Warning! Contains Spoilers For Knight Terrors: The Joker #2!When the Joker is forced to become Batman, he not only has to deal with the nightmare of losing Batman, but also of becoming a paragon of order. The Joker is one of the most chaotic villains to ever appear in comic books, but under the spell of Insomnia, suffering his worst nightmare, it is revealed that what Joker fears more than anything is losing his chaotic edge.
DC Comics has launched its next big event, Knight Terrors, which sees every hero and villain has fallen into the worst nightmares as Insomnia searches for the Nightmare stone. In Joker's nightmare world, depicted in Knight Terrors: The Joker #2 – by Matthew Rosenberg, Steffano Raffaele, and Romulo Fajardo Jr – Batman is killed during a fight, and Joker, in a twist of nightmare logic, takes up the mantle.
Joker's Nightmare Is Having Batman's Job
The struggle between Batman and the Joker has been going on for decades. The two characters famously represent two opposing ideals. Joker wants nothing more than to spread chaos and destruction, while Batman is obsessed with the idea of control. Batman has gone to great lengths to control both his friends and enemies. The two characters are complete philosophically opposed to one another, which is why Joker's worst nightmare hinges on the idea of him becoming Batman, the ideal representation of everything he hates. At the same time, the loss of Batman, his perennial nemesis, his only equal, is itself another thing the Joker fears greatly.
Joker-Batman Represents Everything Joker Hates
Numerous stories have indicated that the Joker is completely unable to live without Batman. In The Dark Knight Returns, when Batman retires Joker immediately goes into a catatonic state and stops responding to the outside world, only snapping out of it when Batman returns. In Going Sane, after Joker believes he killed Batman, Joker immediately gives up crime and becomes an average civilian. Joker has also given up many opportunities to kill Batman. It's clear that Joker can't live without the Dark Knight, which is why part of his nightmare involves Batman dying. The other part involves Joker becoming Batman, which would represent becoming everything Joker stands against in their endless cycle of conflict.
The Joker is one of the most wild and unpredictable characters in comic book history, an agent of destruction who truly only wants to spread chaos and nothing else. Other stories have considered what the Clown Prince of Crime fears, but Knight Terrors: The Joker #2 finds the intersection of his two greatest fears and uses that to drive its story. Even the Joker has nightmares, and his two biggest nightmares are both losing Batman and losing his own ideals, becoming a protector of order instead of the wild, unstoppable force of will that he has been for so many years.
Knight Terrors: The Joker #2 is available now from DC Comics!