Batman and the Joker

Joker and Batman- Interrogation

Joker and Batman- last scene

I live for these two. (seriously.) The first time I saw this film is a night I’ll never forget. In my mind, there is no better symbolic example of what happens when two opposing forces exist only for one another. This is not sexual tension, or love, or friendship, but something that goes well beyond that. It’s past obsession, past even soul mates- I would say it’s closer to their being two sides of the same person. I’ve read more on these two than any other “couple,” I’ve read all the stories, seen all the films. But nothing compares to the Dark Knight- this is a masterpiece. The Joker and Batman are literally made for one another, and this film is their journey of how each came into their respective identites as Joker and Batman, not to themselves, but to *each other.* They existed before the other came into their lives, but together, they become something more. I don’t know of a story more captivating than this one. Neither is a hero, neither is a villain, really… We find ourselves agreeing with a lot of what the Joker says, don’t we? Batman is a tortured soul who sees himself reflected in the Joker, right? And we watch, in this scene, how deep the current is between them. The Joker, during the “interrogation” effectively tricks Batman into choosing his identity as Batman over Bruce Wayne- he can’t live without him. He truly can’t. And Batman was considering dropping the mask, revealing himself to the world, but we can all plainly see he doesn’t really want to do that. Bruce is his mask- Batman is who he really is. The audience realizes that these two are being drawn to each other to forever battle into eternity, and that is exactly what the Joker wants. An eternal war of the two of them trying to bring each other down. It’s flawless. Ingenious. Utter madness. And something more than passion.

There have been debates for a long time as to what their relationship actually is. I personally think it goes beyond any kind of definition. However, in the new series Death in the Family, which the author Scott Snyder says is “a love letter from the Joker to Batman,” the Joker does admit to being in love with Batman, and he accuses Batman of feeling the same. It’s curious, that exchange. But I disagree because that puts them into one neat, little box, when the reality is that their “bond” is so much more than that. Love may very well be one of the many facets, but it’s not the only one. The Dark Knight explores *all* these sides, and I believe it’s a masterwork because of that. The Joker spends the entire film killing off those closest to Batman, getting everyone out of his way so he’ll have no choice but to leave Bruce behind and take up the cape for good, but he refuses to give up his principals, his beliefs entirely, and he won’t be swayed. The last scene with Batman and the Joker is exactly that- Batman has a chance to end his war with the Joker for good, but won’t- killing is something he won’t do no matter what.  The Joker taunts him, saying “oh, you, you just couldn’t let me go, could you? This is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object.”

I know this entire film by heart because it is my heart. Kind of screwed up, isn’t it? But it’s true. I only hope I can mold something with this much gravity, I only hope.

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~ by hln351 on February 10, 2015.

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