As any kid raised in the ‘90s can tell you, Batman: The Animated Series was incredible. That cartoon rendition of the adventures of the Dark Knight and his rogues’ gallery was iconic, and two of the main reasons it was so great were the voices of Mark Hamill and Kevin Conroy, who played the Joker and Batman, respectively. If you look to the sky today, you’ll see the Nostalgia Signal shining in the clouds, because Hamill and Conroy are reprising their roles in an animated home-video adaptation of the classic Batman tale Batman: The Killing Joke. The casting had been rumored for a while, but Comic Book Resources got confirmation this afternoon.
The original comics story was written by Alan Moore, drawn by Brian Bolland, and released in 1988. It depicts a memorable confrontation between Batsy and the Clown Prince of Crime, after the latter kidnaps Commissioner Gordon (played by the always-delightful Ray Wise in the new film) and shoots his daughter, Barbara (played by Tara Strong, who has voiced the character numerous times in other DC Entertainment media). It’s notable for showing a possible origin story for the Joker and leaving Barbara paralyzed from the waist down — a trait that partially defined her for many years afterward. It’s also become quite controversial in recent years, with critics saying its depiction of violence against women (it’s implied that Barbara may have been raped by Joker and his cronies) is unnecessary and demeaning. In addition to hearing Hamill and Conroy again, it’ll be interesting to see if DC decides to tweak anything on that front for this new version.