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"All it takes is one bad day to reduce the sanest man alive to lunacy. That's how far the world is from where I am. Just one bad day. You had a bad day once. Am I right? You had a bad day and everything changed."
-- Joker in "The Killing Joke."

After spending some time in a forum where people were debating on which Joker origin story they prefer, I've come to a realization.

I don't want a Joker origin. I don't want to know where he came from or who he was before he was THE JOKER. The Joker transcends backstory. He's larger than life, larger than human. I think a comic author attempting to give him a backstory makes the same mistake as Harley Quinn did in "Mad Love" when she got suckered in by one of his phony sob stories about a traumatic childhood. She assumed she knew him, had found the "real" Joker behind the make-up, and what happened to her? Ouches, that's what. By making the Joker more "human," you rob him of the mythic quality that makes him so fascinating. You make him just another one of the Arkham-bound crowd. But he's more than the rest. One of my favorite parts of Ledger's Joker is the multiple fake backstories he throws around, because it doesn't matter which one is the true one-- because he's about to slice your face. I also loved the anonymity. No traceable fingerprints, no real name, no known anything. Just the way I like it.

In comics, Alan Moore and Brian Bolland also did it right in "The Killing Joke" (possibly the greatest Batman/Joker comic in existence). They provide a backstory-- in fact the whole comic revolves around this backstory-- but then they throw a twist at the end with the suggestion that even the Joker doesn't know if it's true! An awesome quote and extension of the one above:

"Something like that happened to me, you know. I... I'm not exactly sure what it was. Sometimes I remember it one way, sometimes another... If I'm going to have a past, I prefer it to be multiple choice! Ha Ha Ha!"

Seriously, "The Killing Joke" is amazing in so many ways. Batman offers Joker one last chance to save them both from their mutually obsessive and suicidal course, telling him that he doesn't have to be alone anymore because he'll personally rehabilitate him (consequentially, the slashiest Batman/Joker moment to date), and there's this moment when the Joker-- Ah, just read it. You won't regret it.
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Went to the Orange County Fair with Shala's family yesterday and had a blast. A bigger exhibition of American consumerism there is not. I mean, the vendors were selling everything you can think of deep fried. There were deep-fried Snickers and chocolate-dipped Twinkies. WTF? I ate an enormous turkey leg in order to simulate Henry VIII's court just because I could. There was also an anime booth! I bought a Hinata plushie. Yay! I almost bought a Neji plushie to go with her, but it was just too expensive.

Contributed three times to The Dark Knight's weekend box office gross. Yep. Told you I was addicted.

Finally watched a handful of Dr. Who season four episodes with Nicole. DONNA IS THE BEST COMPANION EVER.

Mamma Mia was just too much fun. Though, I don't think I've ever been in a theatre with so many elderly people at once, ever.

Yay for Bleach chapter 319! The Gin/Kira shipper in me squeed! It's nice to be getting ship fodder for all my various pairings again all of a sudden.

Had a breakthrough on the novel-in-progress. I think I've figured out how to circumvent the Mary-Sue bullshit that was threatening to appear without sacrificing one of my prominent ideas. I've also figured out some important plot issues. Huzzah!
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Just got back from The Dark Night midnight premiere.

Either Ebert or Roeper said that this was the best super hero movie they had ever seen. I must agree.

Cut for long and extremely spoilery review... ) As well as for my sheer geekiness when it comes to Batman. There's a reason why he's my favorite superhero and the Joker is my favorite villain. ;)


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May 2010

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