Bias Watch

Conservatives are outraged that Joker gets pregnant in latest Batman comic

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Pregnant JokerPhoto: DC Comics

A new DC Comics book features Batman’s greatest supervillain, the Joker, but with a twist: the clown prince of crime becomes pregnant after a magician curses him.

Of course, some conservative media figures are upset because they think DC Comics have made the Joker a transgender man. But if they bothered to actually read the comic, they’d realize that isn’t the case.

“Readers may be tempted to think this is part of DC’s attempt to do some woke, LGBTQ-inclusive storytelling with The Joker being a transgender man undergoing a typical pregnancy,” Fox News wrote, adding, “though it’s not quite that simple.”

Indeed, even though the publication’s headline refers to the plot line as “grotesque,” the Joker isn’t a trans man.

The storyline occurs in a short comic at the end of the latest installment of the series Joker: The Man Who Stopped Laughing. In it, the Joker wants to father a male heir to his crime kingdom.

When he tries to woo Zatanna, a powerful magician who has served in the superhero Justice League, she curses the Joker by saying in reverse, “No one else will ever have your baby!”

Instead of making him unattractive to all women, Zatanna’s spell causes the Joker to become pregnant with his own child. This is especially well-deserved considering the Joker’s past abuse of women and romantic partners in his comics.

The “baby” inside of Joker turns out to be a living mud blob, made of the shape-shifting supervillain Clayface, that transforms into a tiny version of himself after he literally vomits it up.

In Fox News’s coverage of the resulting conservative outrage, the media outlet cited a tweet from former congressional candidate Robby Starbuck (R-TN) which read, “Yep, the Joker is trans now. At least the character is the joker because a pregnant woman thinking they’re a pregnant man is the definition of a joker. Who else is sick of this lunacy?”

The article also cited conservative influencer Nick Adams, who wrote via Twitter, “The Joker—a MAN—becomes pregnant. That’s NOT how it works! I am calling for a Complete & Total BOYCOTT of The Joker until further notice. What’s next, a fully-electric Batmobile?!”

Adams advocates taking children to the sexually-charged environment at Hooters and once seemed to advocate giving pornography to underage boys, but he doesn’t think that teachers should be allowed to mention to school students that LGBTQ+ people exist.

Ethan Van Sciver — a conservative comic book YouTube critic and supporter of Comicsgate, a right-wing campaign that blames declines in comic book quality and sales to diversity and progressive — wrote via Twitter, “DC Comics is getting weirder and weirder, allowing more perverts and fetishists to make grotesque filth out of their classic characters.”

Twitter commenter @TinseltownMayor, wrote, “Conservatives complaining about comics they don’t read is usually pretty funny in the first place, but today’s fake outrage is about an out of continuity backup story where the Joker swallows a bunch of cursed mud. Because their pea brains explode when they see pregnant man.“

However, the comics website Bleeding Cool pointed out that one of the Joker’s most famous stories, The Killing Joke (1988), featured two of the Joker’s cross-dressed henchmen, stripping police Commissioner Gordon naked, parading him around a carnival on a leash, and showing him photos of his own naked daughter being violently violated.

“But at least The Joker didn’t get Gordon pregnant, right?” Bleeding Cool wrote. “That would just be a step too far.”

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