BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT #23.4 - JOKER'S DAUGHTER #1
WRITTEN BY ANN NOCENTI
ART BY GEORGES JEANTY, VINES, AND MADSEN
REVIEW BY BOOSTER COLA
Let me start off by saying this is neither the Joker, nor his daughter. Whew, now that the mystery is solved, gang, we can move on to why this book was horrible. The origin story of this somewhat new character(formerly only featured in else-world tales and briefly during Countdown to Final Crisis) named Duela or Joker's Daughter, is simplistic and very formulaic in terms of how DC has handled the New 52 origins of their villains. Riddled with cliche' and "daddy-didn't-love-me" moments, Duela really didn't have her "grabbing moment" of diabolical fortitude that inspired her descent into villainy. Instead we are offered the classic; girl is angry, girl finds face, girl goes on crusade to do something un-relevant to my interests, girl makes gang, girl and all her friends, still hobos.
I don't even think that in a different writers hands this would be different. Her origin, or parameter of characterization is just too flawed and outdone by tons of other better known villains. It seems that DC must reinforce that every villain is a crazy due to domestic abuse and whining. Duela is no different. Where as better villains such as the Joker and Darkseid were evil-doers because they were evil. Finding their comfort in evil decisions with no reinforcing tragedy that may or may not be justified, is scary. Duela is a fan-girl whose reasons of unifying a gang of gullible hobos is justified by her want to control uggos, 1/10 would not bang. DC really has to broaden their formula in evil origin ingredients to progress their galleries of villains. As for the comics' story, there really is nothing here that we have not seen before or anything going on for that matter. The only thing intriguing is the current state of the unmentioned, Joker, dealing with his faceless-ness. In the end, we are left with an angry teenager with a dirty face, doing her best anti-charismatic Jim Jones impression, only to gather a mob to perpetuate an attack(?) on the surface dwellers. This is about as good as chalupa diarrhea.
Find someone's face. Better put it on.
This book did fare a little better on the art side of things. To me, the pencils seemed very average along with inks and colors. Surprising enough, one of my favorite inkers, Dexter Vines, penned this issue and I really couldn't tell. The sewer environments looked like sewers when drawn. There were tons of panels with no backgrounds, just flat colors. This is especially true in Duela's flashbacks of her boo-hoo tragic upbringing. In the characters themselves, things looked clean, nothing too detailed or flashy, just very mediocre.
All in all, I didn't like this book. One of the weakest in the entirety of DC's Villain Month. The whole appeal of the book was the mystery of her title, Joker's Daughter. She ended up being a nutty, over-privileged brat who had daddy issues. The only reasons that would possibly fuel me to recommend this book, would be for the cool 3D cover and it's rareness and rising value. This was by far the hardest villains issue to get a hold of and it's eBay prices are a testament to it. After selling my unborn child to find this issue and reviewing it, I give Batman: The Dark Knight issue # blah blah blah, Joker's "inspired event", a 2 out of 5.
What did you think of this dog sh*t issue?
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