We have to admit, when DC announced that a solo Joker film starring Joaquin Phoenix was in the works, we were more than a little apprehensive. We here at Fiction’s Mistress love DC Comics, and we adore some of the films they’ve made. The Dark Knight trilogy, Wonder Woman, even Suicide Squad holds a place in our hearts, flawed as it was. But in the past few years, trying too hard to be like Marvel, the studio lost their way. And having just introduced a different version of the Joker in Suicide Squad, and teasing his potential appearance in films like Birds Of Prey, it seemed a little too bold to make a Joker film that had absolutely no ties to the studio’s other works. But after seeing the trailer, we may have to change our tune.
The first trailer for Joker dropped on Wednesday morning, and quite frankly, it surprised us. It was nothing like we were expecting. The Joker is Batman’s greatest nemesis. The character has done some truly horrific things, laughing all the while, making him not only terrifying, but simply unrelatable as a character. He may be human, but he’s always felt like something different. He’s always felt like nothing more than a monster. With, of course, the exception of his origin story.
A controversial tale, The Killing Joke revealed how the Joker became the Joker. And it was the first and only time we felt sympathy and empathy towards the character. A man who simply wanted to provide for his pregnant wife. A man who loses his wife and unborn child, who loses everything, and falls into madness. It is the first time we see the character as human, which is why it is one of the most powerful Joker stories. And it seems that the film is greatly influenced by that.
From the looks of the trailer, Phoenix’s Joker doesn’t have a wife, but he is a man who struggles from day to day. He’s just trying to get through life, like the rest of us, and people keep knocking him down (literally). But how many times can someone be hit before they start to hit back? What is the last straw? We’re not sure what it is for Phoenix’s Joker, but, of course, it’s coming.
We expected horror and bloodshed in this trailer. What we got was an eerie, dramatic, melancholy story about a man who smiles through the pain. We’ll say it. We’re more than intrigued. We’re impressed. And we’re definitely adding this to our list.
Watch the first trailer for DC’s Joker down below.
Joker Hits Theaters October 4.