14. Batman: The Killing Joke (1988) – Written by Alan Moore, Art by Brian Bollard
For me, this is the Joker story. It gives him an origin and a sympathetic background that in the hands of another writer would have failed but here Alan Moore makes it somehow work. Brian Bollard’s art helps as he crafts darkly gorgeous images of dilapidated theme parks and thrones sat atop piles of dolls.
The downside to this book is the treatment of Barbara Gordon, who gets crippled and assaulted turning her from the tough as nails hero of Batgirl Year One to just another female victim, who’s pain is only there to fuel the male hero’s righteous anger.
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