I'm pretty sure you've all heard about that recent fan theory by Jason-G169. He writes in his Reddit post, "The Joker we are going to see in Suicide Squad is Jason Todd". If you haven't read this theory, hold your breath for a little bit to suppress your shock and/or anger.
It's unsurprising that the irony of a former Robin becoming one of Batman's sworn enemies could turn out to be one of the strongest story arcs in the DC Cinematic Universe. It's been done before, with Tim Drake becoming the Joker in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, and with Dick Grayson also becoming the Joker in The Dark Knight Strikes Back. Sure, Return of the Joker was better-received than The Dark Knight Strikes Back, but it's a really interesting premise for Jason Todd to turn into Joker, the villain that killed him.
The fan theory states that there are three reasons as to why the Joker is actually Jason Todd in the DC Cinematic Universe.
- The newspaper with the words "YOU LET YOUR FAMILY DIE" written on it
- The vandalized Robin costume in the Batcave
- The way the Joker looks in the trailer compared to how other depictions of the Joker are
If you really want to know how this fan theory plays out I recommend you read Jason-G169's theory here.
Despite the sheer emotional turmoil and dramatic irony that this certain story arc could present for both Batman and the Joker, there are a few reasons why Jason being Joker is a highly unlikely plot prospect.
First of all, let's talk about how the reasons aren't nearly enough to justify the theory.
Now don't get me wrong, I do believe that Jason Todd sent that message to Batman, but not as Joker. Sure, it's usually the Joker who does these little things to annoy the hell out of Batman, or at least to give him a punch in the emotional, psychological and mental gut. However, the Joker wouldn't really even care about tormenting Bruce Wayne, because the Joker doesn't care about learning Batman's secret identity at all.
It's a fact that the Joker has had many, many, many opportunities to find out who Batman really is, but never really took advantage of it. There have been hints here and there about Joker truly knowing who Batman's alter-ego is. The thing is, the Joker doesn't care at all, and wouldn't go through the tiny inconvenience to exploit Bruce Wayne. Why? It's because Batman, the terror of the criminal underworld, is who Bruce really is, not some debauched billionaire playboy. The Joker takes up a serious amount of time trying to convince Batman that the mask is who Bruce really is, that Batman is just as crazy as the Joker.
Red Hood, however, is a character that would go out of his way to torment Bruce Wayne at a personal level. Red Hood is driven to torment Bruce Wayne for failing to save him from the hands of the Joker. Red Hood basically just wants to guilt-trip Batman because of this, as several of his actions would to be to get Batman's attention. Red Hood doesn't share the same "fascination" that the Joker has for Batman, but a personal and Lazarus Pit-driven crazy mission in order to make Batman feel responsible for the death of Jason Todd.
The Defiled Robin Costume
Here's what the fan theory says:
"What joke is on batman? Could it mean Jason wrote that on his suit after he became a deranged psycho? What i think it means is, after all Jason & Bruce have gone through together, him teaching Jason to not be so angry & teaching him how to be a better person, in the end it didn't matter it was all one huge joke because Jason's fate was to become Joker, his fate was to become the arch nemesis of his father."
Here it's stated that Jason was the one who wrote those words on the costume. However, note the significant battle-damage that the costume has. There are multiple burn marks and fabric tears on it. Why do you think Batman kept it this way? To remember what the Joker did to Jason Todd. He keeps it in a state of disrepair to remind himself to never again endanger the lives of other people in his crime-fighting crusade. It makes more sense if it was the Joker who spray-painted those words on the costume. If it were Jason who did it, then "BATMAN" would've been "BRUCE" instead. Also, if the writings were by the same person, then why doesn't the first picture have a "laugh message" or a "HAHAHAHA" like the second one?
Remember, the Joker doesn't care at all about Bruce Wayne, he only cares about Batman and what Batman stands for: Justice and Order. What Batman does in order to uphold those things, the Joker seeks to dismantle. You could imagine the utter joy the Joker felt when he was beating Robin to a pulp.
On a side note, there's a noticeable difference in how the words are written, handwriting and everything. Look at it this way, Joker writes in Comic Sans and Jason writes in... Babadook.
It's no surprise whatsoever that the fans will say that the Joker is different mainly because his appearance is drastically different compared to other depictions of the Joker. Take the grills and tattoos for example: many people believe that those would really be a majorly "out of character" thing to do for the Joker. The Joker wouldn't sit down for hours upon hours to have tattoos drawn on him, and he wouldn't take the time to visit the dentist to get a dental mold for his grills. The Joker wouldn't want to try and conform to "prison culture" because of the grills and the tattoos. So, fans decided that this wouldn't be the Joker, but rather, something the Joker himself would do to someone else.
One part of the fan theory connotes that Jason Todd ended up with grills because the Joker bashed his teeth in with a crowbar. The tattoos would have also been drawn on Jason by the Joker. Some of the tattoos, like the "skull jester" symbolize Jason's "rebirth" as the Joker.
However, isn't the main point, which Joker tries to drive into Batman's head, the fact that everybody is "a little push" away from madness? Isn't his goal to make everyone realize that they are no different from the Joker, and that he is willing to go through drastic lengths in order to make everyone just like him?
This is what I believe: the Joker did indeed bash Jason's teeth in, to at least give him a smile like the Joker has. I also believe that the Joker had to leave a mark on Jason in some manner, but he would have loved a little more blood and less ink on Jason.
Ohhhhh I'm not gonna kill ya.
I'm just gonna hurt ya...
So for the grills and for the tattoos, this is simply a way the Joker distinguishes himself from Batman's Rogues Gallery. You will not believe the tremendous lengths Joker goes through in order to show the world how mad he is, and how mad everyone else is, for that matter. If not, he'll make them just like him.
The Role of Red Hood and the Joker
Finally, let's discuss the role of Joker in the Batman mythology. This role cannot be explained better than in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight, where the Joker is a direct opposition to the symbol of law and order that the Batman upholds. The Joker is Batman's opposite in every aspect of his career.
I know what you're thinking: "omfg!!! this is exactly why Jason should be the Joker!!!!!!!1" However, there is also a role that the Red Hood plays in the Batman mythology.
Jason Todd, The Red Hood is the gray area between Batman being the symbol of justice, and Joker being the symbol for crime. The Red Hood's methods sort of transcend both the Batman and the Joker. Red Hood is willing to kill, but he ultimately is also fighting for justice. The role of the Red Hood is there to add further emotional turmoil for Batman because of Batman's one rule: to never kill. Batman would feel that he "failed" as a mentor because even if the Red Hood fights for justice, he is willing to kill for it. At one point, Jason tries to get Batman to kill the Joker, but Batman works his way around it and ultimately stops Jason from pointing the gun at Joker's head. It doesn't really end well, but that's the point.
I believe that if the DC Cinematic Universe made Jason the Joker, it would be a tremendous missed opportunity in terms of plot points and character diversity. Plus, I feel like with the DC Cinematic Universe, DC is giving tremendous amounts of fanservice, and wouldn't want to stray a bit too far from the comics.
Of course, this is only a counter-theory. Of course, I'm only basing how we would see the Joker based on how the writers have done his character in the past. Of course I'm only talking about the Red Hood in terms of his comics portrayal because we haven't seen live-action movie portrayals of him yet. Of course, we know nothing until the films come out.
[Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice](tag:711870) will premiere on March 25, 2016.
Suicide Squad will premiere on August 5, 2016.