DC Comics Fans Are Petitioning To Make The Joker Gay

A Russian comic book fan has launched a petition on Change.org to 'make the Joker gay again,' as [...]

A Russian comic book fan has launched a petition on Change.org to "make the Joker gay again," as pointed out by Bleeding Cool.

The petition, launched by Elena Shestakova, is aimed at DC Comics President and Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns. The petition reads:

The Joker is a comic book character with almost 80 years history, half of which he was portrayed as homosexual - for instance, in such significant graphic novels as Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns or Grant Morrison's Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth. Neal Adams claimed that The Joker was and always had been homosexual. This opinion was shared by other comic books authors and artists for decades. That is why it's so important to me and other queer readers to return his homosexuality.

The Joker repeatedly confessed his feelings to Batman and showed an interest in other men. Also there was Joker's unnamed boyfriend in the graphic novel Devil's Advocate. The Joker has many feminine traits - he uses lipstick, paints his nails, wears high heels and sometimes does crossdressing. We realize that some of these things is stereotypical, but it gives a very clear picture. Over the years, there were plenty of other queer moments in comics, cartoons and video games (especially in Batman: Arkham series).

However, in the late nineties someone decided to erase Joker's homosexuality and introduced Harley Quinn as his girlfriend (by the way, Harley was made up for the Batman: The Animated Series to replace the Joker in one scene, in which he was supposed to jump from the cake in drag). In the mass consciousness Harley became his only love interest, although in canonical comics there is no evidence that there are romantic or sexual feelings from the Joker's part. His enforced relationship with Harley Quinn looks like an attempt to retconned his homosexuality and turn him in acceptable straight man.

DC Comics already has a great cast of queer characters - heroes (Batwoman or Midnighter), as well as villains (Harley Quinn or Poison Ivy). Maybe some people don't want to see the "terrible villain" as part of the LGBT community. But on the other hand, in Gotham series The Penguin became gay without any problem, and he is morally no better than the Joker. It's not homophobic to have a queer villain. So why not let the Clown Prince of Crime "out of the closet"? DC Rebirth is an excellent reason to bring the Joker back to his roots.

We ask DC Comics to restore The Joker's homosexuality in comics and other media. No one's sexual identity should be changed, even it's only a fictional character. Because sometimes fictional characters is something real people hold onto.

The above is a word-for-word copy and paste from a post made on Comic Book Resources' message board dated August 21, 2017.

Some users made the case for Joker being asexual — "Joker is too trollish to be sure about what is really going on with him," wrote JBatmanFan05 — while others made the case for the villain being "ambiguously gay."

"I think of The Joker more as a pansexual who's interested in whatever strikes his mood at the time," wrote user Frontier.

The LEGO Batman movie most recently played up Joker's "love" for the Dark Knight, exploring the relationship between the hero and villain: the Joker needs Batman, as has often been portrayed across various media across various continuities, whether or not a sexual component is involved.

The iconic Batman foe would join an ever-expanding list of LGBTQ characters in comics: popular A-listers like DC's Catwoman and Marvel's Iceman have been portrayed as bisexual or gay, with the icy X-Man's series most recently being nominated for a GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Comic Book.

Geoff Johns next scripts the Joker in Doomsday Clock #5, the issue boasting a variant cover featuring the Clown Prince of Crime. The issue is expected to hit store shelves in March.