Duke Of Death indeed!
Morrison brings us the super creepy evil genius version of the Joker that we long for! This is not your Saturday morning cartoon version of the Clown Prince of Crime. No, sir.
This RIP story arc has done well in bringing campy goodness back to the rogue’s gallery. The fact that there is a huge man who disguises himself as a hunchback, is only part of it; one of the worst is El Sombrero, the masked Mexican wrestler with a sombrero; he’s like a D-level version of Bane and within this issue he is slaughtered brutally by … the Joker.
Although all of the bad guys are fun to see, it’s the Joker that always comes out on top. This issue is classic evil Joker. This is not even as tame as The Dark Knight Joker from the movie. This Joker is not only crazy and evil, he’s also a genius. Batman thinks he’s going up against the Black Glove but he’s not. The Black Glove pales in comparison to Joker’s plan.
He booby trapped the chamber where Jezebel is tied to a chair so that when Batman inevitably breaks through the glass, red and black rose petals fall. The rose petals by themselves are not dangerous but when the red and black touch, Joker poison is released.
Jezebel is not only fine, she also releases herself from the chair and pulls on some long black gloves. This is why choosing the right pronoun can reveal too much about a secret identity and Morrison has been very careful about this. Everyone assumed The Black Glove was a man but not so. Here she is. She got herself into Bruce’s life and into the Batcave. She played it beautifully. I’m glad there is finally something interesting about this character because as the damsel in distress and knowing Bruce’s secret, I simply wanted her dead. Now, we get something awesome out of it.