The Joker is iconic. So whenever there is a new adaptation of this character, fans will no doubt jump on the hate-wagon. It happened when Heath Ledger was cast for “The Dark Knight.” And it happened Friday night when “Suicide Squad” director David Ayer tweeted an image of what Jared Leto’s take on the sociopathic clown nemesis to Batman will look like in the new DC Cinematic Universe. And to be honest, I was also quite taken aback by it too.
Grills? Tattoos? He looks more like a lead singer from an early 2000s nu metal band than the Joker, was my first impression. Sure, he is imitating an iconic scene, once again, from “The Killing Joke,” but this certainly isn’t how the Joker has been seen on the screen before.
And that’s when it hit me. It would be easy to recycle Nicholson’s Joker. It would be a crime to recycle Ledger’s Joker. And it would just be odd to recycle Cesar Romero’s Joker. So they had to start somewhere new, from a different perspective of the character.
You also have to remember that in the DC Cinematic Universe, Batman has already been around for a while. They are pretty much bypassing an origin story because, frankly, we have had two on the big screen in the past 20 odd years and one currently sucking the life out of the franchise on TV with “Gotham.” So, for all we know, the grills could be from broken teeth at the hands of Batman, same with the scars. As far as we know, the Joker and Batman might have already been at war for years in this film universe.
So, as ridiculous as this might look, I will not downplay it too much since I have no idea where they are going with the character.