Batman The Killing Joke by Alan Moore

“Madness is the emergency exit. You can just step outside, and close the door on all those dreadful things that happened. You can lock them away… forever.”– The Joker in The Killing Joke

                Where does a person begin when their minds are blown and their bodies are numb? Alan Moore is a God among us. Any comic reader has the hair on their skin rise at the simple mention of this God’s name. He does not fear to push boundaries. He does not fear to bring to light ideas taboo to the eyes of others. He does not fear to take on one of the most notorious villains origin story in comic book history. The Killing Joke, published in 1988, remains to this date a one-shot story that’s bound to be read by any superhero fan. Giving readers an in-depth look inside the mind of the Joker at his finest, this graphic novel gives us the chance to understand madness like never before.

                In my most honest opinion, The Killing Joke is the best story I’ve ever read when it comes to Batman’s universe. In fact, it is safe to say that this one-shot story contains a perfect balance between dialogue, action, suspense and jokes. Not only is the Clown Prince of Crime portrayed beautifully in this tragic story, we also get to see key characters go through events that would have been unimaginable if Alan Moore had never tackled the idea of doing comics. Barbara Gordon’s, daughter of James Gordon, fate might be one of the most astonishing moments in this 48 page story. SPOILER HERE: Hover over text to read. The violence depicted on Barbara might have even been one of the most controversial events in the Batman comics. Only Alan Moore might have pulled off such a move. All hail Alan Moore!

                There seems to always be room for praise and admiration for Alan Moore’s work. The Killing Joke contains a couple jokes beautifully dispersed throughout the storyline. Brilliantly balanced to make the reader insanely joyful, some of these jokes actually manage to crack you up and chuckle for quite some time. Although, you might get some amusement throughout this graphic novel, Alan Moore still manages to showcase sadness in all it’s splendor. The tragic event unfolding the Joker’s origin as a failed comedian who wanted to support his wife and unborn child could make the toughest of soul’s feel sadness and empathy for the deranged killer. The Red Hood tie-in also adds interesting facts into the Joker story, especially when the identity of the Red Hood had remained a mystery for so long in Batman’s history. Although, don’t be fooled by this. The Red Hood makes other appearances!

“Remember? Ohh, I wouldn’t do that! Remembering’s dangerous. I find the past such a worrying anxious place.” – The Joker in The Killing Joke

                MadnessWhat would The Joker be without indulging madness at least once? Joker’s case on the subject is one to remember. In my opinion, I believe the past plays a huge role in a person’s mental state throughout their life. Knowing how to cope with tragic events, knowing how to not dwell in the past and knowing how to learn from your mistakes are among a couple of know-how’s that a person needs in order to remain rational and sane as they continue to face different obstacles Life throws at them. The Joker explains how the overwhelming emotions attached to painful and unfortunate events a person has lived can destroy them. He suggests madness as the perfect emergency exit. He suggests that repressing the terrible incidents that a person has lived, to let madness carry you around, helps them survive and surpass these moments. SPOILER HERE: Hover over text to read.

                The final joke, one that gives us beautiful insight to Batman and Joker’s bromance, is one to stay printed into my memory for the rest of my life. Not only does it explain how each of these characters became what they are at this date, it also demonstrates Joker’s cry for help from Batman. It shows a discrete attempt by Batman’s archnemesis to be understood. SPOILER HERE: Hover over text to read.

                Let’s not forget about Brian Bolland in all this! Luckily for me, I got my hands on the deluxe edition. The coloring got a complete upgrade and, if you ask me, it does justice to the art. I’d have to say that the artwork is flawless, ingenious. If I was forced to choose a style, this would be the one I’d pick with my eyes closed. The amount of detail… the ability to translate the amazing ideas of Alan Moore into pictures… Brian Bolland did an amazing work. I’d have to add how I absolutely loved the transitions in this graphic novel. How they did it to make the last scene of a sequence and the first scene of the next sequence flow perfectly. If you ever get the chance to read this masterpiece, watch carefully how they transition from one scene to the other. Nothing is random, everything has a purpose.

                If this review isn’t crystal clear enough, The Killing Joke by Alan Moore is a must-read by anyone remotely intrigued by Batman and his enemies. Batman might not be the center of attention in this graphic novel, but who wouldn’t love to see more Joker in their comics? Sometimes you have to wonder how many more death does Joker need to do before Batman makes an exception to his rule and takes out the Clown Prince of Crime. Forever. Although, blame can’t be put entirely on Batman for locking up the Joker every single time he escapes and kills. In my book, death is not the solution to any criminal’s activity. Sentencing a person to death wouldn’t make us any better than the criminal himself. The Dark Knight Returns emphasizes even more on this subject (look out for a review of that trade paperback in the future!). The Killing Joke deserves to be read. Also, a big thank you to my girlfriend Trang for gifting me for my birthday; truly the best! I also believe this graphic novel will definitely change the perception of comics for several thousands of people. How about you get your hands on a copy right away and get ready to be amazed? It’s time to put a smile on that face.

You can find a copy of Batman: Killing Joke by clicking on  this hyperlink !

My overall rating: ★★★★★/

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35 thoughts on “Batman The Killing Joke by Alan Moore

    • transhaan says:

      Thank you so much for your thoughts on my review ! Glad to hear that a fan appreciates my thoughts on The Killing Joke ! Hope you’ll stick around and check out our future reviews ! 😉

      – Lashaan

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  1. Stephane says:

    Yess! I’ve been waiting for this review as a big Alan Moore fan myself! Thanks for explaining the ending by the way I understood it a little bit but now it’s crystal clear (post reference haha) ! I noticed the transition too.. I think that was real genius. Your review alone did justice to this masterwork keep up the good work

    Liked by 1 person

    • transhaan says:

      Thank you so much for the kind words and I’m really happy that this review could enlighten you on the ending ! I’d like to think that there’s different ways to see the ending, so don’t be overshadowed by what I might have said ! Thank you again for taking the time to read and appreciate my review ! Hope to see you around on our other novel reviews ! 🙂

      -Lashaan

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    • transhaan says:

      Joker was brilliantly portrayed in this masterpiece. I believe you get a pretty decent idea of his persona through this one-short story. One thing’s for sure, my mind was blown when I finished reading The Killing Joke. As a diehard fan of Batman and his universe, I wouldn’t able to point out flaws in this graphic novel. Although, that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have any ! Glad you took the time to check out our review ! Hope you’ll stick along and check out our future reviews on this blog !

      -Lashaan

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  2. thefanboylair says:

    I haven’t read The Killing Joke yet and after reading this you got me pretty pumped to order a copy. All in all this was an excellent review and thanks for hiding the spoilers lol can’t wait until you guys do The Dark Knight Returns ….that is one of my favorite Batman stories

    -TJ

    Liked by 1 person

    • transhaan says:

      Thank you so much for letting us know your thoughts on my review ! I’m really glad that it got you to get yourself a copy of this masterpiece ! You won’t regret it, that’s for sure ! The Dark Knight Returns is definitely another one of those amazing work that will definitely get a review soon enough ! Thank you again for taking your time to read this review ! Hope we’ll see you around for our future reviews !

      -Lashaan

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Marie says:

    I asked Trang on her ask about the ending and she kindly replied that it was on the post…>< thank youu for explaining it ! ( I jst didnt know I had to hover) I really loved the graphic novel and somehow not catching the whole ending.. is.. kinda awkward. Neways great job and really great pictures too ❤ I hope you could put more pics !! Never enough of joker right

    Liked by 1 person

    • transhaan says:

      Hey there ! Our “Spoiler system” might be a little confusing indeed. We need to find some sexier way to point out the sudden arrival of a spoiler ! Thank you so much for letting us know your appreciation of my review ! Big kuddos to my girlfriend for the pictures though ! She’s the best ! 😉 Hope you’ll stick around for our future reviews !

      -Lashaan

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  4. Dan says:

    I think it nicely illustrates the Batman/Joker dynamic as well as highlights their similarities. Joker seemed like a psychopath rather than the buffoon he was normally portrayed as at the time. SPOILER [Show]

    Liked by 1 person

    • transhaan says:

      The ending was definitely memorable, so was that Barbara moment. Joker couldn’t have been portrayed any better in this graphic novel. So glad Alan Moore gave us this gift and gave us the chance to know one of the best Batman/Joker tale ever. Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and read my review ! Hope you’ll stick around for our future reviews ! 😉

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  5. killkenny16 says:

    I’m glad you reached out to me, because this is some seriously great stuff (Your blog and The Killing Joke, I mean).

    While I do love TKJ, I think my favourite Batman story is The Long Halloween. It doesn’t get enough love, in my opinion, which is a damn shame. I would say that TKJ is definitely the best Joker story, in terms of understanding what makes him tick (Or, y’know, getting as close as possible to understanding what makes him tick).

    Liked by 1 person

    • transhaan says:

      Thank you so much for your thoughts on my review ! It’s really appreciated ! The Long Halloween is definitely an amazing tale, following up to some pretty interesting characters from Batman: Year One and also telling the tragic story of Harvey Dent ! I sure do plan on making a review of that story in the near future as well ! Thank you so much again for taking a look at our blog and this review ! Hope we’ll see you around for other future reviews ! 🙂

      -Lashaan

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Chris Evans says:

    Hi guys, great review – it’s certainly given a few things for me to ponder when I next read The Killing Joke! For me, this stands on the podium with Frank Miller’s Batman: Year One and The Dark Knight Returns as the absolute Batman masterpieces (and comic masterpieces in general).

    Liked by 1 person

    • transhaan says:

      Hey there! The Killing Joke definitely remains in the top stories when it comes to Batman. Hopefully the future also has some great writers and artists that will create just as good of a masterpiece or even better ! Thank you so much for your appreciation and for taking your time to read this review ! Hope to see you again in our future reviews ! 😉

      -Lashaan

      Liked by 1 person

    • transhaan says:

      Definitely. The Dark Knight Returns touches so many interesting ideas. I’ve read it already and plan on making a review for it soon. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and for spreading the word about our blog! Hope you’ll stick around to see what’s to come in the near future !

      -Lashaan

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  7. Pingback: Batman 101 Guide

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