Kevin Smith attempts The Dark Knight
Batman and the Joker lock up in Gotham City again with award winning writer/director (Clerks, Chasing Amy etc.) Kevin Smith on board. The story starts out with Gotham’s most hired gun Deadshot, breaking an entry into Arkham Asylum.
It turns out that someone wants the Joker dead because he’s responsible for killing a teenager. He didn’t actually kill him himself though, Crime lord Maxie Zeus turned Jokers venom into a drug. It is distributed on the street as a designer drug named ‘Chuckles’. This is what lead the kid to his grave, thus why the Joker has a contract on his head.
Just when Deadshot is about to fulfill his contract (killing the clown) a criminal called Onimatepia arrives. Taking Deadshot by surprise he drives a bullet to his temple.
The clown is loose and out for vengeance on Zeus, he is livid discovering his Joker Venom is being used and abused. As if this isn’t enough for Batman to be dealing with, he’s got a nut job called Onimatepia to find who is hunting him down.
Kevin Smith does a good job with the story keeping the momentum flowing, with some timeless introductions to Batman by Walt Flanagan. The art isn’t the best compared to past Batman iterations, but it does the job. I do wish though that a more sophisticated artist, was chosen to go with Kevin’s writing.
The Joker is his typical self with an arsenal of comical weapons such as a big wooden hammer and an elongated revolver. For the Joker the punch line is death, in one part he blows up a school full of kids, which contains Zeus’s nephew.
The clown is loose and out for vengeance
He also has a short temper killing his own crew members because he can’t think straight. I’m sure fans won’t have any problems getting acquainted with the clown.
In the start of the novel when joker is out of Arkham, there is a part where Onimatepia gives Joker money. Unclear to Joker he thinks that he’s giving him money because he’s got a clown fetish which is not the case.
Next thing you know Joker buttons down his clothes and leans over a tree and Onimatepia disappears. Why on earth the Joker is portrayed as a homosexual is beyond me and totally unnecessary.
What’s more unusual is that Batman reveals his identity to Joker and even gets changed into the bat suit in front of him. Furthermore Joker makes a remark about seeing his junk when he gets changed. From this point on my whole perception on the story went haywire and I stopped taking the narrative seriously.
I wouldn’t say it’s the best Batman graphic novel I’ve read and I wouldn’t say it’s my worst either. It’s a different interpretation on Batman and the Jokers relationship with a not so linear plot.
Whether or not you purchase Batman Cacophony depends on how loyal of a Batman fan you are.
The Bad: Doesn’t stand so tall against other graphic novels