"Time to Monkey Shine": In the middle of a job, the Joker recalls how he once lived with his abusive Aunt Eunice, who was eager to separate him from his childish attachment to a monkey puppet he called "Gaggy". She would wash his skin with bleach, and brag of how she
- I taught him how not to feel sorry. How not to get caught up in feelings. I taught him that with guilt comes weakness.
- — Joker
Appearing in "Time to Monkey Shine"
- Joker (Flashback and main story)
- Jackanapes (Flashback and main story) (Apparent Death)
- Aunt Eunice (Flashback only)
- Flame Dupree
- Uncle Horace (Mentioned only)
- Batman (Mentioned only)
- Robin (Mentioned only)
- Charlie (Appears only as a corpse)
Synopsis for "Time to Monkey Shine"
In the middle of a job, the Joker recalls how he once lived with his abusive Aunt Eunice, who was eager to separate him from his childish attachment to a monkey puppet he called "Gaggy". She would wash his skin with bleach, and brag of how she murdered his uncle Howard by giving him a Colombian necktie.
Snapping back into the present, the Joker resumes his gang's torture of a zookeeper at the Gotham Zoo by allowing a massive snake to constrict and then consume him. Despite his gang's enthusiasm, the Joker is forlorn, and walks away without watching the snake finish its meal. Instead, his attention is caught by a Gorilla and its child, playing with a small stuffed monkey. Longing for Gaggy, he breaks into the enclosure, gasses the mother gorilla, and takes its child.
Attempting to create a family life with the kidnapped gorilla as surrogate child, Joker drags it and his sidekick Flame Dupree to live in a house whose owners he had long-since killed - though their rotting corpses remained. Flame suggests that they ought to name the little gorilla, and the Joker enthusiastically begins wracking his brain for a worthy name. Gleefully, he settles on Jackanapes.
The Joker intends to raise Jackanapes to live the life he wished he'd had. While Aunt Eunice had raised him strictly, punishing him for bad behavior with beatings, he made sure to reward Jackanapes for deeds done well. While he had been fed meager meals by his aunt, he raised Jackanapes to provide for himself by stealing candy from children. While children threw stones at him as a boy, he made sure that he and Jackanapes were the best of friends, with a relationship like father and son. Eventually, the Joker taught Jackanapes how to build devices of death and destruction - an activity he excelled in. He taught the gorilla remorselessness; that the services they provided in crime were just - not to mention fun.
After learning that a newly elected city councilwoman has called for the closing and demolishing of Gotham Zoo, Joker and Jackanapes decide to do something about it. During a fly-by inspection by dirigible, Joker and Jackanapes sneak onto the aircraft, and begin killing those onboard. Knowing that the councilwoman herself is present as well, the Joker saves the honor of dealing with her to his son, even as the Bat-Signal lights up in the sky. Despite the Joker's excitement, Jackanapes is reluctant to use the device they created, and sheds a tear as he turns its dial, causing the councilwoman and her guards to mutate. Unfortunately, the mutated victims turn on the pair, and knock them into a freefall from the dirigible's cabin to the ground.
As Joker falls, he calls out for Jackanapes to activate his mechanical wings, and avoid death, but to no avail. He survives the fall to find that Jackanapes has fallen into the river, and likely drowned. All he can do is laugh, realizing that he is owed a refund for all the swimming lessons he gave the gorilla. As much as he cared for Jackanapes - having saved the zoo meant that he can go back and find a replacement.
- This issue takes place before Detective Comics (Volume 2) #1.
- No trivia.
- Discuss Batman Vol 2 23.1: The Joker on the forums
- Cover gallery for the Batman series
- Images from Batman Vol 2 23.1: The Joker