Batman:The Animated Series Wiki

"Joker's Favor" is an episode of the first season of Batman: The Animated Series. This episode is notorious for being both the first ever appearances of the Joker, by airdate, and the now iconic character Harley Quinn, in any form of Batman media.

"Joker's Favor" is the 22nd episode produced, and the seventh episode aired.


An everyman Schmo named Charlie Collins insults the wrong super villain on the road, leaving the terrified loser at the beck and call of The Joker. Two years later, he cashes in with Collins, who desperately tries to find a way to alert Batman to his master's evil scheme.


Charlie Collins, a normal everyday guy, inadvertently cusses out the Joker when the latter's getaway car cuts him off on the highway after a particularly bad day. The Joker runs him off the road and corners him.

JF 12 - Joker threatens Charlie

Joker threatens Charlie

Desperate to save his life, Charlie mentions he has a wife and son and promises to do anything the Joker asks of him. He accepts, but decides not to put Charlie's promise to use just yet. He takes Charlie's driver's license and leaves.

Two years later, the Joker learns that Commissioner Gordon is to be given an award, and decides to call in the favor that Mr. Collins owes him. The Joker has kept tabs on Charlie this time, even though Charlie has changed his name and moved to a different city. Charlie is terrified when the maniacal clown calls him, and drops a thinly-veiled threat to his family's safety. Charlie has no choice but to travel to Gotham.

When he arrives, Charlie is surprised when he learns what the favor is to be: Holding a door open for the Joker's right-hand woman, Harley Quinn, when she wheels a cake into Gordon's testimonial dinner. Nevertheless, the Joker promises to send Charlie home immediately afterwards.

JF 28 - Charlie and Joker

Charlie pays his debts

Not knowing what the Joker is planning but desperate to avoid it, Charlie fashions a crude Batsignal, which is seen by Bruce Wayne as he is leaving the dinner. Just then, Charlie is called to hold up his end of the bargain. Charlie dutifully opens the door for Harley, but then finds that his hand has been glued to the handle. Harley slips Charlie a gas mask and dons one herself before the candles on the tables release a gas that paralyzes everybody else in the room. As the guests watch, immobile and helpless, the Joker enters the room in grand fashion and "congratulates" Gordon by pinning a miniature bomb on his lapel. The Joker and Harley leave, explaining, to Charlie's horror, that the Joker does intend to let him go home, but not alive.

With only a few seconds left, Batman jumps down into the room. Acting upon Charlie's warning, Batman grabs the bomb and launches it outside with his Grapple Gun. Hearing an explosion from outside rather than inside, the Joker realizes something is amiss, but then sees that the bomb has blown up their getaway van.

Batman frees Charlie from the glue, while Charlie explains that the Joker called Charlie his "hobby", keeping watch on him for years and threatening his family.

Batman pursues the Joker through the building, dealing in turn with Henshaw, Rocco and Harley. The Joker manages to escape the building, only to then see Charlie waiting for him in an alley. The Joker laughs this off, but is surprised when Charlie belts him in the gut, knocking him into some garbage. In a rage, the Joker repeats his threat to attack Charlie's family. But, driven to mad desperation, Charlie holds up another one of the Joker's bombs, which he acquired from the van and vowing to protect his family by doing them both in and robbing Joker of the only dream he has, defeating Batman in a huge spectacle or dying in the effort. He laughs at the thought of making sure Joker will only be remembered as having been blown up by "a miserable little nobody".

JF 53 - Charlie threatens Joker

Charlie threatens Joker

Panicking, the Joker tries to talk Charlie down, while simultaneously screaming for Batman's help. Batman arrives and tries to persuade Charlie to back down, but Charlie refuses to listen, as he is sick and tired of being under the Joker's thumb. Believing that Charlie has lost it and feeling he has no other choice, the Joker gives up his notebook containing all the information he has on Charlie and his family. After the Joker surrenders the information, he runs to the vigilante for protection Charlie tosses the bomb towards him anyway. The Joker screams and hides behind Batman, but the bomb is revealed to be a harmless confetti firework. Batman laughs, surprisingly, and promptly takes a greatly irritated Joker into custody. Free of the Joker at last, Charlie finally gets to go home, looking forward to his "ordinary" life more than he ever has before.


Actor Role
Kevin Conroy Batman/Bruce Wayne
Bob Hastings Commissioner Gordon
Robert Costanzo Harvey Bullock
Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. Alfred
Mark Hamill Joker
Arleen Sorkin Harley Quinn
Ed Begley Jr. Charlie Collins

This article uses material from the Joker's Favor article at the DCAU Wiki and is licensed under the CC BY-SA License.