John Carpenter
Credit: DC Comic

The Clown Prince of Crime is having the time of his life this year. As if a new live-action origin movie starring Joaquin Phoenix wasn’t enough for the Joker, the iconic bad guy is also celebrating DC Comics’ “Year of the Villain” publishing initiative with a new one-shot comic co-written by none other than legendary director John Carpenter (The Thing, Big Trouble in Little China).

Carpenter and co-writer Anthony Burch (writer of video games like Borderlands 2) have dipped their toes into comics before, previously collaborating on Boom! Studio’s Big Trouble in Little China: Old Man Jack miniseries. But now they’re making their DC debut with the greatest supervillain in the publisher’s stable.

“The Joker is the greatest villain in comics,” Carpenter said in a statement. “I’m proud to be reunited with Anthony on this project.”

DC’s overall “Year of the Villain” story features Lex Luthor becoming an alien hybrid and telling humanity he can help them become their best selves if they embrace evil. But the Joker has never been one to play second banana, and any mastermind who leaves him out of their grand plans usually ends up paying the price. Think back to 2005’s Infinite Crisis event, in which an alternate-universe Alexander Luthor assembled an army of villains to transform the universe but didn’t invite the Joker; in return, the clown murdered him in the comic’s closing pages.

This time, the Joker’s determined to prove he’s still the greatest villain of them all. In a world gone bad, he’s going to get his swagger back by “out-badding” everyone else.

”I’m excited beyond words to be writing for Gotham’s greatest villain,” Burch said in a statement. “I hope the Joker’s exploits make you laugh, shudder, and grow nauseous all at once.”

The Joker: Year of the Villain is a 40-page one-shot featuring art by Philip Tan and Marc Deering. It will hit stores Oct. 9, just five days after Phoenix’s Joker movie hits theaters.

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