Movie Content Plus Video JOKER vs VENOM: Why One Worked and the Other Didn’t

JOKER vs VENOM: Why One Worked and the Other Didn’t

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Venom and Joker are two marquee movies starring popular Marvel and DC villains. So why was one movie so celebratedand the other such a dud. We explain why.

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Written by Sailesh Gudipati
Hosted by Ryan Arey (
Edited by Brianna McLarty

#Joker #Venom #SceneFights

Now for years, studios thought that villains couldn’t carry a comic book movie–even though there were so many classic villain-oriented stories from the comics, like Batman: The Killing Joke. Because of this, we rarely saw big-budget features starring these supervillains as the main characters; and when we did, well…[Clip from Catwoman w/ Spongebob “my eyes”].

However, thanks to the superhero movie renaissance of the late 2000s and 2010s, studios were desperate for any comic book content and took flyers on riskier projects like stand-alone movies for our favorite villains.

Unfortunately, the studios’ desperation was pretty apparent––the majority of these movies were clearly just ploys to line the pockets of studio execs [Suicide Squad, “what are we” clip]. Look no further than Sony’s slipshod attempt to capitalize on the success of the MCU’s Spider-Man franchise with 2018’s Venom, featuring what might be the most obnoxious original song to ever be put to film [Venom by Eminem, “Ow! My freakin ears” The simpsons].

But what if I told you it didn’t need to be this way? What if there was an Oscar-winning supervillain standalone movie that had complex characters, an interesting premise, and a once-in-a-lifetime lead performance? Folks, I present to you [Joker titlecard].

I think there’s one scene that highlights exactly why Joker is [HIMYM awesome] and Venom is [clip]. But first, let’s talk about how these movies are similar.

Not only are these two supervillain movies, but they’re also two movies where the titular character serves as a foil or dark counterpart to their respective heroes. (buffy darkness clip). More So than other villains, these foes share a lot in common with their enemy.

Venom is a darker and out-of-control version of Spider-Man, sharing a similar costume and powers to the webhead but none of the “great power, great responsibility” stuff. [kicking uncle ben meme]

Batman and this representation of the Joker are both forged out of trauma and deal with their problems in their own opposing ways: while Batman has strong principles and kicks the shit out of bad guys in the name of justice [Clip from The Batman or fight scene from BvS], the Joker scoffs at all principle and is a nihilistic lunatic that will do anything to prove a point. [Dark Knight hospital clip]

Both movies tell the story of a social outcast. Eddie Brock has just been dumped and fired; Arthur Fleck is weak and bullied, dealing with severe mental illness in an unforgiving and oppressive city.

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