The Laughing Fish was first broadcasted on January 10, 1993 in primetime and then later aired in the weekday timeslot on April 27, 1993 with a script by Paul Dini and directed by Bruce Timm.
Joker creates a toxin that affects only fish, mutating them into Joker fish. Then, he targets innocent men who refuse to copyright his Joker fish. The Joker also captures Harvey Bullock, and Batman must rescue him and foil the Clown Prince of Crime’s insane scheme.
When you think of classic Joker, this is one of those episodes you instantly go to. I mean, right off the bat, when Joker enters the copyright office, you can already tell that he’s got some devious plan on his hand.
Mark Hamill’s Joker is all over this episode and it’s about as great as you can expect it to be. But not only is the Joker’s plot fun to watch but this episode even manages to poke fun at moments from the 60s Batman TV series too, i.e. Batman facing off a shark….sadly, without the shark repellent.
As the overall story goes, you can kind of see where everything in this episode goes but the execution and the way it is represented is what keeps you going along with it. You want to see what ways Joker is going to keep this plan afloat and how Batman is going to be able to stop him.
Once again, the animation in this one is great with Dong Yang doing most of the animation for this one while the layout is done by Spectrum, so you have two different studios working together on this one episode so you get to see two different animation styles blending together and that leads to interesting bits of animation here.
The Laughing Fish is what you’d expect to see from a Joker storyline with Mark Hamill’s Joker once again stealing the show along with great animation, references to the original 60s Batman series and the comics again, it’s about as great of a Joker episode as you can get.