“Hello. I came to talk. I’ve been thinking lately. About you and me. About what’s going to happen to us, in the end. We’re going to kill each other, aren’t we?”
Since it first hit the shelves in 1988, Batman: The Killing Joke has been one of the most influential stories in the comic book industry. Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s one-shot about the Joker’s “one bad day” had an enormous effect on how people saw the relationship between Batman and the Joker, posited a possible origin for Batman’s most famous villain and, for better or worse, defined the character of Barbara Gordon for years following her unfortunate fate and problematic use in the story. Like many of the acclaimed comics of the late 1980s it has had a mixed legacy, a poignant and beautifully drawn book that showed the depth that comic book stories can have while also influencing an industry that continues to have problems seeing being ‘dark’ as the only way to be mature, not to mention using the trauma of female characters as a device to provoke tough macho sadness from the male characters who actually get the focus.
Regardless of its impact, The Killing Joke remains one of the most well-known stories in comics and continues to be immensely popular, making it inevitable that DC would adapt it for their line of animated films. Announced earlier this year, the feature-length animated film of Batman: The Killing Joke features the voice acting talents of Batman veterans Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill in their long standing roles of Batman and the Joker respectively. As an indication of the stories enduring popularity, the film will be getting a select theatrical release in Dublin cinemas, with DC’s animated films usually kept for home release.
The Light House Cinema, Movies@Swords and Movies@Dundrum will all be showing the film on Wednesday the 27th of July, with two additional screenings at the Light House in early August. With limited availability, tickets will go fast, so fans of the caped crusader interested in seeing this well-known story play out on the big screen should snap tickets up as soon as possible.