The Killing Joke Has Permission For R Rating

Let’s cut right to the chase. Last night, some very good news came out of the 2015 Comic-Con in NYC: the animated film version of “Batman: The Killing Joke” has been given clearance to be R rated. It happened during the “Batman: Bad Blood” panel.

The producer, James Tucker, has also revealed that just because it’s been given the clearance, doesn’t mean he will actually make it R-rated. That seems a little silly to me. The most pivotal event of the comic shows Joker shooting Barbara Gordon, and then stripping her naked, so he can photograph her in a pool of her own blood. That isn’t shown, mind you. There isn’t a panel for panel breakdown of Joker ripping Babs’ clothes off.

However, towards the end, Joker does use those photos to torture Jim Gordon. It’s very dark stuff. If they really wanted, they could make the PG-13 rating work. They’d just have to use the right angles, and always block out the nudity, and blood, and what have you.

Why, though? Why soften it? This will be the first rated R Batman movie. A lot of people are already chomping at the bit, based off this announcement alone (myself included). Don’t disappoint us, Tucker, or you’ll have a lot of angry fans to deal with.

NOTE: If you haven’t read the comic, here’s your chance to catch up:

P.S. Mark Hamill is already locked into reprise The Joker for this film. They need to bring back Kevin Conroy as Batman. This would be an incredible swan song for both of them. The perfect Batman and Joker bringing life to the perfect Batman and Joker story – I need it!


Joseph Finnegan