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A nameless hit man in the Gotham City criminal underworld was known for his gruesome practices. This hit man worked for the mob triad of Sal Valestra, Buzz Bronski and Chuckie Sol. One of his last jobs took place in Europe on the Mediterranean Coast. His victim was Carl Beaumont, a businessman that fled the States after it was found out he embezzled a fortune from the mob bosses.
Years later, the hit man attempted to form his own gang and staged a robbery at the Ace Chemical Plant. It was during this robbery that he first met Batman. He escaped capture by jumping into a nearby drainage vat of chemical waste and found his way to the river. However, the chemicals had an adverse effect on him. His hair was dyed green, his skin bleached white and his lips were stretched into a permanent grin. The change further fractured his sadistic nature. As the Joker, he vowed to show the world the triumph of his comic genius. And so began the career of one of history's worst mass murdering psychopaths.
The Joker's plans were always prevented by the center of his obsession, Batman. While incarcerated at Arkham Asylum for the Criminally Insane, the Joker continued to use his intellect to manipulate those around him. He spun various tales about his youth and an abusive father who never got the punch line. Joker comes and goes from the Asylum as he pleases. His appearance masks an off kilter genius capable of planning, weaponry and a range of witty retorts.
Joker's plans have no prejudice. They can include the most innocent of victims like mild mannered salaryman, Charlie Collins to Gotham's highest level officials, Commissioner Gordon or Mayor Hill. But the Joker has had his share of provocations. Joker was one of three villains to travel to Yucca Springs on an invite from Hugo Strange. Ex-businessman, Cameron Kaiser deliberately made his newly built casino resemble the Joker's look to draw out the villain out. Depending on the joke, his plans can range from small scale to globe threatening. The Joker tried to con his way to a local comedy trophy by using the Mad Hatter's mind control chips on the event's judges. Another time, the Joker stole a nuclear warhead and almost successfully set it off on the residence of Mayor Hill.
The Joker found himself involved with Harley Quinn, a former intern at Arkham Asylum. After one session, the Joker fooled Dr. Quinzel as he painted himself as a misunderstood soul crying out for the world to accept him. Quinzel soon found herself in love with the Joker. However, a combination of Joker's ego and Quinn's lack of humor tends to puch the Joker's buttons. More often than not, the Joker abuses and throws Quinn onto the streets until he decides she is useful again.
Batman shuts down his Gotham operations on a routine basis. But on one occasion, the Joker really did go bankrupt. He traveled to Metropolis and briefly allied himself with Lex Luthor to kill Superman for a billion dollars. The Joker planned to use 'the Laughing Dragon' (which turned out to be Kryptonite). Joker's plans fell apart when Batman deduced what the antique shard left at the shop was and headed to Metropolis. Consolidating his losses, the Joker kidnapped Luthor and hijacked his experimental LexWing assault vehicle. Joker returned to Gotham a month later, still bankrupt. He unwittingly received a $250 million inheritance from his ex-gangland rival, Edward "King" Barlowe. Joker immediately spent the first million on various pursuits like hiring a defense team to wipe his criminal record clean. However, the Joker was duped. The rest of the money was counterfeit and the IRS were claiming their dues. Desperate, the Joker tried to steal a routine money dispersal from the Gotham Mint without using any of his trademarks. Batman intervened again.
During the seven year anniversary of his transformation into the Joker, the Gotham Insider made a live report from Ace Chemical Plant. The Joker made an appearance and attacked the news crew. Jack Ryder was doused with the Joker's toxin then shoved into a drainage vat. Ryder transformed as well, but the combination of the chemicals pushed Ryder further. Fashioning himself as the Creeper, he went on a rampage to end the Joker's reign of terror. Somewhere along the line, the Joker was spared and Batman sedated the Creeper.
Years later, the Joker wound up in Metropolis. He was just in time to join Lex Luthor's Injustice Gang. Joker conned his way into staying by providing his expertise on Batman. After the Justice League was successfully destroyed, the Joker was promised Batman. However, the League survived and went after the Gang. Joker cut his losses and attempted to kill Batman but it seemed Batman was manipulating the situation the whole time.
In another routine shut out, Joker was forced to move his enterprises outside of Gotham. This time he chose Dakota City in Michigan. The Joker planned on forming a metahuman gang and recruited Shiv, Talon, HotStreak, and Kangor. Joker's final choice was Ferret. He extracted the Bang Baby while being pursued by Static. Somewhere in the old industrial district near 34th and Main, the gang regrouped. Ferret, however, turned down the Joker's offer not thinking he was good enough. The Joker obliged him and doused him in Joker Toxin. They then stole two fire trucks from the East Side Fire Station and held up the Dakota Merchant's Bank. After receiving a tip, Batman and Robin arrived in Dakota, much to Joker's delight. He set up a trap at the No. 7 Tunnel, while it was under construction, kidnapped them, and planned to record their deaths. Static used the Batwing to trace the duo's location and rescued them from Joker's fire truck death trap. The Joker reached out in surrender with his joy buzzer armed but Static electrocuted him into submission.
The Joker tried to form a metahuman gang once more. He discovered and entered a secret government compound dubbed Section 12. At the time, it was under the supervision of the Cadmus Project, a federal initiative to procure defenses against the Justice League. Joker freed their captives and fashioned them as a card deck hand, the Royal Flush Gang. He then purchased air time on several networks under a false moniker and broadcasted a live feed of Las Vegas. The Joker secretly planted several dozen high explosives all over the city. The real plan was to use the powers of the Gang's fifth member, Ace. The bomb stunt was merely part of his plan to attract viewers throughout the world. Joker would then transmit Ace's thought waves and render everyone under a mass psychosis. Batman confronted the Joker alone. Batman managed to reveal to Ace that the Joker held onto a special headband used to nullify Ace's powers. Ace, in turn, used her power on Joker and temporarily incapacitated him.
Years later, the Joker devised one last scheme, directed at Batman. The Joker kidnapped the second Robin, Tim Drake while he was alone on patrol. For three weeks, in the former Arkham Asylum, the Joker systematically tortured and brainwashed Robin. After several serum injections and shock torture, Robin began to reveal all is secrets to the Joker. He then dressed Robin as crude version of himself and planned on using him to deliver the death blow to Batman with his BANG! flag-spear gun. The Joker even went far enough to document Robin's torture and show it in the operating theatre to Batman. While succeeding in enraging Batman, Joker delivered a knife to Batman's knee, the wound that would later become the source of the elderly Bruce Wayne's hobble. Fortunately, not even the Joker could fully turn Robin. In the climax, Robin shot and killed the Joker. Though he was buried deep beneath Arkham, Joker's last bid tainted the Bat Family and further engineered its end.
This was not the end of the Joker, though. While he had Robin in his possession, the Joker subjected Robin to another experiment of his own. Using stolen government nanotechnology, Joker encoded his DNA onto a microchip and implanted it at the base of Robin's skull. Over time, Joker's subconscious awakened and began to assume control of Drake's body. The implant took a few decades to rewrite Drake's DNA but the Joker eventually gained the ability to control his transformations at will. In time, he would be strong enough to live in Drake's body on a permanent basis.
The Joker plotted his return. With Drake's knowledge of communications, Joker staged a series of corporate thefts utilizing a sub-group of Jokerz. With the technology, Joker created a satellite jammer and hijacked control of a Hyperion class defense satellite orbiting the planet. The second Batman deduced Drake had some connection and confronted the Joker. In the skirmish, the jamming system redirected the satellite's laser straight to Joker's hideout, an abandoned Jolly Jack Candy Factory on 691 Broome Street. Batman stranded Joker within the compound and fought him one on one. In the finale, Batman used Joker's toy buzzer and electrocuted him. The surge destroyed the microchip and ended the Joker once and for all.
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