You might know the broad strokes of the Joker and Harley Quinn’s twisted romance from Batman: The Animated Series and other DC projects. But the first trailer for Joker: Folie à Deux makes it seem like director Todd Phillips is doing something very different with his musical take on the characters.

Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix) is still locked up in Arkham in Folie à Deux’s new trailer, and it seems as if the events from the previous film have led to his being put under an increased amount of supervision. The Asylum looks like a lonely, bleak place as Arthur’s marched around by armed guards. But there’s hope in Arthur’s eyes when crosses paths with fellow inmate Harleen Quinzel (Lady Gaga).

Though the trailer features a handful of shots suggesting that Arthur will end up back on Gotham’s streets, the real emphasis is on how Harley and Arthur’s meeting will lead them into musical flights of fancy that appear to be heightened escapes from reality. Waltzing across rooftops, headlining nightclubs, and hosting TV shows are all very much the kinds of things Harley and the Joker get up to in DC’s comics. But the trailer obfuscates how much of what is happening is real, and how much of it might just be happening in Arthur’s head.

The trailer definitely makes Joker: Folie à Deux look like it’ll be a novel spin on its two lead characters. But Warner Bros. really needs to stop playing coy, and just let us hear Harley and the Joker sing already. The sequel hits theaters on October 4th.


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