The Lilac Pilgrim – Yet Another Blog

Twisted Romance: The Doomed Loves of Blinded Fangirls

Posted on: July 31, 2008

Heath Ledger, deity of sorts rest his soul, has posthumously let loose a tornado of love-goggled fangirls and their fantasies, the type we really don’t need to hear, the type that are normally of the same ilk as the following:

“And the Joker held her tight, in a very out-of-character way, whispering sweet nothings, his mind for once not on killing everything…”

or

“I’m really really in love with the Joker, despite the fact that he’s a serial killer, but when I finally gt him, I’m not so dedicated anymore because things didn’t go the way they did in my head”

or

“The Joker is just a vulnerable sweetheart, really, I want to be the person he can turn to, the person who he can open up to.”

Girls, seriously, the last thing the Joker is likely to do is open up to you. Open you up perhaps.

When the Joker was Jack Nicholson you didn’t see quite as much of this pseudo-psychological romantic drivel. I agree there probably were some, but not as much as now.

I haven’t yet seen The Dark Knight, though I’m planning on it. But from what I’ve seen, liking the Joker is justifiable. He’s obviously well-acted, and chillingly terrific, so yeah, I can see why you’d like the villain; after all, we like to be thrilled by their screen presence.

However, how can you fall in love with a man whose idea of a first date is torture? A man who’d rather kill you in the most insane ways than kiss you?

There is so much bad fiction waiting to be spewed on the internet like so much undigested green eggs and ham, but please, I beg you, if your OC is a girl (or guy, even) much like yourself who ends up in a romantic tryst with The Joker, reconsider. And reconsider the character of The Joker! The Joker is not likely to let you go, even if he’s playing mind games with you. He likes killing people, it’s something he does, he’s not likely to make an exception for a 15/16/17 year old girl, matured beyond her years or not.

You WON’T be the one to change him. Not even if you insist to him that love is a healing force, not even if you randomly snog his face off while he’s trying to slash your face to bits, not even if you’re Miss World Psychology 2008.

Lets be realistic, girls, being in love with The Joker is kind of like being in love with Charles Manson. It’s a little like saying “Ted Bundy did some pretty screwed-up crap, but boy was he hot!”.

Okay, so the Joker isn’t real, but if he were, he’s not going to want the love of a teenaged fangirl. Most likely he’d find it irritating and easily fly into a murderous rage.

I guess my point here is, sure, it’s still okay to adore Heath Ledger. I had a bit of a thing for DeForest Kelley at one point, and he’s been dead for some time. But my God, The Joker is a maniacal psychopath, it’s not about bondage and leather, it’s about switchblades and rockets and deadly weaponry. I mean really; you cannot change a person if they don’t want to change. After seeing anything Batman related, do you really think he wants to?

Related posts:

Re: Comments on Twisted Romance…
Re: The Joker’s Virtual Harem [Rhonda Leigh Jones]
“If The Joker Were Played By Danny DeVito, We Wouldn’t Be Having This Discussion!”

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23 Responses to "Twisted Romance: The Doomed Loves of Blinded Fangirls"

Hmm, I agree on the ‘not being able to change him’ part.
Nut that’s the point of fanfiction.
It’s fiction written by a fan.
If they want to make him mushy and vulnerable, that’s fine…it’s their choice because they’re writing it.

But I personally prefer writing him as the dark, twisted, sadistic creature that he is.
Because that’s the Joker at his best. :]

Fiction by a fan it may be, but that doesn’t really excuse the vulnerable. Only one woman will ever see that side and that is Harley Quinn.

I don’t think it is fine. Some people think it is because they like the idea or as you said it’s the writer’s choice, but the point of a fan fiction is making your own ideas come to life without damaging the character we already know. Some fans of comics eventually get to write for them but they will never toy with the character formula. Unless of course you’re Russell T Davies and want to blow the whole series out of whack.

With his yellow teeth and moldy hair and the whole, you know, being completely, hysterically insane thing I can’t say I once looked at the Joker during the movie and thought he was sexy. He’s interesting and scary and thrilling as a villain, yes, but not really my cup of tea as far as make-out material goes (that is, I prefer partners who won’t give me a glasgow smile).

I read once that the human brain sometimes confuses fear and anxiety with lust though, so maybe that has something to do with it?

I don’t entirely know what the appeal is, but I don’t see any harm in it. Beyond writing some fanfiction of questionable quality, it’s not hurting anyone. There’s a big difference between developing a crush on a fictional character who kills people and a man on death row who has killed people.

I, for example, had the biggest crush on Hannibal Lecter when I was about 16. I don’t (and didn’t) actually have a thing for real life serial killers and I knew if I ever had the misfortune to know anyone like him in real life I’d either end up dead or have no idea what kind of monster they were, but shoot, it’s not like he was going to come to life and kill me. Something about him just seemed mysterious and dangerous and sexy at the time. I think that’s probably part of the appeal of the Joker.

Also, the dude clearly has ISSUES. Young girls love a broken man with emotional problems. They like the idea of being the one to give him a hug and ease the pain. Some women do too. Heck, some men are also all about crazy ladies who will bring them nothing but grief.

…I’m getting off my point. Which I guess was that I think most of these girls realize the Joker is dangerous and wouldn’t really love them back, they just think he’s sexy for some reason or another. I say let them have their wicked way with him in the fanfiction world.

Look, I’m crazy about the Joker myself (not a crush, I just really love the character) but it’s annoying to see Batman fan-fiction in which the whole story is monopolised by the love between an out-of-character Joker and an original character who is usually described as OMG!gorgeous and oh-so-perfect. Mary Sues are the suck, OOC Joker is the suck, I mean come on! I’ll strike a deal with you; I’ll stop hating this if the fangirls KEEP their horrid fan fiction to themselves! Write it as long as i don’t have to come across a million summaries on fan fiction dot net reading “The Joker is lonely, omg!awesome Princess Beautiful Darknight Sapphire Prettypants is lonely, what will happen?lol!!!”

Incidentally, yay at someone calling it a Glasgow smile ^_^ Most people I know call it a Chelsea grin. We Scots don’t have much but damnit leave us something!

alright, “and here we…go!” Now im a grown up, hardly a teenage, who now has the most inspiring ( im a graphic novel author artist) the most erotic and the most downright obsessive crush on ledger’s joker. Amidst drooling over the characters poweful alpa male agressive ness i noticed a real reason for ladies to fuel the female sexy joker fantasy with this particlar character in this particular movie. the scean where joker taunts and circles rachel at bruce waynes fundraiser,joker tell the story of his wife and how he loved her so damned much he sllced his own face to prove his wifes horrable disfigurement did not change his feelings for her. So ledger’s joker would have sex with you and quite possably might marry you. why not he did it once before? And he didnt kill his wife. So in context with the dark knight movie itself and direct dialouge from Ledger’s jokers character now you have a concreat foundation for female infatuation with this character. Of course i know the difference between my joker fantasy and real life .I also know im turning out some fantastic joker erotica that no one will ever find childish or immature. Fantasy makes our lives richer and ledger’ joker charactor has literally made the earth move under my feet.See ya on the bestseller list!
feel free to write
gypsywitchbarbara@yahoo.com

Then again, gypsywitchbarbara, he might not. Remember he also said that his father slashed his mother to ribbons and turned the knife on his own child (The Joker, obv…). As per the graphic novel “The Killing Joke”, he may in fact remember it differently each time. When he was about to regale Batman with the story, it was probably going to be a different one. Or he’s a pathological liar. And remember also that he was actually going to kill Rachel. He threw her out the window! And before that he was going to “put a smile” on her face. Ldger’s Joker may well be a pathological liar, have broken and false memory issues and he DID kill one woman (Judge Surrillo) at the least. This comment deserves another one of my rants on it’s own, never mind the others. In fact, I just might do that. Right now.

Watch this space.

Oh my God, thank you for putting this up. I am so dead sick of Joker!fangirls that I could puke. The ones I’ve come across (baby, the links I could show you!) are always wannabe Slytherin masochists that literally think rape is sexy and the highest form of goddamned love. UGH!

My (Psycho!fun) friend would like to have sex with Mr. J (in a non-fangirl way, though) and I told her “Remember that scene where the goon tries to take Batman’s mask off and the Joker shoots his hands, jumps up and down on him while laughing, makes a “Blrrr-rr-rr-rr!” face at him and then spits on him? That’s more or less Joker sex.” Yes! I believe the Joker is more or less asexual! He has fifteen more important things on his mind and sex just isn’t as much fun at all! Killing, stealing, making up scar stories, scaring people, making bad jokes, drawing funny faces… hell, deciding how best to keep his makeup from smearing!

Hate to say it, but I blame Harley Quinn and her wikipedia page for 3 to 5 percent of this madness. That page gives out a lot of false hope, especially if you don’t read the rest of it. I believe she does eventually move on to some degree (sorta). ‘Least she never managed to permanently destroy his character. But we can forgive Harley, partly because we may as well get used to her, partly because she does stand on her own two feet sometimes (I may be wrong), but mostly because of her Psychology background. Most psych students go in because they’re a bit psycho themselves. Harley, she’s not all there.

And here’s where I get accused of being a rabid heterophobic slasher (though I will not deny that it’s half true). The closest the Joker has to real romance (in The Dark Knight, which I like to think is just a little bit different) is Batman. And even then I’m not going to go reading about some hot, romantic, passionate sex between the two! No, their relationship is totally unconsummated, based on tension, never spoken, only felt when apart, Kindergarten I-pull-your-hair-because-I-like-you love!

Thanks Harpsiccord; I pretty much agree with everything you’ve said! I don’t think you can assign a sexuality to The Joker; you’re right about Harley, but once again, the tried-to-kill-her thing kind of signifies his non-sexuality.

There’s not a lot I can add to what you said really! XD It was pretty accurate

The tried-to-kill-her thing is overshaddowed in the fangirls’ minds by the “you made me have feelings” quote on the Wiki; a quote which sends shivers of fear down my spine. I guess I’m a Johnny-come-lately to this fandom (wasn’t allowed to read comics until I was out of the house in college) so maybe there is more to it. I’m told he’s very abusive to her. And yet, if you look on D.A, there have been tons more Harley/Joker pictures, which makes me think that the fangirls are replacing her with themselves.

Once again, the links I could show you. A nine part story entitled “The Joker’s Concubine”!

I hope they’ll come to understand that the Joker is about 3% his looks, 97% his actions. Take away his need to kill and his inability to sympathize and he’s not The Joker anymore! He’s just the fangirl’s hot boy-beast that “only she could tame”. Wearing her best makeup no less.

Oh I know! But look at how badly he treats her – because she tried to kill Batman (he wants that fun! Don’t take that away!!) he threw her out of a window! He yelled at her for explaining how he could make a plan work, he tied her to a rocket and launched it! The fangirls are totally replacing Harley with them, some people more literally than others. I love Harley, don’t get me wrong, but she’d be better off staying with Poison Ivy. Ivy’s less likely to kill her in her sleep.

Hey, we all know we are talking about comic book characters and people who do not exist outside of fiction here, right? What is the harm? It’s fantasy people! Guys have their porn sites all over the web. It’s rampant. You don’t see women going ballistic cause “boys will be boys”. Well, give us our space to be girls. And the girls who find it disturbing aren’t being forced to participate so just go away. Shooo! Having said that, I really do believe, after much thought on the subject that a large part of the Joker’s appeal is that we know, even subconsciously, that underneath that messy grease paint and grin, it’s that sweet, sensitive Aussie, Mr. Ledger. I don’t think the Joker would be quite so, ah, stimulating, if we knew it was some crumb bum of an actor playing him. I never had such thoughts about Heath … until the Joker. I’m sure the fangirls are getting all they can of everything Heath as well while they explore the possibilities with Mr. J. Fanfic vids on youtube regularly show Mr. Ledger from clips of other films to illustrate the Joker sans cosmetics. You can’t think of Dark Knight’s Joker without thinking of Heath even if he was next to invisible in the movie. And Heath was a very sexy guy.

Oh, I just wanted to add to my previous comment. Aside from having a Heath filling, the Joker is attractive in his own right for a number of reasons. One is his alpha male confidence. This guy does not doubt himself for a nanosecond and that is very compelling. He is intelligent – quite a turn on. He has a wonderfully goofy sense of humour which is an aphrodisiac for many women. And he is crazy – makes him unpredictable in a thrilling way. He also has a weird sort of integrity going on, shunning crime for money and more to “send a message”.

Add to that his pure kinetic energy and physical abandon (let’s not forget the tongue) and he’s sex in a cup.

Saffron, don’t assume things please; you act as though I hate the Joker. I don’t. I thought Heath gave a spectacular performance. And you know something? I didn’t even like Heath when he was alive. I can easily think of The Dark Knight’s Joker without going “HEATH!!!!” because his performance to me was so spectacular, he stopped being Heath Ledger and started being the Clown Prince Of Crime.

And you know, much as I love intelligent, confident men with a great sense of huour and psychopathic tendencies, I just find it hard to see the appeal in a man who obviously has never heard of a toothbrush and nor does he own a mirror. I really don’t care if you have your communities and such because I never have to visit them, but I am pretty tired of seeing badly written self-insert crappy romance stories that makes NO SENSE.

And NO, the Joker is NOT sex in a cup! He has some interesting attributes but seriously, his interests include throwing beautiful girls out of windows!

The Joker without his make-up is a scarred mental patient who has an obsession with Bats, not Heath Ledger.

And while I know we are talking people who do not exist, I;m not quite sure that YOU realise this, what with your talk being divided between Heath Ledger and the Joker. That kind of illustrates my point of the fangirls only being interested in that aspect. I don’t think I even need to argue this further.

Now you are assuming things, Pilgrim. You see I do realize the difference between Heath Ledger and the Joker. Just to tweak that second last paragraph of yours:

“The Joker without his make-up is a scarred mental patient who has an obsession with Bats, played by a rather handsome actor named Heath Ledger”.

If he had been played just as skillfully by the very talented Danny DeVito, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

I will be perfectly clear, if he were real, if the Joker himself approached me in a dark alley, I would be frightened enough to need a change of undies and appalled at the obvious stench he must bring with him. His breath alone would be heart-stopping and not in a good way.

But he’s not real so in the world of fanfiction, his hygiene issues and little tendencies towards homicide do not detract from his other, obvious charms.

So you see, I know the difference. One is real scream-out-loud horror complete with post-traumatic stress (if he was real) and the other is comic book fiction.

If fangirls were having romantic or erotic takes on Ted Bundy or Jeffrey Dahmer, who actually did exist and did murder people with no trace of conscience, now that would be disturbing. And yes, I am aware that they had their groupies but that’s not what we are discussing here.

Again – reality – fantasy. Two different worlds.

I am sorry that fanfic writing is so bad as a rule but there are some wonderful exceptions. It’s a guilty pleasure, that’s all. I don’t think it will ever reach the realm of fine literature. Fanfic is usually written quickly, without much editing or rewrite, to get it to the small audience of readers who are eager for the next installment. Most of these fanfic writers have day jobs and are doing this for fun. They are not trained word smiths and the ones who read the stories forgive them for it because their dedication makes up for it. I would guess most are written in the dead of night dreading the lost sleep that will make it hard to get up in time for the job next day.

And you are right that there is no need to argue further. You can enjoy the Joker in your way and the fangirls can enjoy him in their way, dirty fingernails, stringy hair, Mary Sue’s and all.

*Raises hand* May I, Lilac?

I know the discussion’s over but I gotta say, Saffron, that the main difference between you and the fangirls I’ve run into is that you seem to be rational. I seriously doubt you’d be one of the ones that found rape sexy or would want to change the Joker’s character. And I do mean rape and change his character!

The links I am dying to share; I swear.

Thank you so much for writing this. I can totally relate! I especially agree with you about the fangirls projecting their vaginas onto Harley! It’s so embarassing.

I wouldn’t be bothered by it if it was limited to fanfic but I have seen BLATANT cases of fangirls projecting their fantasies onto a fictional character and using Harley as a prop. It’s sad and embarassing. You have no idea how grateful I was when I found your page! Much love.

Wow hypocrits.If you hate those god damn fan fictions so much then why the HELL are you even reading them?!It’s not like you’re forced to do it.Just let those girls have their fun.It’s FANTASY people.I doubt most of those girls would have wanted him if he was real.But he isn’t.

I think the joker is sexy and i’m proud of it!:D

I’m not forced to read terrible fiction, you’re right. When I’m browsing fan fiction I am, however, forced to see these self-insert stories all over the place, even where a promising synopsis has lured me in. I am not interested in your stupid wish-fulfilment fantasy. Keep it to yourself. Like Stephenie Meyer should have kept Twilight to herself.

Personally i think such fan fictions are silly myself but creating hate threads because of it is just more pathetic;)

Also keeping in mind that most of these fan girls are very young and immature.I mean come one.Bear over with them

Now, see, that’s where I disagree with you again. I’m just expressing a view on how I like my Joker, and how the Joker should be with regards to his different representations throughout the years. They’ve always been relatively constant in the ways that I put forward and I just wanted to make a point. I expected some backlash from readers, but I never expected it to go as far as it has. I just failed (and still do) to understand what the attraction is. Although, it’s not the attraction I have the problem with, it’s the fact that so many of them want a loving, sweet Joker when it’s not going to happen. If they’re so attracted to him how he is, why not leave him as he is? Harley Quinn does, after all.

First off, I appreciate you for standing up to your beliefs. Harley/Joker is a very popular pairing so it’s natural for fanatics to come and try to put you down.

I am so with you on the Joker/Harley, Joker/OC wish fullfillment fantasy. Mind you, I also have my preferences but that doesn’t mean I can’t take off my beer goggles! 🙂

I talked to come Joker/Harley fans who although they love the pairing, they were open, honest and candid and pretty much said what you already said, that Harley is actually a wish fullfillment of themeselves. It’s beauty and the beast syndrome. Proof of this is when you criticize Harley. God forbid you call her a misogynist concept. I personally don’t agree with that notion but I can see where they got that idea. I have had personal experience (the links I could show you!) with this and man, they will grill you for seeing Joker and Harley’s relationship for what it is (an abusive one where he kicks her ass because HE CAN) than their own personal idealized fetish of romance (he hits her because it’s his own insecure way of communicating with her).

You are so right about Harley Quinn leaving him. Paul Dini himself has demonstarted that he would like her to spread her wings outside of Joker and Ivy’s influence. The last two years and the upcoming Gotham City Sirens series is proof of this. Joker/Harley is nothing but a personal fetish that some people have. There is nothing there to understand. It’s harmless on its own right but like you said, when it becomes an imposed ‘standard’, um, yeah, no, that’s not gonna fly and even as a fan of Joker and Harley Quinn, I get tired of listening to that ****.

Anywho, I just wanted to share my two cents. I do realize that this is an old blog but I just wanted to let you know: WORD!

Ah, Pilgrim, you totally captured all the thoughts. I’m sorry I don’t have time for an otherwise coherent thought. I’ll return later.

Ok, I just remembered something else I was going to say- most of the Joker fanfics are made up of all the same words, except rearranged and used in varying quantities. *Shudders with fear*

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  • HoistTheColours: Dear author, I full-heartedly and absolutely agree with your above statements. I just thought I would let you know, since I don't quite understand w
  • richclark: I covered this in my blog too. Found your post on one of Wordpress' random (associated posts). Has Ask really made the impact it needed to from
  • The Lilac Pilgrim: I couldn't go anywhere without someone mentioning it. It was incredibly obvious and yet people were still arguing about it. Absolutely ridiculous.
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