Tuesday, January 11, 2022

The Joker #11 Review

Stabbed But Not Deterred 

Written By: James Tynion IV, Sam Johns
Art By: Giuseppe Camuncoli, Cam Smith, Lorenzo Ruggiero, Adriano Di Benedetto, Arif Prianto, Romulo Fajardo Jr., Tom Napolitano, Belen Ortega, Alejandro Sanchez, Becca Carey
Cover Price: $5.99
Release Date: January 11, 2022

It's time for a joke as Jim Gordon continues his pursuit of the Clown Prince of Crime. In our previous issue, we saw a great big Network conspiracy in a secret lab that would make new villains based on the DNA of previous ones..... a lot like we see with Vengeance the Daughter of Bane, and while that was pretty big, it wasn't as huge as the Sampson Family showing up, stabbing Jim Gordon and kidnapping the Joker so that they could take him back to Texas and feast on the person that they believe killed their Uncle Billy. Let's jump into this issue and see what Jim Gordon will do next and find out more about our Punchline backup. Let's check it out.

While the hunt for the Joker and the idea that we have a ton of people after him at once, It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World style is something that I'm really enjoying about this book, not to mention that I couldn't wait to see Joker being victimized by a family of Texas Chainsaw Massacre cannibals because it felt like a "just desserts" for how bad the Joker is. The pacing of this story though has been something that I wish would be better overall because the majority of the things that we do in each issue feel like it consists of just sitting around and talking about the road so far or why Jim Gordon hates the Joker and while we get a good dose of that this issue, it's done in a way that feels different, yet does the same because while we have a new situation of Jim Gordon being rushed back to Gotham after the events of the previous issue, it's just us making our way to the next chapter and Barbara Gordon being the one who's working for Cressida instead of Jim and I don't know why that would be something that would be allowed. This feels more like an issue that needs to pad itself out because while Jim gets back on the case by the end of the issue, we don't actually do anything that really continues where we left off except for Joker showing up at the Sampson Family home and our new aspect is we now might have a Bat-Family presence when the shit hits the fan.

As for our Punchline backup, we've got ourselves a wacky Royal Flush Gang story that wants to be pretty epic in the way it feels, but with no real background and the idea that we have a big Royal Flush gang story going on in Justice League, even if it's not all that great, it contradicts what's going on here and vice versa and ultimately we're left with a slow backup story that wants to keep Punchline relevant but with each issue of the Joker it feels like she's overstayed her welcome.

All in all, the art in both the main story and the backup is really enjoyable but each story feels like it's doing its damnedest to be as slow and drawn out as possible and that doesn't make it an exciting read overall. Yeah, you get a background shown on the Sampson Family but it's nothing new that we haven't already heard and Jim Gordon constantly being sidelined only to get back on the case after taking a breather just extends the story and makes everything kind of lose the momentum that gets built up. I'm still interested in this story because I like the Sampson Family, Vengeance, and the Network stories and how they'll be expanded upon but the pacing of this book leaves me wanting more with each issue, especially when it comes to the Punchline backup.

Make sure to listen to our Weekly DC Comics Recap and Review Podcast to hear us talk more about this book.  Just look up "Weird Science DC Comics" anywhere you listen to podcasts, and make sure to rate, review, and subscribe!

Bits and Pieces:

Jim Gordon's back on the hunt for the Joker and while that's what I want to see, this start and stop situation that we keep getting with this book makes things feel completely padded out so that the story can be extended as much as possible and that's really disappointing and just leaves what feels like every other issue coming up short in its progression. The art is still enjoyable though and there are some new elements but even these feel kind of weird. 



  1. I'm glad we finally got back to the actual story after so many flashback issues. That was so annoying. And I'm telling you the cannibal Gordon's cop friend in Chicago told him about that he never caught is going to be revealed as part of the Sampson family.

    1. Hopefully they add that Sampson Family connection but this issue felt a bit disappointing that we were going to get back to the main plot of the book and had to take another issue of sitting around to actually do it.