Joker Not Following Comic Books
Some comic book fans get angry when things do not exactly go their way. Many will go to the forums and rage against the machine that is Hollywood today. There are definitely several examples of Hollywood mucking up different characters over the years. It’s pretty obvious they do not have a great track record generally of putting out adaptations that are loyal to the comics. In fact, even successful films that take characters in different directions such as Iron Man 3 have come under consternation. If some changes are made to the characters in film, they can be helpful to the overall medium. However, there are poor examples of comic to film adaptation that have come out such as Fantastic Four and Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. In fact, Spider-Man 3, which came out the same year as Rise of the Silver Surfer, was pretty bad too because it did not stay true to the comics.
While Iron Man 3 is a good example of taking the character in a different direction and making it interesting, the aforementioned Fantastic Four and Spider-Man films are the worst examples of what can happen when you do not stay true somewhat to the fabric of the characters. Great adaptations of characters that have remained loyal to the comics include The Dark Knight Trilogy and even non-superhero films like Road to Perdition. With word that Joker will not be following any specific comic pattern, it has caused comic book fans to be in an uproar. With so many demanding that the film follow exactly what has come before, it becomes somewhat of an event to see fans get upset at things like Heath Ledger being cast as The Joker or Ben Affleck as Batman.
Todd Phillips, the director of Joker, let loose the news in an interview with Empire. “We didn’t follow anything from the comic-books, which people are gonna be mad about,” Phillips said. “We just wrote our own version of where a guy like Joker might come from. That’s what was interesting to me. We’re not even doing Joker, but the story of becoming Joker. It’s about this man.”
It’s certainly interesting to imagine what it would be like if the young Bruce Wayne in the film needed a super shaker to wake up on time. With the changes obviously being made to the mythos, it will be interesting to see exactly the story they want to tell. There can be some benefit to allowing storytellers to do what they wish with characters. In the long run, Joker could be a film that redefines the character after Ledger’s legendary performance as The Joker in The Dark Knight. However, what’s likely to happen is there will be a division among the fan base. It’s not like the universal love and praise people have for a super shaker.
Some people may love the film because they are either fans of Joaquin Phoenix or they love the version of the character they are being given. Yet, there’s the chance many people hate it and it becomes a failed experiment. That did not stop Phillips from singing the praises of Phoenix as the character. “I think he’s the greatest actor,” the director said. “We had a photo of him above our computer while we were writing. We constantly thought, ‘God, imagine if Joaquin actually does this.’”
Phoenix is definitely a good actor if you’ve seen him in anything like Walk the Line. We will have to see just how this film comes about later this year. It will definitely receive an interesting response, this writer muses.
About the author: Tommy Zimmer is a writer whose work has appeared online and in print. His work covers a variety of topics, including politics, economics, health and wellness, consumer electronics, and the entertainment industry.