Review: Joker: The Man Who Stopped Laughing #4

“It’s Not Funny Anymore” – Part Four
Writer: Matthew Rosenberg
Artist: Carmine Di Giandomenico
Color Artists: Romulo Fajardo Jr., Nick Filardi
Letterer: Tom Napolitano
Review by Kendra Hale

Joker: The Man Who Stopped Laughing #4 is one of the best examples of a comic moving forward that I’ve seen in quite a while. While most would consider this issue a “filler”, it showcases many key points using astounding and detailed artwork to do so. Plus, my favorite character shows up for a visit.

Let’s dive right in!

Chuckles For Charity

When last we left Gotham, Joker, and Red Hood, both men had issues of their own to deal with. Jason dealing with the police and Joker doing the same, but from the hospital after being healed. Each of them finds a unique way out of those situations but it isn’t easy and, in some moments, it’s quite uncanny.

Joker finds himself at the mercy of some of the most vulnerable patients, as he hustles his way through roles to make his escape. Jason uses a distraction to make his way through to the villain. Both men are searching for answers and both show sides of themselves that, I’m sure, dear readers, they never wanted to come to light.

The Best Of Questions 

I admit fully that this issue surprised me, with one scene in particular actually ruffling some feathers. Making his way through the hospital, Joker stops in a room with a woman who’s delirious and dying. In a moment that’s not Joker-like, he uses validation therapy and pretends to be the love of the woman’s life, who passed in the front during the war.

I paused because this is a genius scene of writing using the least likely of characters. It’s genuinely a tender moment. One that while reading this series I was unprepared for. Kudos Matthew for that. Amidst the chaos, empathy is found for both Joker and Jason.

Emoclew Ot Eht Wohs

This issue boasts exquisite covers by talents Carmine Di Giandomenico, Lee Bermejo, Dustin Nguyen, and Simone Di Meo. Each one is a true gem in its own right, but my favorite cover didn’t make sense to me until after I’d read the special bonus story “Knocked Upside Down.”

The bonus story starts off with Joker meeting another love of his life, a potential partner, and my favorite character, Zatanna. The encounter leaves one of them changed forever and Joker could have never expected to be expecting! A true gaggle of laughs was brought to us by Matthew Rosenberg, Francesco Francavilla, and Tom Napolitano.

Conclusion

This series is heating up as both questions and answers arise in Joker: The Man Who Stopped Laughing #4 I couldn’t have asked for a better start to the year and look forward to what awaits us all next issue!

Images Courtesy Of DC Entertainment


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