When it comes to comics, a hero is only as good as his villain. The contrast between them must be so significant that both are elevated from their respective positions; or, rather, they must be equal in their opposite tendencies. Superman is only as virtuous as Lex Luthor is evil. Same goes for Green Lantern and Sinestro. Or Professor X and Magneto.
Some villains are so twisted, their malevolence exceeds their rival's capacity for heroism; they aren't just at the other end of the "good vs. evil" spectrum, but in a league all their own. Perhaps the most notable of these rare figures appeared in Batman #1, on April 25, 1940, a cold-blooded serial killer who left a signature calling card after poisoning his marks, an act that left them with grotesque smiles similar to his own. His name? Joker. Due to the character's inherent nastiness, there's been some serious gore in the Joker comics.
Joker's true identity is a constantly fluctuating enigma. He inhabits an absolute role, one that doesn't require backstory. There are many, varied origin stories explaining how Joker became who he is, one whose manic grin instills fear, and whose motives are driven only by madness. In some cases, he's been described as not insane, but rather super-sane, a person so intelligent his intellect goes beyond what anyone else could possibly understand.
Joker has been called the Harlequin of Hate. The Jester of Genocide. The Ace of Knaves. And, although he's a fictional character, his deeds are nonetheless the things of absolute nightmares. Read on for a list of some of the goriest moments in the Joker comics.
When He Beat Jason Todd With A Crowbar
When He Skinned Monty Alive
When He Shot Barbara Gordon Through The Spine And Violated Her
When He Had His Own Face Removed
When His Actions Led To Harvey Dent's Face Being Half DestroyedPhoto: Warner Bros Pictures
When He Burned Half Of Alex Luthor's Face Off Before Blasting Him With A Shotgun