The Lilac Pilgrim – Yet Another Blog

Archive for the ‘films’ Category

When you look at reviews for anything – movies, books, video games and the like – you expect them to be helpful. You want to make a decision whether or not to bother with the subject of the review, and hope to be guided by the reviewer into making a good decision either way. Many reviewers do this pretty well, giving the pros and cons and their reasons for liking or disliking the subject.

Other reviewers? Not exactly.

Unfortunately, a bad reviewing culture is rampant, even worse with the ever spreading reaches of the internet, though that’s not to say that people aren’t allowed to give their opinions. Still, when your review is less of a review and more of an actor-bashing, director-insulting storm of anger, there might be a problem.

Naturally, IMDb is brilliant for these. So today I’m going to showcase a selection of reviews and explain why they are unhelpful or just plain wrong. Yes; again I am reviewing reviews.

Movie: Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure
This movie about the love between a man-child and his bike and the road-trip he has to embark on to retrieve it after it gets stolen received heaps of mixed criticism. Some people felt it was a fun trip through the real word guided by a small child, others felt (secret word of the day, by the way) it was a terrible, poor excuse for a kids’ movie. Being directed by Tim Burton doesn’t save it even watching it after the director’s great success.

I felt it was a really good film, not exactly mindless as such but definitely fun. Naturally I’m going to disagree with negative reviews. However, I tend to disagree with positive reviews as well if they are not helpful in any way whatsoever, so forgive me if I look a bit biased here; many of the rubbish reviews came from those who hated this film.

IMDb user glistonosz did not like the film, and I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt since they’re Polish and I don’t really follow the argument well, but I’m not sure there’s any excuse for this snippet:

“Firstly, I’m not gay, but I have a lot of friends who are. I frankly don’t care who is doin’ what in the bedroom, but the truth is some of my friends are annoying. When I saw first ten minutes of Pee Wee’s Big Adventure I knew that it’s going to be long movie to watch.”

I’m having a hard time trying to figure out what “gay” has to do with Pee-Wee here. Maybe the cultural divide is so great that “behaves like a small child” translates overseas to “gay as a sparkly rainbow-coloured maypole”. Pee-Wee is a little flamboyant on occasion but that’s not really any reason to be uncomfortable. And yes I’m aware that some people in his country of origin tend to equate Pee-Wee with gay culture but this commentary seems awfully insensitive. And I’d bet glistonosz’s gay friends wouldn’t be too happy to see it either.

Moving on to user Amadeusrye’s review. In its entirety:

“This movie is just plain dumb. Tim Burton is my favorite director and most of his other films are excellent. He really needed practice when he did this one, though. There are a handful of funny scenes, but eventually Pee-Wee becomes too irritating to laugh at. My advice would be to skip this one and watch “Beetlejuice”, “Edward Scissorhands”, “Ed Wood”, or “Sleepy Hollow” instead.”

Let’s be honest; there’s nothing wrong with people saying “I didn’t like this movie”. Amadeusrye thought the movie was stupid, and that’s fine. Let’s hope we’re all mature enough to handle differing opinions. However, this review is just plain bad. Okay, the reviewer did not like Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure. They thought it was “dumb”. But why? There is no explanation offered, other than that they found the Pee-Wee character to be irritating. That alone wouldn’t make it a terrible movie, surely? Plenty of movies I adore have irritating characters in them; their presence doesn’t destroy everything else. It doesn’t give the reader an idea of what the movie is about, nor does it tell them why the character is irritating. If I hadn’t seen the movie yet, this review wouldn’t guide me towards a decision, because I don’t know why the movie is apparently so “dumb”.

User loufalce’s review is not only unhelpful, however, it’s needlessly offensive. Entitled “Defines ‘Retarded'”, it goes thusly:

“A movie that I would never have watched on my own. I’m taking a history class of contemporary America-the 1970s to the 1990s, and part of the class is a discussion of cultural and entertainment trends of that timeline. My professor recommended this, so I had to go out and rent it. I’ll forgive him for that since I’m such a nice guy, but, that being said, I found this movie-and the Pee Wee character not only to be intelligence insulting and completely brain dead,but absolutely pathetically painful to watch. In a nutshell, Herman is the man-child living in his own fantasy world. When his bike gets stolen, he embarks on a cross country journey to find it- with utterly predictable results. Duh! I really can’t understand why Burton is considered to be a great director. Personally I find his films to be too self-indulgent and I can’t for the life of me understand why they are considered to be “art”. Anyway, if you get your jollies watching a grown man with a rubbery face in a gray suit and a bow-tie uttering inanities that a 6 year old would find to be lame, this movie is for you. Totally retarded in every sense of the word, this movie has absolutely nothing to recommend itself, but, if you do want to get a look of what very bad American film-making from a good era looked like, by all means go for it.I read somewhere that Paul Rubens intends to revive the Pee Wee character. PS this movie was relased some years before the Florida porn theater-masturbation incident that finished Ruben’s career. Nice character, huh?”

There’s so much wrong with it that I scarcely know where to begin. Fine, loufalce didn’t like it. He felt that Pee-Wee was “painful to watch”. Again, however, there’s very little explanation as to why he feels this way. Sure, there’s a word limit on IMDB, but more than enough space to actually talk about the damned movie. He makes an attack on the artistic integrity of Tim Burton without explaining that either. Then he arrogantly belittles the main character and any viewer who liked the movie in one line. He finishes the whole thing off with a startling insistence that Reubens is clearly Pee-Wee. Because when the actor is arrested, it means the character totally did the crime, too. This is the sort of review that is very difficult to take seriously unless you were already determined to hate the movie – and even then the end is far too loosely related to the character to justify hating the movie.

One can only hope that he didn’t include this in the discussion for his class. I’m not sure what “Reubens was arrested; that makes him evil” has to do with culture.

I think I’m done with this one for now; feel free to look around IMDb for the other bad reviews (or the good ones if you prefer). Next time I’ll post bad reviews about The Marvellous Misadventures of Flapjack. I’m sure my handful of occasional readers are so excited for that.

Yesterday I went out to see Kick-Ass with my younger sister. Today I found the Daily Mail’s review of the film. The first thing that comes to mind for me when I see a film is usually “OMGIMUSTREVIEWIT” and onto the internet a review eventually goes. Upon seeing this review by the Daily Mail I figured I would kill two birds with one stone (not literally of course, Daily Mail) and pick apart the Daily Mail’s review while also pointing out why it is wrong and giving my own thoughts on the film.

Okay, you know a review is going to be extremely promising when the reviewer gives the film one star and the verdict is “evil”, and later the reviewer also says that the one star they gave the film was “overgenerous”.

It begins:

“Millions are being spent to persuade you that Kick-Ass is harmless, comic-book entertainment suitable for 15-year-olds. “
Um… no, millions are being spent to persuade people who may be interested in the film to go see it. This is calledadvertising and is a common consequence of the aftermath of making a movie. Anyone who takes their 15-year-old to see it or lets them go has not done their research and is very irresponsible. (That said, while I was still bad with movie gore at fifteen my younger sister was most certainly not.)

“It deliberately sells a perniciously sexualised view of children and glorifies violence, especially knife and gun crime, in a way that makes it one of the most deeply cynical, shamelessly irresponsible films ever.”
Emphasis mine, by the way. At no point during the film did I feel that the character of Mindy/Hit Girl was sexualised, as this reporter claims. She was a small girl completely covered from head to toe in a clunky, protective outfit. She shows no other skin than her face in her costume. What part of this is sexual? It also does not glorify violence. Knife crime in the film is harshly punished (anyone who is seen using a knife is obviously a bad guy – Kick-Ass uses batons) and at least one “good” character we see who could be seen to be advocating guns is clearly batshit crazy. Okay, the truly evil guys are brought to “justice” using violence, but there is no point within the film where I would think ‘Yeah, that looks like a good idea – dressing up like a superhero and getting the shit kicked out of me or killed for trying to beat up some really dangerous people.’

The next part I’ll skip because it just goes on to say that the main character is Dave Lizewski who has no superpowers, no money but later acquires by unfortunate accident nerve damage (lessens pain received) and metal plates through him. Very unfortunate accident.

“The plot is an unimaginative clone of Spider-Man 2”
What? If this is the case, you will need to complain to the comic-book writers.

Blah blah blah, rip off of other movies, blah. I wonder if the Mail know this is a British film?

It then goes on to say that it turns the real world into a foolish, smug kind of comic strip. Huh. I think this speaks for itself really. It also goes on to comment that the hero learns nothing “extreme violence against criminals is cool, which is something he thought in the first place”. So… he learned nothing then? Seriously though, he did learn something. Something of a spoiler if you haven’t seen it, but he does learn that he isn’t a hero, he cannot continue trying to be something he’s not (something Spider-Man said, before going back to crime-fighting) and he stops. It might be after Hit-Girl’s mission is done but life goes on after that. Sorry Daily Mail, but if you don’t like that life can go on you have issues.

“The reason the movie is sick, as well as thick, is that it breaks one of the last cinematic taboos by making the most violent, foul-mouthed and sexually aggressive character, Hit-Girl, an 11-year-old.”
AHAHA, as well as thick, oh that’s a good one. Wait, no it isn’t. Anyway, Mindy is aggressive, but not sexually. It’s all too obvious that a man wrote this article. Are women not allowed to be violent? I know she’s a little girl, but she has essentially been brainwashed by her obviously mentally ill father, that is one of the key plot points. Also, no kid of 11 is an angel. I could swear at 11. My first words included a swear word.

“Played with enormous confidence by Chloe Moretz, she’s the most charismatic character in the movie. She may not realise it, but she has been systematically abused by her father, brainwashed and turned into a pint-sized…”
…Pint-sized what? Also yes, Moretz deserves every award under the sun for that performance. And oh, so you dounderstand that she was conditioned by her vengeful father. Odd then that you don’t understand the rest of the film or why it is important to the plot.

“She believes that her vigilante dad (played, simplistically, for laughs by Nicolas Cage) is a hero just as much at the end as she did at the beginning.”
Nicolas Cage really did blow me away; he was fantastic in this role. Also, a tip – he treats her relatively well. Other than all the brainwashing, that is. She idolises him because of that – every little kid loves their parental figure. I still love my mother, even if she does swear and shout and act like a teenager every now and then. Even if now I do know her flaws. When I was a kid, she knew everything and she could do anything. Hit Girl feels the same about her father. I don’t really see the issue. What was she supposed to do? Kick him and run?

“Her attitude towards him doesn’t mature, which makes her pathetic, rather than cool. The fact that many people who see the film are going to think she is cool is one of its most depressing aspects.”
No matter what you would like out of such a film, she isn’t going to become a Conservative or a hippy tree-hugger. I hardly know what to say about calling a child pathetic so soon after calling her sexual.

“The movie’s writers want us to see Hit-Girl not only as cool, but also sexy, like an even younger version of the baby- faced Oriental assassin in Tarantino’s Kill Bill 1. Paedophiles are going to adore her. “
And if she was the sweet little girl you want her to be, paedophiles were still going to love her. Probably more so. Incidentally, I doubt paedophiles will love her, considering paedophilia concerns dominance for the most part and there is no way in hell any paedophile in the world is going to be able to dominate Hit Girl. I don’t know what to say about “Oriental assassin”, but it is unrelated. The writers do not want us to see Hit Girl as sexy. Dangerous, sure. Forced to mature beyond her years, yes. Brainwashed, maybe. Sexy? You must have been looking at her pretty hard to see “sex” in that little girl.

“One of the film’s creepiest aspects is that she’s made to look as seductive as possible”
I am… concerned. Are you trying to say that Mindy was seductive to you? You were seduced by an 11-year-old character? My goodness, man, GET HELP.

“She’s fetishised in precisely the same way as Angelina Jolie in the Lara Croft movies, and Halle Berry in Catwoman”
No she isn’t. Angelina Jolie and Halle Berry wear tight-fitting, thin material outfits showing loads of skin. Hit Girl’s outfit is protective padding that is practical for the activity in the movie.

“As if that isn’t exploitative enough, she’s also shown in a classic schoolgirl pose, in a short plaid-skirt with her hair in bunches, but carrying a big gun.”
Umm… she’s a girl of school age. The outfit was put to good use – making her look like a poor, lost little sweetheart. Up until the point at which she pulls the gun. Then we shouldn’t be focused on the outfit at all.

“And she makes comments unprintable in a family newspaper, that reveal a sexual knowledge hugely inappropriate to her years.”
And yet at eleven or twelve you are usually taught about the basics of sexual intercourse in high school science. I was taught in my classes, though everyone already knew. Kids will find out these things one way or another. Especially young girls who will be going through puberty at that age or even younger.

From here on in, Tookey goes on a very bizarre and pretty offensive tangent. I won’t copy and paste all of it; you can read it at the link above and see for yourself.

“Underage sex isn’t a laugh. Recent government figures revealed that in this country more than 8,000 children under the age of 16 conceive every year.”
Where the hell did you get that statistic? I fact-checked this, and in 2007, according to the Office of National Statistics, the 8,000 figure is correct, but only for that year. Not only that, but I’m confused as to where exactly Hit Girl got pregnant in the film. I don’t remember any pregnancies in the film.

Worldwide child pornography is a multi-billion dollar industry. In and South America, brutalised youngsters who kill and rape are rightly feared as members of feral gangs or child soldiers. “

Once again, where in the film did Hit Girl get raped? Where was she exploited for pornography? And Hit Girl was feared, so I’m not quite sure what Tookey’s point is here.

Do we really want to live, for instance, in a culture when the torture and killing of a James Bulger or Damilola Taylor is re-enacted by child actors for laughs?”

This is the most awful and offensive part of the review. First off, in no part of the movie was a child tortured and killed for laughs. In Hit Girl’s big fight scene against a man more than twice the size of her, no-one was laughing. We could all see that she was just a little girl and it was a tense, frightening scene but that’s why it was effective. It’s shocking to watch; she has no ammo now; she’s just a small girl. And yet it made the film no less brilliant. Also, of the people in the film who were killed, maybe one was truly innocent, if the impersonator was even innocent. None of them were Bulgers or Taylors. I feel the entire plot has been misunderstood terribly.

The rest of the review reiterates the erroneous perception that Hit Girl was somehow OMGsexeh and that the film totally glorifies children growing up to be vigilantes and to kill at a young age. It doesn’t. And even if it did suggest to children somehow that they should absolutely imitate the dangerous stunts performed in the movie, these suggestible kids aren’t going to see it, it is rated 15. Responsible parents will not let their kids see it, and for good reason. It is violent, bloody, crude. I wouldn’t let a girl the age of Hit Girl see it. I wouldn’t let my 13-year-old cousin see it. That said, my cousin knows a lot more than the Daily Mail thinks she should, but she is a responsible young girl with responsible parents and she is not as suggestible as this trashy rag thinks she might be. If you are interested in an action-packed, slightly twisted but altogether fun movie and you are over the age of 15, by all means, go see it. It’s been a long time since I’ve been to the cinema to see a film where the entire audience is genuinely enjoying it.

All in all, the film is funny. It is also violent and a bit twisted. It is not, however, sexy. Not in the way the Daily Mail are actively trying to find the evidence for. Even when one of the boys in the film acknowledges an attraction (it’s obviously intended as a joke by the filmmakers, and we laughed) to hit Girl after seeing her literally kick ass, he is immediately criticised by his friends for even thinking it. Not more than a second later the character says that he would wait for her. There is no indication that this character will ever meet Hit Girl or that they will actually have sex, before she reaches legal age or otherwise. One has to wonder what Tookey thought of Charlotte LaBouff in The Princess And The Frog saying she could wait for Prince Naveen’s underaged brother before she married him? Was that cartoon boy sexualised too?

TL;DR: The Daily Mail’s Chris Tookey, who appears to know nothing about movies or at least is unable to separate his ridiculous, ill-informed Conservative beliefs separate from the films he watches and analyses badly said that Kick-Ass is a bad movie because it apparently glorifies childhood violence and sexualises a girl of 11. I argued that it bloody doesn’t and he must have been looking pretty hard to callously claim to be able to link the murders of James Bulger and Damilola Taylor to the violence in this film, and also that he was definitely looking far too much into the padded-for-protection, unrevealing outfit that Hit Girl wears and that his claims of her knowing too much for her age are ridiculous, because she’s bloody ELEVEN, not five. Children can and will swear, children will find out about sex eventually, girls of eleven might already be experiencing puberty and therefore need to know these things early. I was “blooming” at NINE. I agreed that the film was violent, but it definitely does not glorify violence because no-one in their right minds would watch this film and think that they would want to die fighting guys who were tougher and bigger than them.

I saw the subtitles for The Dark Knight, he mouths “six”, not “ten”. Mouthing ten wouldn’t even make any sense, anyway. He’s pretending to be shocked; that makes perfect sense.

So to close, The Joker, in response to “…and you killed six of my friends” mouths “Six!”. Okay? That okay to everyone? Good. That is all.


After a good long thought about this, I felt I had to continue to express my own feelings towards the whole Sexy Joker thing.

Someone once said to me in response that if Danny DeVito played the Joker, we wouldn’t be arguing about the sexiness of the Joker. No, no we wouldn’t. And do you know why? You wouldn’t fancy the purple pants off the psychotic killer clown.

You just wouldn’t. DeVito is incredibly talented, I agree. But he’s not really a “Joker” type, is he? Therefore, you’d probably be more disgusted than entranced. If you did happen to be entranced, I’d still be urging an answer as to why the hell you’d fancy someone who would much rather close the sofa bed with you still in it rather than make love to you on it. Why would you? My whole problem isn’t that you like Heath Ledger, because that I could understand, despite the fact that I didn’t find him attractive. My problem is that some really rabid fangirls continually make excuses for The Joker to show affection, therefore ruining his characterisation. The Joker did NOT show love towards Rachel – HE THREW HER OUT OF A BLOODY WINDOW! THEN he blew her up! He was going to cut her face up, just like he did to Gambol.

So tell me again where the love is? Because the only part of the film he seems to show any emotional dependence on anyone is when he tells Batman: “You complete me.”

I think I’ve done enough Harley Quinn promotion, too.

So there you go. If needs be, I’ll be back with another one of these. And now, The Joker gets his own category. I hope you’re satisfied.

As I expected, I got a LOT of backlash on that post. Surprisingly enough I got very little defence. My point, ladies, was that I don’t care if these girls have self-insert fiction (whether or not they admit that it is), really BAD fiction deserves to be kept secret. I’m sick of stories where “ZOMG! HE STOLEDED A SKOOLBUS DEN TIED MI 2 GASOLEEEEEN! LOLOL!”>_<

I’m going to take the comments I got and go through them, but first I want to make one thing clear: I have nothing against romance. Romance is fine. I’m aware that the Joker has a girl in canon – Harley Quinn (whom I love to bits). But she’s his only girl, and he has tried multiple times to kill her because he can’t handle such human feelings. He’s made her into a constellation, he tied her to a rocket, he was going to shoot her, he’s kicked her out of windows, he tortures her, pushes her around, hurts her, and this is all in the name of love. And very dangerous love, I might add.

On to the comments, now.

Brie said:
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.

Fair points, I agree, but The Joker just isn’t vulnerable. As per my post “Hush: Chapter Seven: Just TOO Dark?” vulnerable!Joker is just a big NO. The Joker always puts up a fight and has fun with everything. When Rachel was ready to fight for her life, The Joker was ready to fight to take it from her. He’s not a vulnerable man. He’s manipulative, sneaky and vile; he is only ever mushy about Harley, and she’s not even safe from him.

In “The Killing Joke”, The Joker serves as an unreliable narrator in his flashbacks – he remembers a wife, Jeannie, with whom he was completely in love, and he lost her to a household accident. However he later confesses that he sometimes remembers what happened to him one way and sometimes another, and he’s comfortable with that. This means that possibly the Joker suffers from false memories – and so Jeannie may never have existed!

And sure, The Joker has gone through thousands of characterisations, but remind me; which one was vulnerable? Exclude Hush – we’ve been through that. It’s a little contradictory that you say “I agree on not being able to change him” and then defend the fangirls for doing exactly that.

I’m all for OCs, I’m even fine with self-inserts – but the majority are not well-written, especially within The Dark Knight fan-fiction. And that sours me towards the experience. Look at the following excerpt from an honest-to-goodness Joker/OC fan fiction, about a vampire who falls in love with, well… who else?:

“Shit she took some crack heads blood, that was high now she it too.”

“Huh crack where give me some!”

I started to jump up and down like an excited puppy.

“No you are going to bed now.”

He tossed me over his shoulder and carried me away to never never land. Hehe I would finally get to meet Peter Pan and the notorious Captain Hook and his weird beard. I felt myself be put into a bed. I was still giggling. I got quiet and went to sleep. I awoke to the sun coming in through the crack. It was very little but still. I sat up and realized that I was in my bed with Jokester. He was facing away from me. I went to climb over him to get out but he grabbed me and now I was lying on top of him.

I… I have no words here. What could make anyone think that this is okay? This story has good reviews, too. A lot of this story carries on in the same vein (no pun intended) as the above, with a lot of really odd (understatement) happenings and the Joker being incredibly OOC. It’s not fun or cute; it’s annoying, and the only reason stories like this get good reviews is because girls want to imagine that they are the Mary-Sue/self-insert.

Moving on:

Kat said:
“…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 didn’t say it was harmful, but I’d like to be able to find a GOOD The Dark Knight fiction without being bombarded by “questionable” fan fiction about how much some crazy girl wants to boink The Joker.

Agreed on the big difference part, but some of these girls really don’t seem to know the difference. I have known girls to say “I know >real-life murderer whose name escapes me< is evil, but he’s kind of cute in a weird way… is that wrong?” Yes, really.

“..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…”

It doesn’t matter whether they are real or fictional, chances are neither are going to be magically cured of their issues with a hug and some hot chocolate. I admit to being the kind of woman who is attracted to a man with issues. But I’m attracted to psychology. I don’t want to hug the guy better, I want to analyse him. I want to take care of him, sure, but getting to the root of the problem solves much more than a teddy bear can. As a fictional character, The Joker completely fascinates me. There’s so much there that is carried forward onto the next incarnation, so much psychology within a character who murders for laughs. But I’m not sexually attracted to him. I’m not physically attracted. His mind gets me; the madness behind the method. And it infuriates me to no end when that psychology is destroyed. He’s suddeny got purpose, and it’s a pathetic one. He’s suddenly a simpering mess, no longer the Harlequin Of Hate. It gets to me.

“I say let them have their wicked way with him in the fanfiction world.”

I say so too – just keep it the hell outta my way.

And finally:

gypsywitchbarbara said:
“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.”

No offence, because you seem lovely, but age does not a grown-up make.

“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. “

Grammar and spelling aside, there’s a lot wrong with the above paragraph.

The Joker actually had little aggression in The Dark Knight. Alpha-male type aggression is top-dog, obvious, Schwarzenegger-type aggression. The Joker is, for the most part, passive-aggressive, which is very different. Yes he’s the top, but in a sneaky fashion. He gets into the minds of those he gets to assist him (the schizophrenic Arkham inmate Thomas Schiff, for example), he completely twists people into becoming his little guinea pigs/minions. I mean, he doesn’t go on an all-out kill spree; each killing is calculated (Misters Harvey and Dent are examples).

As per “but he loved his wife!!!!!”, well… I’ve made the point already but it’s worth going through again. The Joker recounted a different story as well; that his father cut his mother up and then sliced the young Joker’s mouth open. It’s possible that when he was to tell Batman the story, it would have been another false memory. Maybe the Joker’s a compulsive liar? We don’t know, we probably never will.

He told Rachel she was beautiful – then proceeded to throw her out of a window. Oh yeah, really loving character you got there. While it’s possible that the Joker has been in love in the Nolanverse – accept that this Joker is not the same Joker as in the comics or earlier movies or TV shows – it’s also completely possible that he’s never been in love. And if he has, he was in love before he went stark-raving bonkers. It might never happen for him again.

(Note: “female” infatuation? Gay guys might like the Joker too…)

Ledger’s Joker was wonderful. I loved every minute. But I did not fall in love with him. I fail to see the attraction, I completely cannot see it. His mind is only on chaos – he’s positively obsessed with trying to prove that everyone has their dark side. He is completely enamoured with anarchy and disorder, he wants to see Gotham fall into a fit of violence and desperation. He is extremely intelligent and very manipulative. But a lover he isn’t. He didn’t have a girlfriend in the film, the only woman he targeted was Rachel and he tried to kill her twice in one scene, he didn’t angst over the wife he may have made up in his mind, so where is this sensitive!Joker coming from?

At the end of the day, by all means write your fictions, draw your art but please make it bearable at least. Especially in your fiction, because if I have to read another sickening “I’M THE JOKER I’M INSANE MWAHAHA I KILL YOU NOW PRETTY GIRL ONOZ I LOVE YOU” story I swear to whatever is up there I’ll be another step closer to putting smiles on a lot of people’s faces.

Now all I gotta do is wait for more people to contradict me :S It seems to happen a lot where Heath Ledger’s (and strangely only Heath Ledger’s) Joker is concerned.

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…”


“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”


“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!”

    • 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.