As the release of Suicide Squad slowly edges closer, we’ve been getting the whole marketing deal, from in popping colors to to a whole bunch of (still can’t decide whether the “Blitz” or the “Bohemian Rhapsody” one is the best).
Now Screen Rant have expanded again on the insight they gained from visiting the set of Suicide Squad last year, and more specifically on how the cast and crew imagined the kingpin days of the Joker. You could already tell from his new look, tattoos and ring and all, but this is a Joker who has built an underground empire in Gotham City.
And while comic book fans haven’t all been pleased with this bling-ish take on the character, a lot of them also cried out at the new information that Harley helped the Joker gain his status, and that one of the reasons he was going back after her is that he needed her to rule his business with him. Does that necessarily mean that we’re getting a weaker Joker, however? Could we just have two alphas who are still as strong on their own?
The Joker And Harley Quinn ‘Are Like King And Queen’ Of The Gotham Underworld
Speaking of working with Ayer, costume designer Kate Hawley explained their take on the status of the Joker/Harley couple:
“When I first met him he wanted a very gritty, urban world. That if you think of all the Suicide Squad related in some way in this underworld, in this urban kind of environment, then Joker and Harley are like King and Queen of that.”
She added that they’re “almost like two alpha males”:
“There’s this obsession and this relationship [between Harley and Joker] that… it’s almost like two alpha males, you know? You never feel Harley’s done under in a way, it’s been beautifully interpreted by David in her dialogue, that she’s such an amazing, strong character and they’re like two alpha males. They go out and the games they play with their victims, it’s like cat and mouse. They’re like Natural Born Killers, they’re like Sid and Nancy. In this world they’re like Punch and Judy, you know, there’s a very physical element to them. And there’s a wonderful scene in the club where they really play it together and it’s like two of them playing cat and mouse with a little victim in the middle.”
Which is obviously great news for Robbie’s Harley: It’s 2016, and just like Jennifer Aniston and her supposed baby bump, moviegoers are fed up with the damsel in distress type, so kudos to Ayer for giving her the power she deserves.
Does Harley Quinn Take Some Of The Joker’s Power In Suicide Squad?
But what of the Joker, then? Disappointed fans started objecting that the Joker don’t need no partner — he’s a lone wolf, and if there’s one relationship that truly consumes him, it’s the one with his all-time nemesis Batman.
Now, it appears that the Suicide Squad Joker actually benefited from Harley’s seduction skills to make his way to the top of the baddies food chain. Which means that when she gets locked up in Belle Reve and later enrolled in the Suicide Squad, he loses some of his balance and needs to get her back, and not everyone appreciates that the Joker would need anything from anyone.
Having Two Alphas Doesn’t Make One Of Them Beta
It’s odd that we can’t live with the idea of having a king and a queen running the place in Gotham City, though. Just like the eternal debate between getting starters or a dessert, I want to ask: Why not both?
The fact that Harley isn’t portrayed as a mere side character doesn’t necessarily make the Joker any weaker. Not only has Leto’s take on the maddest of villains been very business-oriented — the actor repeatedly mentioning the inspiration he found in real-life drug lords — but the Joker has always been the calculating type. Sure, he’s batshit insane (bat reference intended), but he’s a Machiavellian schemer who takes a kick out of seeing his grand master plans come together. Which also means he knows a valuable partner when he sees one.
Add to that the obsessive nature of the Joker, and it actually fits with his character that he’d go after Harley instead of shrugging and going on with his business. It doesn’t diminish him in any way — if anything, it makes both of these lunatics even stronger, because they feed on each other’s craziness. They make sense as a pair, and both have enough history that one wouldn’t overshadow the other.
What do you think of this new Suicide Squad Joker? Did you like him better as a solo player, or are you curious to see more about his royalty days with Harley Quinn?