Why Liberal Media Hates ‘The Joker’

Why Liberal Media Hates ‘The Joker’ By  for The Federalist

Why does woke media have against “Joker”?

When it premiered at the Venice Film Festival last month, Time magazine’s Stephanie Zacharek slammed the film for a supposedly sympathetic portrayal of its protagonist, who could “easily be adopted as the patron saint of incels.” A flood of similar comments followed from critics who worried its morally ambiguous depiction of a psychotic mass murderer would incite real-world violence—that lonely and alienated young men would, like the riotous mobs in the film’s closing scene, see the Joker as a hero. As if to validate these overwrought concerns, the New York Police Department even deployed undercover police officers to opening-night screenings.

None of it has stopped “Joker” from a projected weekend debut of $90 million-plus. Part of what’s made it a box-office success is doubtless that we were all warned it was a dangerous and problematic film that some people might take the wrong way, and we can’t have that.

The film, as most everyone knows by now, is about Arthur Fleck, a mentally ill clown who lives with his mentally ill mother and dreams of becoming a standup comic. Played by a rail-thin (and very disconcerting) Joaquin Phoenix, Fleck has serious problems and is very much in need of real help, which he doesn’t get. Instead, he suffers a series of setbacks and humiliations and gradually slips into a violent psychosis.

By the film’s end, amid a violent city-wide riot, he has become a folk hero to the disgruntled rabble of Gotham. Amid random mob violence and societal breakdown, the Joker is born.

What critics have objected to above all is that Fleck is not portrayed as pure evil. He has actual reasons behind his violence. Simply put, he’s taking revenge on an unjust world that showed him too little kindness and no love at all.

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