Nihilism in The Dark Knight

How do we respond when life takes away our meaning? In the universe of ‘The Dark Knight,’ the protagonist, Batman, responds by fighting crime in disguise. However, the antagonist, The Joker, embraces the meaninglessness and abandons all conventional morality from his life. As I watched the movie, the Joker had a scene that provoked my transcendental thoughts on identity: ‘‘Wanna know how I got these scars? My father was… a drinker. And a fiend. And one night he goes off crazier than usual. Mommy gets the kitchen knife to defend herself… Turns to me, and he says, ‘why so serious, son?’ Comes at me with the knife… ‘Why so serious?’ He sticks the blade in my mouth… ‘Let’s put a smile on that face!’ And…Why so serious?’’ (Nolan, Jonathan. Nolan, Christopher. The Dark Knight). His anecdote on losing morality is heartrending, and his rhetoric presents us a thought-provoking question: Why so serious? The Joker’s rhetoric, that abandons conventional morality, influenced me to harmonize with my inner-madness.

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