The Joker is a legendary villain from the Batman comics, known for his twisted sense of humor and his chaotic nature. He has always been one of the most popular characters in the Batman universe, and fans have been eagerly awaiting his return in various forms of media. One such instance is in Batman Beyond, an animated series set in the future, where a new generation of heroes takes up the mantle of protecting Gotham City.
So, how does the Joker come back in Batman Beyond? The answer lies in one of the show’s most iconic episodes, “The Return of the Joker.”
In this episode, we see that the Joker has somehow managed to survive into the future despite being presumed dead for decades. But how did he manage to do it?
The Origin Story
The episode begins with a flashback to when Bruce Wayne was still Batman and was fighting against the Joker and his gang. During this time, it is revealed that the Joker had kidnapped Robin (Tim Drake) and subjected him to intense psychological torture until he became “Joker Junior,” a twisted version of himself under mind control.
Years later, Terry McGinnis (the new Batman) stumbles upon evidence that suggests that Tim Drake may still be alive. Upon investigating further, he uncovers a shocking truth – Tim Drake had actually broken free from Joker’s control and fought back against him. He managed to defeat him but was left with severe emotional scars.
As Terry continues his investigation into Tim’s disappearance, he discovers that a group of criminals known as The Jokerz is wreaking havoc in Gotham City. Upon confronting them, Terry realizes that they are being led by someone who looks eerily similar to the original Joker.
It turns out that after Tim Drake defeated him years ago, the Joker’s body was never found. His followers had stolen it and used advanced technology to bring him back to life. However, the process was not perfect, and the Joker was left with amnesia and no recollection of his past crimes.
The Final Showdown
In the climactic scene of “The Return of the Joker,” Terry confronts the Joker and manages to defeat him once and for all. However, before he can deliver the final blow, the Joker reveals that he had implanted a microchip in Tim Drake’s brain that would turn him into Joker Junior once again if he were to die.
Terry manages to remove the chip just in time, saving Tim from a fate worse than death. The episode ends with Bruce Wayne destroying all evidence of the Joker’s existence, ensuring that he will never return again.
“The Return of the Joker” is one of Batman Beyond’s most memorable episodes, thanks in no small part to its clever use of flashbacks and its shocking plot twists. It also serves as an excellent example of how even a character as iconic as the Joker can be reinvented for a new generation without losing any of his appeal.
With bold storytelling choices and stunning animation, Batman Beyond has become a fan favorite among comic book enthusiasts and casual viewers alike. And with episodes like “The Return of the Joker,” it’s easy to see why.