GEEK OUT! BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE

batman-the-killing-joke

Background
Adaptation of the 1988 one-shot graphic novel featuring the characters Batman and the Joker written by Alan Moore, illustrated by Brian Bolland. The film is directed by Sam Liu and written by Brian Azzarello. Stars the voices of Kevin Conroy, Mark Hamill, Tara Strong and Ray Wise.

Strengths
When it stays faithful to the source material, the performances of Conroy (Batman) and Hamill (Joker) come close to evoking the genius of Alan Moore’s writing. However, any hope of achieving this is hijacked by two things. One, the cartoony artwork and two, the addition of an utterly unnecessary 30-minute backstory for Batgirl/Barbara Gordon.

Highlights
Mark Hamill’s voice-acting is superlative, distinguishing between The Joker and his former self (in the flashbacks) superbly.

Bottom Line
Clearly a mistake to adapt such a dark tale (from 1988 – very different times) in these unforgiving PC times. This is exacerbated by the Batgirl backstory which might be perceived as sexist and misogynistic. Tacking that onto The Killing Joke does a tremendous disservice to this Moore/Bolland masterpiece. Avoid at all costs. Get the book instead.

Information
Official Site: http://www.dccomics.com/movies/batman-the-killing-joke

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