Wednesday, October 9, 2019

The Joker: Year of the Villain #1 Review

A World Without Batman

Written By: John Carpenter, Anthony Burch
Art By: Philip Tan, Marc Deering, Danny Miki, Jonathan Glapion, Jay David Ramos, Gabriela Downie
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: October 9, 2019

For this Year of the Villain one-shot we get to see what our Clown Prince of Crime is up to during the City of Bane........ Obviously, the big draw to this issue besides for it being about the Joker is that horror writer/director John Carpenter co-wrote this issue, but if you're looking to see what this pair of writers will have Lex Luthor offer our title villain....... Well, you're out of luck there.  Let's jump into this issue and see what the Joker does in a city that's devoid of a Batman.  Let's check it out.

Like I said in my opening paragraph, there's no offer in this issue and instead we see what the Joker is up to now that Bane is in and Batman is out, but the strange part is...... The Joker isn't our main character of the story.  No, instead we get Jeremy or as he's known among the Joker's goons, Six of Hearts, who becomes the Joker's sidekick throughout this tail of what the world looks like when you're crazy...... or what a crazy world looks like when you're crazy.  Now initially this is a pretty decent premise, but the glaring continuity problems threw me out of this story and by the end it just seemed unnecessary.

First off, the cops are working for Bane in Gotham, not the villains being the cops in Gotham.  Enchantress, who died in the Suicide Squad series is on a mission in the city, which we never find out about, but who was able to enter no problem and nothing about the Suicide Squad being destroyed because of Leviathan taking out ARGUS is mentioned.  All these problems aside though.... there's no offer by Lex, which has been the theme to these issues.  Instead of all that, we get the Joker playing Batman, killing a dog and the realization from our main character that the Joker is evil.  So yeah, while the Joker playing as being Batman with Jeremy as his Robin initially felt like fun, it just didn't do anything for the Joker's character or for the overall story.

All in all, I found the art confusing at times and the stylized nature of it just wasn't something that I was fond of while reading..... Hell, I thought our main character was a woman for half the book.  Besides that though, the story was just a continuity mess, while reassuring the reader that the Joker isn't a good guy, but doing nothing to elevate the character's role during Year of the Villain, Event Leviathan or City of Bane.  He's just there doing kooky stuff and while I initially found this idea fun, it just got old fast and by the time I was done reading I wasn't having any fun at all.

Bits and Pieces:

If you're going into this book looking for an offer from Lex then you'll be sorely disappointed because this is just the Joker doing evil things, while trying to have some fun in a City ruled by Bane....... and it's just a continuity mess, full of art that I wasn't a fan of.  Yeah, there's some fun to be had with some situations, but overall I just couldn't get into this issue.


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