An origin story for The Joker was famously provided by Batman: The Killing Joke. Now, a new story will explore what happened next — and how the Red Hood became the Clown Prince of Crime.
DC announced the new story, which will run in the regular Batman series, on its official blog. Told in three parts, “The Joker Year One” will ship weekly starting with Batman #142 on February 6, 2024. The story will be written by Chip Zdarsky, with art by Giuseppe Camuncoli, Stefano Nesi, Andrea Sorrentino, Alejandro Sánchez, and Dave Stewart.
The storyline will cover two plots, with Gamuncoli, Nesi, and Sanchez illustrating part one. This flashback will detail how the leader of the Red Hood Gang defied death to become something far deadlier. The second story, illustrated by Sorrentino and Stewart, is “juxtaposed to show the far-reaching impact” of The Joker on Batman’s future.
The story continues in Batman #143, which will be released on February 13, 2024. This issue brings a mysterious figure from Batman’s past into Joker’s orbit. The issue will also involve a reformed Red Hood Gang and their sinister secrets.
‘The Joker Year One’ concludes in Batman #144
“The Joker Year One” will come to a close in Batman #144, releasing on February 20, 2024. The Red Hood Gang goes on a rampage as Batman contends with a devastating new virus. This will also set up the long-awaited “Dark Prisons” storyline, which will begin in Batman #145.
It’s unclear if “The Joker Year One” will address the long-standing plot point of there being multiple Jokers the DC Universe. This idea first appeared during the Darkseid War event, before spinning out into the miniseries: Batman: Three Jokers. More recently, two different Jokers, both claiming to be the original, battled each other in The Man Who Stopped Laughing, further complicating matters.
“The Joker Year One” begins in Batman #142 on February 6, 2024.