The Joker #5

Writer: Sam Johns, Matthew Rosenberg, James Tynion IV Artist: Sweeney Boo, Francesco Francavilla Publisher: DC Comics Release Date: July 14, 2021 Cover Price: $5.99 Critic Reviews: 14 User Reviews: 36
7.4Critic Rating
7.4User Rating

The never-before-seen tale of The Joker’s first night in Arkham Asylum is finally revealed!
When a lunatic in a clown suit tries to poison Gotham City’s reservoir and is placed in Arkham Asylum before his trial, Detective Jim Gordon realizes something’s different about this new inmate that could forever change the future of Gotham.
Backup: Rising-star artist Sweeney Boo joins the series as things get worse and worse for Punchline and Bluebird. Punchline’s prison war against the Queen of Spades escalates, and no prisoner at Blackgate Penitentiary will be exempt from choosing sides. And after barely escaping death at th more

  • 9.5
    Geek Dad - Ray Goldfield Jul 13, 2021

    Francavilla's art is brilliant as always, and this may be one of the best comics Rosenberg has been involved in. Read Full Review

  • 9.4
    The Super Powered Fancast - Timala Elliott Jul 13, 2021

    The illustration in this issue is very well done. Francavilla uses a traditional art style with a color palate that changes with the scene and tone of the story. While Boo uses a modern and youthful art style highlighted by bright and bold color work. Each style captures the essence of the particular story and works to elicit an emotional response from the reader. Read Full Review

  • 9.3
    Comic Watch - Ariel B. Jul 13, 2021

    The Punchline backup is a transitional chapter with a focus on the characters and setting up their next moves. Solid story with beautiful, clean artwork from new Punchline artist Sweeney Boo. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    GWW - Joseph Gilmore Jul 13, 2021

    Overall, The Joker continues to be an outstanding series, whether it is being written by Tynion or Rosenberg. While the series so far has been more about Gordon than Joker, I am fully enthralled with the character study of our embattled commissioner and the journey he is on for ultimate justice. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    DC Comics News - Carl Bryan Jul 16, 2021

    BUY THIS BOOK! This one is a perfect stand alone Joker story with a bonus Punchline (see what I did there)! Read Full Review

  • 8.3
    Major Spoilers - Matthew Peterson Jul 20, 2021

    I didn't expect to like this book as much as I do, but Francavilla and Boo make it visually stunning, even with protagonists that I utterly loathe. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    AIPT - Dan Spinelli Jul 13, 2021

    James Tynion IV and guest artist Francesco Francavilla serve up a full-issue flashback to Gordon's early years in Gotham " when the city was only beginning to wake up to the horror of the Joker. Read Full Review

  • 7.0
    The Batman Universe - Scott Waldyn Jul 13, 2021

    While nowhere near as pulse-pounding as the previous four issues, The Joker #5 delivers an interesting backstory to Jim Gordon and Joker's relationship, one that potentially includes future clues as to who gassed Arkham Asylum. Read Full Review

  • 7.0 - Evan Valentine Jul 14, 2021

    The story itself is definitely worth a read, but Francavilla's art feels unfinished here, though the color work still strikes the haunting tone that he's known for. Read Full Review

  • 7.0
    Lyles Movie Files - Jeffrey Lyles Jul 13, 2021

    This issue doesnt significantly advance the main Joker/Gordon manhunt story, but it provides better context for their next confrontation. Its not an essential read, but worth it for fans of that event as well. Read Full Review

  • 6.5
    Weird Science - Eric Shea Jul 13, 2021

    If you don't mind halting the story that was being told and can get into a day in the life of Captain Gordon, where his obsession with the Joker begins many years ago then maybe you'll dig this issue but for the most part, even though the story was told well I didn't feel like I got anything new out of this and just kind of feel disappointed that we have a strange one-shot issue shoved in when things in this book were really getting interesting. Like I said though, the story is well told and the art works well for the type of story it is but this is a strange installment with a pretty weak backup. Read Full Review

  • 6.0
    But Why Tho? - Charles Hartford Jul 13, 2021

    So while some elements of The Joker #5continue to deliver, the main narrative of this book hits a low point. While I appreciate the attempt to emphasize the Jokers importance to Gordon, this book does so at the expense of one of Batmans most trusted allies. Read Full Review

  • 5.0
    Dark Knight News - Kevin M. Gallagher, Jr Jul 16, 2021

    Unfortunately, The Joker #5 is nearly the complete opposite of last month's issue – and for me it's been the worst in the series thus far. The main story feels like a filler that contributes nothing to the overall story. There will likely be zero impact if you skip this issue, which isn't a good sign for a comic. Even the backup story falters, though I'd say the entire issue is worth it for Boo's art alone. Read Full Review

  • 3.0
    Batman-News - Corbin Nelson Jul 15, 2021

    This flashback filler-episode-esque issue contributes nothing to the overall story of The Joker other than highlighting the already-beaten-into-our-heads fact that Gordo can't stop thinking about the Joker. Normally, I would recommend checking out The Joker #5 on Francavilla's art alone, but even he drops the ball this go around. Read Full Review

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