Jack Napier, better known as the Joker, is the main antagonist of the 1989 film, Batman. He is Batman's arch-nemesis and is portrayed by Jack Nicholson.
Early Life Edit
In the more popular Batman film directed by Tim Burton, the Joker is the main antagonist, and is portrayed by Jack Nicholson. His real name is Jack Napier. Napier was born in Brooklyn, and at school, he proved unstable, but highly intelligent. He turned to a life of crime when he was older, and was convicted of assault at age fifteen.
Doing Crime Edit
When Napier was older, he became a criminal. He and his partner-in-crime mugged a young Bruce Wayne's parents, Thomas Wayne and his wife, Martha. When Thomas attempted to protect his family, Jack shot both of them in cold blood, and came out of the shadows and pointed his gun at Bruce. Before he could shoot, his panicked partner urged him to leave so they could get away. Jack taunted Bruce before leaving him. The experience eventually caused Bruce to become a crime fighter under the name of Batman.
Batman (1989) Edit
Working for Carl Grissom Edit
Napier had eventually become the right-hand of crime lord Carl Grissom. Napier would often toy with a deck of cards. Napier had an affair with his girlfriend, Alicia Hunt, and Grissom wanted Napier to work with a corrupt policeman named Lt. Max Eckhardt at the Axis Chemicals. Grissom wanted Napier to enter the Axis Chemicals, and informed him that he had to steal documents from the plant.
Birth of the Joker Edit
At the plant, Napier tried, but the plan was foiled when Batman entered the scene to capture Napier, and during the fight, Napier killed Eckhardt and tried to escape, but Batman, hot on his heels, made the criminal trip and plummet into a vat of chemicals. His appearance was altered by the chemicals: his skin turned white, his hair turned green, his lips became red, and he had a permanent smile. Unfortunately, Napier had survived and was washed into Gotham Harbor by a drainage pipe. Submerged, he stretched an arm upward through the water. He soon realized the effects of the chemicals.
He then tried to get his face fixed by a plastic surgeon, but he failed to fix his permanently disfigured face. Napier had also tried to let go of what had happened to him, but that failed, too. He then ordered the surgeon, "MIRROR!". Then, he looked at himself, and chuckled evilly. He then slams the mirror on the surgeon's desk. He also destroyed the light bulb that was lighting the room, and left while now laughing evilly.
Carl Grissom's Death Edit
Losing whatever sanity he had left, Napier renamed himself the Joker, declaring that Jack Napier was dead now. He murdered Carl Grissom because he wanted to be the crime lord, and he went on a crime-spree to outdo Batman.
The Crime Lord Meeting Edit
In a meeting with the other crime lords, the Joker lied, saying that Carl Grissom wasn't dead, and had ordered him to run Gotham. However, one of the crime lords, Antoine Rotelli, was suspicious of the Joker, so the Joker terminated him by giving him a handshake, and then electrocuting him with his joy buzzer, horrifying the other crime lords. Then, the Joker's minions came out and held the mob bosses at gunpoint. The Joker then ordered them to leave, and they did so. After this, the Joker then taunts Rotelli after his death, and even says, "And I'm glad you're dead!".
Murdering Roscoe Edit
The Joker then arrived at the City Hall with his goons. After claiming (and lying) that he was his "Uncle Bingo", he murders Roscoe by stabbing a pen in his neck, and leaves. Bruce sees this and discovers that the Joker is Jack Napier who fell into the vat of chemicals.
Wooing Reporter Vicki Vale Edit
He then took an interest in reporter Vicki Vale, and gassed everyone in the museum to their deaths, except for her, so that he could woo her. After that, he ruined and destroyed several paintings using several of his henchmen, including a guy who ruined a picture of George Washington by drawing the money symbol on it, and the Joker then began to woo her. As he woos her, he asks her what she knows about Batman. After that, he squirts acid from the poison flower on his shirt. Vicki then splashes water on the Joker's face. Then, he turns around and reveals his pale white face, saying, "Boo!". After that, he laughs sinisterly, and tries to kill her. At that moment, Batman burst through the ceiling window to rescue Vicki, but the Joker escaped.
Surprising Bruce Wayne Edit
The next day, the Joker surprised Bruce Wayne and Vicki Vale, and shot Bruce, who survived because he was holding a metal tray in front of the Joker's gun. Batman discovered that the Joker was actually the gunman who murdered his parents in cold blood, and seeked revenge.
The Joker had another plan in store: to parade out in the streets and throw twenty million (20,000,000) dollars everywhere. He did so, unfortunately, and the citizens of Gotham rushed out to grab it. The Joker then made a speech that he would relieve them of their lives while they were taking the money, and after this, he then released Smylex gas out of his balloons, and those taking the money were killed. Then, Batman arrived in the Batwing to save them, and kill the Joker in revenge. Taking away the balloons, Batman then fired at the Joker, who shot back with a long-barreled gun, and destroyed the Batwing, and Batman was very willing to kill the Joker.
Final Battle and Death Edit
The Joker kidnapped Vicki and danced with her at Gotham Cathedral, while Batman followed him inside and defeated his minions easily, although one of them, Big Black, was able to gain the upper hand at first. Batman then snook up on the Joker, and beated him using his fists. During the fight, Batman punches the Joker off the tower, but the Joker was on the ledge, and grabs Batman and Vicki by their wrists, and the Joker tried to knock the two off the ledge that they were hanging from. His minions flew a helicopter to the Cathedral and threw down a ladder, and the Joker was about to climb up when Batman tied his leg to a gargoyle. The gargoyle broke loose, and the Joker was pulled down by the weight of the gargoyle, and fell and hit the ground below hard, breaking every single bone in his body and killing him. Commisioner Gordon and the cops came and found his body, and noticed a voice box activated by the landing.
Cancelled 5th film Edit
The Joker was one of the villains planned to star in Batman Triumphant, the 5th film in the Batman film series, with Nicholson reprising his role from the first film. He would return as a hallucination in Batman's mind caused by the Scarecrow's fear-toxin. Harley Quinn would appear as the Joker's daughter trying to get revenge on Batman for her father's death. However, due to the almost universally negative reception of Batman & Robin, the previous film in the series, Batman Triumphant was scrapped, and the franchise was put on hiatus for 8 years.
Nicholson has received critical acclaim for his performance; Newsweek's review of the film stated that the best scenes in the movie are due to the surreal black comedy portrayed in this character. In 2003, American Film Institute named Nicholson's performance #45 out of 50 greatest film villains.
Similar Antagonists Edit
- Batman would continue to have memories of the Joker killing his parents for several years.
- He is one of the villains seen destroying T.V.s, the others being Big Boss from Rio 2, and Scarlet Overkill from Minions.