The Joker is a fictional supervillain created by Bill Finger, Bob Kane, and Jerry Robinson who first appeared in the debut issue of the comic book Batman (April 25, 1940) published by DC Comics. Credit for the Joker’s creation is disputed; Kane and Robinson claimed responsibility for the Joker’s design, while acknowledging Finger’s writing contribution. Although the Joker was planned to be killed off during his initial appearance, he was spared by editorial intervention, allowing the character to endure as the archenemy of the superhero Batman.
In the decades since his creation, the character has been adapted into a variety of media alongside Batman, including television shows (), films, animation, and video games. His appearances have helped make the Joker one of the most iconic characters in popular culture. The character has been listed among the greatest comic book villains and fictional characters ever created. The Joker has served as Batman’s adversary in live-action, animated and video game incarnations, including the 1960s Batman television series (played by Cesar Romero) and in film by Jack Nicholson in 1989’s Batman, Heath Ledger in 2008’s The Dark Knight, and Jared Leto in 2016’s Suicide Squad. Mark Hamill, Troy Baker, and others have provided the character’s voice.