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Ranking the Best Joker Performance

Updated on July 7, 2016

Let's Put a Smile on that Face

With the new D.C movie Suicide Squad coming out in a few short weeks, I thought this would be a great time for me to list my favorite portrayals of the legendary character the Joker. The Joker is Batman’s greatest foe. Many say this is due to the Joker being Batman’s exact opposite in every way. I am not sure there is a better known villain than the Joker because lets face it, he is probably one of the most interesting.

Over the years, we have had some very interesting castings of the Joker. This year we will get to see Jared Leto’s Joker. I know I am excited to see his take on the character but I also feel I should let you all know that I also am highly critical of the casting choice. Personally, I wasn't very familiar with Leto prior to his casting and upon research saw he was a singer with a little acting behind his belt. However, I should note that the last 2 casting choices for the Joker have been great with Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger so I may be a little biased on the fact of his casting. I should note here too that I was critical of Ben Affleck’s casting as the new Batman but I was very pleased with his take in Batman V Superman.

  1. The Dark Knight (2008)-Heath Ledger portrayed the darker version of the Joker to the tee. He captured the Joker’s demented side perfectly. If I had to pick the scariest version out of the bunch then it would definitely be Heath’s. You just can't beat that slow demented laugh he developed. His Joker suit was great! I loved the unkept hair style and how you could even tell it was dyed. The scars on his face looked very legit. I can’t even express how sad I am that we will never get this particular Joker back. He truly made me believe he was crazy and that he didn't care about anything other than messing with Batman.
  2. Batman (1989)-Jack Nicholson portrayed the Joker very well considering the year he made this movie. By that I mean his Joker isn't as diabolical and demented as Heath’s, but only because movie’s hadn't started becoming darker yet. If Jack Nicholson were to play the Joker in 2008 instead of Heath then I feel he would have been just as dark and demented. Regardless, Jack gave us a laugh to never forget. His suit was spot-on too. Jack’s Joker was probably a little more crazy than demented, which is an exact opposite for Heath’s.
  3. Batman: The Movie (1966)-Cesar Romero’s Joker was brilliant. I know you are probably wondering, how? But for the time period, it really was a great performance on Cesar’s part. The Joker hadn't yet become quite so dark and demented. Personally, I thought the Batman (1966) movie was very cheesy but that’s what was so popular at the time. His suit and hair were all freshly cut and clean. We hadn’t ushered in the era of darker comic character’s.

Mark Hamill's Joker Laugh for Viewing Pleasure

Though I am not ranking vocals only in this line-up, I must make a special shoutout to Mark Hamill on voicing the Joker in animation. He really did a fantastic job!

There is my breakdown of the best live-action film portrayals of the Joker. I hope you all enjoy. Please leave any comments/constructive feedback. If you have any questions, comment below! Also, please take time to vote for you favorite Joker in the poll below!

Who Portrayed the Joker the Best?

See results

Suicide Squad Trailer featuring the new Joker


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