There are few characters, heroes, or villains, that are as famous as The Joker in the world of DC Comics.
Joker is one of the oldest villains in comic book history, debuting in the pages of Batman #1 in 1940. While he wasn't supposed to be more than a one-shot villain, The Joker ended up becoming so popular that he stuck around and is now a part of comic book history as one of the most recognizable faces in the medium and one of the most interesting villains to appear in movies and television shows as well.
What really makes Joker unique is that he is not your cut of the mill comic book character and a lot of what people know about him makes little to no sense.
A villain like Lex Luthor is a complex character who hates Superman because he is an alien and Luthor believes that he is too powerful to be safe for Earth. When it comes to someone like Thanos, he is a world conquerer who wants, deep down, to make the universe a better place. Captain Cold is nothing more than a thief in the pages of The Flash.
However, no one really knows anything about The Joker, despite the fact that he's been around for 78 years.
No one knows why he does what he does and a lot of people's information about the character is actually false.
To set the record straight, here is a look at the 20 Things About The Joker That Make No Sense.
20 His UNKNOWN ORIGIN
One of the key themes in the Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight is that The Joker often taunted people when he told them his origin story.
There were no less than three different origin stories that Joker told different people and, at one point, he laughed and said that he was always lying about who he was and where he came from.
That holds true from the DC Comics as well. Joker is not someone who has ever had his history laid out -- or at least had it done and then had it stick.
There were a couple of cases where Joker's origin was revealed only for DC Comics to retcon it and proclaim that it was not his real backstory.
No one knows why he looks like he does, commits the crimes he commits, and hates Batman so much.
19 MARTHA Becoming The Joker
When one thinks of The Joker, they think of the clown -- the Prince of Crime. However, there is a theme that runs through many comic books and was really slammed home in comics like Watchmen.
Would there be supervillains at all if there were no superheroes? Are superheroes to blame for there being supervillains? Would The Joker exist without Batman?
In the Flashpoint storyline, Flash changed history and a number of things did not happen the way they did in the regular DC Comics.
One of those things was Bruce Wayne perishing that fateful night in the alley, while his parents survived.
His father became The Batman and his mother Martha became The Joker. Does this mean that Joker is not a real person at all but just the antithesis of Batman that would exist no matter what?
18 He NEEDS THE BATMAN
One of the comic bits in LEGO Batman Movie was The Joker needing Batman to admit that he is his greatest villain and that they complete each other.
When Batman refuses to do this, mentioning Superman and Bane as his main villains, it sets off Joker to try to destroy the entire world because, without Batman, there is no Joker.
Move over to DC Comics, and Joker is always trying to do something to make sure that Batman is always chasing him -- from taking out Jason Todd with a crowbar to abducting and torturing the entire Bat-family in the New 52.
Without Batman, Joker knows that he is nothing and he needs Batman to even survive as a villain.
This adds to the question of whether the evil that Joker has done would have ever happened if Batman was not in the world.
17 He ACTUALLY ATE CHINA
One of the strangest storylines in the history of The Joker was not in the pages of a Batman comic book. Instead, it was in the nine-part series Superman: Emperor Joker.
In that comic, Joker came across the Superman villain Mr. Mxyzptik, who offers up a percent of his power to an Earth villain but accidentally gives Joker 99-percent of his powers.
This makes Joker one of the most powerful beings on Earth.
So, Joker decides to make life hell for everyone on Earth and the planet needs its greatest hero -- Superman -- to stop him.
So, what does The Joker do? He orders food and then ends up eating the entire nation of China -- which honestly makes no sense at all, even for The Joker.
16 HE HAD HIS FACE REMOVED
Joker was still the most significant villain for Batman even when DC Comics reset its universe with the New 52.
As a matter of fact, DC chose to commemorate Death in the Family by setting up a new storyline titled Death of the Family.
With the first one, Joker eliminated a Robin in Jason Todd and in the new version, he targets the entire Bat-family to bring Batman to his knees.
When it all started, Joker was in Arkham Asylum and allowed Dollmaker to cut off his face.
It made no sense and Batman simply announced that Joker did it as a proclamation and was sending a message to him.
It turned out that Joker did it to symbolize a "rebirth," but there had to be a less painful way to send that message.
15 Jared Leto's inspiration for Suicide Squad
When Jared Leto took on the role of The Joker in Suicide Squad, he made some major changes to the character.
Instead of the white face, twisted smile, and purple suits, Leto's Joker went off the rails.
He had a gold grill over his teeth, tattoos all over his body (including the smiling grin on his hand), and he dressed like an old-school gangster.
Most people looked at his character and wondered where the influences came from and when Leto talked, he just mentioned gangster movies that had nothing to do with The Joker.
Even makeup artist Alessandro Bertolazzi said that he looked outside comic books, including the 1928 movie The Man Who Laughs for inspiration -- but it really wasn't The Joker comic book fans knew.
14 HE HAS MADE THE ULTIMATE SACRIFICE
Joker and Batman have battled for 78 years now in comic book time, but in the seminal DC Comics series, The Dark Knight Returns, Joker and Batman were in their 60s and the clown knew that their battles were coming to an end.
However, Joker wanted to go out on top and take Batman down with him, and he succeeded.
Joker was in Arkham Asylum for 10 years and when he saw Batman come out of retirement on TV, he set his plan in motion.
He convinced doctors that he was sane and was released.
It was all a setup and when Batman and Joker finally fought, the Caped Crusader snapped Joker's neck but left him alive.
However, when they were out of the public's sight, Joker finished the job and made it look like Batman offed him -- framing Batman by making the ultimate sacrifice.
13 THE JOKER VIRUS
Possibly the strangest of the Elseworlds stories that DC Comics created -- and one of the most critically derided -- was Joker: Digital Justice.
In this book, Joker was old and was about to pass away when he somehow came up with a new way to torture Batman, even after he was gone.
Joker created a sentient digital virus called the Joker Virus that carried on his evil even after he passed away.
The story took place in the 21st Century and both Bruce Wayne and The Joker were gone.
The new Batman is Commissioner Gordon's grandson and he is joined by a robot based on Alfred and a self-aware computer created by Bruce before his passing.
The book was published in 1990 when computers were becoming the new craze, and looking back, none of it really makes any sense.
12 COMMISSIONER GORDON letting him live
Batman has a strict policy on the non-lethal apprehension of villains -- and this includes The Joker.
Luckily for The Joker, Commissioner Gordon is also a very good man, although with what Joker has done to Gordon, it makes no sense that he never pulled the trigger to end Joker once and for all.
In Batman: The Killing Joke, The Joker had a plan to prove to Batman that even the greatest men could lose their minds and their morals if pushed far enough.
To do this, Joker paralyzed Barbara Gordon with a bullet in her spine and then took pictures to make Gordon think that he'd done even worse.
Then, in No Man's Land, Joker took the life of Gordon's wife while she was trying to protect a hospital ward of babies.
No matter what Joker did, Gordon always let him live.
11 His treatment of HARLEY QUINN
If there is one person who The Joker mercilessly torments for no reason at all, it is Harley Quinn -- the one person in the world who truly cares about the criminal.
Harley was, at one time, a renowned psychiatrist who ended up falling for Joker while working with him in Arkham Asylum.
As a result, she helped him escape and Joker repaid her by making her just like him -- including driving her insane.
The transformation of Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad was even more disturbing, but Joker has always bullied her and tried to cause her both physical and emotional pain over the years.
Honestly, Joker has done worse things to Harley than he has even done to Batman, showing that he hurts those he cares about the most.
10 He IS A GENIUS
There are those who know that Joker is a criminal genius, but the fact is that he is a genius regardless.
He is highly intelligent and has skills in both chemistry and engineering.
He created his own Joker Venom, which can maim and eliminate anyone and can turn others insane with just a breath. He can create his own explosives and weapons of all sorts.
People consider Joker to be insane, and he is, but he is also a pure sociopath who doesn't know the difference between right and wrong and instead does what he does to amuse himself.
He has broken many people with his plans and is smarter than anyone would give him credit for, showing he can even outsmart Lex Luthor on occasion.
9 He's broken THE FOURTH WALL (long before Deadpool)
Joker shares a trait with Marvel's Deadpool. Joker has what is referred to as Cosmic Awareness -- which also means breaking the fourth wall.
While everyone has become used to Deadpool talking to the audience in both comic books and the movies, Joker did the same thing long before Deadpool even existed on a comic book page.
Joker has often made comments that let people know that he realizes that he is a character in a comic book.
The great thing about Joker -- and the difference between him and Deadpool -- is that other characters see Joker talking about being a character but dismiss it because Joker is insane.
However, there is no real reason for Joker to have this knowledge and it makes no sense in the DC Universe.
8 He Has "TAINTED BLOOD"
Have you ever wondered why Joker can release his Joker Venom and infect people everywhere but it never bothers him one bit?
It makes no sense and most people can just dismiss it, saying that The Joker is already insane, so it wouldn't have the same effects on him.
However, DC Comics tried to explain it and it still makes very little sense.
Joker has what is considered tainted blood. In Batman #663, a mosquito landed on Joker and bit him. When it started to drink his blood, it fell to the ground, writhing in pain and choking on his tainted blood.
This is because Joker's immunity has strengthened over the years due to his constant exposure to chemicals as he experimented.
Most people would perish with the number of chemicals that he came in contact with, but for some reason, it just made Joker stronger.
7 WHO IS JACK NAPIER?
The origin of The Joker is a mystery and this is something that makes him so iconic.
Honestly, revealing why he is insane and where he came from would be a huge moment and a story that might break sales records, but it would also destroy the character and make him less interesting.
Sadly, Tim Burton tried to do this in his otherwise great 1989 movie Batman.
In the movie, Jack Napier was the man in the alley who executed Bruce Wayne's parents. Later, Batman was chasing Napier and accidentally sent him into a vat of acid that turned him into The Joker.
It was the classic idea of making the hero's greatest villain into the reason why the hero was created.
It also was only used for the movie and DC Comics made it clear that this was not who The Joker from the books really was.
6 BATMAN ALWAYS SAVES HIM
Jason Todd perished at the hands of The Joker in Death in the Family and Batman set out to arrest Joker for his actions.
This caused Jason and Batman to have serious problems when the former Robin returned alive later in DC Comics.
Jason was angry that Batman did not avenge him, but that is not what Batman is all about -- Batman always saves The Joker's life in the end.
Why does Batman always save the life of the criminal who has hurt, maimed, and ended the lives of countless people?
Batman always uses non-lethal tactics, but there was also Joker's Last Laugh where Nightwing beat Joker almost to the edge of life and Batman helped save him so that Dick would not have to live with ending someone's life.
Batman can't seem to let The Joker go.
5 HE WASN'T SUPPOSED TO BE A BIG DEAL
In one of the most surprising bits of trivia in Batman history, The Joker was not supposed to be a lasting villain.
The character first appeared in Batman #1 back in 1940 with Bill Finger and Bob Kane creating him based on the classic 1928 movie The Man Who Laughs.
However, the character was supposed to be there for one issue and would never be seen again.
The character that became Batman's greatest villain was so popular, however, that the creators went back in and drew a quick panel that showed that he lived at the end so they could bring him back later for more adventures.
What became one of the greatest villains in comic book history was almost a one-and-done villain of the month.
4 He HAS A SUPERPOWER
One of the funny moments from the DC Animated movies and LEGO DC movies are characters like Superman mocking Batman for struggling to beat non-superpowered villains.
However, there is some argument that The Joker has a superpower -- albeit one that has no basis in reality and makes no sense.
The superpower that Joker allegedly has is the ability to cheat his demise.
There have been many, many times in DC Comics where it looked like Joker was perishing but he somehow managed to pull it out in the end.
It has happened so many times that it has become almost an urban legend that Joker can't pass away.
He has been in explosions, was electrocuted, shot many times over, dropped from a height that no one could survive, and more, and somehow he always returns to torment Batman for another day.
3 HE Has BEATen SUPERMAN
When it comes to actual superhuman abilities, Joker has none. He barely has average strength and is often shown as frail and weak.
However, he has one thing that really puts him at the top of the list when it comes to dangerous supervillains: he is very smart and devious and his insanity makes him highly unpredictable.
When battling Batman, it is tough for the Caped Crusader to guess his next move, and Batman is a brilliant detective.
Superman is a lot of things, but he isn't always the smartest guy in the room. This means that Joker has been able to beat the Man of Steel despite having no powers.
In Superman: Emperor Joker, Joker used the powers of Mr. Mxyzptik to drive Superman to the limit.
In Injustice, he really beat Superman by forcing him to take lethal action and become the world's greatest villain himself.
2 He WASN'T ALWAYS A SOCIOPATH
The Joker was no a sociopath when he first appeared. In fact, it wasn't until the '70s that DC Comics changed his character and made him completely insane.
Instead, when he first appeared in Batman #1, he was just a vicious hitman.
Then, for years he was nothing more than a criminal who worked as a thief. He later became a prankster who liked to mess with the people he was robbing.
It wasn't until 1973, 33 years after his introduction, that Dennis O'Neil returned Joker to the pages of Batman #251 and changed everything about him.
O'Neil made Joker a maniac with impulse control who was deemed criminally insane instead of just a basic criminal.
It is an idea that has stuck with the character and this was when Joker became more than a basic villain and became the true archnemesis for Batman.
1 There might be multiple Jokers
There is a theory that Joker is not just one person. There have been stories where different people have portrayed The Joker.
In Dark Knight Returns, there was a gang portraying The Joker. In Flashpoint, Joker was Martha Wayne. There was also an alternate worlds story where Dick Grayson ended up as The Joker.
However, what about the main DC Comics Universe?
While there is a theory that The Joker has the superpower to never perish, what if he has perished many times over and a new Joker rises up to replace him?
There are even two Joker movies in development with Jared Leto in one and Joaquin Phoenix in the other.
There are many things about The Joker that make no sense, but having multiple Jokers could explain many of those issues.
Can you think of any other things about The Joker that don't make any sense? Let us know in the comments!