The Dark Knight and the Clown Prince of Crime have been engaged in a dance on the pages of comic books for years now. Now Tauriq Moosa with Big Think argues that Batman should finally break his own cardinal rule and eliminate the Joker permanently.
“The Joker is a clear example of ‘an unstoppable’ force that can be seen to harm,” Moosa writes. “The Joker proves time and again his disregard for law, any semblance of respect for other lives, and his consistent need to create chaos in a methodical way. No prison can hold him, no punishment will effect [sic] him, no treatment will cure him. All have been tried, all quiver into dust or, like Harley Quinn, are transformed into another tool for his plans.”
Moosa argues that even permanent incapacitation of the Joker (if such a thing is possible) is ineffective, since his psychological presence in Gotham City seems dangerous enough on its own.
“What’s powerful is not The Joker’s physical presence but what he can create and conjure,” he writes.
Therefore, Moosa argues that death is the only answer if Batman wants to save the most lives and prevent the most catastrophes, and even thinks that the Caped Crusader could pull it off and still keep his virtuous image intact.
“Batman could make it such that The Joker’s death appears to be an accident,” Moosa said. “This means The Dark Knight can retain his image as a nonlethal superhero, but still have the chaotic force of The Joker forever gone.”