Batman: Three Jokers

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Batman: Three Jokers
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Publication information
PublisherDC Comics
FormatOne-shot
Publication dateAugust 2020 — October 2020
No. of issues3
Main character(s)Batman
Joker
Jason Todd
Barbara Gordon
Creative team
Written byGeoff Johns
Artist(s)Jason Fabok
Letterer(s)Rob Leigh
Colorist(s)Brad Anderson
Editor(s)Mark Doyle
Amadeo Turturro

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Batman: Three Jokers is a 2020 DC Comics miniseries written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Jason Fabok. It is a spiritual successor to Batman: A Death in the Family, Batman: The Killing Joke, and New 52s Batman: Death of the Family and Batman: Endgame respectively.

Premise[edit]

Three Jokers follows Batman investigating several ongoing crimes by the Joker occurring simultaneously, which may be related to the possibility that there may indeed be more than one.[1]

Plot summary[edit]

Premise[edit]

At the conclusion of the "Darkseid War" storyline, Batman used Metron's Mobius Chair to know the Joker's true name. The Mobius Chair revealed there "are three" which he later brought up to Green Lantern when he asked about it.[2][3]

Issue #1[edit]

As Alfred Pennyworth tends to Batman's injuries, they see the news that Joker massacred the last members of the dwindling Moxon Crime Family. The news mentioned that Lew Moxon and his crime family were said to have hired Joe Chill to murder Thomas Wayne and Martha Wayne only for them to be exonerated when Joe Chill confessed that he acted alone. The reporter mentions that Joe Chill is still serving a life sentence at Blackgate Penitentiary. Barbara Gordon saw the news that Joker killed beloved comedian Kelani Apaka at her home while recapping how he shot her. Red Hood also fights Joker's men at the time a third Joker sighting was seen as he recaps how Joker originally killed him. Then Batman, Commissioner James Gordon, Harvey Bullock, and the GCPD find three dead men at Ace Chemicals affected by the chemicals that created Joker and dressed in copies of the original Red Hood outfit which Red Hood later stated were from a halfway house. The Three Jokers have been classified in order the Criminal, the Comedian, and the Clown as they meet up to work on a plan to make a better Joker. While Batman, Robin, and Red Hood take down Clown Joker at Gotham Aquarium at the cost of Joker's henchman Gaggy getting killed by a Jokerized great white shark, Commissioner Gordon and the GCPD found another one at Seventeenth and Broadway. As Batman heads out, Red Hood is provoked to shoot Clown Joker much to the frustration of Batgirl.[4]

Issue #2[edit]

Joker arrives at his home and is greeted by his wife where his son is mad that his father hasn't been home a lot. It turns out to be a fantasy by the Comedian Joker who is confronted by the Criminal Joker. The Criminal Joker mentions that the Clown Joker is dead. At Seventeenth and Broadway, Batman sedates the vicious guard dogs inside as Commissioner Gordon and the GCPD find Judge Wade Walls dead while having been affected by the toxin that was used on the men at Arkham Asylum. Batman revealed that Judge Walls took bribes from Arkham officials to send criminals to Arkham Asylum where security was loose. This eventually led to Judge Walls ending up in a forced retirement. Meeting up with Batman, Batgirl informs him about what happened to the Clown Joker. Red Hood is shown attacking some of Joker's henchmen on where they are hiding the chemicals. Arriving at Blackgate Penitentiary, Batman uses the fingerprints on the humanitarian trophy to get in as he makes his way passed the cells of Rupert Thorne and Doctor Phosphorus to get to where Joe Chill is locked up. When Batman finds that he is not in his cell, Batgirl informs Batman that Joe Chill was moved to the infirmary where he is suffering from stage 4 cancer. Batman suspects that someone snuck in and copied Joe Chill's fingerprints. Batgirl then tells Batman that Alfred has tracked Jason Todd's current location. At the Gotham City Athletic Association, Red Hood finds a lot of bodies in the pool filled with chemicals. When he tries to contact Batgirl, he is attacked when a Jokerized person emerges from the pool. After shooting the guy, Red Hood is captured by the other two Jokers and stripped of his gear and outfit. The two Jokers comment on who Joker really is as they work to make him the next Joker. Batman and Batgirl arrive where they are attacked by a lot of Jokerized people. After defeating most of them, they find Jason Todd who starts ranting about Batman leaving him for dead until Barbara calms him down. With Jason asleep in his apartment, Batman states that he is going to investigate some more leads. Barbara checks in on Jason when he wakes up. At the Batcave, Batman goes over the files for missing criminals and missing clowns. At Blackgate Penitentiary, the two Jokers abduct Joe Chill from the infirmary where they put his hat on him and want him to confess on camera as one of the Jokers asks "Why did you really kill Thomas and Martha Wayne?"[5]

Issue 3[edit]

Batman, Batgirl, and Red Hood go over the pictures of the additional Jokers and identified them as a dentist, a serial killer, a drifter, a babysitter, a judge, an artist, a city planner, a zookeeper, an actor, a painter, a fisherman, a felon, an inventor, an interrogator, a chemist, a fighter, a talk show host, a cult leader, a stalker, a coroner, and a surgeon with Batman claiming that Joker is trying to create a better Joker. In addition, Batman claims that the Three Jokers wanted him to uncover his true identity. Red Hood gets into an argument with Batman about disposing of the remaining Jokers which Batgirl breaks up. Batman then notes that the Criminal Joker is more focused on their plot, the late Clown Joker embraced the lethal campiness like a children's show host and the Comedian Joker has a sadistic streak meaning that one of them is the real Joker. Upon answering an alert, Batman arrives at Blackgate Penitentiary where Commissioner Gordon informed him that Joe Chill was abducted from the infirmary. Upon entering his cell, Batman finds letters addressed to Bruce Wayne. Batman asks a prison guard about why the letters weren't mailed to which the prison guard states that he'll have to ask Reverend Evans. As Batgirl and Red Hood talk, Batman learns from Reverend Evans that Joe Chill had a learning disability and that he was writing apology letters before he fell ill. Arriving at the condemned Monarch Theatre, Batman, Batgirl, and Red Hood find that the two Jokers are broadcasting Joe Chill's confession on the big screen. As Batgirl and Red Hood get attacked by more Jokers, Batman finds the Criminal Joker with a bound and gagged Joe Chill. As the confession keeps playing, Batman finds that the Criminal Joker is wearing a dynamite vest as Batman suspects that Joker plans to turn him into a Joker. Then he starts to hoist Joe Chill over a vat of chemicals as part of a plan to get his stage 4 cancer in remission. As Barbara Gordon subdues the Comedian Joker, Joe Chill's filmed confession states that he didn't know they were the Waynes when the gun went off and wanted to find the opportunity to apologize to Bruce. Batman knocks the lighter out of the Criminal Joker's hand which falls into the chemicals and starts a fire as he fights the Criminal Joker. Batman saves Joe Chill and then kicks the Criminal Joker through the wall. As Batman states that he won't kill Joe Chill and saves him from a falling wall, the Criminal Joker prepares to activate his dynamite vest only to be shot by the Comedian Joker who then surrenders. As Red Hood takes the Batmobile back to the Batcave, Batman is in the paddy wagon with the Comedian Joker who knows his true identity as well as Batgirl and Red Hood's true identities. The Comedian Joker stated that the Clown Joker laughed at the suffering he induced and the old Criminal Joker was delusional. As they approach Arkham Asylum, the Comedian Joker states that saving Joe Chill healed his wounds so that the Comedian Joker can be his biggest pain. Sometime later, Bruce visited Joe Chill at Blackgate Penitentiary and gave his forgiveness as Joe passes away. Sometime later in Alaska, Bruce is driving on a snowy road as he flashes back to informing Alfred that he figured out who Joker is the first time they met. A flashback is shown that the GCPD relocated the pregnant wife of the man that became Joker and covered up her death. Bruce states to Alfred that the world can never know Joker's real name. In the present, Bruce is outside the house of Joker's ex-wife who is now raising her son as Bruce stated to Alfred that Joker will find them if the press knew his true identity. As he drives off, Bruce recalls saying to Alfred "So yes, I know his name. But the Joker's name isn't what's important. It never has been."[6]

Reception[edit]

References[edit]

  1. Arrant, Chris (July 19, 2018). "3 JOKERS Lands at BLACK LABEL - But is In DCU Continuity". Newsarama. Purch.
  2. Justice League (vol. 2) #50 (2016). DC Comics.
  3. DC Rebirth #1. DC Comics.
  4. Batman: Three Jokers #1. DC Comics.
  5. Batman: Three Jokers #2. DC Comics.
  6. Batman: Three Jokers #3. DC Comics.


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