|“||You know, kids a lot has changed while your old uncle Joker's been away. New Gotham, new rules... even a new Batman. But now I'm tanned, I'm rested, and I'm ready to give this old town a wedgie again!||„|
|~ The original Joker to the Jokerz.|
The Jokerz are a recurring villainous group in Batman Beyond. They are a large street gang 40 years in the future of Gotham City that take their inspiration from Joker, Batman's onetime arch-nemesis. They tend to dress in clownish costumes and makeup as did their namesake, but have none of the style or humor of the original.
While the original Clown Prince of Crime might have long since disappeared from Gotham, he left such an impression on the psyche of Gotham's criminal underworld that his spirit has lived on inside these copycat hellions. Dressed in clown outfits and face paint, they especially enjoyed practical jokes that turned deadly and generally creating chaos.
At least one of the Jokerz was observed engaging in vandalism and then attempting to extort money from anyone who he believed was amused by his antics. While the Jokerz were certainly a menace, their crimes were small and they were much more easily thwarted than their criminally insane, diabolically creative and resourceful namesake.
In the animated series Batman Beyond, Batman battled different versions of the gang on several occasions. In a Justice League Unlimited episode, Ghoul stated that there are 9,453 active Jokerz that are divided into approximately 200 separate groups (It's unlikely that Chronos affected the large amount considering that he only hired one gang of the Jokerz). There are three known such versions. The first is led by a vandal dressed as the Joker. Those were the Jokerz that Derek Powers' henchman Mr. Fixx incriminated for the murder of Terry McGinnis' father in "Rebirth", the two-part pilot of the animated series. Their leader is J-Man, who dresses in a style similar to the Joker and voiced by DCAU creator Bruce Timm.
In the episode "The Winning Edge" members of this gang buy weapons from a dealer on the streets but are stopped by Batman.
The episode "Joyride" shows their initiation. They take their new member Lee to a small cave with the Joker's skeleton but it is cut short when they find a military jet. They use it to destroy the headquaters of a rival gang The T's but Batman destroys it in the end.
A second group of Jokerz appeared in the episode "Hidden Agenda", led by a Jokerz member named Terminal, a top-tier student at Hamilton Hill High and a would-be killer of rival candidate for valedictorian Max Gibson. Max's search to determine who is after her leads her to find out Terry's secret life as Batman.
In "Once Burned", The Jokerz Territory were seen by the sewers (although it has been briefly seen in other episodes), which is home to dozens of Jokerz from various gangs.
In the episode "Countdown" several Jokerz mug Ro but are scared off by Batman, later they try to rob Zeta in the form of an average man but they underestimated his great strength and are all taken out.
In the direct-to-video feature Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, a third group, including Harley Quinn's twin granddaughters, was actually led by the revived Joker himself, who was using Tim Drake's body. This third group was defeated, and the host seemingly freed from the Joker's influence.
The Jokerz are later featured in the show Static Shock , specifically in the episode "Future Shock" where a gang of them try to trap Terry/Batman II and a time-displaced Static but together they defeat them all.
|“||Sorry, Lord Chronos!||„|
|~ The Jokerz working for Chronos.|
The last appearance of the Jokerz was in the Justice League Unlimited episode "The Once and Future Thing, Part 2." In this episode, the same group of Jokerz from Return of the Joker are shown to be working for a time-traveling villain called David Clinton, known in the comics as the Atom's archnemesis, Chronos. This team of Jokerz has been enhanced with super-powers and/or cybernetic enhancements that Clinton pulled from the future. This group of Jokerz has killed most of the Justice League of that time, leaving only Static, Warhawk, that timeline's Batman, and an elderly Bruce Wayne. The present-day Batman, Green Lantern (John Stewart) and Wonder Woman chase Clinton to this future, and were able stop Clinton and undo the damage he did to the timestream, erasing all of the events of the episode. They were possibly returned to their normal selves. Considering the fact that Bonk, who was seemingly murdered by the Joker in Return of the Joker, is part of the group, it most likely indicates that the Uncut version of that film is more canon than the Cut version.
|“||Evening, boys and girls! Who's up for some laughs!||„|
A large well-known group of Jokerz led by J-Man, who dresses very similarly to the original Clown Prince of Crime, but they would always get beaten and stopped by Batman. The other members of this band include:
- Lee (briefly)
- Scab - wears a red, single-coned jester's cap, possibly inspired by Harley Quinn.
- Top Hat Joker
|“||You're not laughing. He's not laughing. Maybe we should share a few smiles just to encourage him.||„|
Carter Wilson adopted the identity of "Terminal" and made himself the undisputed leader of a small group of Jokerz. They engaged in the usual terrorizing of random victims, with occasional asides to Carter's personal agenda. After a failed attempt to kill Maxine Gibson, the entire gang was subdued by Batman and arrested. The other members of this band include:
The third band of Jokerz was introduced in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, where they worked for what appeared to be the original Joker. They later appeared in an episode of Justice League Unlimited, now working for Chronos and enhanced with super powers. When Chronos is defeated, this timeline is erased.
- Bonk - A powerful, but surly enforcer / muscleman in the Jokerz' ranks. Though amazingly strong, Bonk is not a thug who takes orders willingly. He's got a hair-trigger, and is liable to start up with anyone who gets in his way, be it Batman or Bonk's own Jokerz allies. This is his undoing when he argues with the Joker, accusing him of being a fake. In return, the Joker either murders him with a venomous spear gun disguised as a BANG! flag gun (in the uncut version of the movie) or knocks him out with laughing gas (in the censored version). While working for Chronos, he is equipped with a massive hammer that comes out of his arm. He's able to deliver massive damage with this weapon.
- Chucko - obese, with tight-fitting pink clothes and a clown mask. He is a nasty bullying type who truly enjoys inflicting misery on others. A head enforcer for the Jokerz gang, he's a lot stronger and faster than his flabby gut would lead one to believe. True to his sadistic nature, Chucko's face is always hidden behind his mocking clown mask (aside from the heist at Wayne Enterprises, where he dons a gas mask instead.). He uses a bazooka as a weapon. While working with Chronos, his legs are replaced with a hovering ball that offers more maneuverability and carries a lightsaber-like object that adds extra "oomph". Chucko meets his demise when he betrays Chronos and is sent back to the prehistoric age where he perishes along with the dinosaurs, though this is undone when Chronos' timeline is erased upon his defeat.
- Dee-Dee - the identical twin granddaughters of Harley Quinn. Delia and Deidre, (often referred to by the collective name "Dee-Dee" or simply, "the Deeds") are cute, charming, funny, and completely rotten to the core. They love the thrill of being a part of the Jokerz gang and think it's a large charge to be working for the big man himself, The Joker. They use an acrobatics-based fighting style very similar to Harley's. While working with Chronos, they possessed the power to multiply themselves upon impact and carry an energy whip which electrocutes the victim on contact.
- Ghoul - A jaded young runaway from a wealthy home, Stewart Carter Winthorp III joined up with the Jokerz for kicks. He wears ragged clothing and has grey skin, numerous stitching/scar marks and skull-like features; possibly genetically altered his appearance to make himself look undead. He's heavily into techno-goth music and has adapted the horror look into his costume. Ghoul is never without his plastic Halloween pumpkin which he keeps filled with a number of monster-inspired weapons and tricks. While working with Chronos, he is armed with a spinning blade in his right arm which he can deploy or retract at will. His appearance vaguely mimics that of previous Batman villain Scarecrow and his voice and mannerisms are loosely based on Christopher Walken. Though he never mentioned this to anyone, he wet the bed until he was 14.
- Woof - Woof was just a nameless underling in the Jokerz gang until he decided to try gene-splicing. Infusing his cellular structure with that of a spotted hyena, Woof quickly transformed (some say devolved) into the giggling, bestial, nightmare that he is today. Though he sometimes appears to be nothing more than the Jokerz comical mascot, Woof's crushing jaws, sharp teeth and razor-like claws make him a deadly adversary. While working with Chronos, he has cybernetic arms which allow him to run faster than he previously could and to gouge materials as hard as concrete and steel, as they are sharper and sturdier than his claws once were.
- The Jokerz are known to be rivals of another street gang known as The T's.
- In the episode "Joyride", the Jokerz are shown initiating a new member. The initiation involves an abandoned mine shaft.
- During the sequence of the episode, the leader of the group shines a flashlight toward the bottom of the shaft. When the bottom of the shaft is illuminated the viewer is shown a close up of a skeleton. The remains of the skeleton's clothing are purple with a white flower over its chest. Judging from Barbara Gordon's story in Return of the Joker of what was done with the Joker's body it is possible that these skeletal remains belong to the real Joker.
- The Jokerz are a homage to The Clowns from Akira, a 1988 cyberpunk anime that had a strong influence on the setting of Batman Beyond.