This Deleted Joker Scene From ‘The Batman’ Teases an Intriguing Take on the Character

One of the biggest surprises of Matt Reeves’ The Batman was the return of a classic, and at this point, over-adapted Batman foe. Portrayed by Barry Keoghan, the Joker makes a cameo in the final moments of the latest Batman reboot, where he strikes up a friendship with the film’s villain, The Riddler (Paul Dano) from their adjoining cells in Arkham Asylum. It feels like a setup for this Joker to step onto the main stage in a future Reeves-Robert Pattinson Batflick, but Reeves divulged to Variety that an original (read: even longer) cut of the film featured another extended scene with Keoghan. Turns out audiences didn’t have to wait too long to see it: Reeves released the deleted scene today, and it sheds more light on where Reeves intends to take his interpretation of one of the comic world’s most popular hero-villain relationships.


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The clip debuted as the latest prize from ratalada, the website Warner Bros. used as viral marketing for the movie (the name is a reference to one of Riddler’s clues in the film). Savvy puzzle solvers had to answer a series of clues to unlock the clip, which then quickly began circulating on Twitter and YouTube. The five-minute-long scene is pretty straightforward, but paints an interesting portrait of the new relationship between hero and foe.

The Batman is set during the second year of Bruce Wayne’s career as the caped crusader, and Joker’s appearance indicated the Clown Prince of Crime and Batman have already faced off in this new continuity. The deleted clip confirms that, as Keoghan’s captured Joker makes a crack about an upcoming anniversary between the two. In the same way Reeves drew heavily on movies like Chinatown, Se7en and Zodiac for inspiration, this scene owes a great deal of debt to The Silence of the Lambs, as Batman leans on Joker for his perspective on who the Riddler is. As the two converse, Reeves keeps Keoghan slightly out of focus before slowly revealing his monstrous appearance—one which is clad with deep scarring throughout.

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