Joker: Why we love a creepy megalomaniac more than a superhero

Joker is everything you shouldn’t be – a megalomaniac, a destroyer of world peace, and a sociopath. He isn’t good at maintaining relationships, and, on top of that, he kills people for fun. Image - Eunice Dhivya

We all love a little bit of chaos in the lives we lead and the movies we watch. Why wouldn’t we love the Joker then? He’s everything you shouldn’t be – a megalomaniac, a destroyer of world peace, and a sociopath. He isn’t good at maintaining relationships, and, on top of that, he kills people for fun.

While his presence in the comic books — he first appeared in Batman (1940), published by DC Comics — has gained massive popularity, actors portraying him in live-action movies, too, have reached global celebrityhood. Although Joker exists as the archenemy of Batman, and as the villain who should rather be hated than loved, he’s attained a stature of his own. He’s come a long way from being a supporting character in a story to headlining a motion picture.

The Joaquin Phoenix-starrer, Joker (2019), directed by Todd Phillips, has already wowed critics and audiences at the 76th Venice International Film Festival. It won the prestigious Golden Lion, the festival’s bumper prize, and is running on Indian screens now.

The beginnings

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