The new movie about DC comic villain, Joker, has been stirring up a lot of controversy. The director Todd Philips said “woke culture” ruined comedy and everybody had something to say about the pop culture moment. Some of the things they said were pretty funny, but it was still a lot.
And it ain’t over yet! If you talk about Joker online, you’re gonna attract a certain kind of Reply Guy, and he is both sad and mad. Author Geraldine DeRuiter has been batting away such individuals every since she casually commented on Twitter that the Joker’s character would make a whole lot more sense if he were a woman.
“The Joker should have been a woman. And she finally went insane because too many random dudes told her to smile, so now she perpetually smiles while terrorizing Gotham,” DeRuiter wrote.
The Joker should have been a woman. And she finally went insane because too many random dudes told her to smile, so now she perpetually smiles while terrorizing Gotham.— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
DeRuiter even described what the plot of the film could be with a woman driven mad by suggestions to smile. Batman would be conflicted about taking her down because he is a hero and recognizes how damaging rampant misogyny can be. She also has a new catchphrase. It’s “Well, ACTUALLY.” You get it.
The Batman needs to stop her to restore the order of things, but on some level, he's conflicted. She's a villain. But she's right.— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
Her catchphrase would be “Well, ACTUALLY …” and then she’d just trail off and laugh maniacally.
— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
But there were lots of people who did not get it at all and were in fact completely enraged by DeRuiter’s suggestion. Her mentions were soon full of poisonous fellas who were mad about literally everything DeRuiter had said. Many of them seemed caught up in telling women to smile. While it is a small thing compared to women being murdered (one comparison a man in her comments drew), it is a persistent, weird thing that happens. Most women know how it feels and why it drives them…crazy. Not Joker levels of crazy, but close.
At least DeRuiter seemed to be getting a kick out of the whole thing, even making a Misogynist Bingo Card. On Microsoft Paint.
The only sustenance I need today is fragile male tweets and hot pockets pic.twitter.com/Petq3FrdBO— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
Their fragile male rage just makes me stronger. 🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/UQl3J3zck6— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
Holy shit this is like four different squares on Misogynist Twitter Bingo pic.twitter.com/QDrUiRObqU— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
THE WAR ON MEN, HOUR 21: The women continue to harass us w/ their demands for equal pay, paid maternity leave, and representation in both the government and comic books. The men shudder at the idea of a female joker. Sandwich reserves are low and the women refuse to make us more. pic.twitter.com/IeKNYWmYPE— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
I JUST GOT MISOGYNISTIC TWITTER BINGO! pic.twitter.com/R3hnwj4zot— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 2, 2019
I made this in Microsoft Paint and it took me a very long time and I regret nothing.
— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 2, 2019
Though she received a lot of hate for the “Joker as a woman” mental exercise, there was also a lot of love. Many of the responses were people who wanted to see this version of the movie greenlit and cast immediately. They threw out suggestions for some actresses who would be perfect for the role:
Kate effing McKinnon pic.twitter.com/t4aoW51s4D— Slytherclaw Melanie (@supermod_l) June 1, 2019
Kate McKinnon or Issa Rae— Geraldine (@everywhereist) June 1, 2019
Same— Sophia Gad-Nasr 🏳️🌈 (@Astropartigirl) June 1, 2019
Considering the backlash to a tweet, no one would survive the production of a film like this. But we can all dream of a wild-haired woman cackling over the words, “Well, ACTUALLY!” and running into the night.