One of the all-time great comic book stories will always be Alan Moore’s ‘The Killing Joke’. The story revolves around The Joker’s rise to villainy and his attempts to drive Commissioner Gordon insane to prove that “one bad day” can turn even the most upstanding citizen into a madman just like him. The crowning glory of the tale is that the Clown Prince of Crime shoots and paralyzes Barbra Gordon (aka Batgirl) and uses pictures of the incident to torture the commissioner. Overall, it’s a very unsettling moment that has generated much controversy over the years, but according to former Gosh! Comics employee Bill Hynes, it was meant to go down much differently than what appeared on the page.

Earlier this week, Hynes tweeted out some inked, but unused artwork from the seminal graphic novel that adds fuel to the fire of the debate that suggested that the villain not only shot, stripped, and photographed Barbra, but also sexually assaulted her. ‘The Killing Joke’ artist Brian Bolland commented on the page in a blog post and mentioned that the editors at DC had asked him to make changes in the final draft:

“Here’s a page I drew for ‘Killing Joke’. I drew what was in the script. That’s my job. I was asked to tone it down a bit. I don’t know how the person who posted it got this image.”

The recently uncovered page is NSFW, but you can check it out just below the final version of the scene that appears in the comic:

What do you think of the original version of this iconic scene from ‘The Killing Joke’? If it was included in the final version of the story, would it have changed the already controversial comic for you? Even without the original panel, would you say that this scene sexualizes violence or would you claim that The Joker’s actions were simply demented physical acts of violence? Weigh in on the debate in the comments.

Source: Bleeding Cool