Journal last updated: Sunday, January 17th 2016 at 9:34 PM
The Joker debuted in Batman #1 (1940) as the eponymous character's first villain, shortly after Batman's debut in Detective Comics #27 (May 1939). The Joker initially appeared as a remorseless serial killer, modeled after a joker playing card with a mirthless grin, who killed his victims with "Joker venom": a toxin which left their faces smiling grotesquely. The character was intended to be killed in his second appearance in Batman #1, after being stabbed in the heart. Finger wanted the Joker to die because of his concern that recurring villains would make Batman appear inept, but was overruled by then-editor Whitney Ellsworth; a hastily drawn panel, indicating that the Joker was still alive, was added to the comic. The Joker went on to appear in nine of Batman%u200A'%u200Bs first twelve issues.