Unpopular opinion: I think Jared Leto’s Joker is a throw-away character. Looks-wise, he nailed that specific joker, but he was wholly unnecessary to the Suicide Squad story. HOWEVER, he IS necessary to Joker’s story, and for that reason, I adore him.
Heath Ledger’s Joker gave me goosebumps. For now, he’s my favorite. Maybe forever, because we’ll never see him do it again.
Enter Joaquin and The Killing Joke Joker. I think he’s nailed it. And I think he’s good for at least 2 of the 4 (5) Jokers. And yes, I am purposefully forgetting to include all other iterations of this character. You’ll see why.
If you don’t know, The Joker has 4 (maybe 5) backstories. That lends itself to him having Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), which is the perfect thing for The Joker to have. It explains many things, not the least of which is his love affair with Dr. Quinn. He is also – presumably – wholly unaware of any of the other Jokers that exist in the timeline (yes, all of the characters are), which means that pressing forward with this story line would bring something we haven’t had much of in the DCCU (or any CU): An in-depth character study of people/characters with actual mental illnesses, believable, relate-able, real. It also gives the writers a chance to make all of The Jokers semi-aware of other timelines and weave them.
Before you @ me: I haven’t seen any evidence that this is what the writers and the DCCU intend to do. I don’t know if Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker is a one-time deal, or if they’ll take the story and run with it. I’m hoping the latter, because of all of the villains in all of the universes, The Joker is my favorite. His story is so complex, that I can’t help but try to unravel and understand his motivations.
Another thing that The Joker having DID would make possible is a femme character or two, since DID isn’t gender based.
ALL OF THAT TO SAY:
Jared Leto’s Joker is ok for the purposes of the story line I would like to see play out. If Joaquin can do 2 separate story lines – which makes only slightly less sense now that I’m saying it again – and Jennifer Connelly (?) could play her.
What do you think?