The Joker has a history almost as long as his arch enemy, Batman but we know very little about him. He made his first appearance in the comic books seventy years ago and since then he’s been seen in almost all Batman TV shows, cartoons, movies and video games.
What everyone knows about him is that he’s a psychotic clown that wants to kill the Dark Knight. His past has been purposefully kept vague with various different explanations for his madness and actions. Over the years a lot of weird stuff has happened to The Joker and few people know that he has also been an actual clown, a Judge Dredd villain and even a murder victim.
1. He fought Judge Dredd
This happened in ‘Batman/Judge Dredd: Die Laughing’ comic book. The Joker gets his hands on a belt that can dimension jump to Mega City but when he tries to use it instead of transferring his body, the belt transfers only his spirit. Once there The Joker sets out to free the 4 Dark Judges from their egg-shaped containment crystals.
His plan falls apart when Batman uses Anderson’s belt to get to Mega City and teams up with Judge Dredd.
2. He was almost killed off
Even though The Joker is Batman’s greatest nemesis and probably one of the greatest villains in the history of comic books, he asmost didn’t make it past his first issue. He made his first appearance in 1940 in Batman #1 and the final page of the comic book showed him dieing by accidentally stabbing himself. However editor Whitney Ellsworth decided that this character is too good to be killed off so the last panel was redrawn.
3. The Joker disappeared for a decade
It’s pretty hard now to believe that Batman’s arch enemy wasn’t appearing in any comics between 1964 and 1973. He was brought back when Dennis O’Neil and Neal Adams proposed a radical reinvention of the character for the story “The Joker’s Five Way Revenge”, where he reverted to being a homicidal maniac who casually murders people on a whim. Pretty much how he is today.
4. He teamed up with Carnage
It happened in ‘Spider-Man and Batman: Disordered Minds‘ comic book launched in September 1995. The story says that Dr. Ashley Kafka tries to cure The Joker and Carnage by sticking chips in their heads in order stop them being so crazy. Carnage deals with his chip pretty easily and then springs The Joker from his prison as well, with the two of them heading on a psychotic crime spree with their shared understanding that the world is chaotic and life is pointless. Of course, Batman and Spider-Man managed to stop them before they did some serious damage.
5. It’s Always “The” Joker (Except Once)
Over the years, in ever appearance he made The Joker always had green hair, clown make up, a frightening smile and he always was a psychopath. One weird thing about him is that he’s always referred to as The Joker, except one. This happened in the animated series The Batman.