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Say hello to DC's newest villain: Little Joker in Rafael Grampá's Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham

Rafael Grampá has been growing the Batman mythos by leaps and bounds, and he's not stopping yet

Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham #3 cover
Image credit: DC

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The Joker has been terrorizing Gotham for almost 84 years, but this summer he is moving over to make way for a new, younger, cuter, and impossibly more creepy model.

Little Joker.

In the third issue of Rafael Grampá's Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham limited series, the Little Joker will debut as the latest in a rapid-fire volley of new DC villains that have debuted in previous issues. Little Joker will make his debut on the cover to Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham, coming this May from DC Comics.

“Crytoon is a character that has very little to laugh about,” says Grampá, referring to another new Batman villain he created recently. “In Little Joker, he finally finds a twisted balance of evil in its purest form, and in the laughter of this sinister child.”

Here's how DC describes the issue:

"In this acclaimed DC Black Label (17+) series, Grampá has introduced a nightmare-inducing lineup of new villains, including Crytoon, MOTH-er, and The Virgin. In this issue, Batman's investigation takes him to the deadly lair of Doctorgeist - where his presence is not only expected... but welcomed," reads DC's description of the issue. "Batman will find help in a group of new heroes and their savage fight for the soul of Gotham – and for the soul of Bruce Wayne himself – will send shockwaves through the city from which it may never recover.

While Grampá is writing and drawing the series itself, he is joined by all-star artists on variant covers. Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham #3 will feature variant covers by Jamie Hewlett, Frank Quitely, Bilquis Evely, and Pedro Cobiaco. Here's a first look at those, as well as Grampa's main cover:

“I was really opening the doors to go darker and show what this story is about,” Grampá told Popverse last year about Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham. “This story in my head is a kind of essay on evil. This is a very deep subject, but I’m trying to portray it in a way to really entertain people and discuss it in the comic, but having fun with that.”

Keep in mind, while Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham is a DC book, it like all the titles in DC's Black Label, are outside the continuity of the main DC books - as is Batman: the Dark Knight Returns and its sequels (which Grampa also worked on).

Batman: Gargoyle of Gotham #3 (of #4) goes on sale May 28, 2024.

Batman's Rafael Grampá on "bringing in ugliness when trying to make something beautiful".

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Chris Arrant avatar
Chris Arrant: Chris Arrant is the Popverse's Editor-in-Chief. He has written about pop culture for USA Today, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel, Newsarama, CBR, and more. He has acted as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, the Harvey Awards, and the Stan Lee Awards. (He/him)
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