Writer Scott Snyder‘s Batman #14 is problematic as it seems to suggest, but carefully never directly prove, that the Joker has far more knowledge about the true identities of the men and women who are part of the Bat-Family than has ever before been stated. Is this simply the writer toying with us, or is Snyder about to implement yet another major New 52 deviation that I simply can’t get on-board with?
The classic take on the Joker is a villain obsessed with Batman who doesn’t want to know the Dark Knight Detective’s secret identity, as that would ruin all the fun. This is exactly what happens in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker when the Clown Prince of Crime admits that he wished he had never peeked under the cowl.
Snyder is careful by giving us an alternative explanation for the Joker’s abduction of Alfred as well as the Joker never naming names when he “reveals” he knows Batman’s secret identity. I’m hoping for a huge bait-and-switch. But seeing how the New 52 has given me very little of what I actually want, I’m not too hopeful. Hit-and-Miss.