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Why Joker Sometimes Makes More Sense Than Batman? | Exploring the Psychology Behind It

Story Highlights
  • Letting go of his past
  • A practical approach to life
  • One bad day
  • Money is not important.

For many years, Batman and the Joker have been bitter foes. They make up one of pop culture’s most recognizable duos of heroes and villains. Supervillains who like to do strange things are often hard to explain, but the Joker wouldn’t be as popular if he didn’t have some humanizing qualities.

Let’s tally up all the times the Joker tried to get you to dance with the devil in the moonlight, shall we? Here are some instances where the Joker was more rational than Batman.

Letting go of his past

Traumatic experiences characterize Batman as a superhero. Batman’s origin is recognizable to anybody who watches superhero movies.

No one knows how the Joker got this way—an industrial accident, a mafia hit, or Batman. The Joker doesn’t care—in a scene from Arkham Origins, inspired by The Killing Joke, he protests against facing traumatic memories, something everyone can relate to.

Instead of torturing himself like Batman, the Joker forgets his past.

A practical approach to life

The Dark Knight’s Joker is practical. To the Gotham City criminal masters, he provides a service that no one else can provide: the assassination of Batman. “If you’re brilliant at something, never do it for free,” he tells the managers, knowing his talents are in demand.

Since money doesn’t bother Batman, he never makes these remarks. Bruce Wayne has huge family money, while the Joker does not. Anyone without money may connect to the Joker’s belief that he deserves payment. Bruce, not everyone has billions for hobbies!

One bad day

The Joker insists that regular people are closer to lunacy than you believe. “All it takes is one terrible day,” he says in many of his visits. 

Not everyone goes insane. But some can be, and his point is important: sometimes, it only takes one day.

A prime example is how Bruce Wayne’s life altered once his parents died.

Like the Joker, he may have gone insane. Trauma may influence anyone’s mental health. Humans are frail, and one shove may shatter them.

Money is not important

Batman, meanwhile, is usually wealthy.

Few authors consider his life without a mound of riches. Batman is a hero, yet he hoards his money to support his vigilante justice.

Because money doesn’t become important in heroism or villainy, the Joker burns and gives away vast wealth in numerous scenarios. Joker knows you can be nice or wicked without money.

Batman indeed stands for justice, but he’s not without flaws, and there are moments when the Joker’s twisted sense of humor and moral compass seem more alluring than Batman’s own. It’s refreshing to see a crazy character after seeing Batman frown his way through an episode.

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