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The Joker Reveal Is Out of the Way. So, When Can We See The Suicide Squad’s Harley Quinn?

I recently claimed to not really care what Jared Leto’s version of The Joker will look like in Suicide Squad, David Ayer and Warner Bros.’ adaptation of DC’s Dirty Dozen for super-villains comic book.

Why? Because it doesn’t come out until August 5, 2016, and that’s a long dang time from now

Why? Because Heath Ledger’s Joker is still fresh in my memory.

Why? Because I don’t actually get the impression that Leto’s Joker will receive a significant amount of screen-time even if his presence looms large over the plot.

Why? Because I’ve already experienced three cinematic Jokers at this point (Romero, Nicholson, Ledger) whereas I’ve never seen many of the Suicide Squad characters in anything live-action before and even then sometimes it was just on Arrow or The Flash where the budget is much smaller than a big movie.

Why? Because I don’t need anything other than Harley Quinn to make me excited for this movie. As far as I am concerned, the The Joker in the Suicide Squad is a mere necessity to finally give us a live action Harley Quinn, to be played by Margot Robbie. He’s a box office insurance character they’ve thrown in which I am accepting because I am a huge fan of the New 52 Suicide Squad comic book, and also because I don’t know how you do Harley Quinn without at least some kind of initial presence for The Joker.

Of course, I am still vaguely curious about Leto’s Joker because, well, it’s the Joker.  To this point, though, I think his presence is actually pulling focus away from the rest of the Suicide Squad. Then again, the byproduct is that way more people are aware of this film, validating my opinion about the studio putting the Joker in as box office insurance.

Well, now here’s our first full look at Jared Leto’s Joker:

suicide_squad_letoThat’s…not quite what I expected. I don’t love or hate it; I’m still taking it all in. It’s like they made The Joker a character from HBO’s prison drama Oz.  I can adjust to that, though I don’t think I’ll ever forgive the extreme laziness of his forehead tattoo none-too-subtly labeling him “Damaged.”  Other than that, I think Twitter has it pretty well covered:

That last one ultimately sums it up for me. You can look back at the history of the Joker in the comics and notice that beyond certain constants, such as his hair color and the color scheme of his costume, he’s been re-imagined multiple times. You can look back at the history of superhero movie costume reveals and attempt to figure out how often bad or controversial costumes have actually translated to weak films. You can think back in your own personal history to see if you’ve been wrong in embracing or rejecting a costume based on a photo alone. For example, I know I kind of hated Grant Gustin’s The Flash costume the first time I saw it, but by the end of The Flash pilot I was so swept up in the show I barely gave the costume a second thought. Ultimately, though, if The Joker turns out to be as important to the Suicide Squad as the early social media promotion by David Ayer might suggest then they’re making the wrong movie. I am only really here for Harley Quinn.

The Suicide Squad is due out August 5, 2016.


      1. I am just wondering how often he will be shirtless to show off all those tattoos. A shirtless version of the Joker just feels odd, as if this is the first time I have ever had to ponder him without a shirt.

  1. I am probably one of the few people that like it. Honestly, I didn’t notice a bunch of the things that a lot of people focused in on. My eyes were drawn to the teeth and the eyes and his ribs.

    1. His teeth? That’s the first thing I noticed in the picture too! My first thought was honestly, “Wow, the Joker has a lot of cavities,” until I looked closer and realized all of that silver isn’t from cavity fillings.

  2. I can’t help but agree. The Joker needs to be there for the masses, really, but the draw for me is Harley. The rest aren’t quite piles of puke compared, but… *pointing at Harley* The only thing that would make me die from happiness is if Poison Ivy was added (but not looking like Uma Thurman’s drag queen version).

    1. I would absolutely watch a live action buddy adventure centered on Harley and Poison “Red” Ivy. I wouldn’t even need the Suicide Squad. If they wanted to do a movie about Harely and Ivy trying to go straight only to get pulled back into crime I’d watch that, like a comic book Godfather 3, at least the “Just when I think I’m out they pull me back in” part. Or they could do a variation on Harley and Ivy’s first team-up episode of Batman: The Animated Series, a girl’s crime spree thing. I’d watch that, too.

      Of course, at the rate that Suicide Squad seems to be adding new cast members I wouldn’t 100% rule out Poison Ivy being shoved in there. Actually, I don’t really believe that, but they do have quite the ensemble cast at this point.

      Really, Suicide Squad is a fantastic opportunity for Warner Bros. to do something totally different from the MCU. It’ll be a villain team-up movie with diverse cast, both in terms of gender and race. If done right, this could be a lot of anarchic fun with a lot of surprising character deaths. Plus, they are finally playing one of the best guards DC has right now in Harley Quinn, who is the top-selling female character in all of comics (last I looked at least, which was admittedly a year ago). The fear is that WB will screw it up and simply turn Suicide Squad into a backdoor pilot for a Ben Affleck Batman movie in which he fights the Jared Leto Joker. It could go either way, really, and I suspect WB is probably going to try and have it both ways. But if they get Harley Quinn right I’ll be happy either way.

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