SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Batman: What Knight #3 by Sean Gordon Murphy, on sale December 6.
There’s a new Joker in town.
The creator behind Batman: White Knight, Sean Gordon Murphy, who both writes and illustrates the miniseries, took to his Instagram page to reveal a surprise twist that will occur in the third issue of his alternate reality story. The second issue of the series threw most fans for a loop when it revealed that there were actually two Harley Quinns in the Joker’s life, and now it looks like this revelation will lead to many more complications. The writer/artist revealed two images of issue #3, where we saw that the second Harley Quinn, the one who was rejected by Jack Napier, will take it upon herself to become the new Joker of Gotham City, taking on the name Neo Joker.
Batman: White Knight explores a different Gotham City whose savior is not the Batman but a recently cured-from-his-mania Joker who now goes by the name of Jack Napier. When Jack came home to propose to his longtime love Harley Quinn, he discovered that this Harley, who was very much dressed like the Suicide Squad film version of the character, wasn’t the original Harley Quinn. The real, court jester costume-wearing Harley later appeared, declaring that the Joker, in his obsession with Batman, had never noticed that another woman had taken Harley’s place. Jack left with his original puddin’ in tow, leaving the second, Suicide Squad Harley Quinn all alone, and brokenhearted. But now, it looks like this Harley will not take this rejection lying down.
“It was important to me that both Harleys get empowered in my book,” Murphy said in the post’s caption. “Classic Harley becomes the source of courage for Napier to keep moving forward. And the rejected Suicide Harley (Marian Drews) upgrades to become the new Joker,” he added, confirming the name of this second Harley Quinn. The five panels released by the artist show Marian gear up with a new costume, applying lipstick as she laments the loss of her love before revealing the full look of the Neo Joker. There is no green hair to be found here, nor is there ample amounts of white makeup. Instead, the focus is on the purple, and a different kind of smile.
“White Knight is written to make Harley fans on BOTH sides happy,” Murphy finished saying. And with the warm reception the book is already garnering, it looks like he is succeeding.