Comic Book Review 23 – Batman: Joker’s Daughter #1

This week, we’re going down the rabbit hole, we’re going out where the buses don’t run, for a walk on the wild side, where they’re all a few vegetables short of a cabbage patch, and when I say mad I don’t mean angry, we’re going to poke around in the mind of one of Gotham’s newest and most deranged characters EVER, in the one-shot Batman: Joker’s Daughter #1.

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Jokers Daughter #01-Page7

Joker’s Daughter

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Golgotham

Batman: Joker’s Daughter #1 is a $4.99 one-shot comic  book, published by DC Comics, rated T (teen), and originally released on February 5, 2014. The issue was written by Marguerite Bennett, with art by Meghan Hetrick, colors by Michelle Madsen, letters by Saida Temofonte, and a cover by Georges Jeanty and MIchell Madsen.

Batman: Joker’s Daughter #1 sees Joker’s Daughter taking the spotlight for the second time in a standalone story, as she also did during DC’s “Villains Month” in Batman: The Dark Knight #23.4. We are here to discuss the results of the psychological profile and analysis I was commissioned to work up on the patient known only as “Joker’s Daughter”, based on the provided reading material. This session will attempt to give us a bit more of an origin for the patient known as Joker’s Daughter, than we got in her Villains Month issue, with mixed results. While our session tells a revealing and compelling story about Joker’s Daughter and her disturbed psyche and past, it raises as many questions about her as it answers. All we know for certain about the patient is that she is a violently psychotic teenage girl, of approximately seventeen years of age, with an obsessed fixation on The Joker, finding him, becoming his “real” daughter, and that she compulsively seeks his approval through her own criminally insane actions. After following the Batman into the twisted underground cavern where the Joker fell to his death, The Batman lures Joker’s Daughter back to the surface and into a trap where she is arrested by the Gotham City Police Department. At which point, the patient maims Officers Aguilar and Daniyal, escapes from their custody, and then makes her way here, to Arkham Asylum. Joker’s Daughter, to me at least, is an endlessly fascinating patient. I am immersed in the mystery of who she really is, since her past and childhood are radically different with every recollection. The patient’s true past and origins are as complicated and convoluted as the psychosis that grips the poor girl’s mind, as this observer can never quite tell if the memories she revisits throughout our session are the truth, outright lies, or merely products of her own severe mental illness and delusions.

A girl of many pasts.

A girl of many pasts.

During our session, the patient has described herself as having always been a rebel, then as having always been a princess, and later to have always been an outcast. She has, at various times, described herself as never having parents, as having murdered her parents, and as having run away from her parents. The patient sees The Joker simultaneously as a father, the god of both death and evil, and the devil of Gotham, while she sees herself as the Joker’s daughter, his prophet, his heir, and his property. After a chance encounter with Arkham Asylum’s first patient, The Anchoress, it has even been speculated that the patient may not be insane, at all, and is, in fact, merely a pathological liar. This encounter with The Anchoress left Joker’s Daughter visibly shaken, prompting her to flee the asylum. She then sought out the man responsible for removing the face of her “father”, Barton Mathis A.K.A. Dollmaker, and makes a deal to bring him new flesh for his own sick misdeeds in exchange for sewing the mask of Joker’s removed face onto her own. The patient has also indicated she may have a possible sexual attraction to The Joker, as her practically orgasmic reaction to having his mask of flesh sewn onto her face by Dollmaker seems to suggest. In my humble professional opinion, she’s as Loony as a Toon!

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Joker’s Daughter 2.0

Off to the art department! In today’s session, we will be discussing the artwork of Meghan Hetrick, who aided this observer by penciling visual interpretations of the patient’s recollection of memories and events. Hetrick’s art was quite helpful. Her pencils were dynamic and gritty, and gave a rough around the edges feel fitting of Gotham City, Joker’s Daughter, and her tattered clothes. The action scenes and the “acting” of the characters were both well portrayed. Michelle Madsen applied the colors to Meghan Hetrick’s pencils, thereby making them as vivid as the patient’s imagination. It appears Madsen used the colors-to-pencil method, where the colors are applied directly to the penciled pages without them having been inked. The colors add to the slightly surreal setting of the scenes that take place in what Joker’s Daughter refers to as Golgotham, the place where the Joker presumably fell to his death, at the end of the “Death Of The Family” crossover.

Overall, Batman: Joker’s Daughter #1 succeeded at being a very god and entertaining read. However, the session was not quite as successful at actually detailing an origin for its subject, Joker’s Daughter. The session, while productive, raised, at least, as many questions as it answered about the patient, and, for that reason, I could not give it as high of a mark as I would have liked.

I give Batman: Joker’s Daughter #1 a score of 2.5 Long-boxes out of 4.

All images are property of DC Entertainment.

STATUS (31 Posts)

James “STATUS” Eaddy is a freelance writer, who enjoys Readin', Writin', and Doin' Stuff! Along with Joe’l Williams, he is also the co-creator and writer of, the upcoming comic book property and characters, “The StreetKeepers”.