, I did enjoy this quite a bit even if I’m a bit fuzzy on some of the details but took it as it’s own thing (in a similar vein I totally enjoy Jack Nicholson’s version of the Joker and how Batman/Joker’s origins are entwined in Batman ’89) with some interesting ‘what if ‘ ideas. Oh and Jason Fabok’s art was worth the wait, we seriously need more from him beyond just the odd cover or occasional one-off title.

    Great review Lahsaan, I totally respect your opinion and the points regarding the Killing Joke (which I also LOVE) on this even if we diverge. Hm, I wonder how you’ll receive “Joker War”, I’ll await with much anticipation and interest!

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    1. I think I mostly saw an attempt to retcon when looking at the final twist regarding the Killing Joke and how they made him seem like an abusive father, which then forced his wife to fake her death. I also had an overall feeling that the story tried to retcon this multiple Joker narrative because of how I kept on considering this story as part of the New 52 continuity. As I read this story, I tried to see if it made any sense amidst all the stories that kept with Rebirth and whatnot. Having never seen Batman question the “triple Joker” hypothesis much, seeing the whole Joe Chill redemption arc (when other Joe Chill stories were already told before too), and finally establishing that Gordon knew of Batgirl identity, these all made me a bit cold towards this story.

      I definitely think it’s much better to check out this story and consider it like some sort of spiritual sequel to The Killing Joke/Death in the Family/Under the Red Hood… My expectations regarding what it could’ve been just made me nitpick my whole way through the story and just gave me a hard time appreciating the story (everything else is near perfect though).

      Thanks for your open-mindedness, my friend! I still very much look forward to sharing my thoughts on Joker War soon enough though. If it maintains the quality like Their Dark Designs, I’m sure it can only be better! 😀

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        1. By the way, a while back a made a “Digital Mini Reviews” post about a couple of X-Men reads I got around to in the past months and wanted to tell you that I got around to diving into the whole House of X/Power of X saga and have been enjoying most of the spin-off series since (Fallen Angels being the weakest one that I recently finished). How have you been enjoying those yourself? Thank you so much for steering me towards that colossal and pivotal Hickman volume though. It really was quite the volume and sets up such a fantastic new premise for the X-Men characters!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Wow, I missed that post – sorry man, having trouble keeping up with everything lately! Glad you’re loving Hickman’s X-Men, I knew it would be totally up your street!

            Alas, I’m only following Hickman’s main X-Men book as I’m trying no to be swamped by all the various X-titles…there’re so many!!!

            Liked by 1 person

            1. No worries at all, my friend hahah No way that I could burden someone into staying up to date with my content! I do look forward to your next post though *hint hint* 😀

              Hahahaha something did tell me that you wouldn’t have been following all those spin-off series though. They really made a bit too many of them! 😛 Thanks again for putting it on my radar though, Chris!

              Liked by 1 person

    1. And that’s probably the moral of this story too. 😉 Just see it as writer Geoff Johns attempt to try and create some kind of “logic” to how the Joker evolved in the past 80 years. The 3 Jokers here each represent a variant of him that we knew and loved, not only distinguished by how he acts but also his style (character concept and clothing!). It’s like… an homage that tries to explain how everything came to be…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “Unnecessary” is the appropriate word here. The art is glorious, as you said. What a shame the story doesn’t live up to the quality of Fabok’s rendering of it. That hardcover edition looks beautiful, though:-)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s definitely a nice collector’s item! Unfortunately, I could never put it up there alongside The Killing Joke, for example, despite it being almost a spiritual sequel to it… Worth checking out out of pure curiosity though. Thanks for reading, my man! I appreciate it. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. We need questions, not answers! Geez, these guys still haven’t learned. 🤠

    All jokes aside. Thanks for another great review, Lashaan. These posts are like the equivalent of Saturday morning cartoons, it’s just sad that this one got the channel changed on it.

    Can we buy some speech bubble stickers and put our story, then?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I didn’t set high expectations for this one because it felt over hyped to me, and honestly, it was.
    You are right about the art and the splash pages (although some pages weren’t that appealing and the drawings felt a bit repetitive especially with the front face shots, as an artist, it felt like lazy drawing).
    And about the story, it’s not the best for sure, I didn’t like the first book and it took me three days to go through it and I usually finish a whole volume in one sitting. It got better though with book two and three but everything happened felt so stereotypical and unoriginal.
    I was hoping for a better ending honestly, but again, they stuck with all the mystery that surrounds the Joker…
    And I do have a theory, this whole story is a nightmare inside Batman’s head. I mean it’s the perfect nightmare, especially with what the Joker said at the end!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. First of all, I’m so glad to hear from someone who read this one too! I’ll have to drop by your blog for sure now! 😀

      As for the expectations I set for this one, I knew I shouldn’t have but I was so blinded by the creative team on this project and the promise of delivery since the New 52 Justice League run that I just couldn’t allow myself not to have expectations.

      While I’m glad that it’s now done, despite rumours of potential sequels to this, it definitely felt unnecessary in the end, especially when the final twist simply brings it back to the status quo?

      Your idea of a nightmare is definitely cool though but maybe a bit complicated to explain how the Mobius Chair revealed the existence of three Jokers hahah

      Thank you so much for dropping by! I appreciate that you shared your thoughts with me! 😀

      Like

  6. I was looking forward to see what you’d say about this one. It was so highly anticipated. I even had a customer popping in several times a week to see if it was out yet. Kinda sucks that it wasn’t absolutely amazing though.
    I’m not big on superhero comics, but I think I’ll get this one. I love the cover and the illustrations you show appeal to me too. Plus I love silent picture books and when that’s used in comics, so I’d like to see how that works here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My expectations for this one was really high since I’ve been keeping an eye out for it for a very long time, since it was teased in other stories. It’s not entirely silent but it utilizes that story-telling style here. You could read this as a spiritual sequel to The Killing Joke so you can grasp the story better too!

      Like

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