Batman / Batman Joker

How Many Times Has Joker Defeated Batman?

The Joker, Batman’s arch-nemesis, has been a constant thorn in the Dark Knight’s side since his first appearance in Batman #1 in 1940. The Clown Prince of Crime has always been a formidable adversary for Batman, with his unpredictable nature and sadistic sense of humor. In this article, we’ll take a look at how many times the Joker has defeated Batman over the years.

The First Encounter

The Joker’s first appearance was in 1940’s Batman #1. In this issue, the Joker was introduced as a homicidal maniac who killed people with a sinister grin on his face. In their first encounter, the Joker managed to escape from Batman and even lure him into a trap later on in the story.

The Killing Joke

One of the most famous encounters between the two happened in 1988’s ‘The Killing Joke.’ In this story, the Joker shoots Barbara Gordon (Batgirl) and kidnaps Commissioner Gordon.

He then proceeds to torture Gordon by showing him pictures of his daughter’s injuries. Ultimately, Batman manages to rescue Gordon and defeat the Joker, but not before he is left questioning whether or not he and the Joker are truly destined to battle forever.

No Man’s Land

During the ‘No Man’s Land’ storyline in 1999-2000, Gotham City is hit by an earthquake that leaves it isolated from outside help. Criminals run rampant throughout Gotham, including the Joker. In this story arc, not only does the Joker manage to defeat Batman but he also kills Sarah Essen-Gordon (Commissioner Gordon’s wife).

Death of Family

In 2012-2013’s ‘Death of Family,’the Joker goes on a rampage Targeting all those close to Batman – Robin (Damian Wayne), Nightwing (Dick Grayson), Batgirl (Barbara Gordon), Red Robin (Tim Drake), and Alfred Pennyworth. He even manages to capture Batman and hold him hostage in the Batcave. Though Batman ultimately escapes, the Joker’s actions leave a lasting impact on Bruce Wayne.


The 2015 ‘Endgame’ storyline sees the Joker return to Gotham City after being presumed dead for a year. He unleashes a virus that turns people into Joker-like creatures, and even infects Batman himself. In this story arc, the Joker succeeds in killing Batman, but it is revealed that Batman had anticipated this and had a contingency plan in place.


While the Joker has managed to defeat Batman on several occasions throughout their long history of battles, it is important to note that these victories have been few and far between. Despite his best efforts, the Dark Knight always manages to bounce back and find a way to defeat his greatest foe.

  • First Encounter: Joker escapes from Batman and lures him into a trap.
  • The Killing Joke: The Joker tortures Commissioner Gordon and shoots Barbara Gordon (Batgirl) but ultimately loses to Batman.
  • No Man’s Land: The Joker kills Sarah Essen-Gordon (Commissioner Gordon’s wife) and defeats Batman.
  • Death of Family: The Joker Targets all those close to Batman but ultimately fails to defeat him.
  • Endgame: The Joker unleashes a virus that infects both Gotham City and Batman himself but ultimately fails to kill him.


  • ‘Batman #1’ by Bill Finger & Bob Kane
  • ‘The Killing Joke’ by Alan Moore & Brian Bolland
  • ‘No Man’s Land’ by Various Authors
  • ‘Death of Family’ by Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo
  • ‘Endgame’ by Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo