DC has brought back some major Batman villains, in the pages of the new Joker series. (Major Spoilers Follow!) Issue #2 of Joker sees Commissioner Gordon go to both Batman and his daughter Barbara (who he knows is Oracle) in order to get their support in hunting down Joker, at the behest of the mysterious and wealthy "Cressida." Well, not surprisingly we learn that Gordon is far from the only person now gunning for Joker, as Bane's legacy has also created a new threat against Joker, as well. However, it's the climax of Joker #2 where we learn the Clown Prince may truly ruffled the wrong feathers.
Warning Spoilers for DC's Joker #2 Follow!
As it turns out, Cressida's true surname is "Clarke," which carries a lot of weight around Gotham City - and apparently within the Court of Owls, as well!
The Court of Owls is the secret cabal that has controlled Gotham City for centuries, often including some of the most powerful, influential, and wealthy families in Gotham as their members. Through their real estate holdings, the Court of Owls had secret lairs and passages throughout Gotham City and a special breed of near-immortal assassins known as "Talons" who did all the necessary killing to steer and shape Gotham's future over the decades. Batman finally discovered the Court of Owls' existence when they came for Bruce Wayne after he announced plans to rebuild Gotham for the future - plans that encroached on the Owls' ancient secrets.
Batman narrowly escaped the Court of Owls machinations and assassination attempts - and the Batman Family had to fight off an entire army of Talons attacking Gotham, in the "Night of the Owls" crossover event. The group was thought to be wiped out by the Batman Who Laughs, but it was revealed that a small cadre of them still remained. Now, it looks like the Court of Owls has refilled its ranks (even with formerly "disgraced" members like Cressida) and is ready to reclaim what they feel is theirs.
It's only inevitable that the Court of Owls would collide with The Joker. After all, the court is all about setting out its best-laid plans and schemes to grow and prune elements of Gotham like they are tending a garden (or maybe a jungle). We know full well that when it comes to Joker, burning it all down is what he's about.
Joker #2 is now on sale from DC Comics.