Which Joker is the Best? Heath Ledger or Jack Nicholson?

When I saw both of these films I was shocked on how the two jokers were completly different. The Jack Nicholson joker focused on the comedic and silly part of the Joker which was well played for an actor. When I saw the Heath Ledger joker I thought his way of playing the joker was focusing on the deeper, darker, smarter vision of the Joker. In my opinion both of these Jokers are well played by great actors....but I like the darker version of the Joker. What do you think?
Lenin Plazas
12-30-2012 10:31 PM

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richmondiggy

Ignacius Fritis

After reading this thread, i think you all might as well change the name of this thread to "the heath ledger fan page". First of all, i could care less if he is dead or not, which i think is more than i can say about most of the ledger fans who commented. Just because hes dead doesnt mean he gets a sympathy vote as best joker. But apparently it does get you an undeserved sympathy oscar. My vote goes to jack for a number of reasons. Jack took a role that was restricted to staying true to the comics, which made it all the more impressive, because he breathed life into a role that any lesser actor wouldve made mundane and old. If heath hadnt died, i doubt anyone would even give a crap about the dark knight. Realitt is any monkey coulda taken heaths lines and done just as well. No actual acting required, the script and lines made the character dark and evil on its own. Jacks lines and and scenes woulda been nothing short of terrible had they given the script to ledger. So theres the counterweight. If they had to do each others roles at the time, who would still stand out. My bet goes to the two time DESERVED oscar winner ;)

Jan 4 - 06:03 PM

Jeremy Schep

Jeremy Schep

I deem them equal yet different..

Oct 27 - 10:57 AM

Migs Rodriguez

Migs Rodriguez

As far as live action, I'm partial to Jack because he was funny and sadistic. Heath really wasn't funny, but he played his part well and it was great for the movie.

Nobody beats Mark Hamill though. The Mask of the Phantasm is one of my favorite Batman movies.

Oct 19 - 01:13 AM

Brendan Sullivan

Brendan Sullivan

He wasn't really funny? Unless you don't like black comedy, he should have been funny to you.

Oct 23 - 07:47 AM

Jonty Richmond

Jonty Richmond

Well really, they're both very strong in a different way. Jack was good because he stayed true to the comics. Heath was really good because he was a more realistic take on the Joker, as Nolan wanted the trilogy to be.

Sep 26 - 05:56 PM

teenagerrager

Drake Hendren

Nicholson is better. I honestly feel people say that Heath was better because he died. And that the dude played a gay guy before. Both performances are great however. But Nicholson stayed true to the comics. And that's huge points in my perspective.

Sep 17 - 09:19 PM

Daniel Roberts

Daniel Roberts

Jack is certainly excellent, and he utterly nailed the comic-version of the Joker, but my vote goes to Heath Ledger. He turned the Joker into something so compelling, so frightening, and so engaging that no matter how many times I watch The Dark Knight, I can't take my eyes off him. His performance as the Joker is truly amongst the greatest movie villains of all time.

Aug 10 - 10:14 AM

BobHarris

Rich Aurillia

Jack

Aug 5 - 12:52 PM

Geoffrey Hill

Geoffrey Hill

both were great in there roles for there time - but ledger was in a far superior film version - so hard to fairly compare - my vote only goes to Heath Ledger - because he somehow seems more realistic in the real world (As opposed to movie world)

Aug 2 - 02:57 AM

Andy Bones

Alexander McJet

In my opinion, Heath Ledger's was more devoted, and definitely my favorite. I loved Jack Nicholson as The Joker, it was a great character and certainly the best representation of that character at the time. Ledger understandably took the role in a very different direction to fit into Nolan's Batman saga- darker, more menacing, and way more unhinged psychologically. He was a genuinely scary movie character with a sadder story and more mysterious beginnings. Both actors did a fantastic job portraying an iconic villain, but these are very different times with very different fears to play upon. Still, I'd say Heath Ledger put more of his soul into The Joker than Nicholson did- not to detract from the latter's great performance.

Jul 17 - 04:03 PM

Wyatt Person

Wyatt Person

*Cough*Mark Hamill*Cough*

Jul 13 - 11:03 AM

Daniel Roberts

Daniel Roberts

Yeah, people too often forget just how amazing he is as the Joker. He basically combines what's great about both Nicholson and Ledger and rolls them into one amazing performance, over and over again.

Aug 10 - 10:15 AM

Samuel Baker

Samuel Baker

You know what my answer is.

Jun 23 - 07:10 AM

Kenneth Leon

Kenneth Leon

Jack Nicholson's take on the Joker is more comedic and immersed in the comic-book fantasy, which is entertaining to watch, but it lacks what Ledger brings to the table and that is a depth that no-one can help but watch in awe of.

Jun 7 - 03:53 PM

President Pedro

President Pedro

That is more of a personal opinion more than anything. Nicholson is the perfect example of the comic book Joker, while Ledger is much more realistic. Nicholson is creepy and funny, where Ledger is just incredibly horrifying. Nicholson is crazy but at the same time fairly sane, and is really just looking for more revenge, Ledger is insane and is there to cause chaos and bring the good to their knees and make a point. Nicolson had a backstory which explained his actions, where Ledger had known which made him so much more mysterious and creepy. Nicholson's performance is terrific, but I have to say Ledger's was legendary. In both films, there is a scene where the Joker falls to his death and both react differently; Nicholson is terrified and screams in horror on his way down to his death, showing he didn't want to die and still human on some levels. Ledger on the other hand laughs maniacally on his way down, it's amazing because it shows how insane and sick his character is. Both acted amazing, but personally Ledger gets my vote. Don't get me wrong Nicholson was more faithful to the source material, but Ledger created a Joker that takes the character to extraordinary levels.

Apr 14 - 06:35 PM

Ben Thompson

Ben Thompson

I would say they're at the same level.

Apr 11 - 07:05 PM

Rainbow Spirit

Rainbow Spirit

lol

Jun 22 - 12:54 AM

Hunter Primm

Hunter Primm

I've got to say Jack, but that's just my opinion. He is really funny and he is exactly what I would think the Joker would be like in a less realistic world like Burton's.

Apr 7 - 06:13 PM

SE

S E

It's really hard to decide who was better. The two portrayed the Joker in their own way, and they each did a great job.

Mar 29 - 09:01 PM

ballermat982

ballermat 982

Nicholson was a comedic joker, but Ledger's joker was comedic while also being truly horrifying and insane all at the same time. Ledger nailed it.

Mar 20 - 09:47 PM

Samuel Choi

Samuel Choi

Ledger is my personal choice because he was ultimately a representation of a true villain: a man with no motivation, a man that cannot be compromised. There was no insanity caused by chemicals, none of that bullshit, and while its inaccurate to the comics, it made Joker as a character stand for something more; a polar opposite and a psychological opponent of Batman. Ledgers acting was also impeccable, far more impressive and dimensional than Nicholsons.

Mar 4 - 07:28 PM

Brendan Sullivan

Brendan Sullivan

I love jack, but heath made him look like a c actor

Mar 1 - 09:57 AM

Alex M.

Alex Maverick

As with comic books, the two portrayals were very different but also both spot on. The character of the Joker has changed a lot since his inception. In the '60s, Cesar Romero played the sillier Joker, and the comics reflected that characterization at the time. He's shifted back and forth from silly to dark, but I prefer the dark version. This is because I never saw the lighter version as a real threat to Batman, whereas the darker version was very threatening. I think Jack Nicholson's Joker was the closest thing to a threatening silly Joker. However, I think Heath Ledger's Joker is one of the best villain performances I've ever seen so I have to go with Ledger.

Feb 24 - 01:50 PM

Wyatt Person

Wyatt Person

I agree with your opinion on Ledger's being superior to Nicholson's, but you have to admit, Mark Hamill killed it in portraying the perfect amalgamation of The Joker.

Jul 13 - 11:05 AM

Christopher Chan

Christopher Chan

R.I.P TO HEATH LEDGER

Feb 24 - 06:36 AM

Christopher Chan

Christopher Chan

I would choose Heath Ledgers's performance because he has a better acting and he did a great job doing the Joker.But Jack Nicholson's was also great but his Joker was more based on the comics but the great thing of Jack is that the movie explained the process of how the unknown person be the Joker.All though they both have a great acting,I would choose Ledger's.

Feb 24 - 06:35 AM

Mackenzie Herren

Mackenzie Herren

Ledger. Hands down. You ask this as if it is even a contest...

Feb 23 - 12:23 PM

Leslie Richardson

Leslie Richardson

Heath Ledger portrays the darker side of the Joker, while Jack Nicholson plays the lighter. Both kill and destroy but, for some reason, it doesn't seem so shocking when Nicholson does it; however, the perfect Joker is probably somewhere in between, although I do believe Ledger gave the more breath-taking performance. Yet, his masterpiece is whittling away, whereas Nicholson's role is more exciting because it had to be dusted off and remembered.
If you are looking for another take on the crazed-maniacally-laughing-killer, check out the animated movies, usually they do a fine job depicting Mr. J.

Feb 22 - 11:05 PM

Stephen Adolf

Stephen Adolf

And then we have the masterwork of Mark Hamill to listen to :3

Apr 17 - 08:15 PM

John Russel Flores

John Russel Flores

Sorry, I'm late. But seriously, it's Ledger! He's the best, PERIOD. May God bless his soul.

Feb 16 - 01:13 PM

John Micheals

John Micheals

They are both different take on The Joker. You can't really compare them. Heath Leagder's Joker was a realistic dark one. Jack's on the other hand was more like the comics. But if you want a perfect Joker, that will be Mark Hamill. So it just depends on what take on the joker you like. I like all jokers. He is one of my favorite villains no matter who plays him.

Feb 8 - 01:46 AM

Dylan Kaiser

Dylan Kaiser

Heath Ledger because he lived (and unfortunately died) as the joker, I like nicholson's to. But Ledger all the way.

Feb 3 - 02:04 PM

Jeffrey Ballesteros

Jeffrey Ballesteros

Heath Ledger because he truly portrays the Joker as a mass murder staying true to the comics and in a more REALISTIC approach.

Jan 12 - 09:15 PM

Mikayla Flood

Mikayla Flood

Ledger. He was amazing.

Jan 6 - 08:31 PM

Ken

Kenneth W.

Ledger.

Jan 6 - 08:05 PM

Ricky Xie

Ricky Xie

Both had their goods and bads, Jack's version is closer to the comics while Heath's was more realistic. In my opinion, the one that stands out more than the other is definitely Heath's. Not only was he unrecognizable, but his performances as the Joker were overall very believable and realistic. He definitely deserved that Oscar.

Jan 6 - 12:47 AM

Robbie Obrien

Robbie Obrien

Well, I prefer Heath Ledger. Here are my reasons. First off, Jack Nicholson was great as The Joker. But Jack was playing Jack, he didn't develop into the character of the Joker. The reason he added the more comedic side was because he was playing Jack Nicholson more than he was playing the Joker. Second, Heath Ledger did a better job at portraying the character the way it was ment to be portrayed. He added a dark side, sure. But what made him great as well was his acting ability to morph into a different character other than himself. That is why I prefer Heath Ledger's joker. Both are great though.

Jan 1 - 01:58 PM

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