Best Joker: Heath Ledger vs. Joaquin Phoenix
Playing the Joker can take everything out of you, learn how Joaquin Phoenix transformed himself into the iconic character, right here!:
The Joker... versus the Joker. Heath Ledger... versus Joaquin Phoenix. Two incredible actors … one role. Join WatchMojo as we pit the late, great Heath Ledger against living legend Joaquin Phoenix to see who gave us the superior big screen incarnation of iconic Batman villain, the Joker, from their portrayals in "The Dark Knight" (2008) and "Joker" (2019), respectively. Come along as we evaluate a wide-range of categories to determine which interpretation of the Clown Prince of Crime reigns supreme. Which Joker performance is your favorite? Let us know why in the comments below!
Check out more awesome Joker content from WatchMojo below:
Top 10 Reasons Joker Will Blow Your Mind:
Top 10 Things You Need to Know About Joker (2019):
Why Joaquin Phoenix Is Meant to Be the Joker:
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    Learn how Joaquin Phoenix transformed himself into the Joker, right here!:

    • Scott Jamerson
      Scott Jamerson

      @Slick Sosig no

    • Scott Jamerson
      Scott Jamerson

      @Curtis Tisberger So you don't go see movies in theaters? Do you rent movies from red box or do watch them on a streaming service? Do you'll up a copy off the web on a clandestine streaming service like cinema he or Putlocker? If you answered no to all those questions then you haven't seen the movie so why the fuck are you even here running you're fucking mouth about it then you bitch troll. and if ya answered yes to any of those questions I got news for ya braniac, then you too are supporting those same chomos and peds you speak of like you're right there, living in the heart of Hollywood itself. And guess what, even if you haven't seen the movie or any Hollywood produced film because following you're extremely limited logic then every movie produced by a Hollywood studios is supporting this den of peds and rapists, just you're presence here, on this thread , unwanted though it may be by everyone probbably, us also supporting those peds and rapis you speak of. It's called publicity. Advertising. You're in a chatroom on TR-my, owned by Google specifically dealing with these movies idiot. I really detest morons like you and I often times wish we all had a magic button we could use just once that would somehow make it. possible for 2 people to be magically transported to the same place so we could hash this out in person the old fashioned way because I don't suffer fools lightly and you, and make no mistake about this, are a fool

    • Scott Jamerson
      Scott Jamerson

      @Ismael Rodriguez Really?because that's exactly how it is portrayed in the comics retard. of course it seems forced because it is. His voice is as much of his disguise as his mask and costume. fucking DUHHHHHH. I guess you prefer a Batman , who when in his final confrontation with the joker just casually strolls up behind him and in a leisurely almost casual voice Bruce Wayne might use when telling a house boy of histo fetch some more wine for his party ' ahh excuse me. By chance have you ever danced with the devil by the pale moonlight?" Now that's impressive. And just in case you hadn't noticed some of the shit Bale did with the character was brilliant. For starters, there's 3 characters he plays'. The Batman, the Bruce Wayne he projects to the public and the real Bruce Wayne. The guy he plays when he's having a conversation with Alfred or Lucious.. And there are dark psychological underpinnings at play in his performance as well. How, when he's in Batman mode, even if only in the company of someone like Lucious like when he unveiled the imaging system he created to find the joker, he stays in character even though he knows Lucious knows everything about him. That's somehow disturbing and only shows how smart and good of an actor Bale is. He didn't even want to play the part when it was offered to him because he told Nolan that the villains in these types of movies always tend to be the showier and funner parts to play not to mentioned more developed and well written so he asked Nolan if he could atleast attempt to make the part competitive with the villains and when Nolan agreed Bale came on board. And to his credit, during the Dark Knights best and only real scene with Ledger, the interrogation, Bale just kind of stands back and let's Ledger do his thing because he knew how strong Ledger's performance was and it was the right thing to do. At this point, looking back at that trilogy as a whole, there are very few people who don't , atleast in hindsight appreciate what Bake did with it & if you don't you're either very young or very dumb. Bale had to carry that entire trilogy on his back and he pulled it off and actually still had a career after it was over an where alot of actors would have been type cast for life after a trilogy if movies as successful as those were but instead he just went out and almost immediately won an Oscar .

    • Avinash

      When I think of joker laugh i remember the best joker i. E h20delirious

    • Scott Jamerson
      Scott Jamerson

      @Stephanie Huckabee You're absolutely right Stephanie but it's too late now. Somebody had to go & let Pandora out of his freakin' box & that, as they say, is that.

  • Indonesian Hero
    Indonesian Hero

    Jared is the best, muslims love Jared

  • Gio Rgi
    Gio Rgi

    Heat ledger is instant classic and true joker a maniac a monster a killer and not a peoples man and a lover so its obvious heat is best. Ledger kills all he’s goons jouqlen doesn’t

  • Javit soi
    Javit soi

    One is the prime while one is the origin..... U jst can't compare legends

  • Hansen Xiao
    Hansen Xiao

    share a little opinion .. in my opinion the two films are very different concepts .. Joaqin told how he became a joker ... ledger story about after becoming a joker .. if you judge only from a side where from evil deeds / evil plans yes the ledger wins, because he has become a joker .. This can't be compared Apple to Apple because it's clearly different versions and lore ... I'm a connoisseur of DC movies ... both win .. but in my opinion should not be used as a benchmark overall ... if for enjoying entertainment I choose ledger because it's cool .. if to get the message delivered I choose Joaqin ... PS: sorry for my bad english..


    Are you colorblind? His suit is red.

  • Jesus Christ
    Jesus Christ

    Joaquin Phoenix is the better joker are giving them points for stuffs that dont even make joker has more sinister the new joker plays an origin story hows he gona make up sinister plans ??in an origin story ??

  • John Butler
    John Butler

    What if Heath ledgers joker was there as a kid seeing Phoenixs joker create the first riot? That’s where he got the idea that people are all chaos driven. That’s where heath got the idea of being the joker.

  • Raheel Malya
    Raheel Malya

    movies cant reach at billion dollar mark without superheroes, action and romance... PHOENIX : hold my mask joker was the movie dealt single handedly


    This ain't fare.

  • Branden Blanchard
    Branden Blanchard

    Pre Joker was definitely Joquain and Heath was definitely better prime joker But they're both so damn talented. But I'm glad that Joquain got the torch passed down basically and dropped Leto

  • Kondzio717

    Delivery and impact were pretty similar while Ledger had maybe 40% of screentime Phoenix had, therefore "Why-so-serious" clown takes the spot.

  • bamadness

    Love both movies but the joker movie is the fuckin shit! So dark and twisted! Loved it!!!! Phoenix all the way

  • The Punisher
    The Punisher

    Ledgers Joker: A movie Character. Phoenix’s Joker: Reality. They can’t be compared, they both play a different Joker. However, both are absolutely amazing and instead of choosing which I like better (because I can’t) I’d rather say they are both legendary performances.

  • Brandon James Roman
    Brandon James Roman

    Let's put this into perspective: Joaquin Phoenix is a great Arthur Fleck. Heath Ledger is a great joker.

  • The Punisher
    The Punisher

    The difference between the two? Simple, Heath Ledgers joker is a someone who you’d only see in a movie, Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker is a person you might walk past, might live by or meet, his Joker is reality.. Both performances are amazing, I can’t choose between the two because in my opinion they play the joker different ways, 1 joker is what you expect in a movie and the other is one you expect you’d see in the news for a shooting. So basically it goes like this, Ledger’s Joker is a movie character, Phoenix’s Joker is reality. And Jared Leto’s Joker.. well, it was a joke.

  • burnoutberry

    Both Heath Ledger and Joaquin Phoenix's Jokers are done to perfection. They are equally good.


    Both of them are awesome actors from each style of acting.

  • Igor Bosnjak
    Igor Bosnjak

    I'm late,but i watched movie yesterday.It's really a masterpiece for a psycho-thriller fans this is a must see movie.Phoenix's performance was brilliant,and i'm glad there is finally someone equal to ledger's joker.But imo and like plenty of people already said in comments: You can't compare them cause phoenix was fully fleshed joker in last 15 minutes of movie,and ledger was the joker in 152 mins of dark knight's runtime.But they are both brilliant in their own way,and will stay like that for a long time,cause i don't think any future joker actor can top phoenix's or ledger's performance.

  • Varu Lucian
    Varu Lucian

    In my opiniom both are great..But, Heath's Joker was PERFECT. The joker we all imagined it on how it should look.

  • drewstae

    Phoenix's joker is showing us the real pain and reason why he became joker at the first place while ledger's joker is a product of what came after that,, what society created,, both are amazing and we cannot compare legend to a legend

  • Leppo Fumika
    Leppo Fumika

    Suicide squad fan be like: hey,where jared leto HAHAHAHAHAAHAH

  • jithin raj
    jithin raj

    Both of them played their role very those who agree with me😊👍

  • nathan montes
    nathan montes

    hope marvel make a movie for thanos story

  • Av Nani
    Av Nani

    Believe me....Phoenix joker is best...

  • Dovahkiin

    I wonder how jared leto feel when he read this comment section

  • Revolt Ter
    Revolt Ter

    Here we go comparing 2 legends again. Who's better? Who's worse? Both of them did an amazing job and that's where you should leave it.

  • Stay Away
    Stay Away

    Is it true that Ledger got himself inside locked room for 43 days and then came out with a perfect real Joker that eventually killled himself in real life ?

    • Stay Away
      Stay Away

      @Igor Bosnjak Acha. Probably that joker Mentalist hit him so hard that he committed suicide. Who knows !

    • Igor Bosnjak
      Igor Bosnjak

      He locked himself in the room and devoted every part of himself to the role?-YES. But did he died because of the consequences after playing the joker? Who knows,but the thing everyone agrees about is that the role definitely changed him,i mean this is the joker we're talking about.Even jack nicholson used pills while playing the character.

  • Ronnie Bonbino
    Ronnie Bonbino

    I'd give it a tie

  • Justin Raz
    Justin Raz

    i love them both!

  • Aces

    Why is Jared Leto not in this video?!? Said no one ever

  • Muhammad Uzair
    Muhammad Uzair

    Heath ledger is the best one

  • Nabisa Nagoor
    Nabisa Nagoor

    I love dark knight joker

  • The Joker
    The Joker

    Phoenix is better by far

  • dragare slayer
    dragare slayer

    They both are great jokers

  • Paul Currie
    Paul Currie

    Ridiculous. Lol

  • Blakkheim

    There really is no winner and your points are all subjective. They both played it in their own ways accordingly to the film's theme/script and they've done it masterfully.

  • GD 123
    GD 123

    They were both brilliant. Can we just settle on that? POTENTIAL SPOILER: Arthur Fleck (Phoenix) is NOT The Joker that Bruce Wayne/Batman winds up fighting in Tim Burton, Joel Schumacher nor Christopher Nolan's "The Dark Knight" He is NOT Jack Napier but does have let's say a connection to that Joker. Other than that it's really not fair to try and compare the two actors as The Joker because they are in fact two very different characters.

  • Ibowen 2
    Ibowen 2

    Phoenix had the worst performance as joker I hated the movie and it has nothing to do with the original comics

  • Udont Knome
    Udont Knome

    Heath is still better..Forget what she talking bout

  • I am Nobody
    I am Nobody

    This not really a fair match up because one Joker, Heath Ledger, was already a full blown Joker.... As where, Joaquin Phoenix's Joker was one in transition. So his Joker will probably might not have the full Joker voice as Arthur Fleck. This is really more a comparison of a full blown Joker vs. Arthur Fleck! Which again, in my opinion, is really not a fair comparison!

  • ElenTria

    We may all disagree about the best Joker, but we can all agree that Leto was the worst joker.



  • Dhanakumar Thounaojam
    Dhanakumar Thounaojam


  • CB Nomad
    CB Nomad

    Heath’s Joker. Done!

  • Leander Herman
    Leander Herman

    Both Ledger and Phoenix were great Jokers, i mean Leto was just garbage he looked like some pimp from a R & B music video didn't scared me and sending used condoms and live rats to it's co stars who the hell did Leto think he was and have the co stars call him mr J. I mean Jack Nicolson when it comes to a comic accurate Joker was great

  • lmdo b*tch
    lmdo b*tch

    Technically Ledger wins, But Phoenix makes the joker irreplaceable.

  • Clay Webb
    Clay Webb

    Like comparing apples and pears, oranges and lemons. Pointless. They were two entirely different roles, entirely different films. They may as well have thrown Top Gun in for all the purpose this exercise serves!

  • Isaac Quesada
    Isaac Quesada

    Joaquin Phoenix made the movie very touchy. I walked out depressed and just very sad but the movie overall was so good! I was having sad feelings over a movie. While Heath Ledger made me feel excited and daring I walked out the movie wanting to be like the joker. They both are legends! Jarred Leto though................. Ummm boy you are the joke 😂

  • Subramanian Gopalan
    Subramanian Gopalan

    Ledger all the way

  • Chris Finegan
    Chris Finegan

    Chelsea Smile. Glasgow Kiss.


    Comparing is senseless HEATH joker is ultimate


    Fools : why joker has more fans People : one and only HEATH LEDGER JOKER



  • Hanny Kim
    Hanny Kim

    Joaquin phoenix JOKER IS THE BEST ilove the movie so much😍😍😍😍😍

  • draftsman74

    Phoenix was outstanding! Coz Ledger gave him the blueprint.

  • sajjad maleki
    sajjad maleki

    10k unliked😂😂😂

  • Unknown User
    Unknown User

    He reminds me to Tony ferguson I swear

  • beaverwhiffer27

    If Legder hadn't died the hype would never have been so high.

  • Emilia Alenfors 7A
    Emilia Alenfors 7A

    joaquin Phoenix is the best Joker i think every one know that okey?

  • Matthew Mayson
    Matthew Mayson


  • Viczzz News
    Viczzz News

    Heat ledge is ultimate man with perfect planing , master mind dont compare to any

  • anabolic stephen
    anabolic stephen

    I believe joaquin respresents the madness inside the character while heath portraits the chaotic side of him better Still i prefer Heath but not by alot,joaquín is still a 9 in my books and Heath a 9.9

  • Tre nine
    Tre nine

    I say ledger is #1 Phoenix is #2 and mark Hamil/Batman animated series is #3

  • Stone Artisen
    Stone Artisen

    Heath is definitive Joker

  • Stone Artisen
    Stone Artisen

    Both were different and perfect in their own way Nicholson and hamil deserve honourable mentionsa

  • kikong kamote
    kikong kamote

    I like the joker movie but ledger's joker is still the best for me.. What if ledger is still alive and maked this movie

  • Dawson Garret
    Dawson Garret

    I used to say no one could compete or beat ledger but Phoenix changed all of that. If you haven't seen joker, see it

  • Firearms Training Central
    Firearms Training Central

    It’s not “one role”. These weren’t even remotely the same role. That was what made it awesome.

  • spiritual soul310
    spiritual soul310