"The Laughing Bat" is the fourth episode of the second season of The Batman.
The episode starts with a jaywalker getting attacked by a mysterious shadow which has the same appearance as Batman. It is then revealed to be none other than Joker, who has decided that if he couldn't beat the Batman, he'd be the Bat, with Batman arriving all too late for him to save the jaywalker from becoming a victim of a new strand of "Joker Gas", which Batman's antidote apparently fails to cure.
Although the Joker is enforcing the law throughout the episode, he does so through alarming methods, using his Joker Gas to apprehend "criminals" for the most minute and unreasonable reasons, such as cops breaking the speed limit in a car chase, and an elderly lady for driving three blocks with her left-turn signal turned on. In addition to that, he demanded payment from Gotham, stating that "crime-fighting isn't charity work". After attacking the Mayor's wife, Sheila, Joker tries to gas two girls playing on a side walk by drawing on it with chalk, claiming that they are "scum" and what they are doing is "graffiti", but is stopped by Batman.
A short confrontation ensues, which results in the Batman's defeat at the hands of the Joker, who states that if he is going to be the Batman, he needs a "joker of my own", and injects him with a venom which "injects a bit of humor" into the Batman. After a disastrous meeting with the mayor, Bruce Wayne finds out that the venom actually infects the nervous system and causes the body to increase in fits of laughter, which kills his enemy after a few hours. Batman devises a cure, but it requires a sample of Joker's venom as well.
Meanwhile, the Penguin breaks into the Gotham Museum of Art, with both Bruce and the Joker to stop him. After a short scuffle, Penguin is injected with the Venom by accident as well, which leads to Batman and Joker facing off once again in one-on-one combat.
Despite the Joker's near victory, Batman ultimately defeats the Joker by stealing the venom from Joker and curing himself. With the Batman finally cured, he defeats the Joker and tells a short Joke, which results in the Joker laughing uncontrollably, with the Batman telling him (with an uncharacteristic smirk) that "that's the Joker he (the Batman) knows" whilst pulling off the Joker's cowl. The episode then ends, with both the Joker's and the Penguin's laughter echoing throughout Gotham.
Voice Cast and Characters
- Rino Romano as Bruce Wayne/The Batman
- Alastair Duncan as Alfred Pennyworth
- Kevin Michael Richardson as The Joker
- Adam West as Mayor Grange
- Tom Kenny as The Penguin
- Joker's 'secret identity' in this episode somewhat resembles Clark Kent, Superman's secret identity.
- Interesting enough, Batman-Joker and Laughing-Batman are fighting in this episode together against the Penguin - more or less.
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